Wood Putty vs Wood Filler

[Cover] Wood Putty vs Wood Filler

The terms “filler” and “putty” are often used interchangeably, and you might have noticed so. They are, however, quite different actually. It’s essential that you understand what makes them different from each other before using them to get the best possible result. In this article, we’ll be further discussing their distinct traits and uses so read on if you are still unaware of them. So, Wood putty vs wood filler; what are the differences between them?

Differences in Ingredients

As you may have guessed, the first difference between the two lies in the ingredients. So, wood putty vs wood filler: what are they made of?

Wood Filler

Wood filler is a compound that often has wood fibers and particles mixed in. It might also contain certain minerals like limestone for extra durability. A good trait of this substance is that it becomes after a while. Its optimal use would be on wood that is still unfinished.

How to Choose and Use Wood Filler | This Old House

Two-Part Filler

This product is a filler based on epoxy offers the best of both putty and fillers. To use it you simply mix it until it gains a bit of consistency then you just mold it into the wood and let it harden.

How to fill wood with 2 PART FILLER!

WOOD Putty

Wood putty is a composition made from certain types of plastic which are mixed with oil and other chemicals. This compound doesn’t harden, and you can’t sand it, but you can find it in different tones of wood to match the color of your woodwork. The optimal use for this product would be on finished and already stained wood.


Now that we got the ingredients out of the way, we’ll go over the differences in uses between wood putty vs wood filler.

What to Use for Exterior Patching

Exterior use is done best by putty thanks to its traits which match this particular use. As even though it doesn’t harden like filler, it has expanding and contracting characteristics that enable it to resist temperature variations.

Putty also works good for furniture, but make sure to use it after you have already finished the wood since you can’t paint or stain it afterward. 

Larger outdoor work is done best by a two-part filler since it gives even more flexibility that you’ll need to do other finishing work.

What to Use for Interior Patching

For interior patching, your best bet is wood filler, since it’s the best one when it comes to hardening. Moreover, it is resistant to temperature variations, which is ideal for this type of work. In terms of durability, it is also better than putty thanks to the minerals in its composition.

Two-part filler remains your best bet for large projects as it will offer the flexibility you need for them.


Even though they might seem similar, you can now see that they are two completely different products, each with a distinct use. That’s why it’s important to identify your needs, particularly the area and environment of your woodwork so you can determine which is the most suitable for the job.

If you want to get the best of both worlds, the two-part is the product for you, especially for bigger projects that require flexibility. 

In the end, we hope this article has helped you in differentiating between different wood fillers and will help you pick the best one for your job!

If we did help you out, feel free to check the rest of our tutorials and buying guide, in which review various tools and machines; from battery trimmers and gas leaf blowers to mini metal lathes, plasma cutters, and work pants.


Jeffrey Alfaro

Jeffrey is a craftsman and writer who specializes in testing tools and covering the tool industry for construction and woodworking professionals.

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