does wood filler absorb stain?

If you’re staining a piece of furniture, one of the first questions that you might have is: can I use wood filler to hide holes in the wood?

This question is more complicated than it seems—there are several places on a piece of furniture where you might need to fill in a hole before staining.

It’s important for these areas to be filled before applying stain because there are different types of stains and if they’re not applied correctly, they won’t look right. So how do you go about filling holes before staining? You’ll find answers below!

Does wood filler accept stains?

Yes, wood filler is stainable. Applying stains to the surface of existing wood filler can be tricky but it’s doable.

A drywall screw and washer will easily penetrate a small amount of dried filler; just make sure to wear gloves and take care not to scratch the surface of your project with the screwdriver or damage any surrounding areas with adhesive from your masking tape.

To apply a stain to freshly applied wood filler, first, use a paintbrush to spread out any excess thickened glue — this will help prevent bleeding from occurring during application.

Apply thin coats with fine-grain sandpaper between each coat until you reach your desired finish (you may need one or two more coats depending on how large an area you’re filling).

How do you fill holes in wood that will be stained?

First, you should choose the right wood filler for your project. It’s important to know that not all wood fillers are created equal.

Some are meant to be used with stains and some aren’t. If you’re going to stain your wood, then it’s best to use a wood filler that is compatible with the stain—this way you won’t have any problems when it comes time to apply your paint or color coat!

Second, make sure that the filler matches the color of your wood as closely as possible so that there aren’t any noticeable differences between them after they dry out completely (this could happen if there wasn’t enough care taken in choosing which one was most appropriate).

Thirdly: don’t forget about matching other aspects such as texture or surface type too! These things matter because they help create aesthetically pleasing results upon completion.”

Does Elmer’s wood filler take stain?

Yes! You can use any stain that is compatible with the type, finish, and color of your wood. For example, if you have a stained piece of pine and want to fill some cracks or holes in it, then you’ll want to use an oil-based stain that’s compatible with both the original finish (if it’s still there) and Elmer’s wood filler.

If you’re using Minwax Polyshades Stain & Finish in Chestnut on unfinished red oak, then go ahead and try out a water-based latex paint as well—it should work just fine without damaging either product.

Just make sure you get all your supplies from one store so they’re compatible!

How do I get wood filler to not show stain?

You’ve got a lot of options when it comes to getting wood filler that doesn’t absorb stain. You can use a stain-blocking primer, paint, wood filler, or sealer.

To block stains from penetrating the surface of your project:

  • Use a stain-blocking primer to prime bare surfaces before painting over them with your favorite interior latex paint in any color you please (paint is usually sold in quarts).
  • If you’re using a polyurethane varnish or polyurethane topcoat as a final finish on your project and want to keep it looking glossy and new for years, use an oil-based sealer first then apply the polyurethane topcoat over that. Oil-base products will not react with water-base paints/finishes so there’s no need for another layer of protection between these types of products

Why is wood filler showing through stain?

  • If you’ve used too much wood filler, it will soak up all of the stains and show through.
  • If you’ve used too much stain, it will saturate the wood filler and show through.
  • If your wood filler is old, it may have dried out and become hard or brittle. Try using a fresh batch of wood filler next time.
  • Use a different brand or type of wood filler if nothing else seems to work: some types don’t absorb stains as well as others; some brands are more watery than others, which gives them a tendency to soak up the stain instead of letting it sit on top like they’re supposed to do!

Do you use a wood filler before or after staining?

  • Use wood filler before staining. Wood putty is used after staining, and most stains will not adhere to the putty. If you want to stain the wood filler, use stainable putty instead of regular wood putty.

What is the difference between wood putty and wood filler?

Wood putty and wood filler are two different products. Both can be used to fill holes and gaps in wood, but they have a few distinguishing features that set them apart.

Wood putty is a paste-like material and is usually grey in color. It’s typically used to fill holes and gaps in the surface of a finished piece of furniture or another wooden project, rather than being painted over like the surrounding surface will be (as with filler).

Is water putty Stainable?

Water putty is not stainable, but water putty is a different product than wood filler. Water putty is a primer and cannot be stained. Wood filler can be stained.

The reason that water putty can’t be stained is that it’s made to absorb stains, rather than resist them as wood filler does.

That’s why you’re able to use it as a primer for painting over raw plywood before staining or painting the wall or furniture piece that the plywood will cover up (since you don’t want any of the wood grain showing through).


This should help you determine whether your wood filler is stainable, or if it will show through when you apply a stain. If you are unsure about what kind of filler to use, or if there are any tips for using fillers with stains or paints.

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Martin Flood

Martin Flood has been working in the construction industry for over 20 years as a general contractor with expertise in remodeling projects that are large or small. He has furthered his career by specializing in epoxy resin flooring, providing excellent service to both commercial and residential clients. Martin’s experience enables him to offer professional advice on how to choose the right type of project based on your needs and budget.

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