can you paint over wood filler
Kristina Davis

Can you paint over wood filler, or should it be vice versa? Wood filler is a reliable option to cover up pits and gouges or any holes that might be with the wood.

At the same time, you have to apply paint on the wood and may well not know the protocol to follow.

Can you paint wood over wood filler? The short answer is yes! you can paint over wood filler. This article evaluates the options and the best practices to abide by while filling wood and painting.

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Lookup for answers within this article; this blog post will reveal to you more than just whether you can paint over wood filler.

It will help you understand why you need to fill wood in the first place, why you need to paint it, and best practices on which activity should precede the other.

What Is Wood Filler Anyway?

what is wood filler

Do you have any idea about what wood filler is? That is almost self-explanatory; It speaks for itself.

A wood filler, otherwise known as wood putty, is a concoction meant for filling gaps in the wood. These gaps may be holes left by nails, those left by rotting, etcetera.

Wood filler is made up of wood dust combined with a binding effect to stick on the crevices within the wood to make it solid and straight.

Tip: Always make sure that you collect wood that matches the wood you want to fill. Don’t use darker dust to fill a brighter area.

What Can Be Used as Wood filler?

what can be wood filler

There are several options at your disposal to pick from in a bid to fill the nicks, scratches, and gouges within the wood.

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There are both natural or traditional wood fillers and artificial or modern ones.

Natural Wood Fillers.

You do not have to always go commercial with everything.

Even though commercial wood fillers are ready for pickup and exchange in the nick of time, you can opt for natural ones as well if you want to save some cash.

There are several DIY ways to come up with wood filler. You can create one by mixing sawdust with shellac or sawdust and glue.

natural wood filler

Below is a brief guide to help you prepare to Do It Yourself, Wood Filler.

You need an estimated ten minutes to have cleared making homemade wood filler with all needed material assembled in time.

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You will need a putty knife, tack clock, fine-grit sandpaper, and an electric sander for tools.

Assemble Craft stick, cardboard, or scrap wood, and a sticking agent such as wood glue or shellac for materials.


  1. Make some sawdust using a sander to collect it.
  2. Gather the collected sawdust onto cardboard or scrap wood and remove any large particles, wood, or metal shavings.
  3. Mix the wood filler by gathering the sawdust into a pile, adding some glue, and mixing with a crafty stick. Add more glue until the mixture becomes thick.
  4. Apply the wood filler onto the wood.
Why Do People Prefer Homemade Wood Fillers?
why people prefer homemade filler

Although commercial wood fillers are readily available and relatively costly, most people opt to make their wood fillers at home.

These are the reasons that validate this habit.

  • Carpenters opt for homemade wood fillers to design one that suits their demand so that it closely matches the project at hand.
  • DIY wood filler becomes convenient in case you run out of commercial ones while still running the project. You can make your own in less than ten minutes and carry on with the task.
Tip: Always apply homemade filler immediately once it reaches the desired texture.


You can also bid goodbye to blemishes on your wood by matching it to the store and getting commercial wood fillers.

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artificial wood fillers

These ones are readily available to fill up all the cracks, divots, holes, or rot on the surfaces of your wood.

Commercial wood fillers are in two categories: wood-based ones and solvent wood fillers.

While we may not suggest the best wood filler due to the varied locations of our esteemed readers, consider the following while selecting wood filler from any vendor.

  • The task you need to accomplish.
  • Consistency
  • Color of the wood.
  • Application environment
  • packaging

Can You Paint Over Wood Filler?

paint over the wood filler

You might have come across questions like; can you use wood filler over paint? Many people may not know what to do at this point.

Now, once you are done filling out any holes in the wood with wood filler, you are all set to paint over it. So, YES you can paint over wood filler.

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The wood filler takes at most an hour to dry. The thickest will take up to an hour, while the mildest will take about half an hour.

Once the wood filler is dry, you are at liberty to run paint over it so as to make the wood have standard color and obliterate the wood filling.

Can You Paint Over Wood Filler Before the Filler Dries?

You cannot paint straight to the filler but will have to wait for it to dry before moving on to apply the paint.

paint over filler before dries

Wood filler is made of sawdust that will automatically affect the entire paint by spilling it all over the wood if a brush of paint is run over it before it has dried up well.

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Therefore, you cannot paint over wood filler but only after thoroughly drying up.

Tips to Make Wood Filler Dry Faster.

At times, the wood filler may not even dry within the hour you expect it to, especially when the temperatures are too cold.

As a result, you will need to find some other way to have it dry faster. Doing so is easier but letting the wood filler dry by itself at its own pace is better.

Quickening the rate at which the wood filler dries can cause damage or stains to other parts of the wood.

tips to make dry faster

But you can always be careful about it, and this is what you will need to do to fasten the drying speed of the wood filler.

  1. Do not make the wood filler so thick. Usually, the thicker your wood filler putty, the longer it will take for it to dry.
  2. Make the filler less thick to speed up its drying.
  3. Place a fan right on top of the area with the wood filer.
  4. A fan will act as a drying agent on the wood filler by bothering it and increasing the warmth around the area it is laid.
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Can You Paint Over a Wood Putty?

Most of you may think that wood putty and wood fillers are the same. Anyway, you may not genuinely know since we are all not seasoned, woodworkers or carpenters.

There is a slight difference between wood putty and wood filler. Although they are both used to fill up holes in wood, they are different in a way that may be grim to notice.

These two have significant differences in their composition.

paint over wood putty

Wood putty is more of a plastic wood filler made with oil products and chemical composition, while wood filler is a product of wood particles such as sawdust thickened by glue.

Therefore, can you paint over wood putty?

You can paint over wood putty. But since it is thicker than wood filler, you will have to wait longer for it to dry before painting over it.

Tip: Wash off putty from tools used once you are through. If dried, it becomes impossible to wash them off.


Can you paint over wood filler now? Has this article helped you to understand how wood filling works? The wood filling is a vital aspect of the woodwork industry.

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It enables carpenters to fill up any loopholes that may weaken the wood while being used.

The wood filler should, however, not be confused with wood putty. We hope this blog post helps you get the difference and treat the wood with paint at the right moment.