How to Use an Electric Brad Nailer Safely

Life being a continuous learning process, any veteran of the manual method of hammering up trim would find a simpler way of securing trim much fascinating. Using an electric brad nailer is undoubtedly more efficient compared to nailers that call for compressed air systems and air hoses. But, what exactly is this efficient tool? Let’s separate the sheep bfrom the goats.

What is an Electric Brad Nailer?

It is simply an electrically powered tool that is used to fire 18-gauge brads. Electric brad nailer can either be cordless or corded. The corded models are cheaper than the cordless ones.

How Does It Work?

An electric brad nailer loads an air compression chamber via an electric charge. As the chamber discharge, it releases the power that shoots the brad. The brads are normally 18 gauges but can be as long as 2”. For an electric brad nailer to function properly, it must possess the following key features.

Key Features Of an Electric Brad Nailer

  • Double Insulation: This is meant to eliminate the need for a three-wire grounded power cord.
  • HI-LO Power: Use HI power setting to shoot the brad nails into hard surfaces. Use LO power setting to drive the brad nails into soft materials.
  • On/Off switch: Allows you to switch it off when not in use and vice versa.
  • Depth Gauge: It enables the user to adjust the distance of the nailer from the work material.
  • Magazine: It’s the section where the brad strips are packed.
  • Air Pressure dial: This feature is meant to regulate the quantity of air that is expelled once the trigger is pressed. The more the air pressure the deeper the brads, less pressure means higher brads.
  • Flush nailing: It’s stapling tacker fits flush against perpendicular surfaces.
  • Magazine Lock: This lock facilitates the loading of the electric brad nailer. It’s normally pressed to load the tool. It’s often confused with another lock at its opposite. However, the other lock on the magazine is there to help clear the magazine of jammed brads.

Some Functions Of An Electric Brad Nailer

  • Crown molding: This is one of that magical fix-it and an awesome way to accessorize your home.
  • Fixing cabinets and furniture.
  • Trimming around interior windows and doors.
  • Installing baseboards and quarter-round.

Please note that electric brad nailers should not be used for tacking up insulation, thin material like veneer nor plastic sheeting. It’s also not for construction works such as nailing a 2×4 of framing a house. For such works, it’s advisable to use a pneumatic framing nailer with a coil magazine that’s capable of shooting 1.5” to 3.5” nails. With that in mind and having your tool then it’s prudent to learn how to use an electric brad nailer.

How To Use An Electric Brad Nailer?

Well, it’s quite simple to use an electric brad nailer. Undoubtedly, you ought to be cautious and ensure that your work doesn’t split. Essentially, an electric brad nailer is quite effective and gets the job done much quickly and efficiently than a manual attempt.

Just like any other brad nailer, the electric brad nailer call for adherence to a set of safety precautions lest it causes injuries if not handled properly. It’s wise to have a first aid kit at a close range throughout. Obviously, even before using an electric brad nailer, you got to load the brads first.

Loading an Electric Brad Nailer

  • Unplug the tool-Place on/off switch in ‘off’ position.
  • Ensure usage of specific brads identified by stock numbers. Any other brads will cause jamming.
  • Identify the image of a brad nail on the tool and slide the brads into that direction only.
  • Hold it upside down.
  • Place brads into the magazine while tilting the brad nailer to ensure the brads lie against the channel’s wall. Afterwards, slide the latch backwards and ensure that the brad strip doesn’t fall.
  • Use low/high power setting while driving brads.

After loading the brad nailer, you’re now good to go. To use the electric brad nailer, follow these steps:

  • Use clamps to secure and support the workpiece to a stable surface.
  • Ensure the on/off switch is ‘off’ and the plug brad tacker in.
  • Turn the electric brad nailer ‘on’ and hold it firmly against the work surface to engage safety mechanism.
  • Apply sufficient pressure on the knob when the trigger is pulled but don’t force the tool.

Importantly, read and adhere to all instructions. Failure to do so may result in electric shocks, fire or serious personal injuries.

While using an electric brad nailer, it’s advisable to adhere to instructions pertaining he work area, electrical safety, and personal safety as well. Below are some of the instructions that will prove handy during the operation.

Work Area

  • It should be clean and adequately lit.
  • Avoid explosive environments during operations.
  • Shun any distractions that may lead to loss of control.

Electric Supply

  • Avoid body contact with grounded surfaces.
  • Keep the tool away from wet conditions and water.
  • Don’t abuse the cord, replace the damaged cords as soon as possible.
  • When using the electric brad nailer outside, look for an outdoor extension marked ‘W-A’ or the one marked ‘W’ as those cords are specifically rated for ‘external’ use thus reduced risks of electric shocks.

Personal Safety Tips

  • Wear safety equipment e.g. goggles, dust masks and hearing protection for appropriate conditions.
  • Ensure you remove adjusting switches before turning it on.
  • Stay alert and sober when using the tool.
  • Avoid accidental starting. For instance, ensure the switch is off before plugging in.
  • Stay balanced throughout. Proper footing and balance ensure you have proper control in unexpected situations that may arise while using the tool.


  • Don’t lubricate the tool. It’s crafted to function without oil or grease.
  • Don’t use solvents to clean the tool as they damage the plastic parts. Instead, use a clean cloth for removal of any dirt.

Clearing a Jammed Brad Nail

Generally, this tool should not jam if properly loaded, cleaned and the correct size of the brad nails are used. In case of a jam, unplug it and remove any removing brad nails and reload with new brad nails.


Ultimately, nothing is permanent under the sun. Considering this, this tool will also depreciate after some time. To cater for that, servicing by a competent mechanic is wise. Else, if in search of a comfortable tool that will reduce hand fatigue, this is the perfect choice that’s guaranteed to keep your frustrations at bay.

Emily Floate

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments

Leave a Reply:

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This