5 of the Best Stainable Wood Fillers For Floors You Need in Your Home
- 1 How does a wood filler work?
- 2 Contents of a wood filler
- 3 Additives in wood fillers
- 4 Why is it essential to be stainable?
- 5 Our Top 5 Picks
- 6 Tips and tricks for buying wood fillers
- 7 The Verdict
Wood fillers can be a forgotten item in-house repair. However, there’s no mistaking that these are great solutions to fix little dents and cracks on any wooden material. In our homes, doors, floors, and cabinets are one of the standard places where damages can occur.
With that said, having the best stainable wood filler for floors is a must, especially if you have wooden floors. Even without it, the products that we will be reviewing, later on, can cover a wide range of applications. Stick around to find out more!
How does a wood filler work?
Wood fillers, or wood putty, are exactly as how they’re named to be. They are artificial compound materials that form into a paste. This paste can work with just like clay before applying. Once applied, this compound material acts as a filler for scraped, dented, or damaged wood.
When “filling” damaged wood, you just take a chunk of the filler and apply it like paste on the surface. Afterwards, it then dries up and sets, which you then spread out and sand later on. The way this works is almost similar to epoxy putty.
Contents of a wood filler
So, how does this sort of magic happen? It’s a matter of chemical combination and reactions. For starters, wood fillers usually use wood dust as its base material. There isn’t much surprise here because to fill wood; there has to be a wooden material.
Along with wood dust, comes a binder. Binders allow the wood filler to take in its shape and elasticity. Just imagine, if there’s no binder, then the wood filler would have a texture similar to wood dust. Of course, this won’t be possible to use as a filler given how delicate it is.
Binders vary depending on products. However, its function in the formula remains the same. Just imagine it as that raw egg yolk that you put in burgers and crab cakes. It works just the same way for a wood putty.
Lastly, it’s combined with a thinner. This thinner is what makes the putty easy to manipulate. That’s because the binder with the wood dust alone can make it too clumpy and solid. Thus, the thinner eases it out. Some thinners used can be quick to dry. That is why it’s essential to have sealed containers for your wood putty.
It’s also important to note that many wood fillers have colors mixed into them. That is why you’ll get wood fillers that are not brownish. Some are white, while others can come in beige or gray.
Additives in wood fillers
Finally, since we’re focusing on floors as the beneficiary of the wood putty, it’s important to remember that there can be additives. These additives are used to enhance the wood filler when you’re using it for broader applications. Of course, when we talk about more prominent uses, wooden flooring comes into mind.
The most common additive here is silica. Silica is a chemical that is rooted from silicon, being its oxide compound. Silica is a compound oxide that is suitable for many synthetic applications.
Since it’s found naturally in sand, it’s no surprise that it can be a substitute for wood dust in fillers. However, some brands use silica with wood dust. That gives it a more profound and integrated grain material to fill in and act as new wood.
Why is it essential to be stainable?
Some wood fillers are not stainable nor are they paintable. This kind of wood filler limits the material’s versatility. Moreover, it constricts what you can further do with your damaged flooring or wooden surface.
Now you might be wondering, what does a stainable wood filler mean? What is its importance? To explain it correctly, try to envision a wooden floor that has been applied with wood filling a few months ago.
Now, you’re starting to see the entire flooring get a little foggy and brittle due to age. Usually, homeowners maintain wooden floors by applying wooden floor polish to restore its shine. If you used a non-stainable wood filler, then this will break down once placed with the finish.
Wood is a very versatile material, and there’s a lot of things you can do with it regarding aesthetics. That is why getting a stainable wood filler is essential. That’s because it allows you to treat the liner just as how you can manage wood.
That means you can paint it, polish it, wet it, and even plane it. With a wood filler like this, you’re bound to forget that you also placed it in the first place!
Our Top 5 Picks
We’re starting off with the Elmer’s Carpenter’s color change wood filler because it’s one of the most famous ones in the market. Elmer’s is renowned for a variety of crafting products, and their wood filler has been one of the recent ones.
One of the best things about this wood filler is it works well with either light or dark dyers. The formula that Elmer’s Carpenter’s color change uses is very complicated, yet at the same time easy to use. That makes this wood filler a great item to have for any homeowner.
- Patented wood formula is the backbone of this reliable wood filler
- After the product has set and taken effect, you won’t notice that it’s there!
- Good repair item for holes, dents, and scratches
- It doesn’t use any toxic chemical, which makes it pleasant to work even indoor.
- Excellent for indoor repairs
- It’s stainable, sandable, and paintable, nothing else can beat it!
- Fundamentally sound product
- Elmer’s component goes purple and then it dries white whenever it is ready to sand
- The lid needs to be more airtight to prevent this product from drying too quickly
- Still, it works brilliantly for floors!
- It can be a little challenging to apply when you’re not dealing with a flat surface
- With that said, try to seal this correctly to avoid waste
The Minwax High-Performance Wood Filler is a solid product that you can use indoors or outdoors. What you’ll first see here is its sleek container. The best thing about that tank is that it’s airtight. Thus, it doesn’t dry out too quickly.
Besides the shelf life, Minwax does an excellent job in repairing wood damages through its wood filler. The filler itself is guaranteed not to shrink, fall out, or crack when applying or drying. Even better is that you can sand this quickly without waiting for too long!
- Fast and reliable
- This product sets in 15 minutes after applying, and then is sandable in just 30 minutes!
- Excellent for repairs but also capable as a working surface after application
- You can drill, screw, and even plane a cover that comes with Minwax
- Adheres well to wood and any porous surface
- That is one of the reasons why it also dries quickly after application
- Can be a little more regarding quantity
- Unlike the 16 oz packaging of Elmer’s, Minwax only has 12 oz in their wood fillers
- The quick dry feature can backfire on hot days since it can dry too quickly
- That makes the product a little harder to work with
Bondo Home Solutions is another well-known brand in the household repair market. Their wood filler is affordable, yet it’s also twice as much as the Elmer’s. Not only do you get a bargain for quantity here, but you’ll get a quality liner.
What Bondo’s wood filler specializes in is its restoration process. After sanding and staining this product, your wood surface will look good as new. It’s almost as if there was no dent or scraped area! That is all thanks to Bondo’s trustworthy formula for their wood fillers.
- Easy to work with after it sets and dries
- While staining it via paint is familiar, you can efficiently use buffers, sanders, and planers on it too!
- Very affordable yet large in quantity
- It’s packaged in one quart (32 US oz) despite having a similar price with products that have only half the size!
- 2-part wood filler enhances this product’s performance
- Bondo’s 2-part filler formula allows the wood filler to adhere better and remain intact without shrinking
- Moreover, this wood filler is waterproof which further strengthens it as a filler
- Can be a bit clumpy if you don’t attend to it quickly
- Like the other products that set fast, it can backfire
- It takes stain smoothly, but it can be enhanced to compete with other products better
Elmer’s enters our list for a second time because of its top-notch restoration capability with their wood filler. This time around, Elmer’s changes their packaging. From a circular container, you can now get a wood filler in a tube.
It looks like your typical toothpaste at first, but Elmer’s E855 is a reliable and robust filler in a small package. It’s stainable and paintable, but at the same time, it doesn’t dry too quickly! This one’s best for professionals or hobbyists who need a filler in their pockets!
- Lightweight and portable
- The Elmer’s E855 can comfortably fit in your pocket; this makes it great for outdoor jobs
- Resists shrinking and cracking
- Like any good wood filler, Elmer’s has a waterproof formula that prevents the pad from dissolving
- Right drying time gives you a lot of leeways to work with
- What’s right about Elmer’s is that it’s neither fast or slow in drying
- The tube can have a lot of air inside, which can make it hard to squeeze out
- Being a white colored wood filler can be challenging to some
- Having a darker hue closer to wood can make the job easier
FamoWood comes last on our list with its Latex Wood Filler. FamoWood uses a solvent-free formula, which makes cleaning up with water a lot easier. Not to mention, the finished coating of the wood filler is guaranteed to protect your wood from the liquid.
With that said, it’s great to take in a lot of stains and paint at the same time. It dries in 15 minutes too, so you know when to work the filler. One of the best things about this product is after it sets, it’s almost as if you’re working with actual wood!
- Drying time is just right
- The 15-minute mark gives you ample of time to work the filler without it getting clumpy
- Great for filling gaps
- Because it’ such a solid material, and acts like wood once it sets, you can use this like an epoxy too
- Smooth transition from wood filler to “wood.”
- Once you’ve applied this on your wood surface, it will seamlessly fit in the damaged areas after sanding.
- The packaging can be quite small
- Sometimes, you could encounter a half-full container
- It can be a little thick so working out the filler at first can be challenging
Tips and tricks for buying wood fillers
Now that we’re well aware of the contents of a stainable wood filler, then you may check these few reminders first before reading our top 5 selections! These tips and tricks will guide you on how to buy useful wood filling.
- Buy airtight packaging – Again, the wood putty can quickly dry out, so make sure the packaging is sealed tightly!
- Drying time should not be too fast nor too slow – A wood filler that dries too quickly will make you panic in applying it. Meanwhile, a liner that dries slowly can make you impatient!
- Make sure the colors match – perhaps one of the most common problems wood fillers encounter is color-matching. There are some products out there that have no trouble matching wooden colors. With that said, try to gauge the color of your floor before buying!
- Buy a good liner that’s easy to mix – the best wood filler texture is somehow similar to wet cement. Anything thicker than that can be challenging to apply.
Getting yourself a wood filler might sound intimidating at first, especially if it’s your first time. There are dozens of wood fillers out there, and you might get yourself a bad quality product. However, with the right research, you can quickly get a product that works best for you.
Always remember to take into account the drying time, thinness, and stainability of the product. If you meet these three products, then patching up your floor will be a walk in the park. With these three factors in mind, we’ll give the edge to the Elmer’s Carpenter’s wood filler.
The Elmer’s Carpenter’s has the right blend of wood filling, thinness, and drying time to make it our winner. Not to mention, it also comes at an affordable price for 16 ounces. Still, you can always look at the other products if some peaked your interest!
If you found this article informative, don’t forget to share this with your fellow homeowners! Good luck!