how to cover wood filler with stain?

What’s the best way to cover wood filler after you’ve stained it? And why is my wood filler showing through my new stain job?

These are questions I’ve been asked a lot over the years. In this article, I’ll show you how to cover wood filler and make your next stain project look great.

Can you stain over a wood filler?

You can stain over a wood filler, and it will look great! If you want to use a light-colored stain, let the filler dry completely before applying it. If you need to apply the stain right away, use a darker color.

If you’re using epoxy putty that actually looks like wood or another non-porous type of filler, it might not be necessary to prime with an oil-based primer before staining.

The same goes for any other type of product that claims to be “paintable,” as long as it’s not too thick.

Does stain hide wood filler?

As you probably know, wood filler is a different color than the wood you’re covering. While it can be tempting to simply apply a coat of stain over top of your new filler, this is not the best way to achieve a natural look.

Instead, you should use an application of polyurethane or shellac on top of the filler before applying any type of stain. This will help ensure that the stain adheres properly to your freshly filled surface and won’t wear away as easily in time.

Once your polyurethane or shellac is dry (following the manufacturer’s instructions), then go ahead and apply whichever type of stain you prefer!

How do you stain wood filler to look like wood?

You can use a wood filler that is the same color as the wood, or you can use a filler that’s one shade darker than the wood. Just make sure that your stain matches either of them.

If your filler is white, use a stain to match it. If it’s colored, find a matching stain for it (or go darker if you want).

How do you color over wood filler?

If you want to cover wood filler with stain, here are some tips:

  • Pick a stain that matches the color of your wood filler. If it’s too dark, your wood will look fake; if it’s too light, it’ll look like there are gaps between boards when they’re really filled in.
  • Don’t use anything red or orange-colored on spruce-based woods (like pine), because this can cause discoloration over time.

What kind of wood filler can you stain?

Before you start staining, it’s important to know what kinds of wood filler you can stain. Wood filler comes in an array of different types and each type can be stained differently.

Some types will allow the stain to soak into them while others will not allow the stain to penetrate into the wood at all. The following are some examples:

  • Water-based stains work best with fillers that have been made from water-soluble products such as sawdust or flour paste along with paint thinner and wax emulsion (a solution made out of mineral spirits). These materials have a tendency not only to absorb water but also other fluids, which means they’re great for getting a deep coloration on your project!
  • Oil-based stains are ideal when working with fillers like linseed oil and tung oil because these materials tend to repel watery liquids like latex paints or acrylics; however, they aren’t recommended for use when using shellac since this type tends not only to absorb but also repel liquids–making it difficult for any kind coating material underneath (such as shellac) from sticking properly onto whatever surface is being coated in order protect against peeling off later down the road due exposure by ultraviolet rays from sunlight through windows/doors, etc..

Will gel stain hide wood filler?

If you’re painting over wood filler, a gel stain is your best bet. It’s thicker than regular stain and can be used on top of the wood filler without causing any problems.

Gel stains are available in a variety of colors, so you have some freedom when choosing the right shade for your project.

If you’re worried that the color won’t match exactly with what’s underneath, there’s no need to worry: gel stains tend to darken as they dry (though this will depend on how thickly or thinly it was applied).

They also tend to darken over time as they age, making them ideal if you don’t want all of your furniture pieces to look exactly alike after several years of use.

Can you varnish over wood filler?

You can varnish over wood filler. However, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

  • Apply the varnish with a brush or cloth that’s been dipped in water to help spread it evenly. It will dry much faster than if you were to use an applicator pad or roller, and it will make it easier for you to get an even coat of finish on your wood filler.
  • Sand between coats to smooth out any raised areas and remove dust from previous coats before applying another one.
  • If your piece has been stained before applying the stain, sand down any raised spots before applying the stain again so that they don’t end up peeking through later on when the topcoat is applied (this will happen if those areas aren’t sanded down).

Can you sand wood filler?

Yes, you can sand wood filler. However, be careful not to over-sand it. If you do, the wood filler may look worse than before and you’ll have to fill and sand again.

To prevent this from happening, use coarse grit sandpaper (60-80 grit) and sand in the direction of the grain of your project’s wood; then move on to finer grit (120 or 150) as needed.

Can you stain Elmer’s wood filler?

Elmer’s wood filler is a polyurethane, so it can be stained with oil-based stains, water-based stains, and gel stains.

If you want to stain Elmer’s wood filler, then you should use an oil-based stain. You can also use water-based or gel stains.

Why is wood filler showing through stain?

  • The wood filler is too big. When you apply a stain over wood filler, the excess filler will show through the new coat of stain and create streaks. To avoid this problem, use fine-grit sandpaper to remove all traces of the old filler before applying the new one.
  • The wood filler is too thick and/or unevenly applied. If some areas have less filler than others, it will be more noticeable when you apply another layer over them because those spots won’t absorb as much stain as other areas that have been filled completely with new wood putty (also known as spackling). To fix this problem, simply apply more putty in those areas until they’re filled up evenly with spackle!
  • The previous coats were not sanded enough before they were stained over again–and now there’s some visible texture left behind by said stains–which creates an uneven surface that catches light differently depending on where you look at it from certain angles while standing outside or indoors under different lighting conditions depending on how bright things are getting inside today’s office spaces thanks to advances made by LED lighting manufacturers who’ve recently started producing products which use less energy than fluorescent bulbs did previously but provide brighter output than incandescent bulbs could ever hope for doing so without generating excessive heat levels like halogen ones do when turned up high enough for long periods of time without stopping between breaks every hour or two just like we always do so these days anyway since nobody cares anymore about being considerate towards others’ feelings since nobody seems interested anymore about thinking about what other people might think about themselves unless maybe if something happens along which means there isn’t any reason left behind anymore because everything else has already happened first:,


Wood filler is a great way to hide unwanted cracks and holes in your wood, but it can be tricky to cover up.

If you need to stain over wood filler, we recommend using gel stain or an oil-based polyurethane varnish that will bond with the wood fibers better than latex products will.

You can also try using an epoxy coating if you don’t want a shiny finish on your project!

Photo of author

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.

Leave a Comment