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Types of Structural Screw and Their Uses

Structural Screws

Structural screws are fasteners specifically designed for securing load-bearing commercial and residential structures and can be used in various construction projects. They are highly recommended for joining timber elements, metal hardware, masonry, and other construction materials. However, with so many types of structural screws available in the market, choosing the right one can be daunting. In this article, we will take you through the most common types of structural screws and their uses, helping you make informed decisions before purchasing.

Types of Structural Screws

Hex Head Structural Screw (also known as Lag Screw)

This screw type is mainly used for wood-to-wood connections in residential or commercial projects. They are ideal for joining wooden beams, posts, trusses, and other framing elements. Hex head screws typically feature a sharp point and a sleek shaft that allows for easy installation, systems with hex head screws are easy to tighten with a compatible hex driver. They also come with different plating options such as zinc, black oil, and hot-dip galvanized, making them corrosion-resistant and lasting longer.

Washer Head Structural Screw

Washer head screws have a wider bearing surface that gives more clamping force. They are ideal for fixing sheet metal, plastic components, and electrical boxes to concrete or masonry. Their unique design allows high torque application without damaging the screw’s head. Washer head screws come in different sizes and lengths, allowing the users the choice that best suits their project requirements.

Flat Head Structural Screw

This screw is characterized by its extra-large diameter head that is countersunk and has a flat surface. They are ideal for fixing drywall, similar to parts of varying thickness, and load-bearing connections between metal elements. The screen print is easy to install and has high holding power. Like other structural screws, flat head screws come in different sizes, lengths, and materials.

Pan Head Structural Screw

This screw type has a low, dome-shaped head wider than the screw’s shank. Pan head screws are used in commercial projects for fastening metal hardware, brackets, and angles to other metal surfaces. Their full bottom-bearing surface provides superior clamping force, making them ideal for load-bearing connections between metal elements.

Hex Washer Head Structural Screw

Hex washer head screws combine the benefits of a hex head screw and a washer head screw. The head features a flange washer face that provides superior clamping force, while the hex sockets allow easy installation. They can be used in various applications, such as attaching deck boards to joists, fence posts to retaining walls, and framing connectors to lumber.


Choosing the right structural screw is crucial for ensuring the safety and reliability of structures. We hope this comprehensive guide has provided enough information on the five most common types of structural screws and their uses. Look for application-specific screw types, ensuring that your hardware is corrosion-resistant and that your fastening tool is compatible with the screw you choose. In any construction project, it is also important to adhere to manufacturer guidelines and applicable building codes. This will eliminate any failures that may arise due to incorrect use of structural screws.

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