10 Best Stainable Wood Fillers & Buyers Guide

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Today, there are several stainable wood filler products, and they all come with different dry rates, consistencies, and textures. Stainable wood fillers help hide the appearance of nicks and nail holes in your wood floor, furniture, and wood surface but can be used to fill in gaps remaining from the installation of a new door frame or drywall. It is advisable to buy a stainable wood filler with a texture similar to the wood.

The most common problems that homeowners face are:

  • A scratched hardwood floor.
  • Rotted wood in windows and door frames.
  • Furniture that has been dented.

To call in professional services to sort the wood repair can be pretty expensive, which is why using stainable wood fillers is more cost-effective. These wood fillers can be used to fill in cavities, holes from nails, and any cracks that have appeared, and other blemishes in wood fixings. Stainable wood fillers are a blend of fine wood particles with a binder that, upon air exposure, dries rock hard. This is why they are a perfect solution to fixing imperfect wood surfaces.

To help you to decide which product would be suitable for your needs, we have compiled a comprehensive review of ten of the best stainable wood fillers on the market, along with a Buyers Guide that will give you more information on the product. 


Our Favorite Stainable Wood Fillers | Compared

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Best Stainable Wood Fillers | Reviews

1. Minwax (Model 42853000) Stainable Wood Filler, 16 oz (Best Overall)

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Quick-drying
  • Premixed ready to use
  • Ideal for oil-based and water-based Minwax stain
  • Ideal for indoor and outdoor wood filler
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Product can dry out if left unsealed

 

2. Goodfilla Water based Wood and Grain Filler (Best Value)

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Withstands extreme temperatures
  • Easy to sand, stain, and paint
  • Long shelf life
  • 1-year guarantee
  • Good value
Cons
  • Not ideal as exterior wood filler

 

3. Elmer’s (Model E914) Carpenter’s Color Change Wood Filler

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Water-soluble
  • Color change to natural when dry
  • Non-toxic formula
  • Easy to sand, stain or paint
  • Affordable
Cons
  • Not ideal for large cavities

 

4. FamoWood (Model 40022126) Latex Wood Filler

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Fast drying
  • Very strong
  • Environmentally friendly
  • No strong odors
  • Variety of wood tones
  • Suitable for indoor and outdoor wood filler
Cons
  • Ensure the lid is on tight to keep contents from drying out

 

5. DAP Plastic Latex Based Wood Filler (Model 211442)

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Strong and easy to use
  • Will not shrink or crack
  • Indoor and exterior wood filler
  • Affordable
Cons
  • May work better with paint than stain

 

6. Bondo Home Solutions Wood Filler Hardener

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Very strong solvent based filler
  • Ideal for sanding, staining or painting
  • Good for larger projects
  • Sets extremely quickly
Cons
  • Fairly strong odor
  • Short working time

 

7. Timbermate Hardwood Wood Filler 8oz Jar

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Quick-drying
  • Easy to apply
  • No shrinking, cracking or falling out
  • No Waste
  • Accepts paints and stains
  • Non-toxic
Cons
  • Not suitable for outdoor use

 

8. SYNKO Interior Latex Stainable Wood Filler 

Pros & Cons

Pros
Cons
  • Not suitable for outdoor use

 

9. Varathane (Model 215198) Wood Filler

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Durable
  • Dries hard to touch in 1 hour
  • Non-toxic
  • Water-soluble
Cons
  • Not suitable for outdoor use
  • Small repair jobs only

 

10. J-B Weld KwikWood Epoxy Putty Stick Wood Repair 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Quick setting
  • No shrinking or rotting
  • Accepts stains
  • For all wood DIY household repairs
  • Interior or exterior use
Cons
  • Unsuitable for large repairs

 


Video: How to Choose & Use Wood Filler

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Stainable Wood Filler Buyers Guide

The Project 

To determine which stainable wood filler would best suit your needs, consider the type of project you will be working on and then consider the amount of stainable wood filler you require, the preparation time, and the constraints regarding drying time, weather, and impending rain. 

It is also vital to ensure the product is rated for staining as some work better with paint, so always check the product; otherwise, your project could get ruined. Research before you buy, read other people’s experiences and reviews.

Types of stainable wood fillers

Wood fillers are either water-based or solvent-based fillers and can also be categorized by their four formulas; epoxy-based, gypsum-based, latex-based, and cellulose-based.

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Epoxy wood filler

Epoxy fillers are durable and resistant. However, they do require the most preparation before they are ready to use. The two parts must be mixed for the epoxy to have the proper adhesion and consistency. It is essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions to obtain the correct result. 

The epoxy wood fillers expand and contract with temperature changes making them ideal for outdoor use. As they are water-resistant, they are the best wood fillers for sealing foundations or walls in a home against the wind and rain. However, indoor projects should be the last choice because of the preparation and drying time involved.

Gypsum-based

Gypsum-based stainable wood fillers are mainly for indoor use. This type of filler is used in repairing gaps in drywall or baseboards. It is made out of gypsum dust that, when mixed with water, creates a paste; when it dries, it is no longer pliable and has a similar consistency to hardwood or rock! 

It is important to note that these fillers are susceptible to water damage and should not be used to expose them to rain even after the wood filler has dried out. However, the gypsum-based wood filler is the most affordable type.

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Latex filler

The latex-based stainable wood fillers require less preparation than epoxies. They are used outdoors and after application set very quickly and are water-resistant within the hour. These latex fillers are easy to work with and very useful in repairing rotted wood and fixing holes.

The latex wood fillers are very durable and, when thoroughly dried, become rigid like hardwood allowing sandpaper to be used on the filler to give a smooth finish to match the surrounding wood. The repair will not be damaged with screws or nails being driven into it. 

Cellulose-based

Cellulose-based stainable wood fillers are not usually known as such on any packaging. Still, the product will say they contain actual wood fibers and are inexpensive compared to a latex filler or epoxy wood fillers. 

These fillers, before application, can be mixed with any stain giving a rich color to the material. They are water-based and can be used outdoors but beware; some are strictly for indoor use, so always read the directions on the product to confirm whether it is for indoor or outdoor use.

stainable wood filler
Bondo Home Solutions Wood Filler (Credit: Amazon)

Before you buy

There are two critical factors to consider before buying a stainable wood filler, quantity and drying time. 

Quantity

Buying the correct amount of stainable wood filler for the job can save you money. If you only want to fill small holes and cracks as a one-off job, then a tiny tube of filler will be sufficient. For professional or heavy-duty projects, larger quantities will ensure you don’t run out in the middle of the task and be more cost-effective. Any filler leftover can be stored for future projects. 

Drying time

This is an essential factor to consider. Fillers with fast drying times are ideal for minor projects, but when working on a large project, the last thing you want is to be up against time! 

It will make the job easier and less stressful to have a slower drying time so that you can work on the project without feeling rushed. However, some fillers will not work if they are exposed to any moisture before they have cured so consider the weather and drying times stated on the product before starting.

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Stainable Wood Filler Frequently Asked Questions

Does stainable wood filler work?

Yes, they are a great way to repair cracks and gouges in unfinished furniture, floors, or walls. They can also be used on newer pieces of stained wooden floors for repairs before the finish is applied if you want them not noticeable later down the road when it’s time to touch up with another coat!

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Does wood filler stain the same as wood?

The use of wood fillers can be problematic when trying to achieve consistency in color. They often don’t absorb stain as well, resulting in spots that are much lighter or darker than surrounding stained wood. This is a problem because if you want your project to look uniform with any type of finish (whether it’s paint or wax) then having these small patches will ruin the overall appearance.

Wood filler also has another downside: they sometimes cause discoloration after finishing due to powdery residue infiltrating nearby grain holes which causes inconsistency between natural and stained wood. Testing on scrap pieces of timber is a good way to tell if you have found a good color match before going ahead with the project.

A good stainable wood filler can be difficult to find, but luckily we have done all of your research for you and compiled a list that will help make choosing much easier! 

Which is better, wood putty or wood filler?

This depends on whether you are repairing wood inside or outside. For external work, putty is the best option. However, you will need to use something that can be sanded and painted over afterward for interior woodwork, so we recommend using wood fillers because the result is neat and achieved relatively quickly.

Wood putty is a compound that can be used in both woodworking and also painting. Many seasoned experts will refer to it as “plastic wood” because of its ability to fill gaps as plastic filler does but without the risk of destroying or damaging raw surfaces – such as those found on pieces made with softwoods (like pine). It’s often recommended for use after staining or varnishing workpieces so the chemicals from these processes won’t damage the piece before you apply your desired finish.

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Wood putty is a versatile filling agent. Once dry, it will harden, but this process takes longer than wood filler, and some types need to be mixed with chemicals for stiffening purposes. The most significant drawback of the product is its long drying time, making light colors susceptible to dust accumulation that could darken them over time. However, there are more color options available so finding something that matches your wood stain becomes easier.

Wood filler is a putty-like compound used to fill in cracks and holes on wood surfaces. Unlike wood putty, you should apply it before doing any staining or finishing work on the project; otherwise, your finish may not adhere as well. 

Wood filler comes in many different colors, but if yours doesn’t match, there’s no need to worry! Add some dye with tints to match the color scheme, or mix sawdust into it for a more natural look instead – both options will do just fine.

You’ll notice that latex fillers are one of the types most commonly used. Latex is a water-based wood filler, making it easy to clean up after and perfect for filling large cracks in unfinished wood-like doors or window frames. The only downside? It can’t be mixed with dyes, so you won’t get any color variation if you’re using white paint as an example, but then again, this isn’t too big of a deal because we have other common types such as epoxy and polyurethane fillers at our disposal!

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Can you make wood filler from sawdust?

What do you think about when it comes to woodworking? Sawdust and wood glue, right! Well, guess what. Putting a layer of putty onto your project can save the day if need be. You might have noticed that there are ‘do-it-yourself’ options out there – but should you go through all this trouble for something so small?

stainable wood filler

Woodworkers and carpenters meticulously craft their filler to match the specific wood of each project. They use either raw materials or mix sawdust from that particular type of wood with glue, shaping them into a putty consistency for easy application.

Woodworker’s cabinetmaker’s putty is often made by mixing sawdust from an identical piece of furniture with a binder (typically wood glue). This makes it much easier to make sure your patch matches perfectly- not only in color but also in texture!

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Conclusion 

All of the stainable wood fillers reviewed are the best on the market and would do a good job. However, our Best Overall is Minwax 42853000 Stainable Wood Filler. This stainable wood filler comes premixed so no-fuss, is quick-drying, and is suitable for indoor or outdoor use. It is specially formulated to accept Minwax penetrating wood stains that are either oil-based or water-based. It is a very versatile product at an affordable price, so what’s not to like!

Our Best Value stainable wood filler is Goodfilla Water-Based Wood and Grain Filler ideal for indoor use.  This stainable wood filler withstands extreme temperatures, is easy to sand, stain, and paint, has a long shelf life, comes in a variety of colors – including mahogany wood fillerand is good value for money. It also comes with a 1 year, money-back guarantee so you can’t go wrong!

We hope that the ten reviews and Buyer’s Guide have given you all the information you need to buy a stainable wood filler that is right for your project and you can now buy with confidence.


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Walter Snyder