Pointed Screws in Distribution Panels

When pointed screws (wood screws, sheet rock screws etc.) are used on distribution panel covers I call it out. Then I put them back in and move on.
Does anyone carry blunted screws for this purpose?


I used to leave them out and put it in the report unless there were not enough proper screws to hold the cover on…


I carry panel screws, but mostly just in case I drop one of the originals to the great unknown. I have replaced pointed ones on a few occasions, generally if there is a clear risk in putting them back in. I have also just turned the pointed ones in a little bit and not fully seated.


It is more often that I use my own screws to install a deadfront that is sitting on the floor when I get there than I do to replace pointed screws. Typically, there is enough separation between the wiring and the scew location that you only have to leave one or two out.


I carry a couple extra as well but they don’t always fit, especially if it’s one of those old GE panels with the fine threaded machine screws, then I just drive the wood screw back in but I always make sure it’s not going to pierce a wire before I do.


I typically put the same ones back, but I make sure first that I only put them in the spaces that are clear. If that means leaving one or two of them out, I will…


I do not pull them out, soooo. :man_shrugging:


Probably the safest option.

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I usually find a couple laying around on new homes that are still under construction, so what the hey.
Not my fault they’re lazy and can’t “police their brass”. I got 'em covered! :wink:


They go into my pocket as well.

The biggest problem is finding which box the electrician keeps them in,



I carry a large assortment of panel screws in my truck. I replace any pointed screws I find.
For me it is quicker to replace the improper screws than note it in the report.


I hate it when someone else has used the WRONG screws, especially on older panels.


I have an assortment ratting around in my toolbox and usually end up replacing one or two if they are missing. I rarely would have enough for a whole panel. As for calling them out? Definitely if they are even remotely close to wires but on a crappy house with a million other issues and the screws are no where near wires I may let it go. Of course, that type of house usually has a thousand other electrical problems so I throw it on the list of “examples of problems.”


At the price they sell them, I don’t replace them and I only put them back if there are no wires close by and/or if needed:

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I’m going to wait for MP to say if this is Code or Safety before I give my answer… :upside_down_face:


One would hate to be caught carrying contraband.

You gotsa be careful who you buy from online…

Yeah but you gotta watch that shipping fee, that price just triple…

I replace pointed screws with the proper kind if I think there is any chance of trouble putting a pointy screw back in. I don’t want to shock myself.

As you can see, I’ve purchased a pack or two on four occasions in the past few years

My local electrical supply retailer has them for about $6 a box ( about $1 per screw).
I don’t know why they are so expensive. Some things don’t make sense anymore
I paid Amazon $3.10 for a six pack back in March 2020.
$4.40 last month.
they are now $4.63

Inflation is relentless.


Forget code compliant - why would you ever install new screws in a panel? Why would you ever re-install the incorrect screws. I have seen drywall screws into the line side of conductors.

It’s your safety. Do as you please.