What Is a Rivet Removal Tool?

Tags: Rivet Removal Tool, Rivet Tool, Rivet Removal, Rivet Head Assembly Kit, Rivet Hammers Are you looking to remove rivets? In order to do so, you're going to need a rivet removal tool. But, what is a rivet removal tool? And, how do you use one? Check out this guide to learn everything you need…

rivet removal tool

Tags: Rivet Removal Tool, Rivet Tool, Rivet Removal, Rivet Head Assembly Kit, Rivet Hammers

Are you looking to remove rivets? In order to do so, you're going to need a rivet removal tool.

But, what is a rivet removal tool? And, how do you use one?

Check out this guide to learn everything you need to know about rivet removal tools.

What is a Rivet Removal Tool?

First things first, what exactly is a rivet removal tool?

As the name suggests, a rivet removal tool is a device that's used to remove rivets. Rivets are permanent mechanical fasteners that consist of a cylindrical shaft and a head on the end. Rivets are used for a variety of different things, including:

Home Building and Decorations

If you take a glance around your home, you'll likely see some rivets. Rivets are typically used in gutter construction, as nails aren't effective when attaching metal sheets together.

If your roof is made of fiberglass, then it's likely held together by rivets. Other home objects that are attached by rivets include holiday decorations, photo frames, framed paintings, and any other type of decor that's attached to the wall or ceiling.


Rivets are also common in the woodworking industry. Wooden shelves, stands, cabinets, and lockers are all held together by rivets.

They're more durable than nails and screws, and they ensure a sturdier finished product. Drawer pulls, doorknobs, and door handles are all also held in place using rivets.


Rivets are used by both amateur and professional jewelry makers. Rivets allow jewelers to join metal pieces together without having to use heat or soldering methods.

Plus, rivets can add texture and depth to jewelry pieces.


The aircraft and aerospace industry also makes use of rivets. Riveting provides strength and neatness while still allowing for a lighter weight in aircraft construction.

How to Remove Rivets

Now that you know a bit more about rivets, let's talk about how to remove them using rivet tools.

How to Remove a Blind Rivet

A blind rivet holds two pieces of metal together with a small fastener. You'll find blind rivets on planes, bridges, and automobiles. They're also used to refurbish cars and put together metal chests.

Removing blind rivets is not a difficult task, as they don't need to be drilled out or cut off. Here's what you need to do to remove a blind rivet:

1. Mark the Rivets

Before you begin removing all of the rivets, you should mark each one using a marker. This will make it so you don't have to keep hunting for them.

2. Grind the Rivet Heads

Next, you'll grind the heads off of the rivets using a Dremel tool. You'll want to grind the heads off until they're completely gone and all you have left is bare metal.

Once the heads are rounded off, you'll be able to see the tube parts of the rivets.

3. Indent the Rivet Center

Once you've ground off the head using the Dremel tool, you'll need to locate the rivet's center body so you know where to drill.

Use a center punch to place a small dent in the part of the river body that is still in the metal. You don't need to drive the punch in super deep, just far enough to make a small indent.

4. Drill Out the Rivet Center

To drill out the rivet center, you'll need to use a drill that comes with a drill bit that's a bit smaller than the rivet body.

When drilling the rivet out, make sure that you go straight into the body. Also, don't try to force it through, as this can cause you to drill unevenly and go through a portion of the metal.

5. Punch Out the Rivet Body

Once you're done drilling through the blind rivet body, you can use a small punch to remove the rest of it. Use a smaller punch and just push through the hole.

Again, you'll want to be careful to not apply too much force, as this can enlarge the hole.

How to Remove a Steel Rivet

Another type of rivet you may need to remove is a steel rivet. In order to do so, you'll need to drill out the shaft using cobalt drill bits. Here's what you'll need to remove a steel rivet:

  • Hammer
  • Bullet point chisel
  • Drill motor
  • Pliers
  • Cobalt drill bit set
  • Safety glasses
  • Cutting lube for the drill bit

Then, here's what you need to do to remove the steel rivet:

  1. Place the bullet point chisel's tapered end on the rivet head's center
  2. Hit the chisel with a hammer to form an indent where you're going to drill the hole
  3. To the drill motor, attach a 1/8-inch high-speed cobalt bit
  4. Before you begin drilling, apply cutting lube
  5. Set the bit in the rivet's indent and slowly squeeze the drill motor's power trigger
  6. Drill a pilot hole halfway through the rivet
  7. Use a bit that's equal in width to replace the 1/8-inch bit on the drill motor
  8. Apply cutting lube to the new bit and place the tip where the pilot hole was drilled
  9. Squeeze the power trigger on the drill motor gradually and drill to an equal depth as the pilot hole
  10. Pull the bit out of the drill hole- you'll notice that the rivet head is still wrapped around the drill bit shaft
  11. Grab this piece with pliers or a wrench and reverse the drill to remove it (Be careful not to touch the metal with your bare fingers, as it's very hot)
  12. Place the bullet point chisel's tapered end into the drilled hole
  13. Use a hammer to hit the back of the chisel in order to push the rivet out of the hole

You can then move onto the next rivet following the same process.

Rivet Removal Tool: Are You Ready to Remove Some Rivets?

Now that you've read this rivet removal tool guide, it's time to get started removing rivets. With this guide, the rivets should be removed in no time.

If you have any questions about rivet removal, contact us today.