Can You Screw Into Wood Filler? [Solution & Useful Tips]

Sometimes the wood around your home can get cracked, dented, or chipped. Luckily, a wood filler can help fill all kinds of blemishes in the wood.

Thus, you can use it for many different projects, such as filling holes in hardwood, plywood, particleboard, or even concrete blocks.

Furthermore, a Wood filler is commonly used in the construction industry. For this reason, many handymen have asked: Can you screw into wood filler?

To start, yes, you can screw into a wood filler; however, not all wood-filling materials are sturdy enough to be screwed or drilled into. Below, we have discussed everything you need to know about screwing into the wood filler and the best materials.

What is Wood Filler?

Wood filler is a type of wood putty commonly used in the woodworking industry to fill cracks, holes, and other imperfections in the wood. It’s handy for so many things, such as repairing furniture and creating everything from a do-it-yourself shelter to a wall of customized art.

The best wood filler is an epoxy-based wood filler that is dry-mixed using the right water and epoxy resin ratio.

Can You Screw Into Wood Filler?

Screw Into Wood Filler

The simple answer is YES! Screwing into wood filler is a common practice in the woodworking industry.  You can screw wood filler with a small pilot hole after it has cured well.

Nevertheless, the process of drilling and screwing into wood filler is one of the most common household tasks. So you must know how to do it right.

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Start with a pilot hole that is the same diameter as the wood filler, then drill the pilot hole into the wood filler using a pilot bit.

While screwing and drilling into epoxy-based wood fillers is possible, you will need to use the right technique for the best results. If you drill too deep, you risk drilling through the wood, which could cause cracking and damage to your project.

To drill and screw into a wood filler, you need a drill bit that is the correct size for the filler. Some of the best wood filler bit sizes include:

  • 1/4″ bit: Perfect for drilling into large pieces of firmer wood such as pine
  • 1/2″ bit: Perfect for drilling into medium-firm wood such as fir
  • 5/8″ bit: Perfect for drilling into medium-firm wood such as cherry
  • 1″ bit: Perfect for drilling into softwoods such as oak

Types of Wood Filler You Can Drill Screw Into

What Types of Wood Filler Can I Drill Into

Simple Wood Fillers

Simple wood filler, also known as “wood stoppers,” is usually made of sawdust or chalk and is used to fill in chipped or damaged wood. These wood fillers are much easier to work with but cannot hold screws or be drilled into.

Two-Part Epoxy Wood Fillers

Epoxy fillers are made from a mixture of resins and hardeners. They are ideal for applications such as floors and moldings because they are both permanent and waterproof.

Furthermore, they are durable, easy to work with, and can be drilled or removed when needed.

Exterior Wood Fillers

Some wood fillers are specially designed to be used on exterior surfaces that are exposed to harsh elements. Exterior fillers have many advantages that include:

  • No replacement needed
  • Easy removal
  • Does not create cracks
  • Does not burn the paint
  • Exterior protection
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Multi-Purpose Wood Fillers

You can use multi-purpose wood fillers to fill in gaps or cracks and decorate your home’s exterior. They dry very quickly and can be used in any season.

Additionally, multi-purpose fillers have all the benefits of epoxy-based fillers and exterior fillers.

Best Wood Filler For Screw Holes

Here are some of the best filler products that you can use for screw holes:

Abatron WoodEpox Replacement Compound

Abatron Wood Epoxy Compound works well on concrete, metal, drywall, and wood. It is ideal for decorative trim work and repairs where you don’t want to remove the original wood.

For example, you can use it in cases where the wood is rusted or covered in nail holes because Abatron is a lightweight filler that is great for exterior projects and repairs.

Minwax 12-ounce High-Performance Wood Filler

This high-performance filler is perfect for filling small holes or crevices and removing shrinkage from the wood. Thus, you can also screw and drill from this wood filler.

On top of that, Minwax does not shrink even if it is left sitting for a long time.

Elmer’s Carpenter’s Wood Filler Tube

Elmer’s Wood Filler Tube is ideal for multiple applications such as patching, filling gaps, cracks, holes, and filling missing wood. Some of its advantages are as follows:

  • It is easy to use and safe for use on any wooden surface
  • Safe to use on carpeting, synthetic floors, and concrete floors
  • Helps reduce your costs as it eliminates the need to use sandpaper
  • Relatively easy to apply, stain, and weatherproof
  • Lasts for many years without losing strength
  • Can hold screws in place

FamoWood Latex Wood Filler

FamoWood Latex is a fast-drying filler that can be sanded, nailed, stained, drilled, or painted. It is also a water-based formula that dries out evenly without shrinking or cracking.

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J-B Weld Wood Epoxy Adhesive

If you are looking for a fast-setting epoxy-based filler that can hold screws in place, J-B Weld Wood Epoxy Adhesive is your best choice. It works well on all types of wood surfaces and makes the edges around the joints extremely strong.

3M Bondo Home Solutions Wood Filler

3M Bondo is another wood filler with a high-quality formula that is exceptionally durable and can replace worn-out wood sections in most applications.

It can also be nailed, painted, sawed, drilled, and sanded. Thus, Bondo wood filler is especially recommended for damaged and dry hardwood.

4 Steps on Applying Wood Filler for Screws

Here are the steps you need to know when screwing or drilling into the wood filler.

Step 1: Surface preparation

When working with food filler, you will need to clean the surface thoroughly you intend to fill. Cleaning helps get rid of stains, loose paint, and any wood chunks.

Step 2: Sanding rough edges

Sanding rough edges

It is important to sand off all rough edges, after which you can use a tack cloth to clean off debris.

Step 3: Apply wood filler.

Use a putty knife to apply your wood filler and press it into the area that needs filling. Slightly overfill to compensate for the filler shrinking or losing its shape.

Step 4: Allow the filler to dry and cure

The filler needs enough time to dry and set for it to hold the screws in place. The minimum time for drying should be 20 minutes to several hours.

Just make sure not to rush this process. Once the filler has completely dried, sand off the uneven edges.

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Tips for Wood Redrilling Screws After Filling Holes

Redrilling screws into a wood filler requires a combination of patience and accuracy. Nonetheless, there are many ways to fill a hole for redrilling screws when you want to make your wood usable again.

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Some of the quickest ways to fill a hole in the wood include:

  • Use of wood filler
  • Using sawdust and glue
  • Using wood plugs

Thus, choosing the best filler that will not get damaged when redrilling is a good idea. For best results, use a wider diameter screw than the original one.


Is wood filler as strong as wood?

Tests on wood fillers have shown that they don’t hold the same standards as real wood. Thus, wood fillers and sand fillers are compounds used to increase the dimensional stability of any material.

Many different types of wood fillers are available today, each with its unique properties. Every type of wood filler contains a certain combination of synthetic resins, petroleum-based binders, and additives to promote dimensional stability.

Why is it not a good idea to drill screws into Wood Glue?

Drilling screws into wood glue is a bad idea and a very dangerous job. It can cause injuries to the worker, and in some cases, the damage to the structure may be permanent, given that the screw may stick to the wood glue itself.

Can You Reuse Screw Holes In Wood?

You can reuse screw holes in wood as long as they are small enough for the screw placed inside the hole. If the holes are jagged or too loose, they will not secure the screw once it is screwed into place. If you don’t have enough room to place another hole, you can always fill the hole with a quality wood filler, let it cure, and use it with a different screw.

Will Epoxy Wood Filler Hold A Screw?

Will Epoxy Wood Filler Hold A Screw

Yes. Epoxy wood filler is the hardest type of wood filler available on the market. When this type of wood filler dries, it hardens to the surface of real wood, making it easy to sand, paint, nail, and screw. If you’re looking for a wood filler with the structural capacity to hold screws and heavy objects, epoxy wood filler is the best way to go.

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Can I screw into Polyfilla?

Yes. Polycell Deep Gap Polyfilla can fill deeper holes, up to 20mm, in one application. Easy to sand for a smooth finish. Fills holes up to 20mm and accepts nails or screws.


It is possible to screw and drill into a wood filler. However, every wood filler varies and is used for various applications like filling gaps, cracks, and holes.

So it is essential to take note of the type of wood filler and the application you’ll be using it for.

Nonetheless, we hope that this article has taught you how to identify what wood filler to use and how to utilize it for your next project.

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