Framing nailers are used to drive nails on housing frames. And roofing nailers are a bit smaller, used to drive nails on the roof. That’s why both are quite different in many ways.

So, can you use a framing nailer for roofing? No, you can not. Even Though they both are nailers, they are completely different in the jobs they can do.

This article will hopefully give you more information about these two nailers and their interchangeability.

Can You Use A Framing Nailer For Roofing?

No, you can not use a framing nailer for roofing. They are two completely different tools for different purposes. They are built differently and the nails they drive are also not the same. So it really goes without saying, do buy appropriate tools for their respective purposes.

Framing Nailer Vs Roofing Nailer

Difference In Nail Holding Capacity 

The holding capacity of these nailers are different. The framing nailers are to load strap nails. These causes the builder to rush through the process when he finishes the strap

Roofing nailers have the nails collected in coils. It is more like a machine gun. Builder can drive as many nails as he wishes without rushing.

Difference In The Nails

Framing nailer is typically produced for heavy duty works. The nails that these tools drive are also bigger. They are meant for holding heavier frames together, so the nails and nailers both have to be strong. 

They are almost 3-3.5 inches long. But for joining large planks, framing or molding, you have to use even  longer and higher nails.

On the other hand, roofing nails are only used to nail the shingles or roof tiles in place. So they do not usually have to be super heavy duty appropriate. 

Typically one to one and a half inches do absolutely fine with roofing nailers.  

Can You Use A Framing Nailer For Roofing

Difference In Their Durability and Strength

The framing nailers have to be super durable and strong. They literally drive nails to frames that structure housings. 

So they have to be strong to do the job properly. Otherwise the whole construction will collapse creating a disaster. 

It can be life threatening to people. The nails should be long enough to hold the wood together. 

The roofing nailer is not as durable as framing nailer. It is much smaller in size. And it can only do stuff like nailing shingles on the roof.  


Framing nailer is used in the heavy construction area. For example, joining boards, beams, framing buildings, attaching planks etc. 

And the roofing nailer only attaches shingles, felts etc. on the roofing area.

Areas Where These Tools Are Used 

Framing nailer is used for many purposes while building houses. From nailing framing structures to walls, these come handy in many ways. 

It is due to their durability and strength. They do not cause any manufacturing issues. 

On the other hand, the roofing nailer is not very appropriate for using on any other structure other than the roof. That is also applicable when the entire house is already built. Roofing nailers are not as durable or strong as the framing nailers.

Renting These Tool

It is also a good idea to rent a roofing gun instead of just using the framing one for your roof as well. Because in this case, one can never do the job of another properly.

Some also suggest buying the roofing nailer instead of renting them for a day. In this way you can finish your work properly without rushing to give it back. 

So buy the roofing gun, do your job and resell it if you do not need it anymore.


 So, to answer the age old question Can You Use A Framing Nailer For Roofing? is a no. You can not interchange them. Both are built to serve different purposes. Framing nailer is meant for stronger frames that need bigger nails, and the roofing ones need smaller nails that shoot right into the shingles. 

Hopefully this article was informative enough for you to differentiate between these two tools.


As a civil engineer and roofer, I love to share the experience that I have gained through the last couple of years. In the roofing industry, practical experience is a very crucial fact that can help you a lot. Hence, I want to help you with my blog.

Write A Comment