How To Countersink Screws

A Quick and Easy Tutorial on Countersunk Screws

If you are new to woodworking, you may have seen the term “countersunk screw” used in joinery. What exactly is a countersunk screw? Why countersink a screw? I’ll explain this method and even show you  how to countersink screws!

how to countersink screws

What is a countersunk screw?

A countersunk screw is a screw that is “sunk” into a piece of lumber. The head will sit below the surface of the material and it can easily be filled with a wood plug or filler. Bolts and large hex-head screws can also be countersunk. Each require a special countersink bit for the best results.

how to countersink screws countersunk screws back and front sides

Why would a countersunk screw be used?

Countersinking a screw is one of the many methods of joining one piece of material to another.  It makes a very strong, tight joint and is used in places where other joinery is not practical. In other words, if you don’t want to have to fill a bazillion pocket holes, countersink a screw instead. The hole is smaller and easier to fill. Most of the plans on my site can be constructed using countersunk screws instead of pocket hole joinery with just a few modifications!

How to countersink screws

First, you will need a countersink bit. I recommend purchasing a countersink bit set (<– affiliate link!). This way, you have a different size bit for different size screws. A countersink bit has a regular drill bit at the end to drill a pilot hole as well as a step or two to create a larger hole for the screw head and a plug to fit into.

 how to countersink screws drill bit countersink a screw

Mark the position on the board for the countersunk hole. Drill the hole being careful to to move or wiggle the bit as it can break. I know this from experience and have broken plenty of bits!

 how to countersink screws drilling into workpiece countersinking screws

Insert the screws and join the boards together.

how to countersink screws close up countersinking a screw

how to countersink screws finished with screws

Fill the holes as desired. That is all there is to it! Have questions on how to countersink screws? Leave a comment below!!

Originally posted 2014-02-13 08:00:31.