In this article, we'll be going through everything you need to know about the differences between a siding nailer and a roofing nailer. We'll also be discussing the pros and cons of Almost all the nailers look similar but there are some subtle differences between them. Each nailer has been designed for a specific purpose and has a different way of working. When it comes to dealing with carpentry and roofing works, two types of nailers are widely used i.e., siding nailers and roofing nailers.
Although both of them look quite similar, there are some fundamental differences between the working of these two kinds of nailers. Each nailer has its advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, it is essential to know about these differences before deciding which one to use for your specific needs.
In this article, we'll be going through everything you need to know about the differences between a siding nailer and a roofing nailer. We'll also be discussing the pros and cons of each kind of nailer so that you can make an informed decision about which one is better suited for your needs.
Our Top Picks
Best Roofing Nailer
- Extremely well built and durable
- Designed for speed, can shoots 10 nails per second
- Accurate nailing and reloading is very easy too
Best Siding Nailer
- Easy to load, and use
- Working great for cedar and hardie concrete fiber siding
- Magazine holds up to 300 nails
Siding Nailer Features, Pros & Cons
The first nailer we have is the siding nailer. Siding nailers are designed for attaching siding to the exterior of a house.
A siding nailer is a coiler nailer used to install siding on exterior walls at its core. The function in the same basic manner as roofing nailers and appear identical. The most significant difference between these two types of nail guns is in the nails they fire.
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It means that a siding nailer can be used for various purposes such as installing fiber cement siding, installing vinyl siding, and even attaching foam insulation to the exterior walls.
Siding nailers are also quite versatile and can be used for a variety of other applications such as installing soffits, and fascias, and even for doing some light framing work.
Siding nailers mostly use longer nails and have a larger magazine capacity as compared to roofing nailers. This is because the nails need to penetrate deeper into the siding material, and a larger magazine capacity is required to avoid frequent reloading. You can also use nails of different sizes so that you can adjust the depth of penetration according to your needs.
Siding nailers have a few disadvantages as well. They can be a bit pricey and are not as widely available as roofing nailers. Siding nailers are also a bit bulkier and heavier than roofing nailers, which can make them a bit difficult to maneuver.
Read Also: Angled vs Straight Finish Nailer
Roofing Nailer Features, Pros & Cons
So now that we have looked into the features of siding nailers, let's take a look at what a roofing nailer has to offer!
Both roofing and siding nailer are nearly identical. If you put them side by side, it would be very difficult to tell the difference. The main design difference between the two is that they have different functionality and purpose of use. So, what does a roofing nailer offer?
As you can guess by the name, roofing nailers are used for attaching roofing material to the surface. They are also known as strip nailers because they use coils of nails that are held together by a strip of adhesive.
This type of nailer is specifically designed for installing asphalt shingles, which is the most common type of roofing material.
Roofing nailers use shorter nails as compared to siding nailers because the roofing material does not require the nails to penetrate as deep into the surface. This means that roofing nailers have a smaller magazine capacity as compared to siding nailers.
Since roofing needs occasional nailing, the nails that are used are also quite thin and easy to remove. Unlike siding nails, which are held in place by friction, roofing nails can be easily removed if you want to make changes to the roofing material.
Roofing nailers are quite lightweight and easy to maneuver, which makes them ideal for working in tight spaces. These nailers are ideal for thin and lightweight materials such as asphalt shingles.
Roofing nailers have a few disadvantages too. They don't generate as much power as siding nailers, and can only be used for thin and lightweight materials. They are also not as versatile as siding nailers and can only be used for attaching roofing material. However, they are much cheaper than siding nailers.
Also Read: 16 vs 18 Gauge Nailer
Difference Between Siding Nailer and Roofing Nailer
Can use up to 2.5” long nails
Can use up to 1.75” long nails
Mostly used for siding tasks
Mostly used for roofing tasks
Has a smaller head
Has a larger head
Expensive than roofing nailers
Cheaper than siding nailers
Ease of use
Since it’s heavy it can be hard to maneuver
It’s on the lighter side so it can be used easily
On the heavier side
On the lighter side
Hard and thicker surfaces
Which one is better for you?
There is no short answer to this question as it completely depends on what you need to use the nail gun for. If you are a roofer, then a roofing nailer is going to be better suited for your needs. However, if you primarily work with siding, then a siding nailer would be the better option.
There are some key differences between siding nailers and roofing nailers that you should be aware of before making a purchase. For starters, siding nailers are designed to work with heavier and thicker materials. This is because they need to be able to penetrate deeper into the surface to properly secure the siding.
Roofing nailers, on the other hand, are designed for lighter materials. They don’t need to penetrate as deeply because the main material that they are used for is asphalt shingles, which are not nearly as thick or heavy as siding.
So the clear answer to the question is that it depends on what you need to use the nail gun for. If you are primarily working with siding, then a siding nailer is the better option. However, if you are mostly working with roofing materials, then a roofing nailer would be better suited for your needs.
Also Read: Pin Nailer vs Brad Nailer
Are siding nailers and roofing nailers the same?
It can be quite confusing if you place these two nailers side by side because they can look identical, but they are not the same. As we have discussed, the main difference is that a siding nailer is designed to work with heavier and thicker materials, while a roofing nailer is designed for lighter materials.
Even they use different nails and the nails cannot be interchanged between the two types of nailers. Siding nailers use larger nails that are designed to penetrate deeper into the surface, while roofing nailers use smaller nails that don’t need to penetrate as deeply.
Can I use a roofing nailer for siding work?
You cannot use a roofing nailer for siding and vice versa. As we have discussed, these two tools are designed for different materials and use different nails. If you try to use a roofing nailer for siding, the nails will not be long enough to properly secure the material.
However, if you are using vinyl siding, you can use a roofing nailer because the nails are the correct length. Although it's not advisable either so using a siding nailer is still the better option.
Can I use a roofing nailer for Hardie siding tasks?
No, you cannot use a roofing nailer for Hardie siding. The nails that are used in a roofing nailer are not long enough to properly penetrate the surface of Hardie siding. Hardie siding materials are made of cement and fiber, which is why they are much thicker than other types of siding.
What kind of nail gun do you use for siding works?
There are a few different types of nail guns that you can use for siding, but the most popular option is a siding nailer. Siding nailers are designed to work with heavier and thicker materials. This is because they need to be able to penetrate deeper into the surface to properly secure the siding. There are also a few different types of nails that you can use for siding. The most popular options are coil nails and strip nails.
What else can a roofing nailer be used for?
Roofing guns are designed to efficiently and effectively drive nails into asphalt, fiberglass, tar paper, and insulation board. No matter if you're working on a new roof or repairing an old one, these nailers are built specifically for the task. So the answer to the question is that you can use a roofing nailer for other purposes, but it is not ideal.
How long should nails be for siding?
1"-1.5" is the most common length for siding nails but the size might depend on the material and thickness. This is because they need to be able to penetrate deeply into the surface to properly secure the siding. These nails also fit perfectly into most siding nailers so it won't be an issue finding the correct size nails.
So there you have it! Now you know the difference between a siding nailer and a roofing nailer. As you can tell by now, these two nailers are designed for different purposes so pick one that is best suited for your needs. And if you're ever unsure, just remember that a siding nailer is designed for heavier and thicker materials, while a roofing nailer is designed for lighter materials. Thanks for reading!
Brad is the ultimate DIY expert. Mostly self-taught, he has a lot of knowledge about the “do’s and donts” of nearly any home project. Brad routinely reviews new tools in the marketplace and provides a handful of helpful tips for aspiring do-it-yourselfers along the way. He is a lover of all things regarding building and creating.