Tips to loosen screws holding foot peg rails?


I have a 2000 Perception Acadia with the original foot pegs in it. It’s a rotomolded plastic boat. I’ve just bought the Sea-lect adjustable foot pegs from TopKayaker, so that I can adjust the foot pegs while on the water. However, I cannot seem to loosen the Philips head screws that attach the original foot peg tracks to the boat. I’ve tried squirting WD40 on the screws and I’ve tried a manual impact driver but have not had any luck up to this point. The screw heads are rounded and I cannot attach a pair of vise-grips to the outside edge of the screws.

Do you have any tips or suggestions?

Many thanks,


Hello there. Try a penetrating fluid. Much better than WD40.

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A mix of 50% Automatic Transmission Fluid and 50% Acetone is an outstanding penetrating oil.
you’d only need about 2 teaspoons of it so one each of the liquids is enough. Mix them in a jar and apply it to the stuck screws with a small brush . Keep the heads wet for about 3-4 minutes to give time for it to soak in, and then try to loosen them.

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If all else fails I grab the 4" disk grinder and make a nice slot for a large straight blade. If that fails carefully grind the head off. Make sure to keep it wet and cool as to not melt the boat.

If you don’t have a 4" grinder Harbor Freight has one for under 10 bucks that works great. A good excuse to buy a tool.

Welcome to the forum Ben.


Nearly always paddling saltwater, I’ve had good luck with vinegar for that purpose. It’s stainless steel screws into aluminum rails, which seems particularly prone to corrosion in saltwater.


Vinegar……….really? I have never heard of using vinegar in that way. Thanks for the tip!

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Or maybe Liquid Wrench or PBBlaster. But try the above first, less expensive.

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PB Blaster might work but is stains plastics and prolonged exposure will soften non-rigid plastics like those used for some boat hulls.

If the foot peg rails are bolted through the hull, I’d try drilling the bolts out from the outside. Cobalt drill bits used with lubrication, low speed, and high pressure work best on stainless steel.


Thanks, did not know that. I use the heck out of it but generally on things that are a lotta metal.

Thanks! that’s a great idea.

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Thanks for the suggestion.

Some fine suggestions, but…also remember that Acetone can actually Melt plastic. The heat from grinding or drilling can also melt plastic. Be careful.