How to Remove a Stuck Router Bit from Router | 3 Easy Ways

Getting a router bit stuck doesn’t happen a lot today with new router designs compared to the past, but it could still happen under the wrong circumstances. Here are some ways on how to remove a stuck router bit in different scenarios.

How to Remove a Stuck Router Bit

Tap it out

Before using brute force to drag it out, try to just gently tap it out as you do with a stuck jar lid. Place a block of wood against the side of the bit to protect your bit. Then use a hammer or other tools to gently tap the block to loosen the bit, remember to not use too much force. When you are tapping it out, remember to do it from sideway, and if a single direction doesn’t work, try from multiple directions to get it loosened.

Using WD-40

If the previous method doesn’t work and your stuck router bit still wouldn’t budge, you might want to try the WD-40 method. Apply or spray a few drops of lubricant next to the collet and wait for it to penetrate through, and lubricate around the shank. After that, use your wrench to hold the spindle, with a thick work glove (a must) on your other hand, grab the bit, and twist to pull it out just like the picture shown below.

How to Remove a Stuck Router Bit

Using heat

If your stuck router bit still won’t move, try to use a lighter or a torch to heat up the collet and the shank after using WD-40, but remember to not heat it for too long, a good 20-30 seconds is probably enough, as higher temperature might probably cause damage. After heating up, let it sit for about a minute, and then use a thick glove and wrench to pull it out.

Preventing your router bit from getting stuck

Here are some possible cause on why your router bit is stuck:

Bottomed-out bit shank

When installing your shank, whenever the shank would reach the bottom of the collet, that’s when you should slowly pull back the bit for about 1/8 to 1/4 inch. Just like what she said, don’t forget to pull it out. Here’s our guide on how to install a router bit.

Dirty collet or bit shank

Don’t forget to check and blow out the collet regularly with a blast of compressed air. If required, clean the collet and threads with a soft brush. (For a self-releasing collet, you might have to disassemble it.) Wipe down router bit shank if you find a stain on it, with a cloth and mineral spirits. And if there’s any rust or tough grime you need to remove, read more from our guide on how to sharpen your router bit.

Overtightened nut

There’s no need to overtighten your nut, as it increases the chance of having a stuck router bit.