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Need air compressor to run 4 roofing nail guns

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by David Hughes
(Laurens SC USA)

I need an air compressor to run 4 roofing nail guns, what size do I need?


Run 4 roofing nail guns
by: Bill

What CFM do each of the guns require?

Roofing nail gun - this one's by Bostitch
Roofing nail gun – this one’s by Bostitch

Running all 4 at the same time or incrementally.

Roofing type jobs or framing type?

Please provide a bit more info, or have a read of the buying a compressor pages on this site for more guidance.


roofing nail guns
by: David

0.079 per shot and they all go at the same time But sometimes we only use 3.


Compressor for 4 roofing nail guns
by: Bill

Assuming that the .08 per shot refers to CFM, and assuming what… 15 shots per minute, that’s 1.2 CFM for a minute, times 4 guns – which you may use all at the same time – that’s 4.8 CFM per minute.

Since an electric compressor generates about 2-4 CFM at 90 PSI per each HP of motor size, you can surmise that a 2 HP compressor should suffice.

You want long air hoses to the guns, not long extension cords, so allow some extra for pressure drop through those longer hoses.

My thought is you should be good then with a 3 HP air compressor. Get one with a good long duty cycle though, K?


Roofing nail guns
by: David

Thanks a lot, I’ll be getting at the least 3 or more HP Compressor. We use 150′ of hose most of the time.


Supplying nailers
by: Bill

Yeah, 4 x 150′ hose is a long run, so your though about over sizing the compressor a bit is a good one.

Good luck.


Need air compressor to run 4 roofing nail guns
by: David

A lot of time there’s no power and We have to use a generator. I was thinking of a gas powered compressor. What kind would be the best for us?


The same HP as we already discussed.

Using a generator to run an air compressor has all its own issues, including whether the generator can handle the inrush requirements of the compressor when it kicks on.

Gas powered compressor are often a step up in terms of quality. You’ll want to pick the best one for long term service from the vendor where you are.

Consider shorter air hoses now if possible, but also, be aware of the noise of the compressor being a wear factor on folks that are working around it, and, maybe some sort of collapsible cover (with lots of ventilation holes) to mute the sound somewhat.


4 roofing nail guns
by: David

Thanks a lot will look into trying not to get people mad. That’s why they put the power poll so far away from the house I guess! Most of the new houses we did lately it’s 50 two 60 feet away. Again I like to thank you for the help.


You are welcome, indeed.

Other nail gun related pages you may be interested in reading:

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By Bill Wade

About Air Compressors has been helping folks with their Air Compressor Problems since 2002 online. We're a community of DIY and Compressed Air professionals who are keen to support everyone across the globe with their air compressor issues and troubleshooting. Whether you're trying to identify an old air compressor, or troubleshoot an error code on a sophisticated new industrial air compressor - the community at About-Air-Compressors.com is here to help you

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