Screwing

By
Home Inspector with JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC HOI 394

Depending on what you're screwing, I can go down several roads here, but will take the high one, using the correct screw for the job is vital. There is no question the favorite fastener in house construction is the drywall and the most misused. Now there are many screws that look like drywall screws, but are specialized for a specific use, for example the deck screw.

Dry wall screw fastening a gutterI recently happened upon a use for a drywall screw I fortunately haven't seen in some time, gutter fastening. When ascending my ladder, I always stop to take a gander at the gutters before stepping on to the roof. The gutters on this home were beautifully clean, which helped the screws to stand out. The main reason the drywall screws were so easy to spot was, first they were all backing out and second, they were all rusting.

On closer examination and the fact that screw was rusted through with the top part pulling right out, I could see these were the galvanized variety of dry wall screw. That was a relief to find. After all a screw meant for interior use would surely have the same galvanized coating as say a screw meant for the exterior to hold gutters, right?

Wrong!Dry wall screws used to fasten gutter to house

There are fastener made just for hanging gutters, as there are screws made for decks, cabinets and a plethora of other specialized applications.

When screwing it is always important to make sure you do it right.

 

Posted by

James Quarello
Connecticut Home Inspector
Former SNEC-ASHI President
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC

 ASHI Certified Inspector

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Rainmaker
237,113
Doug Dawes
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Georgetown, MA
Your Personal Realtor

Thankfully there are people that know which style screw to use for a particular job. Thank you for passing on your knowledge of screwing =:o)

May 15, 2012 05:05 AM #1
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Charles Buell
Charles Buell Inspections Inc. - Seattle, WA
Seattle Home Inspector

Jim are you screwing with us or just screwing around?  Drywall screws are the duct-tape of screws.

May 15, 2012 08:39 AM #2
Rainmaker
1,269,221
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

I don't know why it is so hard for contractors of every stripe to understand that not every screw can be used in every application. 

May 15, 2012 04:13 PM #3
Rainmaker
643,241
James Quarello
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC - Wallingford, CT
Connecticut Home Inspector

Doug, Glad to help :)

Charlie, How true.

Jay, They understand, they just don't choose to use. 

May 17, 2012 03:49 AM #4
Rainmaker
229,429
Reuben Saltzman
Structure Tech Home Inspections - Minneapolis, MN
Minneapolis Home Inspections

Drywall screws really do work well for everything... for a little while, at least.  

May 23, 2012 07:01 PM #5
Rainmaker
643,241
James Quarello
JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC - Wallingford, CT
Connecticut Home Inspector

Reuben, They do...on both points ;)

May 24, 2012 03:20 AM #6
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James Quarello

Connecticut Home Inspector
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