If you don’t think fastening to concrete can be fun, then you’ve never used a . This tool is essentially a .22-caliber pistol that fires hardened nails into concrete. How cool is that? (Some tool manufacturers also offer .25- and .27-caliber models.)
Powder-actuated fasteners are ideal for securing 2x4 sleepers to floors, furring strips to walls, and plywood subfloors to slabs. They provide a strong and fast way to attach to concrete—but you can’t remove the nails once they’ve been fired in.
The gun accepts a wide range of nails, called pins, ranging from about 1/2 to 3 inches, and various charges, also known as loads. The larger the load, the more gunpowder it contains. Loads are numbered and color-coded for easy identification, ranging from Gray No. 1 (least powerful) to Purple No. 6 (most powerful). Which load to use depends on several factors, including the nail length, thickness of material being fastened, and hardness of the concrete.
Be aware that, like a nail gun, a powder-actuated fastener is a potentially dangerous tool. Use it only to fasten to poured concrete—never to concrete block, brick, or any other surface. And always wear safety goggles and hearing protection.
Powder-actuated fasteners come in a wide range of prices, starting at about $75, but you can also rent one for about $40 per day, not including pins and loads. Expect to pay about $12 to $20 for a 100-piece box of 3-inch pins, and about $8 for the same number of Yellow No. 4 loads.
Finally, it’s worth mentioning that for about $20 you can buy a manual powder-actuated fastener that you hit with a hammer to fire the load.