Am I correct in that the IC extraction is used to extract an IC from a DIP socket for swap/extraction in a safe manner? Or is it used for something else?

I doubt I will need this behaviour, however if I damage the socket it is worth a few dollars to own such a tool.


4 Answers 4


If there is adequate clearance, a typical screwdriver will work very nicely for removing DIPs from sockets. Insert the blade between the socket and the chip (not under the socket!), then twist gently in alternate directions to raise the two sides of the chip. Apply gentle pressure on the side of the chip opposite the side being raised, near the corner where the screwdriver is being used, to ensure that both ends of the chip rise by about the same amount.

One "tool" that's even better than a screwdriver, though I'm not sure where you can find one, is the L-shaped metal piece from an old-style PC case which screwed in to cover up the holes where I/O cards go. Not sure how best to describe it. Old-style PC cases are a bit hard to find these days, though.

BTW, I've yet to find a chip extractor tool that worked better on DIPs than the above-mentioned PC case piece.

  • \$\begingroup\$ A placeholder metal slit? I believe mine has some (2005), and a clamp to hold all of them in at the same time. I am just starting out circuitry, so I'll definitely try a few things out - never would have come to me to try it myself. Thank you! \$\endgroup\$
    – Hobbyist
    Oct 21, 2011 at 23:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ You mean a PCI slot cover? amazon.com/gp/product/B000BSJHRI \$\endgroup\$
    – Craig
    Oct 21, 2011 at 23:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ Actually, better than a slot cover is to take a flat-blade screwdriver, under 1/8" or 3/16" or so, and bend its tip into a 90 degree arc. This gives you a lot better handle to work with and can get into tightly packed areas. Smaller tips can be used to eject PLCCs from their sockets as well. Honestly, though, actual DIP extraction tools are cheap and easy to work with; they're usually just a stamped piece of metal with hooked ends, so you don't have to keep swapping the tool from one end to the other and back. \$\endgroup\$ Oct 22, 2011 at 2:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sometimes there's other components around the IC like capacitors that would make it hard or impossible to get something long in there (above comment can help with that) \$\endgroup\$
    – tom r.
    Feb 18, 2021 at 3:50

Yes, you can use an extraction tool for removing ICs from DIP sockets (you can get them for PLCCs too) but something like a screwdriver wiggled underneath gently at both ends works fine.

The main thing to avoid is lifting one end up too high and bending the pins, so you lift one side a mm or two, do the same with the other, etc until both ends are raised flat and the chip can be lifted easily from the socket.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, a screwdriver is fine, just be gentle. \$\endgroup\$
    – endolith
    Oct 22, 2011 at 1:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ +1 for actually mentioning the main problem of screwdriver method. \$\endgroup\$
    – AndrejaKo
    Oct 22, 2011 at 8:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, up for emphasising the risk to pins from levering too far at one side - bending or, eventually, breaking. Sure, you the reader probably won't break any pins. But if you do, and that was an irreplaceable ROM or proprietary IC? You'll wish you'd been more careful/patient. Take the time! \$\endgroup\$ May 2, 2016 at 23:07

Wiha has small screwdriver-sized crowbars for extracting DIL-ICs. With these you can push up the far end of the IC from below, even if you can only get at it from one side.


I've pulled DIP parts with pliers without too much trouble.

The best kind of pliers are the slip-joint type that can open wider.

You grip the ends of the chip, pull upwards gently, and rock the pliers back and forth across the DIPs long axis.

DIP IC packages are very resilient. As long as you don't apply pressure to the leads, they're generally fine with being clamped using various tools.


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