The nail gun.
I see this all the time on new construction.
I see it often on old construction, from under a floor.
And that is nails and brads, sometimes 30 or more, that were shot through wall cladding or sub-floor material that completely missed the intended anchor stud or joist.
Does that mean the cladding or sub-floor is loosely held in place?
And when many studs in a row are missed, or many floor joists in a row are missed, things can knock, warp, squeek or otherwise remain improperly attached.
Nail guns are good! They can be set to insert a nail or brad to just the right depth. They improve productivity as things can get nailed much more quickly. When a nail gun is on the scene more nails will actually be used to attach things then when nailed manually.
However, when I was a kid and nailing something, I KNEW when I hit the stud or the floor joist. When I missed I simply moved over 1/2" and tried again. Then I removed the old nail, which was nailed into nothing.
These days, though, you cannot so easily feel if you hit the stud or joist! And the problem above results. So you have to pay especial attention! Carpenters and assistants should be cognizant of when studs and joists are hit or missed. Such cognizance represents the difference between a good or not-so-good job!
My recommendation: on new construction look to see what has been nailed improperly. My client on this site mentioned it to the supervisor who was amenable to having the capenter return to add more brads. This was not the only stud! There were many! Perhaps the return call will help this carpenter be more aware next time.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560