Correctly Using Washers and Bolts
What Are Bolts and Washers?
Bolt washers are a small, flat discs, usually made of metal, but sometimes rubber and plastic. You insert this disc underneath the head of a bolt before fastening. When tightened, the washer’s function is to disperse pressure evenly between two items. In effect, it acts as a spacer or seal with the bolt fasteners.
The “bolt” in bolts and washers acts as a small fastener. It connects or joins up two surfaces or items. Metal usually makes up the material used in bolts. Bolts are also sometimes referred to as screws, though this is incorrect.
Bolt fasteners differ from screws in a few ways. For example, a bolt generally has threads and a flattened head and bottom. Screws mate with pre-made internal threading, or create their own threading. This depends on the design used.
Sizing Bolts and Bolt Washers
You’ll need to correctly size the bolts and bolt washers to the mounting hole. The manufacturer’s documentation should contain information relevant to the mounting hole. Using this, you can find the right sized bolt fasteners for the hole. If you don’t know the hole diameter, try out different sized bolts until you find the right one.
You will also need to size the washers and bolts in a correct manner. The washer should fit around the bolt shaft, while sliding up to the head. Keep in mind, this should not be a snug fit.
Working With Bolts and Bolt Washers
For correct installation, you will first need to insert the bolt into the washer. Next slide the bolts and washers into the appropriate mounting holes. After threading the bolt into the hole, begin turning the head of the bolt. Tighten the bolt down to the washer until the head contacts the washer.
Use a torque wrench to tighten the bolt, if necessary. To do so, place the torque wrench over the head of the bolt. Then, turn it until the torque wrench pops and gives you a reading. This should ensure proper tightening for the washer and bolts.