What Type of Nail Gun Do I Need – Real-Life Experience

As an avid DIY (Do-it-Your Own) Enthusiast, I have encountered different tools throughout my crafting journey. After one stressful day hammering a patio, I was introduced to nail guns. This tool made my work easier and safer in comparison to using hammers.

However, as I used my first nail gun on almost every DIY project, I realized that there are types of nail guns available in the market. So, when I start a new project, I always wonder what type of nail gun do I need.

These types of nail guns work on different kinds of tasks and materials. Understanding how they work best will make you more efficient in what you do.

Read on if you want to learn more about the types of nail guns and determine whether this is the right one for you:

1. Finish Nail Gun

Finish Nailer is often compared to Brad Nail Gun in terms of being the best DIY nail gun for first-time users and DIY makers. However, Finish Nailer has stronger characteristics, making it more of a heavy-duty type nail gun.

This electric nail gun got its name thanks to its common use, which is to do finishing construction tasks.

Things You Should Know About Finish Nailer

To understand how Finish Nailer stands out from the other models, here is a breakdown of the item:

Why Should You Get It? (Pros)What’s The Catch? (Cons)
Stronger power to hold heavier moldings and panelsBulkier and visible nails may require special attention to cover 
Uses 15 to 16-gauge nails and/or wiresCannot be used on delicate types of materials, and the chances of splitting the trims and moldings
Better withdrawal resistance, making it ideal for people looking for a heavy-duty nail gunRequires more accessories to function

Where Can You Use Your Finish Nailer?

There are just instances where you ask yourself what kind of nail gun do I need for this DIY closet or which nail gun do I need for this wooden repair. To determine whether Finish Nailer is the right nail gun for your projects, here is a list of projects where you can use it:

  • Installation of:
  1. Baseboards
  2. Hardwood Flooring
  3. Moldings
  4. Panels and Trims
  5. Chair Rails
  • Building a cabinet
  • Joining Door Casing and Windows

Recommended Brands:

Now that I was able to determine to know what type of nail gun I need, I struggle a bit with what kind of Finish Nailers should I buy. So, here are some brands I discovered you might want to check out:

  • Dewalt Nail Gun 20V Max Finish Nailer
  • Metabo HPT NT65MA4 Finish Nailer with Air Hose
  • Makita XNB02Z 18V LXT Straight Finish Nailer

2. Cordless Nail Gun

Courtesy: Instagram.com

The most annoying thing when doing a DIY is wires and cords all over your place. So, I asked my friends what nail gun do I need to avoid this kind of problem. They immediately recommend buying Cordless Nail Gun.

Unlike the typical electric nail gun, batteries power cordless nail guns. Recently, a lot of brands introduced rechargeable types of nail guns, including cordless ones.

Things You Should Know About Cordless Nail Gun

Standing next to people in Home Depot, always wondering which nail gun I need, I realize that most of us just need a Cordless Nail Gun for our projects. Here are some reasons you might want (or not want) one:

Why Should You Get It? (Pros)What’s The Catch? (Cons)
No wires and/or cords around your work areaHeavier due to the batteries included in the Cordless Nail Gun
Portable and can be taken anywhereMight restrict your hours of work, unless you have extra batteries
Low Maintenance NailerCarries with it the disadvantages of the kind of nail gun your Cordless Nailer is
Many kinds of Cordless Nail Guns

Where Can You Use Your Cordless Nail Gun?

Interestingly, a Cordless Nail Gun has different kinds, including Finish Nailer. So, depending on your electric nail gun, it can perform a variety of work. Still, here’s a list of when you can use a Cordless Nail Gun:

  • Perfect to use in places far away from electric sockets
  • Neatest way to fasten your trims

Recommended Brands:

You may ask, “Now that I know which brand should I trust?” Here are some recommendations we have:

  • Dewalt Nail Gun 20V MAX Cordless Brad Nailer Kit
  • Metabo HPT 18V MultiVolt™ Cordless Finish Nailer Kit
  • Ryobi One+ 18v Cordless Brad Nailer P320

3. Framing Nail Gun

tampa_pawn / Instagram

If you are a professional, you most likely have a Framing Nail Gun. This electric nail gun is perfect for heavy-duty construction projects. So if you ask, “what kind of nail gun do I need to build my expertise,” then Framing Nail Gun must be your top choice.

Things You Should Know About Framing Nail Gun

Learn more about Framing Nail Guns here:

Why Should You Get It? (Pros)What’s The Catch? (Cons)
Great for tight spacesRequires more maintenance to avoid carbon build-up
Generally can hold up to two strips of nails, around 160 nailsProduces loud noises
Ideal for professional or home builders planning to build a house from scratch or for home renovationsAdvisable for professional use as Framing Nail Guns are sensitive to work with

Where Can You Use Your Framing Nail Gun?

Thinking of working with Framing Nail Gun? Here are the instances you might find useful:

  • Projects requiring precise and accurate nailer
  • For larger types of projects, such as:
  1. Roof Sheathing
  2. Sub-flooring
  3. Fencing
  4. Framing

Recommended Brands:

If unsure which brands to choose from, here are some of our recommended brands:

  • Milwaukee 7200-20 Framing Nail Gun
  • DeWalt Nail Gun 20V Max DCN692M1 Framing Nailer
  • Metabo HPT 18V NR1890DR Framing Nail Gun

4. Brad Nail Gun

Unlike the others mentioned that are electric nail guns, brad nail gun is a pneumatic nail gun. Pneumatic means that it is air-powered, which means it relies on a compressor to perform.

It has become an ideal DIY nailer because of its handiness.

Things You Should Know About Brad Nail Gun

To understand Brad Nail Gun, here are some details you can check out:

Why Should You Get It? (Pros)What’s The Catch? (Cons)
Compact and easy to use, making it also ideal for first-timersCannot handle heavy-duty tasks or thick materials
Can perform intricate tasks due to its maneuverabilityDoes not provide a tight finish
No visible brads/nailsRelies on an air compressor to work
Works great as a substitute for glue, holding smaller pieces together

Where Can You Use Your Brad Nail Gun?

You can use your Brad Nail Gun in the following instances:

  • Smaller or lighter types of projects
  • Involves delicate materials
  • When installing decorative moldings
  • Temporarily attaching things together

Recommended Brands:

If unsure which brands to choose from, here are some of our recommended brands:

  • Metabo HPT Cordless Brad Nailer Kit
  • StanleyTRE550Z Brad Nail Gun
  • Craftsman C3 Brad Nailer

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