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Why Won’t My Nail Gun Load My Nails – 5 Common Reasons

Nail guns are essential tools for construction and carpentry. It can quickly and effectively drive nails into various materials. Compared to conventional hammering techniques, they save time and labor. However, nail guns can sometimes have difficulty loading nails. This can lead to dissatisfaction and work delays. I think you should know why won’t my nail gun load my nails?

In this article, we’ll explore common reasons why nail guns won’t load nails. Also, provide practical solutions to fix them.

What Is Nail Guns Load

What Is Nail Guns Load

A nail gun’s “load” is the number of nails that can fit in its barrel. The amount of nails a nail gun can hold depends on its model and type.

For example, a framing nail gun magazine can usually hold between 200 and 300 nails. The magazine of a finished nail gun can usually hold between 50 and 100 nails.

It’s important to remember that a nail gun’s firing capacity is not the same as its load capacity. A nail gun’s shooting capacity is how many nails it can shoot with a single air charge. The number of nails a nail gun can fire is usually a lot less than how many nails it can hold.

For example, a frame nail gun that can hold 200 nails may only be able to fire 50 nails. This is because the nail gun’s shooting mechanism needs some air pressure to work.

Make sure you are putting only a few nails in your nail gun. Putting too many nails in a nail gun might not work right or even break.

Common Reasons Why Nail Guns Won’t Load Nails

Common Reasons Why Nail Guns Won't Load Nails

There are several common reasons why nail guns may have difficulty loading nails. Here are some possible causes:

1. Wrong Nails

Using the incorrect kind or size of nails might prevent the nail gun from correctly loading. Each nail gun type has different criteria for nail length, gauge, and angle. Using nails that do not satisfy these requirements might lead to feeding problems. Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions or user manual to verify you’re using the proper nails for your nail gun.

2. Nails Jammed In The Magazine

Nail jams occur when nails get stuck or tangled within the magazine of the nail gun. This can happen due to a misalignment of nails, dirt or debris obstructing the feeding mechanism, or damaged nails. To resolve this issue, follow the manufacturer’s instructions to clear nail jams safely. Typically, this involves removing the magazine, clearing any obstructions, and reloading it correctly.

3. Nail Gun Not Getting Enough Air Pressure

Pneumatic nail guns require compressed air to operate effectively. If the nail gun is not receiving sufficient air pressure, it may fail to load nails. Check the air compressor’s pressure settings and ensure it delivers the required pressure. 

Additionally, inspect the air hose for any leaks or blockages that could affect the nail gun’s performance. Regular maintenance and cleaning of the air compressor system can prevent this problem.

4. Damaged Magazine

The magazine of a nail gun is responsible for holding and feeding nails into the tool. If the magazine is damaged, bent, or misaligned, it can hinder the smooth loading of nails. Carefully examine the magazine for any visible signs of damage. If detected, consult the manufacturer’s instructions for replacing or repairing the magazine. Proper maintenance and storage of the nail gun can help prevent damage to the magazine.

5. Nail Gun Not Properly Assembled

Improper assembly of the nail gun can cause nail-loading problems. Attach all parts, like the magazine, feeder, and moving device, according to the directions from the maker. Improper assembly can disrupt the nail-feeding process. causing the gun to fail to load the nail. Always double-check the assembly before using the nail gun.

How To Fix Them

How To Fix Them

Now that we have explored the common reasons why nail guns fail to load nails, let’s discuss the steps to fix these issues:

Wrong Nails

  • Check to see if the nail gun maker has any nail standards.
  • Ensure you have the right type, length, size, and angle of nails.
  • Get nails that meet the rules.
  • Try to reload them.

Nails Jammed In The Magazine

  • Follow the directions the maker gave to get rid of nail jams safely
  • Take out the magazine, check for jams or broken nails, and clean the device that feeds the bullets.
  • Put the nails back in the gun the right way, and try it out.

Nail Gun Not Getting Enough Air Pressure

  • Check the pressure settings on the air compressor to ensure they meet the nail gun’s needs.
  • Check the airline for leaks or clogs, and fix them if you find any.
  • Maintain and clean the air compressor system regularly to make sure it works well.

Damaged Magazine

  • If the magazine is broken, look at the directions from the maker for how to change or fix it.
  • If the nail gun’s barrel is broken, don’t use it because it could cause more trouble.
  • Carefully handle and keep the nail gun so the magazine doesn’t get broken.

Nail Gun Not Properly Assembled

  • Recheck the nail gun.
  • Make sure that all its parts are firmly connected according to the instructions from the maker. Take the nail gun apart and put it back together if you need to.
  • Please make sure the magazine, feeder, and moving gear are all in the right place by paying close attention to them.

By following these practical solutions you can fix these common problems.


Q: Why Is My Nail Gun Not Feeding My Nails?

A: There could be several reasons for this issue, including:

  • Using the wrong nails
  • Nail jams in the magazine
  • Insufficient air pressure
  • A damaged magazine or improper assembly.

Refer to the article above for detailed solutions to fix these problems.

Q: Why Is My Framing Nailer Not Driving In Nails All The Way?

A: The air pressure isn’t high enough if your frame nailer doesn’t drive nails in. Not driving is usually caused by using the wrong size or type of nails, a worn-out driver blade, or a depth change. Check the air pressure, the nails’ size, the settings for the driver’s blade, and the depth adjustment.

Q: Why Is My Paslode Nail Gun Not Feeding?

A: Paslode nail guns need to be cleaned and maintained frequently. If your Paslode nail gun isn’t firing nails, it could be because the parts are dirty or old. There needs to be more lubricant, or the nails need to be loaded right. Take the gun apart, clean the parts, lubricate as directed, and make sure the nails are loaded correctly.

Q: How Do You Unclog A Nail Gun?

A: To unclog a nail gun, first, remove it from the air supply. Then, remove the magazine and inspect for any obstructions or tangled nails. Use a tool like a small screwdriver or pliers to remove the debris or untangle the nails carefully. Reassemble the gun and test its functionality.


Finally, several common reasons can prevent nail guns from loading nails. By knowing these reasons and trying the offered methods, you can effectively solve and fix loading problems.

Remember to use the correct nails, keep the nail gun clean and well-maintained, and ensure proper assembly. By doing so, you can enjoy seamless nail loading and enhance the productivity of your work. Happy nailing!