Generally, we use slotted screwdrivers very often since most screws are single-slot screws. And, secondly, we use Phillips or Pozidriv screwdrivers for cross slot screws. But, what is a Torx screwdriver? Yes, it is a specialized screwdriver that is not commonly seen because of the minimal usage of Torx screws. This screwdriver is designed to fit only star-shaped Torx screws. Now let’s take a closer look at the unique features of this screwdriver.
In this post we'll cover:
What is a Torx Screwdriver?
Torx is actually a screw head type introduced by Camcar Textron in 1967. This screw head has a 6 point star-like slot, and there is less possibility of damaging the head because of such a complex design. You will see this screw type used in some consumer electronics, computers, hard drives, vehicles, motors, etc. And, when it comes to Torx screws, we can only use a Torx screwdriver.
Torx screwdrivers are sometimes called star screwdrivers for their star bits or heads. This screwdriver comes with a star-shaped bit that fits perfectly with the matching screws. As it has more critical edges around it, you will commonly see it to be made with very tough materials and shapes. Designed with a unique setup, the Torx screwdriver comes with better resilience and lasts around ten times longer than other usual screwdrivers.
Torx screwdrivers are considered stable tools, however, a slightly mismatched screw won’t work correctly with this screwdriver. You must find the right screwdriver bit size, which matches the screw heads. For example, when you are using a screw of 1.1 mm head, you need a T3 Torx screwdriver with the same size bit.
Types of Torx Screwdrivers
As a matter of fact, the Torx screwdrivers come in various sizes and shapes. If we differentiate them according to their bit sizes, they actually come with a large diversity. The lowest and the highest bit size is respectively 0.81 mm or 0.031 inches and 22.13 mm or 0.871 inches, and there are also many sizes available between them.
However, when you categorize the Torx screwdriver based on its type, there are mainly three types of them. These are Standard Torx, Torx Plus, and Security Torx. More information about these types is given below.
Standard Torx Screwdriver
The standard Torx screwdriver is the most used tool among all Torx screwdriver types. Additionally, this screwdriver is widely available in nearby stores. Not to mention, the standard Torx screwdriver has a 6 point star-shaped bit that fits in the screws of a star-shaped flat head. The design is straightforward just like a star with 6 points. That’s why it is the most straightforward and frequently used Torx type among all Torx screwdrivers. The best standard torx screwdriver set is probably this Kingsdun 12 in 1 pack:
Security Torx Screwdriver
Pin Torx is another name for the security Torx because of its additional pin in the center of the screw head. Though the design is the same as a standard Torx with a 6 point star shape, you cannot fit a standard Torx screwdriver in a security Torx screw for that additional pin in the middle.
The main reason for implementing a center pin is to make it more tamper-proof. As a result, you can consider the security Torx screwdriver more secure than the standard Torx screwdriver. However, some people call it a star pin screwdriver, Torx pin screwdriver, Torx TR (Tamper Resistant) screwdriver, six-lobe pin Torx screwdriver, tamper-proof Torx screwdriver, etc. for its distinguishing characteristic. The best one I’ve found is this Milliontronic security torx bit set:
Torx Plus Screwdriver
Torx Plus is the actual successor design of the original standard Torx screwdriver. There is no fundamental difference between these two without the number of points in the bit. To be specific, the Torx Plus screwdriver has a 5 point star shape design in the bit instead of a 6 point design like the standard screwdriver. Anyway, the 5 point design of the screwdriver bit is called a pentalobular tip. Introduced in 1990, it brought higher torque than a standard Torx screwdriver for such improvement.
Later on, after further development, an updated variant is introduced, which comes with a tamper-resistant feature like the Torx plus screwdriver. That means this variant has been made for the center pin in the middle of its 5-point star shape design screws. Because of this different structure, you won’t be able to use the original Torx plus screwdriver in these screws. However, this variant is sometimes known as Torx plus TR screwdriver or Torx plus security screwdriver. This Wiha set of torx plus screwdrivers is the most useful set I’ve seen:
After all the discussions above, it is clear that the Torx screwdrivers are made for removing or tightening the Torx screws. And, these Torx screws are used in some consumer electronics and automobile components. So, the Torx screwdriver is commonly used in these areas, and the updated versions are chosen for tamper-proof performance.
I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.