5 Best Roofing Nailers of 2018 | Roofing Nailer Reviews

Roofing Nailer Reviews

As its name suggests, a roofing nailer is a pneumatic nailer used for nailing roofing materials. Roofing nailers usually come with a coil magazine for faster nail delivery that accepts 15-degree wire collated fasteners. The nail sizes vary from as small as 7/8” to as long as 1-3/4”. Almost all models are air-powered (pneumatic) and require 70 - 120PSI of pressure to work making them very powerful nailers.

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Product Name

Magazine

Nail length

Rating

Current Price

Bostitch RN46-1 Coil Roofing Nailer

1. Bostitch RN46-1 Coil Roofing Nailer

120

3/4 - 1-3/4 in

4.5

Hitachi NV45AB2 Coil Roofing Nailer

2. Hitachi NV45AB2 Coil Roofing Nailer

120

7/8 - 1-3/4 in

4.4

Senco Roof Pro 455XP Roofing Nailer

3. Senco Roof Pro 455XP Roofing Nailer

120

3/4 - 1-3/4 in

4.4

DEWALT DWFP12658 Roofing Nailer

4. DeWalt DWFP12658 Roofing Nailer

120

3/4 - 1-3/4 in

4.3

WEN 61782 Roofing Nailer

5. Wen 61782 Roofing Nailer

120

7/8 - 1-3/4 in

4.2

#1. Bostitch RN46-1 Coil Roofing Nailer

Editor's Rating:  (4.5 / 5)

Bostitch RN46-1 Coil Roofing Nailer

The Bostitch RN46-1 is a durable roofing nailer with dependable and versatile features. This coil roofing nailer accommodates nails of 3/4 to 1-3/4 inches which makes it versatile when nailing different type of materials.

This roofing nailer packs a serious punch. It is able to deliver an impressive 410 in./lbs of force with only 100 PSI of pressure. This makes is suitable for all types of air compressors and you do not have to own the most powerful unit to use this model right out of the box.

The RN46-1 is not the fastest roofing nailer as it can only shoot 100 nails per minute (realistically around 1 nail per second). However, it is still plenty for most people. You can easily change the firing mode from bump to sequential with the push of a button. In sequential mode, it should provide a fairly decent accuracy for even finish work. The carbide insert nose is very durable and should last a long time.

In addition, it has an adjustable depth control that allows you to quickly adapt to the material thickness and density on the fly. The lightweight magnesium construction of this unit is easy on the hand, at only 4.8 lbs - which makes it excellent when operated for long hours. When you want to install shingles, the one-step nail loading mechanism allows you to reload faster since it is a single piece. Generally, side-loaded coils are more user-friendly and easier to use. We’re glad this model has it.

Finally, the trigger mechanism is excellent. It requires little force to press and has a long travel. It is also not obstructed. This might seem as an insignificant feature but it makes a world of difference when nailing in awkward positions for extended periods of time.

Pros

  • Powerful and works with only 100 PSI
  • Soft rubber pads for comfortable grip.
  • Side loading magazine for faster nail reload.
  • Lightweight magnesium housing.
  • Carbide insert nose for nose durability
  • Adjustable depth-of-drive

Cons

  • N/A

Who should buy?

This Bostitch roofing nailer offers good versatility and works with different nails of different sizes. It has a durable and lightweight construction that makes it a dependable roofing nailer. If you require both a powerful and fast roofing nailer, this model is not for you. If you simply require power and not speed, then it is a decent model to get.

#2. Hitachi NV45AB2 Coil Roofing Nailer

Editor's Rating:  (4.4 / 5)

Hitachi NV45AB2 Coil Roofing Nailer

This Hitachi roofing nailer is a popular model used by many professionals who work in various construction work fields. Mostly because of its versatility and ease of use. It is a side-loaded nailer that makes reloads very easy. But it doesn’t stop there.

The depth-of-drive control can be adjusted with a scrolling knob situated right behind the trigger. A handy feature especially if many people use the same roofing nailer for nailing different materials. It is very accurate and can be used for precision tasks like flush nailing or nailing overhangs. This is where you see the importance of a depth-of-drive feature.

The handles are coated with a soft rubbery material that makes it very comfortable to hold and work with.

The magazine capacity is quite decent and can hold 120 nails in a wire collated coil. This should prevent frequent reload. The carbide nose delivery sits flush to the ground and delivers a precise and powerful nailing every time the nose touches a surface.

What we like the most about this model is its ability work with very small 7/8 inch nails. The magazine can accommodate 7/8 - 1-3/4 inches nails which are the whole nail size spectrum of a roofing nailer. Neat!

Pros

  • Solid and quality build - durable.
  • Large carbide nose for accurate and powerful delivery
  • Generous magazine capacity of 120 nails
  • Side-load pack for faster nail replenishment
  • Works with 7/8 - 1-3/4 inches nails

Cons

  • N/A

Who should buy?

This model is one of the best roofing nailers on the market for anyone looking for a dependable solution. It is no wonder professionals and newbies use this power tool every day. It has a nice balance between performance, versatility, and ease of use. It is a little bit more expensive that other models in the roofing nailer review but it is well worth it.

#3. Senco Roof Pro 455XP Roofing Nailer

Editor's Rating:  (4.4 / 5)

Senco Roof Pro 455XP Roofing Nailer

The Senco Roof Pro 455XP has been one of our favorite roofing nailers for a long time. It does not have extraordinarily spectacular features but what demarks this roofing nailer from others is its great ease of use. It holds very well in the hand and has great ergonomics - practical and can be used for long hours without hand fatigue. It is light enough so as to be comfortably operated by one hand. Best, you do not need very big hands to operate this model. Women are more than welcome to use it.

It drives a decent range of round-head 11 GA 15-degree wire collated nails of 3/4 - 1-3/4 inches. Not as good as the Hitachi NV45AB2 above, but very decent and should be versatile enough for most roofing professionals.

When operating a roofing nailer, it is important that debris, exhaust air, and oil does not spill on you or your nailing area. This model has a 360-degree adjustable exhaust for this effect. The depth-of-drive can conveniently be adjusted and located just below the trigger mechanism. The trigger itself is easy to press with an excellent long travel distance.

For better ergonomic and long hours of use, Senco provides a soft-rubber material on the handle. We like how it feels and no roofing nailer manufacturer should do without it.

Lastly, this model is delivered with a case that makes it handy to carry to your worksite.

Pros

  • Easy to use and good quality construction
  • 360-degree rear exhaust protects you and your nailing area
  • Drives every type of round-head 3/4 - 1-3/4 inches nails.
  • Adjustable depth-of-drive
  • Great ergonomic and soft handles. It feels great in the hand.
  • Delivered with a carry case.

Cons

  • A little bit pricier than other models with same specs

Who should buy?

If you are a professional and require a dependable roofing nailer to work with in the long term, this Senco roofing nailer is the right tool for the job. It has ample power for sheathing/shingles and general roofing tasks. With the right adjustment, it can even be used for sensitive work like installing overhangs.

#4. DeWalt DWFP12658 Roofing Nailer

Editor's Rating:  (4.3 / 5)

DEWALT DWFP12658 Roofing Nailer

This DeWalt roofing nailer is a good example how an excellent roofing nailer with excellent specs can also have an excellent price. The build quality in this unit is superb and it should easily withstand the daily challenges of heavy-duty roof nailing.

The shingle guide located right beside the trigger mechanism makes it easy to adjust the depth-of-drive. The firing mechanism is equally easy to adjust and the unit can perform both bump and sequential with the push of a button. Very handy on the job where you need both accuracy and speed at varying degrees.

The handles are coated with a thick elastomer that makes it very comfortable to hold. Furthermore, handling is boosted thanks to molded patterns.

This model accepts 120 round-head nails of 3/4 - 1-3/4 inches for less frequent reloads. Reloading it quite easy thanks to the side-loaded canister than easily opens with the pull of a latch.

Lastly, the dive nose is non-skid making it ideal for nailing slippery grounds. It is also fairly large for added stability and performance.

Pros

  • Excellent price to performance ratio
  • Great overall quality and durable build construction
  • Easy depth-of-drive adjustment
  • Magazine capacity of 120 3/4 - 1-3/4 inches nails
  • Large non-skid nose

Cons

  • Some customers experience a wiggling of the shingle guide. Not a big issue but worth mentioning.

Who should buy?

Overall, we like the ease of use, performance, and price of this unit. It has a very good price to performance ratio and this roofing nailer from Dewalt offers good value for money for both professionals and newbies alike.

#5. Wen 61782 Roofing Nailer

Editor's Rating:  (4.2 / 5)

WEN 61782 Roofing Nailer

This roofing nailer has a more modest built construction as it is an entry-level roofing nailer. Despite this, it still offers fairly competitive features that makes it worth the consideration. 

Amazingly, this model drives 7/8 to 1-3/4 inches round-head nails which makes it compete directly with the Hitachi NV45AB2, which is one of the rare professional roofing nailers that drives 7/8” nails. But it definitely pales in comparison with the Hitachi NV45AB2. They are totally not in the same league.

​The build construction is a big issue in this model. A roofing nailer needs to be solidly built with quality materials. Else, it will not withstand the powerful pressure exerted at the nose. As expected, this model fails almost entirely in being a roofing nailer. It is fragile and despite the magnesium housing, it feels more like a toy than a power tool.

​It accommodates 120 nails but the replenishing the coil pack is not seamless and easy as other models in this roofing nailer review. Mostly because of cheap construction.

​Pros

  • 120 nails coil pack
  • Accomodates 7/8 - 1-3/4 inches nails
  • Cheap price

Cons

  • It has a cheap construction

Who should buy?

Beginners with low budget should buy this product.

What Is the Best Roofing Nailer?

If we were to make a recommendation for professional use, the Hitachi NV45AB2 win our heart. It has a solid construction and easy to make adjustments like the depth-of-drive. It feels and performs as a professional and robust roofing nailer without any significant problem. The only caveat is that it is a little bit pricier than other models in this review. Even if you are a beginner, Hitachi NV45AB2 is easy and straightforward to use.

If you are on a tighter budget, the DeWalt DWFP12658 is an excellent performer at significantly less than the Hitachi NV45AB2. It can even be used for professional roofing. Whatever be the case, cheap is not always the best and you should avoid ultra-budget models when it comes to roofing nailers. Models like the WEN 61782 will sadly not be dependable in the long term and you will end up spending more trying to find a replacement.

What to Look for When Buying Roofing Nailer

Before going ahead and buying your roofing nailer, here are some factors to take into consideration. They will prevent you from making an expensive mistake as roofing nailers are not the cheapest power tools.

#1. Weight and Balance

Since you will most likely work for hours with your roofing nailer, it should be easy on your hands. It should have:

  • A comfortable weight of no more than 5.5 lbs (or around that)
  • Ergonomic form factor with comfortable rubber handles
  • Feel balanced and fit well in the hand.

Most roofing nailers have comfortable handles, and even if you have small hands this should not prevent you from using it.

#2. Nailing Speed

This aspect is essential and your choice for a roofing nailer will deeply depend on the type of job you have at hand. If you need fast contact nailing, aim for a roofing nailer with a fire rate of at least 1 nail/second. The more the better. The ability and ease of changing from sequential to bump mode must also be considered.

#3. Nail Size

The roofing nailer needs to accommodate a wide variety of nail sizes. One that can host 3/4 - 1-3/4 inches should be versatile enough for most roofing tasks. Going with a model that offers the small nail size, as in 7/ inch” is not always important unless you will be using this size. Again, it will largely depend on the type of material you work on and task you have at hand.

#4. Depth of Drive 

Different roofing material will require a different nailing depth. It will depend on the material thickness and nail size you use. Your device needs to provide a way to adjust of the depth-of-drive and make it as easy as possible. Some models even have a scrolling knob just below (or beside) the trigger mechanism for the best ease of use.

#5. Magazine Design

Some models come in a 2-piece design that requires you to open 2 hinged pieces to reload. This is time-consuming and not very user-friendly, especially when working in an awkward position on roofs. Aim for a single piece coil cover. All that is required is pulling a latch for the coil cover to come open. Furthermore, a side-loaded magazine design is preferred and makes it easy to open and reload your nails. Some models have coil packs that are difficult to reach and it is not worth the reload frustration. When shopping for roofing nailers, look for the term “side-loaded magazine“ for better ease of use when reloading.

#6. Trigger

The trigger mechanism is what does the firing. You should be able to freely press the trigger with no obstruction. The trigger press should be smooth and long. A short trigger can be quite dangerous as it is a health-hazard that can shoot nails on the slightest touch. You don’t want that!

#7. Nose Dive Shape

The nose dive should be perfectly flat and sit flush on the ground. It should also be large as this offers more stability, performance and control over your nailing. Additionally, it should also be non-skid for better grip on slippery materials.

Image source: protoolreviews.com, Amazon.com