Troubleshooting Guide: Bostitch 18-Gauge Brad Nailer Stopped Working

As a seasoned contractor, you’re well aware of the importance of reliable tools, and the Bostitch 18-gauge brad nailer is no exception. It’s a workhorse that simplifies tasks, but what happens when it suddenly stops working? Don’t fret – in this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the troubleshooting steps to revive your trusty Bostitch brad nailer.

The Basics of the Bostitch 18-Gauge Brad Nailer

Before we dive into the troubleshooting process, let’s get acquainted with the core components of the Bostitch 18-gauge brad nailer.

Key Parts of the Bostitch 18-Gauge Brad Nailer

  1. Magazine: This is where brad nails are loaded for firing.
  2. Firing Mechanism: It drives the brad nail into the material.
  3. Air Inlet: The connection point for your air compressor.
  4. Trigger: What you press to fire the nail.
  5. Depth Adjustment: Allows you to control how deep the nail is driven.

Now, let’s address the issue of a non-functioning brad nailer.

Troubleshooting a Stopped Bostitch 18-Gauge Brad Nailer

1. No Nails Are Firing

If your Bostitch brad nailer suddenly refuses to fire nails, several factors could be at play.

  • Air Pressure: Start with the basics. Ensure your air compressor is delivering the recommended air pressure, typically between 70-120 PSI.
  • Jammed Magazine: An obstruction in the magazine can hinder nail feeding. Remove any jammed nails or debris.
  • Firing Mechanism Issues: Check for any damaged or misaligned parts in the firing mechanism. Lubricate moving components as needed.
  • Trigger Problems: Inspect the trigger mechanism for any wear, breakage, or obstruction. Replace any faulty components.

2. Continuous Air Leakage

A brad nailer with a persistent air leak can lead to inefficient performance.

  • Check Connections: Examine all connections, hoses, and fittings for any loose or damaged parts.
  • O-Ring Inspection: Examine O-rings and seals for damage or wear. Replace them if necessary.
  • Tighten Loose Fasteners: Ensure that all screws and bolts are securely fastened.

3. Misfires and Inconsistent Nail Depth

If the nailer is inconsistent in driving nails or the depth isn’t uniform, you’ll need to perform more targeted troubleshooting.

  • Depth Adjustment: Ensure the depth adjustment is correctly set to your desired nail depth.
  • Air Pressure Regulation: Double-check the air pressure, as excessive or insufficient pressure can lead to inconsistent driving.
  • Dust and Debris: Clean any accumulated dust or debris from the depth adjustment and firing mechanism.

Disassembling and Reassembling Your Brad Nailer

In some cases, a deeper inspection may require disassembling your Bostitch brad nailer. Here’s a step-by-step guide:


  1. Disconnect the nailer from the air supply and release any built-up pressure.
  2. Remove the magazine and any remaining brad nails.
  3. Carefully unscrew and remove the housing.
  4. Access the firing mechanism and other internal components for inspection or repair.


  1. Reattach the internal components, ensuring proper alignment.
  2. Replace the housing and secure it with screws.
  3. Reload the magazine with brad nails.
  4. Reconnect the nailer to the air supply and test its functionality.

Regular Maintenance

To keep your Bostitch brad nailer in optimal condition, a regimen of routine maintenance is essential:

  • Lubrication: Apply air tool oil to moving parts and O-rings to reduce friction and prevent wear.
  • Cleaning: Regularly clean your nailer to remove dust and debris.
  • Inspection: Routinely check for loose screws, worn O-rings, and signs of wear and tear.


Your Bostitch 18-gauge brad nailer is a dependable tool, and with proper care and maintenance, it can continue to be a reliable asset on your projects. By understanding its components, troubleshooting common issues, and practicing regular maintenance, you can ensure your brad nailer remains in prime working condition. So, the next time your trusty tool stalls, you’ll be well-equipped to diagnose and rectify the issue, keeping your projects on track and efficient. Happy nailing!

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