How Big Of A Hole Can Wood Filler Fill?

Wood filler is a significant innovation that helps people fill the holes in wood. If you have used it before, you know how helpful it is as a repair material. But how big are the holes it can fill? We have researched this for you, and here's what we found out:

Using wood fillers in holes bigger than 3/8 inches is not recommended. But if you need to patch a larger hole (2 to 4 inches deep), you can use a thicker wood filler or apply more product. You can achieve this through multiple layering. 

There's still more to learn about this topic—which we will tackle. For example, how to fill large holes using wood filler. Rest assured that you will learn much about this product if you stick through to the end of this article. Hence, you will be knowledgeable in dealing with it under different gap sizes. 

Young carpenter in work clothes and face mask using wood filler in finishing work for console table .- How Big Of A Hole Can Wood Filler Fill?

Filling A Big Hole With Wood Filler

Young carpenter in work clothes and face mask using wood filler in finishing work for console table . — Photo

The good news is that filling the gaps in your wooden flooring, wall, or furniture is not that hard. It can be a DIY project as long as you're skilled at following instructions, especially with measuring the correct portions when dealing with a powder product.

There is no specific size regarding the limit you can fill with wood filler. But as mentioned earlier, it is best not to fill holes that measure more than 3/8 of an inch. The wood filler is perfect for medium-sized gaps. Replacing a wooden board with too big a gap is better.

So, determine the best solution based on the extent of the damage. 

That said, you can still use wood filler on bigger holes. There's available ready-to-use filler that comes in buckets and is perfect for large gaps. That way, you won't be short of the product and can cover the whole space. 

Check out this wood filler on Amazon. 

How Do You Use Wood Filler For Large Gaps?

Young carpenter in work clothes and face mask using wood filler in finishing work for console table . — Photo

Here's how you fill a large hole using a wood filler. 

Step 1

If the large gap is on a wall or in a vertical position, not having a base could cause the wood filler to flow out. So, we first make a barrier on the hole with a craft stick. Otherwise, you might have a hard time filling it. 

Begin by measuring how wide and tall the space is to know how much stick you need. Then place an adequate amount together, side-by-side, on a flat surface. It should look like a board.

Ensure you align them before pasting their sides to enable them to stick together. Next, wait for the adhesive to dry. 

Check out these craft sticks on Amazon.

Step 2

Locate the back part of the hole. Run wood glue along its outline and paste the board you made on it. Let it sit until it no longer slips from the spot and is completely adhered to the surface.

Check out this wood glue on Amazon.

Step 3

Start mixing the wood filler. The procedure differs depending on the manufacturer. So, make sure that you carefully read the instructions and strictly follow the measurements or steps given. 

Step 4

Once you finish preparing the filler, use a putty knife to apply it evenly to the hole until it is level with the wooden surface.

Let it sit for about an hour for the wood filler to dry completely, then sand it with 120-grit or 220-grit sandpaper. Sanding makes the filled surface smoother and eliminates the bumps or uneven parts.

Check out this MAXMAN's 120-grit sandpaper on Amazon.

Step 5

Remove the dust or debris with a slightly damp and clean cloth. You can also apply a primer and paint afterward.

Want to know the best fillers for large holes? Learn about them here: "8 Best Wood Fillers For Large Holes."

How Do You Make Wood Filler Look Real?

Young carpenter in work clothes using wood filler in finishing work for sofa server project isolated on white background — Photo

Camouflaging the wood filler can be a challenge. If inexperienced, you may lack ideas on how to hide its presence. But do not worry! We will show you ways to make your wood look untouched and not repaired. 

Please note that you should first apply the wood filler and let it dry. Once dry, you can choose either of the two simple methods below.

Sawdust & Stain

For the first method, choose a wood filler and sawdust with a shade that blends with the surface where you intend to apply it. What's the sawdust for? You mix it with the filler before application. Then you stain it with a product that matches the wooden surface. 

Pre-stain Conditioner

In the second method, take these three steps (assuming you are done with the sanding and cleaning part).

  1. First, spread a pre-stain conditioner.
  2. Then paint the surface.
  3. Finally, apply a protective finish. 

What Is The Best Wood Filler For Large Areas?


There are several wood fillers that are best used in large holes. They include two-part epoxy, wood putty, old-school sawdust-glue mixture, and acrylic caulk with silicone. To give you an idea of what makes them great for your large hole-filling project, take a look at their advantages:

  • Two-part epoxy: This is an excellent medium for patching up big spaces and can handle being screwed. Also, you can mold it even if it's already dry. Therefore, you can shape it to suit the surface's look better. It's also easy to use and can handle major repairs.
  • Wood putty: Unlike other wood fillers, this does not shrink or sand unevenly. It can also hold paint well if you plan on staining the surface afterward.
  • Sawdust-glue Mixture: Woodworkers have used this method of mixing sawdust and glue to form a wood filler over the years. This solution enables you to blend your wood surface well if the sawdust used is the same species as the material. In addition, it dries fast.
  • Acrylic Caulk with Silicone: Best used for exterior woods due to its moisture-resistant feature. This wood filler has good flexibility and adherence. It's also easy to apply. Furthermore, you can get it in various colors to match your surface and conceal its presence. 

Can You Use Gorilla Glue As Wood Filler?

You can use Gorilla glue as a wood filler. However, there are a few pointers you should take note of when using this product. These are:

  • Mix it with fine dust particles of wood.
  • It should have a thick consistency (like a toothpaste texture).
  • Use it in small quantities. 

Can You Use Liquid Nails As A Wood Filler?

It is not ideal to use Liquid Nails as a wood filler. Although you can apply it to the gap, it does not possess the characteristics and components of a wood filler. Since it's not made for that purpose, the liquid nail may double your work in patching the holes you must repair. 

Can You Screw Into Wood Filler?

It is possible to screw into wood filler once it cures fully. However, there are a few points which you should remember before doing so. One concern is that you must evaluate the load and stress you will put into it. 

Once the wood filler hardens (about 1 to 2 days after application), it can receive little stress from small screws. So if you're planning to do this on your repaired wood, consider these types of wood filler that you can safely screw:

  • Two-part epoxy wood filler
  • Multipurpose wood filler
  • Exterior wood filler

Wondering how long it takes for the wood filler to dry? Check out this article: "How Long Does It Take For Wood Filler To Dry?"

Can You Cover Screws With Wood Filler?

Sanding and applying fillers to the boards of a pallet


You can cover the screws with wood filler. To do this, prepare the surface by sanding and applying the sealant over it with a putty knife. Once it dries, sand it again to remove any unnecessary bumps. 

Wood filler is suitable for filling up to 3/8-inch holes. But you can use it on bigger holes by using methods that allow you to accomplish this task. To fill a large space, make a board out of craft sticks and use it as a support so that the wood filler does not flow out. Instead, it settles into the gap better.
To fill large holes, choose a suitable filler among two-part epoxy, wood putty, sawdust-glue mixture, and acrylic caulk with silicone. You can also use Gorilla glue when you mix it with fine dust wood particles. 
If you want to screw into the wood filler, it's fine as long as you don't put too much stress and pressure on it. 

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