No Nail Gun No Problem – Learn How To Install Quarter Round Without Leaving Hammer Marks and No Nail Gun

So you want to add some quarter round to the walls/floor but you don’t have a nail gun (or like me, nail gun kept jamming and back up nail gun was somewhere in the garage) . Adding quarter round really makes a room feel complete and professionally done when added correctly.

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What is quarter round trim?

Quarter round trim is a piece of material that goes along your wall to cover any gaps from flooring to wall. It is a quarter of a circle hence the name.

How do you install molding without a nail gun?

You can install molding without a nail gun with two different methods. The first being the most successful one. The first method is by using a hammer and a nail set (which is how I’ll go over this tutorial). The second method is to use an adhesive and glue it down.

Tools For The Job
Circular Saw or Handsaw
Nail Set

The nail set will be the most important part that will make it easier if you don’t have a nail gun. It is a cheaper alternative if you do not own a nail gun or a nail set, you can order one from Amazon this is the one we recommend.

Should you glue or nail quarter round?

The best thing you can do is to nail your quarter round to the wall. It will make it secure and easier if you ever need to remove it and change it out. Using a glue will also vary on what type of quarter round material you are using (e.g: pvc, wood, vinyl).

Both options work well but nailing your quarter round will last longer and just give a more professional feel to the project.

How to install quarter round without a nail gun

1. Clean your work area

Do a sweep of the floor, remove any glue or anything that may cause the quarter round to warp.

2. Cut your quarter round

You’ll want to measure and make sure that you use 45 degree cuts. If you are using a circular saw (see how a beginner can use one here) you can easily adjust the bevel to make it a 45 angle. If you are using a handsaw you should still make your cuts at 45 degrees.

Pro Tip: When you get to a corner having your wood at 45 will help the angle of the meeting walls connect easily. Creating a beautiful 90 degree angle for your corners.

3. Lay quarter round flush on floor against wall

Before you even pick up a nail and hammer make sure that the cut you did is correct by laying the quarter round flush against the wall.

Once you agree that the cut is correct, you can now start to use a hammer and nail and nail set.

4. Hammer your nail 3/4 of the way

Now you can go ahead and start hammering your nails into place with a hammer. You’ll only want to go 3/4 of the way into the quarter round.

The reason you are doing it this way is to avoid your hammer creating dents or breaking your quarter round.

5. Use your nail set to finish

Now that you have your nails in 3/4 of the way you will place the nail set on top of the nail and hammer down the nail set.

This way your nail set get the push from the hammer and not your actual nail. This will make sure that your quarter round is not damaged.

Now repeat steps 2-5 until your room is done.

6. Cover nails

Once your room is complete with the quarter round to give it that professional look go ahead and cover the holes of the nails with putty and then let it dry.

After it is dried you can sand down the putty and paint the quarter round. This will make it look 20x better. If you don’t want to paint try and find a putty the same color as your quarter round. Then sand it when it is dry.

Tips For Installing Quarter Round Without A Nail Gun

  1. Measure your pieces before even grabbing a nail. Lay it flush against the wall and decide where the cut will be placed.
  2. Work in small sections at a time to avoid breaking your quarter round.
  3. After using sealant to cover your nail heads always sand down the excess.
  4. Touch up the quarter round with paint
  5. Cut each piece when it is time to add it don’t cut all of it at the same time (especially if this is your first time doing this)
  6. Seal your corners with caulking
  7. If your quarter round ends at a door cut it straight not at 45 degree’s.

How do you nail quarter round without splinting?

The best way to nail down quarter round without splinting if you don’t have a nail gun is to use a nail set to hammer it at the end. This will assure a steady hand and less force to the quarter round.

Also make sure that you are hitting the nail straight when you put it in 3/4 of the way so it can grab the wall.


It is pretty easy after you get used to using the nail set. The first few that you do may look bad or may not be great, but after a few sections you can get going and find it pretty easy to do. And that is how to nail quarter round without nail gun.

two ways to install quarter round for beginners that do not have a nail gun. If you don't have a nail gun you can still install quarter round

How To Install Quarter Round Without A Nail Gun

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