Teenager Sam Curran claimed his first five-wicket haul of the season as Surrey took control on Day Two at Edgbaston.
The all-rounder picked up 5-44 as the visitors bowled Warwickshire out for 247, five runs behind Surrey’s first innings score.
Keith Barker top-scored with 62 after putting on a useful seventh-wicket partnership of 95 with Ian Bell.
Kiwi Jeetan Patel made a quick 29 towards the end of the innings, but couldn’t take the hosts past Surrey’s score of 252.
Surrey were tasked with facing the final 15 overs of the day and finished 33-1 after spinner Patel had Dominic Sibley caught at short leg by Ian Westwood in the penultimate over of the day.
After being taken for a couple of boundaries in the first over by Varun Chopra, Tom Curran took his revenge as the opener’s flashing cover drive was smartly caught by Jason Roy at second slip.
Jonathan Trott came to the crease and batted patiently with Westwood, who faced 25 balls before getting off the mark, in difficult conditions.
The pair both fell as Stuart Meaker struck twice as lunch approached. Trott feathered one behind to Kumar Sangakkara and Westwood gave Roy another catch in the slip cordon after scoring 45 on his comeback into the side.
Skipper Bell and Laurie Evans took the Bears past lunch but Curran ran riot in second spell, taking three early wickets in the middle session.
Having returned from a loan spell with Northamptonshire where he’d made two scores in the 70s, Evans was unable to bring back his good form to Edgbaston, edging to Rory Burns at gully while attempting to play through the legside.
The fielder was again at hand to take an excellent catch to remove wicketkeeper Tim Ambrose for a second ball duck.
The roles reversed from the first innings for the wicket of Rikki Clarke as Curran’s in-swinging yorker trapped the all-rounder in front of the stumps for a simple LBW decision.
It meant Barker joined Bell at the crease and the duo batted well to bring Warwickshire back into the match.
Bell played a measured innings in order to see off the superb spells of Curran and Meaker, while Barker became the aggressor once he’d settled at the crease.
After tea, all-rounder Curran returned with the ball and struck twice to secure a third First Class five-wicket haul of his career to put Surrey back on top.
The hosts made a quick scoring start to the session but the captain fell early to Curran as the visitors continued to display a perfect catching record in the slip cordon.
Barker swiftly followed after Surrey’s short ball tactics to the bowler paid off as the 30-year-old flashed at a wide delivery and found an edge to second slip.
Overseas bowler Patel tried to take the game to the visitors with his counter-attacking style and came close to giving Warwickshire the lead after the first innings of each side.
The New Zealander and Chris Wright posted a partnership of 39 before the former gave Mark Footitt a solo wicket, finding mid-off with a lofted drive.
Oliver Hannon-Dalby had his stumps rearranged by Tom Curran to give Surrey 15 overs before the close of play.
The opening pair batted well until Patel was rewarded for a dominant four overs to give the Bears a glimmer of hope heading into the third day.