Troubleshooting Tips for Porter Cable Finish Nailer Not Firing

If your Porter cable finish nailer is not firing, check if the safety is properly engaged and if there is enough air pressure in the compressor. Now, let’s dive into possible causes and solutions for this issue.

Porter cable finish nailers are essential tools in carpentry and woodworking. When the finish nailer fails to fire, it can become frustrating and affect productivity. Several reasons could cause a Porter cable finish nailer not to fire, such as low air pressure, the type of nail, and dirty parts.

This article explores possible causes and solutions for Porter cable finish nailers not firing to help carpenters and woodworkers troubleshoot the tool and return to work promptly.

porter cable finish nailer not firing

Common Causes Of Porter Cable Finish Nailer Not Firing

Have you ever experienced the frustration of your Porter cable finish nailer not firing? This can hinder your daily projects and delay the progress of your work. The good news is that there are common reasons why your nailer is not firing, and most of them can be resolved with a little effort.

We will take a closer look at the typical causes of a non-firing Porter cable finish nailer.

Causes-1: Jamming Of Nails In The Nailer

One of the most common reasons why Porter cable finish nailers stop firing is due to the jamming of nails in the nailer. It usually happens when the magazine is not loaded correctly or when the nails are not fed correctly.


  • Nails are not loaded correctly. Empty the magazine and reload the nails carefully.
  • The magazine is damaged or bent. Replace the magazine.
  • The nails are damp or dirty. Use dry and clean nails.
  • The feeder is worn out. Replace the feeder.

If your milkaukee finish nailer not sinking nails, read this blog to troubleshoot: Milkaukee Finish Nailer Not Sinking Nails

Causes-2: Faulty Or Worn-Out Trigger Mechanism

Another reason why your Porter cable finish nailer is not firing may be due to a faulty or worn-out trigger mechanism. When the trigger assembly is damaged or worn out, it may not allow the gun to fire.


  • The trigger does not work at all. Replace the trigger.
  • The trigger is loose. Tighten it by following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • The trigger assembly is worn out. Replace the trigger assembly.
  • The safety is stuck. Release the safety.

Causes-3: Broken Or Worn-Out Nail Feeder

The nail feeder is an essential component for the gun’s proper functioning. It advances the nails in place to fire them with the trigger. If the feeder is broken or worn out, your Porter cable finish nailer will not fire.


  • The feeder spring is broken. Replace it.
  • The feeder housing is damaged. Replace the feeder housing.
  • The feeder is worn out. Replace the feeder.
  • The feeder is jammed. Clear the jam from the feeder.

Causes-4: Low Air Pressure In The Compressor

Your Porter cable finish nailer requires adequate air pressure to function correctly. If the air pressure in your compressor is low, the nailer will not fire.


  • Check your compressor’s pressure gauge and ensure that it has enough pressure.
  • Adjust the regulator valve by following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Clean the air filter to improve airflow.
  • Check for any leaks in hoses and fittings and repair them accordingly.

These are the common reasons why your Porter cable finish nailer is not firing. It’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to resolve these issues appropriately. By doing so, you can quickly get back to your DIY projects with ease.

Porter Cable nail gun repair

Maintaining Your Porter Cable Finish Nailer

To ensure that your Porter cable finish nailer continues to function properly, regular maintenance is necessary. Proper maintenance not only ensures that the nailer works efficiently but also prolongs its life. Negligence in maintaining the tool can eventually lead to expensive repairs or even replacement.

Recommended Maintenance Schedule

Porter cable finish nailer requires regular maintenance, based on usage. However, for proper functioning, it’s best to schedule a maintenance check at least once a year. Depending on the frequency of your use, you may need to do a maintenance check every six months to be safe.

For professionals and contractors who frequently use the nailer, it’s advisable to do a checkup regularly.

Maintenance Procedures

Maintenance procedures include cleaning, lubrication, and adjustment. These procedures ensure that the nailer continues to work at its optimum level. Here are some steps to follow to maintain your Porter cable finish nailer:

  • Clean all debris and dust from the surface of the tool.
  • Clean the air vent and fan area using a compressed air canister.
  • Lubricate all moving parts, including the o-rings, with oil.
  • Inspect the magazine and follower assembly.
  • Take note of the nailer’s accuracy by checking the nail depth and the nailer’s driving power.
  • Adjust the safety mechanism and driver blade to ensure that it’s working properly.

With regular maintenance and care, your porter cable finish nailer should be trouble-free and last for years. Start following the recommended maintenance schedule above and save yourself from expensive repairs or replacement costs.

Tips For Avoiding Common Porter Cable Finish Nailer Problems

The Porter cable finish nailer is a reliable tool that can make carpentry and upholstery tasks much easier. However, improper handling can cause common problems, such as misfires, jamming, and leaks. In this section, we will explore some tips to help you avoid these issues and get the most out of your nailer.

Proper Handling And Use Of The Finish Nailer

Following these tips will help you avoid common problems associated with the porter cable finish nailer:

  • Always wear protective gear when operating the finish nailer, including earmuffs, safety goggles, and gloves.
  • Make sure that the nailer is firmly connected to the air compressor before use.
  • Keep the nailer clean and well-oiled to prevent jams and misfires.
  • Release the nailer trigger when it is not in use, as this can prevent leaks and save air.
  • Store the nailer in a dry and cool place, away from direct sunlight and moisture.

Also read this blog: Ridgid Brad Nailer Not Firing

Recommendations For Choosing The Right Nails And Accessories

Choosing the right nails and accessories can improve your nailer’s performance and help you avoid common problems like jamming and misfires:

  • Use nails that are compatible with your nailer’s size and gauge.
  • Consider using galvanized nails for outdoor projects, as they are rust-resistant.
  • Use the right nail lengths for each specific project to avoid damaging the materials.
  • Choose the right air compressor to power your nailer, ensuring that it provides enough psi to operate it.

How To Avoid Common Mistakes That Can Lead To Nailer Problems?

When working with your Porter cable finish nailer, keep these tips in mind to avoid common mistakes and problems:

  • Avoid using the wrong nail gauge or length, which can cause jams or damage to the materials.
  • Do not use nails that are too big, as they can split the materials and create a weak joint.
  • Do not overload the nailer with too many nails, as this can cause jams and misfires.
  • Do not force the nailer to drive the nail, as it can damage the tool and create a weak joint.
  • Regularly inspect the nailer’s o-rings and seals for wear and tear, replacing them when necessary.

By following these tips, you can avoid common problems with your Porter cable finish nailer and make the most out of this valuable tool.

Brad nailer not shooting nails

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs):

Why Is My Porter Cable Finish Nailer Not Firing?

There are several reasons why a Porter cable finish nailer might not be firing, including low air pressure, a faulty trigger, or a jammed nail.

How Do I Fix My Porter Cable Finish Nailer That Is Not Firing?

To fix a Porter cable finish nailer that is not firing, you can try troubleshooting the air pressure, inspecting and cleaning the trigger mechanism, and clearing any nail jams.

Can I Repair My Porter Cable Finish Nailer Myself?

While it is possible to repair a Porter cable finish nailer yourself, it is recommended that you have some knowledge and experience in nailer repair and use caution when attempting to fix it on your own.

Do I Need To Use A Specific Type Of Nail With My Porter Cable Finish Nailer?

Yes, it is important to use the correct type and size of nail for your porter cable finish nailer to ensure proper operation and safety. Check the user manual for recommendations.

How Can I Prevent My Porter Cable Finish Nailer From Not Firing Again?

To prevent a Porter cable finish nailer from not firing again, regularly inspect and maintain the nailer, use the correct type and size of the nail, and follow all safety instructions and guidelines outlined in the user manual.


With all the information provided in this blog post, you can now diagnose the problem if your Porter cable finish nailer is not firing. Remember to check the compressor, safety mechanism, air pressure, and the condition of the nailer’s internal parts.

By doing a thorough inspection, you can fix any issues yourself or seek professional help if needed. Don’t let a malfunctioning finish nailer disrupt your work, get to the root of the problem and find the solution. Keep your nailer maintained and clean to prevent any future problems.

With the right maintenance schedule and a little bit of attention to detail, you can keep your finish nailer running smoothly and efficiently. Remember to always prioritize safety when working with power tools. Thank you for reading this post and we hope it has helped you solve any issues with your porter cable finish nailer.

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