With everyone being stuck at home, I thought now is a good time to take those creative aspects of myself and get down on some DIY projects. I have been a DIYer for years and have tackled some projects requiring a nail gun.
And let me tell you, depending on what kind of project you are working on, the nail gun can prove to be the absolute worst or the best nail gun for DIY project ever.
Of course, that is not the only thing that matters when it comes to choosing your nail gun. You can still get away with using a good 23-gauge nailer for quite a few of your DIYs until you take on other projects like making a fence.
So, as I have constantly been spending my time keeping myself busy with DIY projects, I thought I would share with you some of my favorite tools to use and why you should try them out too.
8 Best Nail Gun for DIY Project Reviews
Okay, here we are; the top 8 nail guns I recommend for DIY projects. If you have a project in mind already, remember it while reading through to make things quicker.
1. PORTER-CABLE 20V MAX Cordless Brad Nailer Kit
If you are looking for a simple, efficient, and inexpensive battery-powered brad nailer for your DIY projects, then I recommend this as the best nail gun for home use.
It is battery-powered, so you don’t need to attach it to a hose, or use a compressor or get an expensive gas cartridge, etc. You simply need to charge the battery to the full, and you are ready to start your project.
The battery used is a 1.5 Ah 20-volt MAX lithium-ion battery. It offers a good amount of power and pressure to the tool and also lasts much longer than a Nickel-Cadmium battery.
Moreover, it offers a depth adjustment wheel so you can countersink the nails as per your project’s needs. Plus, the tool uses 18-gauge brad nails, which are perfect for the job.
To make things even better, the tool comes with a tool-free release lever along with a jam release! This can solve most of the bigger problems in using a nail gun, including jams, saving you a lot of time and effort.
- Battery-powered; doesn’t require extra attachment or power
- Offers depth adjustment wheel for accuracy
- Includes a tool-free release lever
- Prevents the tool from jamming
- Uses 18-gauge brad or pin nails
- Might deliver slight recoils
- The flashlight’s location renders it almost useless
2. Metabo HPT NP35AM 1-3/8 in. 23-Gauge Micro Pin Nailer
Being Pro Preferred for 7 years in a row starting from 2014, this is the best nail gun for home projects and has won the hearts of many professionals and DIYers alike. If the reputation of the product matters to you, then look no further than this.
The magazine of the tool offers automatic adjustment to various lengths of pin nails. They are 1 inch, 5/8 inches, 1 3/8 inches, ¾ inches, and 1 3/16 inches in length, so you can try out whichever suits perfectly for your DIYs.
Besides that, weighing just 2 pounds or 0.9 kilograms, it is a lightweight pin nailer that you can comfortably use for hours without pain. It also gives it a beginner-friendly quality if you are just getting started with the tool.
Moreover, the nail gun comes with two or dual triggers that stop you from pressing the trigger on accident. You have to put a little more pressure on it than your average nail gun to fire the pin nails.
In this way, you can calculate the position you will be firing the nail while pressing the trigger for a more accurate shot than ever.
- The magazine supports pin length auto adjusting
- Good for small and big DIY projects
- Dual triggers provide more accuracy and security
- Preferred by professionals since 2014
- Might need to adjust the tool’s nose for accuracy
3. NuMax SFR2190 21º Full Round Head Framing Nailer
This round head framing nailer is one versatile tool as it can not only be used for framing but also for many other purposes, including sheathing, wood fencing, roof decking, and much more.
It is a pneumatic nailer, so it uses air to fire the brad nails. But not only that, it has an adjustable 360-degree air exhaust which you can use to blow out the debris from the workspace. But be careful not to put your face near the tool, or else it might blow the dust in your face.
The whole body of the nail gun has been constructed from magnesium. So, it is very lightweight and durable.
Besides that, it is suitable for both home DIY projects and professional construction contractors. Plus, you can hold and use it comfortably thanks to its secure ergonomic handle.
Since the tool features a no-mar or damage tip and the depth adjuster, it gets its versatility for being adaptable for a variety of working surfaces. The manufacturer recommends an air delivery of minimum 2.5 SCFM at 90 PSI.
- Has an adjustable 360-degree air exhaust to blow out the debris
- Constructed from very lightweight and durable magnesium
- Suitable for home DIY projects and professional construction contractors
- Offers an ergonomic handle design
- Adaptable to a variety of working surfaces
- Only allows plastic-coated pin nails
4. BOSTITCH RN46-1 Coil Roofing Nailer
If you are looking for a long-lasting, consistently great performing coil nailer, then this one checks all the boxes for all your DIY construction works and, of course, for professionals as well.
You can use it for not only roofing but also on insulation boards, exterior drywall, fiber cement applications, and much more. It is a must-have tool for roofers, professional construction workers, builders, etc.
This pneumatic coil roofing nailer can deliver up to 410 inches per pound of force at 100 PSI. Its operating pressure starts from 70 to the highest of 120 PSI and fits nails from ¾ inches to 1 ¾ inch in length.
It also offers many useful features such as adjustable depth control, wear guards for the body and magazine, a side-load canister, and around the driver. All of these contribute to making it easier to use while also maintaining a high-performance rate.
As for its construction, it has a lightweight aluminum body along with using carbide tips. This increases the longevity of the tips.
- Delivers up to a powerful 410 inches per pounds of force at 100 PSI
- Offers wear guards for the body and magazine
- Uses lightweight aluminum for construction
- Fits nail length from ¾ inches to 1 ¾ inch
- Great to use on roofing, insulation board, exterior drywall, etc.
- Doesn’t have a sequential tip and will double fire without practice
5. NuMax SF618 Pneumatic 3-in-1 15.5-Gauge and 16-Gauge Flooring Nailer and Stapler
This flooring nailer and stapler is basically the only tool you need for your DIY projects. It has all the qualities and functionalities you require for home projects and also professional jobs.
You can switch between three designs: staples, L-cleats, and T-cleats. This allows you to work on different variety of pieces without having to carry extra tools or equipment.
Besides, the tool offers an extended handle for the flooring nailer so that you don’t have to deal with achy backs after working for long hours. There is also a light strike bumper to lower the impact while drilling, thus also reducing recoils.
Other than that, they also provide a rubber mallet with the package for you to be able to move the flooring properly in place.
As for its usage, it is suitable for upholstery, repairs, fencing, woodworking projects, screen repair, insulation, and more. Plus, it has a quick-release feature for clearing jams along with a die-cast solid aluminum body.
- A flooring nailer and stapler in one
- Allows switching between staples, L-cleats, and T-cleats
- Offers an extended handle to prevent achy backs
- Provides a rubber mallet for moving the flooring
- Boasts quick release feature for clearing jams
- Requires washers for ¾ inches floorings
6. Freeman PCN65 Pneumatic 15 Degree 2-1/2” Coil Siding Nailer
With a stylish design and tough construction, this pneumatic nailer using 15-degree coil siding nails is perfect for many professional and non-professional works. From fencing to installing cement siding, fiber concrete siding, sheathing, decking, OSB, etc., you can do it all with it.
This coil siding nailer is made of magnesium which gives it both the durability and lightweight body you want for a nail gun. Its magazine can hold up to 400 pieces of only plastic-coated or wired siding nails.
Moreover, it offers depth adjustment as well, so you can customize the depth of the nails while firing through a board for your different DIY or professional projects.
Their nail gun, including all their other products, are made, distributed, warrantied, and serviced in the USA. So,I can vouch for its durability and assure you that you will be getting a high-quality nail gun that is worth the money.
Additionally, it offers a no-mar safety contact to prevent the impact from causing dings and dents on the board. Its ergonomic grip and design make it easy to use as well.
- Made of durable and lightweight magnesium
- Allows adjusting nail depth before firing
- Made, distributed, warrantied, and serviced in the USA
- Magazine holds up to 400 pieces of plastic-coated or wired siding nails
- Prevents the tool’s impact from causing dings and dents on the board
- Might show some double firing issue
7. BOSTITCH Pneumatic Nailer With Air Compressor (Combo Kit)
It is a pancake compressor offering up to 6 gallons or 22.7 liters of compressed air. The tool can deliver a powerful 2.6 SCFM at 90 PSI pump, allowing you to run it for many hours for work.
What is more, is that this compressor kit doesn’t use any oil to run, so you don’t have to deal with cleaning and maintaining the unit from oil leaks and stains on a regular basis like with other ones on the market.
Moreover, it doesn’t make loud noises when operating. Its average noise level is around 80 dBA, so you can work quietly without disturbing others around you.
The kit comes with a 2 ½ inch 16-gauge straight finish nailer, an 18-gauge 2 inches brad nailer, and a 25 feet long air hose.
- Maintenance-free and oil-free
- Offers up to 6 gallons of compressed air
- An average operating noise level of 80 dBA
- Delivers a powerful 2.6 SCFM at 90 PSI pump
- Comes with a 16-gauge finish nailer and 18-gauge brad nailer
- The operating noise can get very loud sometimes
8. Freeman P4FRFNCB Pneumatic Framing & Finishing Combo Kit
This combo kit or set is everything, fulfilling all of the brand’s most useful features among all the nail gun types. It includes a finish nailer, a framing nailer, a narrow crown stapler, and a straight brad nailer.
So, it is the ultimate set for all your everyday work to crafts and DIY projects –starting from roof decking to pallet building, subflooring, doing fine detail or trimming baseboards, cabinetry, window casings, crown molding, etc.
Among the tools, the brad nailer supports 18-gauge nails, the framing nailer supports 21 degrees, 18-gauge for the narrow crown stapler, and 15-gauge for the angle finish nailer. All of the tools are oil-free as well.
You will also be getting a canvas storage bag with oil along with a manual and wrenches with the package. It can be the best nail gun for small projects and larger ones as well.
Besides that, the tools also come with a quick jam release feature, anti-dust cap, and 360-degree adjustable exhaust. You can also adjust the depths of the applications for perfect accuracy.
- Set includes three different nailers and a stapler
- Offers a canvas storage bag with oil, a manual, and wrenches with the package
- All the tools feature a quick jam release feature and anti-dust cap
- Allows adjusting the depths of the applications
- Perfect set for smaller to bigger professional projects
- The framing nailer might jam often
What to Look for Before Buying?
Here are some of the things you want to look out for in your preferred nail gun before buying.
Before you buy, consider what kind of DIY project you will be starting with the tool. Depending on your work, you can choose between many different types. I will discuss them more a bit later in the article, so for now, let us tell you which is better in which projects.
- If you need to work on a room, wood sheathing, or fencing, consider the framing nailer.
- For joining larger sizes of wood or materials together, the siding nailer is a great choice.
- The brad nailer and pin nailers are the best for crafting and working on smaller DIY projects.
- With thin to medium-sized material pieces, a finish nailer is the best choice to go with.
- Staple guns do not necessarily nail guns, but you can use them for carpentry, carpeting, upholstery, and many other projects around the home.
If your nail gun doesn’t perform well, then it doesn’t matter whether you are a professional or not; the results will be the same.
Make sure to check if the nail gun works smoothly or not, if the nails jam often, and if the impact causes any recoil or not. If the latter two are a yes, then it is not a good nail gun, and you should look out for more.
As for durability, prioritize nail guns made of aluminum as they are tougher and lightweight. Avoid flimsy plastic parts, especially the trigger, as they can break very quickly.
Look out for safety tips and other useful features like jam release, dry-fire lockout, dual-trigger to get the most benefit out of your nail gun.
Types of Nail Guns
There are many types of nail guns in the market, and I have discussed some of these above. But there are more, and these are the seven most commonly used nail guns by people.
This is the most commonly used for crafting and doing small delicate details or trimming. The brad nails are usually of18- to 23-gauge, so they are very tiny and are not suitable to use on thicker pieces.
It is great for trimming window and door casings, baseboards, and molding as well.
Finish nailers use 16-gauge nails, which are much bigger, making them suitable for carpentry work and joining medium-sized baseboards and wooden pieces together. They are suitable for larger picture frames and other such crafts.
Pin nailers use the tiny 23-gauge nails, which are also called pin nails like its name. They are the perfect tool for crown molding, creating thin veneers, delicate and ultra-thin trim pieces, details on carpentry work, etc.
These are for more professional work and use a unique plunger mechanism that you need to hit using the attached mallet. This makes them more powerful and also gives them more accuracy in firing at both depth and angle.
You can find these flooring nailers in two different types: manual and pneumatic. The pneumatic one uses compressed air, so you don’t need to apply much pressure to the tool to use them.
Roofing nailers are strictly used for repairing and doing roofing works. They are heavy-duty and can drive into thick boards quickly.
There are few different varieties of roofing nailers. These are pneumatic, spring-loaded, and solenoid. The pneumatic and solenoid types are very powerful without requiring much strength from the user.
Siding nailers are used to joining the sides of two pieces, hence the name. They perform better, joining bigger pieces of board or wood together.
For DIY and crafting projects, you can use a stapler gun in various ways. It is not anything like the rest of the nail guns, but you can use it the same way.
You can use them to construct birdhouses to even dog houses. Other than that, they are good for small to medium-sized projects, repairing, etc.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the best nail gun for home projects?
The best for home projects would be a cordless nail gun, preferably battery-powered, because corded ones can be limiting to some people. Other than that, it vastly depends on the kind of project you will be doing.
- What kind of nail gun do I need?
If you are not sure what kind of project you will be starting, then you can go with a 16-gauge nail gun. They are most versatile in size, so you can try out different DIYs with them.
- Should I get a brad nailer or a finish nailer?
For small projects, brad nailers are perfect. But if your work asks for larger pieces of material, then brad nailers won’t do. You will need a 16-gauge or finish nailer for that job.
- Which is better: straight or angled finish nailer?
If it is for simply joining two pieces from the surface, then straight finish nailers are better as they use regular straight nails. At the same time, an angled finish nailer uses a curved or angled nail that works better to fix or attach smaller or tighter areas of the board.
- What kind of nail gun do I need for building furniture?
Either one among the 16-gauge and 15-gauge nailers is ideal for constructing furniture. Their nails are the right size to be not so visible while still holding the pieces securely together.
Now that you know what the best ones are, I hope you found the best nail gun for DIY project you were looking for. With the help of any of the nail guns from our review, your project will surely be a success.