When your furniture starts to look tired, and the padding feels less generous, maybe it’s time to roll up your sleeves and reupholster your antique chairs and couch. While it might be better to seek the services of a professional, others will want to tackle the job themselves.
So, what are the best upholstery staple guns to get the job done? We bring you our top 5 to get you started.
- Has 1-inch nose extension
- 22-gauge crown staples
- Lightweight & compact
- Multi-use 4-in-1 tool
- Takes D, T, U-type fasteners
- Comes with 4,000 spare staples
- Fires 30 staples per minute
- Has a trigger lock
- Takes 16,18, 20-gauge staples
- Carbon steel construction
- Loads T, U, D-style fasteners
- Rubberized soft grip handle
- Refined firing mechanismn
- Fires 6 fastener size
- Has anti-dry fire mechanism
Types of Staple Guns for Upholstery
Essentially, you can buy 3 types of staple guns to help you complete your upholstery project. So, what are they?
These are the most common staplers and the easiest to use. Manual staple guns don’t need a power source, so you can use them anywhere.
Manual versions are less convenient than the other types, but they are a firm favorite with hobbyists and crafters, as well as for general use.
As the name suggests, all it takes is a bit of elbow grease. Just squeeze the handle to provide downward pressure, which releases the staple. Nothing could be more straightforward. They are easy to master and quick to load.
The second plus is the price. Compared to more expensive, powered models, you can pick up a decent manual staple gun for a small amount of money. Plus, manual models are compact and light, making them easy to store away.
The downside with manual staple guns is the added stress it places on your hands and wrists. If you are undertaking a substantial upholstery project, it might be better to consider a powered staple gun.
The advantage of an electric staple gun is they are lightweight and easy to load. They also require zero effort to operate effectively. This increases your work rate and decreases the pressure on your hands and wrists.
Electric staple guns are a common sight, especially in workshops and hobby rooms across the country. Simply load the staples, plug it in, press the nose of the gun on the surface of your project, pull the trigger and a fastener gets released.
The obvious downside is you need an electrical supply to operate them. They are also more costly than manual versions. Plus, because this staple gun discharges so easily, the chances of an injury increase, so take care when using it.
Pneumatic staple guns are also lightweight, and they are the most powerful of all the varieties. Air-powered models are easy to use and comfortable to hold, making them the best versions for longer projects.
Pneumatic guns are adjustable, so you can vary the power to accommodate different materials. You can also choose different types of fasteners.
The disadvantage is that this type of tool is more expensive, and then you need an air compressor, which increases the costs. Plus, dragging around an air compressor is inconvenient.
Another downside is the noise these tools make. You will need earplugs when operating most air compressors, and if you work from home, the neighbors might not like the interruptions.
How To Choose the Best Size Staple Gun for Upholstery
What are the key things you should be looking for when selecting your shiny new staple gun? It’s time to give you some pointers.
Size of the Project
It doesn’t matter whether you are tackling one or 21 jobs; all that counts is the size of each project. If you plan to take on a renovation project, consider getting a top of the range model. If you just want to add extra padding to a dining chair, maybe a cheaper model will suffice.
Try and avoid the cheapest staple guns because it could prove to be a false economy.
Okay, so we get that staple guns and nail guns are different, but they operate in the same way, and the risks of injury are just as significant. So, look for locking handles and safety switches that prevent accidental firing.
You should also be aware of children when using a staple gun. In the wrong hands, it can quickly lead to disaster.
Think about how you intend to use the staple gun. If you predominantly work outdoors, consider a cordless model. It frees you from the shackles of a power supply and allows you to work from anywhere.
Consider an electric model for substantial projects so you can work faster and longer, with minimal impact on your hands and wrists.
For occasional users, a manual version would be the best bet. They are cheap and effective but remember you will work at a slower rate.
The more you spend, the better the staple gun, or that’s the theory at least. It all comes down to what you can afford. If you have the means, get the best model that you can, but if your budget is tight, get the best value you can for your money.
Look at the components and how many plastic elements there are because the cheaper materials are less robust and will fail a lot quicker than metal parts.
Comfort and Ease of Use
Most staple guns come with ergonomic handles with rubber overmolds for better comfort and grip. The stapler should be balanced and easy to control. All of these elements increase usability while reducing hand and wrist fatigue.
They should also have an easy-load staple magazine so that you spend less time fiddling with the staple gun to change the magazine, and more time working.
The Best Upholstery Staple Guns of 2021
So, now it’s time to find out which staple gun is the ideal choice for you. We have narrowed down the selection to the best 5 staple guns.
1. Porter-Cable Pneumatic Upholstery Stapler
This pneumatic staple gun uses 22-gauge crown staples from 0.25 inches to 0.625 inches long, and thanks to its compact dimensions, it is lightweight and easy to control. It is the ideal tool for reaching tight spots because it has a 1-inch nose extension.
It has a steel top cap for durability and the rear exhaust port channels away moisture and tool oil. You also get a high-capacity, bottom-loading magazine that handles 185 staples, as well as a driver-guide that moves back to clear blockages and jams.
The only downside to this stapler is that it requires an air compressor, which adds to the tool’s expense and increases the noise factor. Repairing furniture with this tool will be a loud affair, so you might want to do it away from your home to avoid annoying the neighbors.
Why We Love It
Pneumatic staple guns are the king of the jungle when it comes to power. If you have a chair or sofa with a hardwood frame, this is the tool to use for the cleanest fastener penetration.
When you are looking for the most refined finish, the size of the staples you use is crucial. 22-gauge fasteners are the most common in upholstery because they leave the least damage to the wooden structure while successfully securing material and padding.
Lightweight and Compact
Air tools are lighter than electric varieties because they contain fewer working parts and no motor, thanks to the air compressor. It means you can use them for longer without the fear of hand and wrist fatigue.
Keep In Mind
Needs Compressed Air
This staple gun has no onboard motor. Instead, it gets its power from an air compressor. This means you have the cost of the tool as well as the air compressor to take into consideration. It increases your spending enormously.
You cannot avoid the fact that pneumatic staplers are noisy. It might restrict you because air compressors generate about 85 decibels, which might annoy the neighbors.
|Dimensions (inches)||14 x 10.5 x 3.25|
|PSI||70 to 120|
|Power source||Compressed air|
2. YEAHOME 4-in-1 Staple Gun
This YEAHOME staple gun is so cheap. You could buy more than 5 of them for the same price as the Porter-Cable pneumatic model. But is it any good?
First, it’s a manual staple gun, so it will be slower than powered versions, and it does require elbow grease to operate it, but it is a 4-in-1 tool, which increases your versatility.
It takes D, T, and U-type fasteners, as well as pin Brad nails, so when you have finished reupholstering your armchair, you can turn your hand to any number of repair and DIY jobs around the home.
It has an adjustable pressure knob, so you can choose the depth you want your staples and an easy-load magazine for the simplest fastener swap.
Why We Love It
This stapler is versatile because it is a 4-in-1 tool. You can shoot T, D, U-type, and pin Brad nails. So when you have finished upholstering, you can mend inside and outside trim.
If you are on the lookout for an affordable staple gun, this one is pretty hard to beat. It costs a fraction of the price of other models, making it the ideal occasional and first-time staple gun.
Not only is this a cheap tool, but it also comes with 4,000 spare staples to get you started straight out of the box.
Keep In Mind
Manual staple guns slow you down. This may not be a deal-breaker, but if you are looking for a speedy outcome, this is the slowest and most labor-intensive option.
|Dimensions (inches)||8.1 x 6.9 x 1.65|
|Warranty||180-day money-back guarantee|
3. KeLDE Electric Staple Gun Kit
This KeLDE staple gun could so easily have been our budget pick, thanks to the fantastic price. It comes with a trigger lock to ensure it stores away safely, and is safe while plugged in. It also fires 30 staples per minute, and each fastener and Brad nail magazine hold 50 pieces.
It takes 16,18 and 20-gauge staples, as well as 18-gauge Brad nails, making this KeLDE an extremely versatile tool for upholstery and a host of other general DIY tasks.
So, to recap, this staple gun is affordable, easy to use, lightweight and versatile. No matter what upholstery task you have ahead, this gun can handle it.
Why We Love It
Thanks to its 16, 18, and 20-gauge capacity, this KeLDE staple gun can tackle most fastening tasks with ease. And when you want to swap to interior and exterior trim, it can handle that too.
This model is not expensive. It costs a fraction of some to make the list, and if you are a beginner or occasional user, this gun is great value for money.
Given the low price, it is surprising that you also get 3 packs of various gauge staples and a pack of Brad nails so that you can get started straight out of the box.
Keep In Mind
While it is a multi-function stapler, the general consensus is it is not a heavy-duty tool. It can tackle most DIY tasks, like framing, fitting insulation boards, and upholstery but you might struggle with anything more demanding.
|Dimensions (inches)||9.76 x 7.17 x 1.81|
|Gauge||16, 18, 20|
4. REXBETI Staple Gun
This is a heavy-duty manual staple gun, so it is the ideal tool for most fastening tasks, but this gun is perfect when it comes to upholstery. It has a strength adjustment bolt to cater to different surfaces and materials, and the rubberized soft grip handle reduces hand and wrist fatigue.
The carbon steel construction ensures longevity, while safety is taken care of by the lockable handle. It loads T, U and D-style fasteners with a bottom-loading magazine for convenience.
Why We Love It
Carbon Steel Construction
Unlike other examples, this manual stapler is constructed from durable carbon steel to ensure a long working life. It should keep going for years to come.
Thanks to its versatility, you can load D, U, and T-style fasteners as well as Brad nails. It keeps you working on many tasks and allows you to scale up or down your upholstery jobs.
The beauty of a manual staple gun is you are free to work in any location without the need of a power supply. It means you can reupholster your garden furniture without dragging it into the garage near a power socket.
Keep In Mind
Requires Brute Strength
Manual staple guns are great for working anywhere, but the downside is you need brute strength to operate them. This might lead to hand and wrist fatigue and restrict you to smaller tasks.
|Dimensions (inches)||12.8 x 11.46 x 2.05|
|Gauge||16, 18, 20|
5. Makita XTP02Z 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Staple Gun
This Makita cordless staple gun has a refined firing mechanism, which reduces recoil and the force required to drive the staples. It gets its power from an 18V lithium-ion battery (sold separately), and it fires 6 different sizes of fasteners, including a 23-gauge version, making it ideal for upholstery.
You also get a tool-less depth adjustment to cater to different surfaces and tasks. Each magazine holds 120 fasteners, and it has an anti-dry fire mechanism to prevent firing blanks, which could damage the surface of your project.
The handle is ergonomically designed, you get an LED for a better view, and the rubber bumpers protect your tool and the material’s surface.
Why We Love It
From anti-dry fire mechanisms to rubber bumpers and reduced recoil, this Makita is packed with the latest innovations to keep you safe and improve results.
Cordless staple and nail guns are the ultimate work-anywhere tools. They give you all the power of plugin models with none of the inconvenience. It’s a win-win.
Some brands command respect, and Makita is one of them. They are renowned the world over for quality and performance, and this tool is no exception.
Keep In Mind
Considering the price of this gun, you would think the battery is included, but unfortunately, it is sold separately. That means you need to up your budget to get the charger and battery if you want to get started with this tool.
|Dimensions (inches)||3.39 x 11.42 x 9.21|
|Gauge||18, 20, 23|
|Power source||18V lithium-ion battery|
|Porter-Cable Upholstery Stapler||Pneumatic||2 lbs||14 x 10.5 x 3.25″||22||Compressed air||1-year limited|
|YEAHOME 4-in-1 Staple Gun||Budget Pick||2.44 lbs||8.1 x 6.9 x 1.65″||18||Manual||180-day money-back guarantee|
|KeLDE Electric Staple Gun Kit||Electric||2 lbs||9.76 x 7.17 x 1.81″||16, 18, 20||Electric||1-year|
|REXBETI Staple Gun||Manual||3.65 lbs||12.8 x 11.46 x 2.05″||16, 18, 20||Manual||Not stated|
|Makita LXT Lithium-Ion Staple Gun||Cordless||4.49 lbs||3.39 x 11.42 x 9.21″||18, 20, 23||18V lithium-ion battery||3-year limited|
What Is the Best Size Staple for Upholstery?
Unlike construction work and heavy-duty tasks, an upholstery stapler should be a bit more refined, which is why you frequently find they accommodate smaller gauge staples. Typically, staple gauges range from 16, 18, and 20, whereas an upholstery staple is often 22-gauge.
Smaller fasteners cause less damage to the wooden frames of your favorite chair, reducing cracks and splits. They are also more discreet, making it easier to hide them in fabric folds and edging material.
Show Your Furniture Some Love
Nothing stays as new. Everything ages, sags, and discolors over time, and your favorite armchair is no different. Rather than throwing it in the trash and buying something new, get a staple gun, and get creative.
It might be easier than you think to revamp the material and refill the cushions, and the bonus is you get the satisfaction of doing the work yourself.