Best Hardwood Floor Nailer In 2022/2023

The parent article of this Best Hardwood Floor Nailer guide can be found here – so, you can read more about floor nailers in general there.

When we say hardwood floors – we are talking materials like Maple, Pecan, Beech, Cherry, Oak, Pine, Birch, Walnut, Hickory and more.

Hardwood floors are in comparison to both engineered/laminate floors, and dense floors like bamboo.

We put this guide together to help you pick the best hardwood floor nailer for fixing into these type of floors listed above.

If you are short on time, you can glance over the top rated list immediately below.

Otherwise, if you have a few minutes, the full guide has some handy information that might make your decision easier.


(*Friendly Disclosure – links to retailers or brands on this page may include affiliate links, and we may receive a commission when you purchase through these links)


Top Rated Hardwood Floor Nailer List


Best Cheap 18 Gauge Hardwood Floor Nailer – Freeman PFBC940 (on Amazon)

Best Cheap 15.5 & 16 Gauge Hardwood Floor Nailer – NuMax SFL618 (on Amazon)


Best Hardwood Floor Nailer: Reviews


Freeman PFBC940 4-in-1 18 gauge Mini Flooring Nailer/Stapler – Best Cheap Hardwood Flooring Nailer

View On Amazon


What’s Good About It For Nailing Hardwood? 

  • Quite Cheap
  • Designed for use on ¼” – 5/8” engineered or solid tongue and grove flooring, cabinet backing, shoe molding and other
  • Lightweight – Only weighs 4 lbs
  • 70 – 115 psi (consider this for your air compressor)
  • 100 nail capacity
  • Is compatible with – All 18 Gauge Glue Collated Brad Nails 5/8” to 1-5/8” in length, and 18 gauge Staples with 1/4″ Narrow Crown from 5/8″ – 1 5/8″ in length
  • 360° Adjustable Exhaust
  • Tool-free Adjustable Base plates for different thickness/depth floors
  • Air Filter/Anti-Dust Cap, Can shoot Brads & Staples At 45° Angle and at 90° Angle
  • Oil-Free Design
  • Quick-Jam Release
  • Comes with mini flooring tool, air connector, adjustment tools, lubricant oil, an instruction manual, and safety goggles.


What Could Be Improved?

  • A little annoying to switch out the base plate sometimes
  • Not for bamboo flooring
  • Only does brad nails and staples – doesn’t do T or L cleats if you want to use them
  • Only does nails and staples up to 1-5/8 inch – not built to do 2 inch long nails if you want to use them
  • Will need to buy another nailer if you want to do 15 or 16 gauge staples, nails or cleats


What Else Might You Buy With This Nailer?

Some users choose to buy extras like these with this nailer:

18 Gauge Staples – NS18-125 Freeman 18Gstaple 1-1/4″ 1K Blister 1000Pk (on Amazon)

Pancake Air Compressor –PORTER CABLE 6 Gallon Pancake Compressor Kit (on Amazon)


Where To Check It Out?

View the Freeman PFBC940 on Amazon


NuMax SFL618 3-in-1 Pneumatic Flooring Stapler/Nailer with White Rubber Mallet – Value For Money Hardwood Flooring Nailer

View On Amazon

What’s Good About It For Nailing Hardwood? 

  • Quite affordable
  • Interchangeable base plates for ½”, 5/8” and ¾” Solid T&G Flooring
  • Uses any brand 15.5 gauge Flooring Staples and 16 Gauge T and L Cleats from 1-1/2” to 2” in length
  • Includes a oil, wrenches, no-mar mallet and tool
  • 2.5 CFM @ 90 PSI – recommended 3 gallon air compressor at the least
  • Made of die cast aluminium – quite strong
  • 120 nail capacity


What Could Be Improved?

  • Not a true tool for professionals – but fantastic for DIY’ers.


What Else Might You Buy With This Nailer?

Some users choose to buy extras like these with this nailer:

2 Inch L Cleat Nails – BOSTITCH FLN-200 2-Inch Flooring L-Nail, 1000-Per Box (on Amazon)

Nail Setting Tool – Porta-Nail 42620 Flooring Nail/Staple Setting Tool (on Amazon) 

Pancake Air Compressor –PORTER CABLE 6 Gallon Pancake Compressor Kit (on Amazon)


Where To Check It Out?

View the NuMax SFL618 on Amazon


Best Hardwood Floor Nailer: Buyer’s Guide & FAQ

What Is Hardwood Floor?

Hardwood floor is flooring generally made of solid woods like Maple, Pecan, Beech, Cherry, Oak, Pine, Birch, Walnut, Hickory and more.

This is in comparison to say a laminate/engineered flooring which comes with a veneer surface, and is composed of layers.

Common thicknesses of hardwood floors are 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch, but 3/8 inch and thinner thicknesses are also used.

Pros of hardwood floors are that they can be sanded and re-finished several times, and they are very sturdy and durable.

Cons are that they can be expensive to install, they don’t retain heat or dampen sound, and they can be prone to expanding and shrinking in the seasons.


What Makes A Floor Nailer Good For Hardwood Floors?

Two things:

1. Floor Supplier Instructions

You should always refer to the manufacturer’s or floor suppliers instructions for the type (cleat or staples), length and positioning of the fasteners along the floor. Make sure the floor nailer you purchase fires these types of cleats or staples


2. Capabilities Of The Nailer

The nail gun manufacturer will normally tell you what types of flooring their nail gun is designed for.

Make sure the nailer is designed for the type and thickness of hardwood you want to install – mainly, check that the nailer fires the type (which gauge?) and length of cleats or staples you need to use.


What Is A Floor Nailer Used For On Hardwood?

There is 2 main types of nailing for hardwood flooring:

1. Face Nailing

The first row from the wall is usually face nailed and set. Some people prefer to hand nail these, while others like to use a pneumatic nail gun.

These nails shoot through the sub floor into the joists.


2. Nailing Into The Tongue Joint

The second lot of nails are shot usually with an angled long arm nail gun through the tongue joint of the hardwood.


Types of Hardwood Floor Nailers

There are two main types:

1. The flat guns used for face nailing – usually 18 gauge

2. The long armed angled guns used for nailing into the tongue – usually 15 to 16 gauge


Hardwood Floor Nailer Bits & Accessories

The most common accessories and extras for hardwood floor nailers are:

Cleats (L and T cleats)


Nail Setting Tool

Mallet (for shooting/driving nails on the angled long handle guns)

Base plates (for different thickness floors)


How To Choose A Floor Nailer For Hardwood

Read the installation instructions from the hardwood supplier and/or manufacturer

Read the product description and manufacturer instructions of the nailer to see what the gun was designed for – hardwood, engineered/laminate, or dense/exotic floor like bamboo?

Check for other features on the gun like an adjustable baseplate, ability to fire the cleats or staples you need to fire etc.


Features To Look For In A Hardwood Floor Nailer

What is the main design of the nailer – standard nailer, or long handled angle nailer?

Is the tool a 2 in 1, 3 in 1, or 4 in 1 tool – if so, what are the full list of functions?

What type of nails does the tool fire – L cleats, T Cleats, staples or a combination?

What gauge are the nails – 15, 16, or 18 gauge?

What length are the nails – 1.5 to 2 inches long is usually good for hardwood floors?

What thickness flooring is the base plate adjustable for – ½”, 5/8” and ¾”?

Is a mallet included if a long handle nailer?

How many nails does the magazine hold?


BIG ONE – most people forget about the compressor, but…

A compressor with the following features is usually OK:

Tank capacity of at least 3 gallons (check the CFM, cubic feet of air per minute consumption of the nailer)

Provides 70-115 PSI (check the recommended PSI of the nailer)


How To Use A Hardwood Floor Nailer

The flat nailers sometimes used for face nailing are operated using your finger on the trigger.

The long handle nailers used for tongue nailing are operated by sitting the nailer and baseplate into the hardwood, and striking the shaft knob with the mallet.


Best Hardwood Floor Nailer: Resources





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