How is a drill a screw

Drill and screw correctly in wood

Which drill is the right one for which hole size? How do I drill holes in the wood without splinters? When does a pilot hole make sense and what do I have to consider? Here you will find practical tips and everything you need to know about drilling in wood.

You will find out in this article:

  1. The right drill
  2. Set the speed correctly
  3. Drilling holes in wood without splinters: two methods
  4. Screw it right into the wood
  5. When does a pilot hole make sense?

All the basics at a glance

Which drill and which dowel do I need for which purpose? What to do if the hole is too big or the dowel gets stuck? Here you will find practical instructions with lots of tips: »Drill and dowel correctly

The right drill

Use one Wood drill with center point. The center point prevents you from accidentally slipping off while drilling, the chipped wood is transported out of the drill hole by means of the so-called chip flutes. By the way: A metal drill is also suitable for drilling through wood.

Which drill for which hole size?

  • Small to medium-sized drill holes up to 10 mm: Twist drill
  • Large, deep drill holes from 8-10 mm in diameter: Auger bits. At the front the drill has a hardened tip with a thread, so that a very clean, tear-free drill hole is created. Use one for even larger holes Hole circular saw.
  • Flat holes up to 30 mm in diameter: Forstner bit

Set the speed correctly

Basically is a Cordless drill ideal for drilling in wood - a drill is not necessary.

Pay attention to the correct speed. If the speed is too low, the bore will be unclean. If the speed is too high, there is a risk of the workpiece overheating and causing burn marks.

The general rule: The smaller the diameter of the borehole, the higher the speed should be set.


Drilling holes in wood without splinters: two methods

Every craftsman knows the problem: When drilling through wood, the drill hole tears or frays on the underside.

  • The problem occurs especially with soft conifers such as spruce, pine or fir. You can achieve clean drilling results with hardwoods.
  • If possible, drill along the grain of the wood - this will give you the cleanest result. If you drill across the grain, the wood quickly tears or splinters on the exit side.
  • Secure the workpiece with clamps so that it does not slip while drilling.

The sacrificial wood method

The solution against splinters: Use a “sacrificial wood” as a buffer - this is a piece of leftover wood that you “sacrifice”, so to speak, for your beautiful piece of wood.


That's how it works!

Place the sacrificial wood (red, shown on the left in the picture) under the piece of wood you want to drill into and clamp the two pieces together with screw clamps.

Place the drill bit on the marked center of the drill hole. The drill should be held at right angles to the wood so that it can work its way straight through the wood. Drill through the upper wood into the sacrificial wood.

As soon as the hole has been drilled, set the drill to "reverse gear" and pull the drill straight out of the wood while the machine is running.

The result on the front and back: a clean drill hole without tears. The sacrificial wood stabilizes the wood fibers and prevents tears at the drill hole.

The two-sided method

Alternatively, you can also try this variant to prevent the wood from tearing out.

Drill through the wood - but with caution. You shouldn't pierce the wood all the way through.

Stop! As soon as the drill bit peeps out of the wood, stop drilling.

Not like that! If you drill too deep into the wood, the wood will splinter and fray.

Now turn the wood over and drill back through the drill hole at the point where the drill tip peeks out of the wood. Make sure the hole is straight.

Screw it right into the wood

The basic rule is: Always use suitable ones Wood screws. Similar to wood drills, wood screws have sharp, thorn-like tips with which the screws can be screwed into wood relatively easily. Metal screws, on the other hand, usually have a blunt tip.

To prevent the wood from cracking, tearing or splitting while screwing, one is often used Pilot hole makes sense. To do this, pre-drill a smaller hole into which the screw is then screwed.

When does a pilot hole make sense?

If you want to prevent the wood from cracking when screwing in a screw, pre-drilling is always useful. We urgently recommend pre-drilling, especially for larger holes from about 5 mm in diameter.

But also with very narrow woods a pilot hole makes sense to steer the screw in the right direction. Otherwise there is a high risk that the wood will crack because it is too narrow or the screw breaks on the side.

Pre-drill correctly

Select a smaller hole size for the pilot hole than the later hole so that the screw will still find sufficient hold afterwards. The hole shouldn't be too small either, otherwise the pre-drilling might not be of any use and the wood will still crack.

As a rough guideline, the Pre-drilling about half the size of the screw diameter should be. For a screw with a thread diameter of 8 mm, for example, you should select a pilot hole with a diameter of about 4-5 mm, for a 10 mm screw a pilot hole of about 7 mm.

With soft woods you pre-drill a little more than half the screw length, with hard woods at least two thirds of the screw length.