LedgerLOK® Flat Head Wood structural deck screws

FastenMaster LedgerLOK vs. 1/2" Lag Screws

When attach­ing a ledger to a rim board on a new con­struc­tion project, the tra­di­tion­al method has been to use lag screws, usu­al­ly a half-inch-wide lag screw with an addi­tion­al wash­er to secure the boards and cre­ate a firm connection. 

But there is a new option: Ledger­LOK screws from Fas­ten­Mas­ter. Should you replace lag screws with this code-com­pli­ant tech­nol­o­gy, or is the old way still the best way?

To find out, let’s com­pare the instal­la­tion process, as well as the capa­bil­i­ties, of these two options.

LedgerLOK vs. 1 / 2” Lag Screws

Process for Lag Screws

To install lag screws, you first need to drill a pilot hole; actu­al­ly, you need to drill twice to meet code. Assum­ing you are installing 1÷2” lag screws, you’ll need to start by drilling for the nar­row­est diam­e­ter on the screw; in this case you use a 3÷8” bit to drill the full length of the fas­ten­er. Then you drill with a 1÷2” bit to clear space for the shoul­der of the lag screw so it doesn’t cre­ate sig­nif­i­cant, unnec­es­sary out­ward pressure. 

Once your hole is prop­er­ly drilled, you need to place the wash­er on the lag screw and drill the screw into the ledger board. 

Process for LedgerLOK

With a Ledger­LOK screw, no pre-drilling is required and the wash­er is already fixed to the screw itself. With a stan­dard drill, you sim­ply dri­ve the screw into the ledger board until the wash­er comes firm against the material. 

That’s it. That’s all it takes to install Ledger­LOK screws. 

How Long Does it Take to Install Lag Screws vs. LedgerLOK?

In our com­par­i­son video, you can see the process­es for installing lag screws vs. Ledger­LOK screws. 

Here are the results:

ScrewTime to install
Lag screw and washer0:26

With two-phase drilling, prepar­ing a wash­er, then drilling the fas­ten­er, lag screws took 26 sec­onds to com­plete. The Ledger­LOK screws took 3 sec­onds to com­plete a code-com­pli­ant connection.

Through­out a large build­ing project or the devel­op­ment of mul­ti­ple homes, the time sav­ings could sig­nif­i­cant­ly enhance your over­all productivity. 

About LedgerLOK

Ledger­LOK screws are a code-com­pli­ant wood screw that has been engi­neered to meet the spe­cif­ic needs of a ledger instal­la­tion. Ledgers need to be firm­ly and secure­ly fas­tened to a rim joist, and the process calls for strong, reli­able screws or bolts. 

Ledger­LOK screws are thin­ner than 1÷2” lag screws, but they are strong enough to meet the high demand of a ledger installation. 

One of the most impor­tant fea­tures is the built-in wash­er, which elim­i­nates the need for fix­ing an addi­tion­al piece before installing the screw. The large hex head cre­ates supe­ri­or bit engage­ment to reduce cam out” when dri­ving the fastener.

Most impor­tant, it’s code-com­pli­ant and has been test­ed and sup­port­ed by engi­neer­ing data. These screws also con­form to cur­rent Inter­na­tion­al Code Coun­cil (ICC) standards. 

You can find Ledger­LOK, as well as oth­er world-class fas­ten­ers, when you work with Fas­ten­Mas­ter. We spe­cial­ize in strong, effi­cient fas­ten­ing sys­tems to make your build­ing projects more effec­tive and profitable. 

Find the fas­ten­er sys­tem solu­tions designed for your project today!