Learning, Drilling,

How to Fill a Drilled Hole in Wood (5 Easy Methods)

In this guide, I’ll teach you how to easily fill a drilled hole in a piece of wood.

As a handyman with years of experience, I know how to fill drilled or unwanted holes quickly. Doing this is a vital skill you need to know if you’re working with wood or planning to.

In general, there are many techniques that you can use to fill drilled holes in wood depending on the size of the hole and the nature of the wood:

  • Use Wood Filler
  • You Can Use Wooden Plugs
  • Use a Mixture of Glue and Sawdust
  • Toothpicks and Matches
  • Wood Chips

We will cover more detail below.

Method 1 – How to Fill a Hole in Wood Using Wood Paste

All varieties of wood and byproducts can be efficiently repaired with patching paste. The application is simple – both inside and outside.

The hole repair provided by patching paste is relatively simple to sand. Due to the incredibly small pieces, it does not clog the abrasive bands and can be used without any noticeable sagging on a vertical surface. It is advised to use a wood filler whose hue is closest to the substance you wish to fill.

Part 1: Ready the Hole You Want to Fill

It’s important to remember to prepare the wood with pulpwood before resealing. To begin with, a material that is not in good enough condition cannot be repaired.

Step 1: Control Humidity

The first step is to manage the humidity in the wood appropriately. The water content should notably not exceed 20 percent when processing the material.

Step 2: Remove the Dirt

To reduce the amount of wood shrinkage, warping, cracking, or splitting, it is crucial that the substrate is not overly wet.

Remove wood pieces in the hole in step two by carefully scraping the affected area. It is crucial to remove the damaged components until the timber is exposed. Decaying timber should be removed. After curing the wood, rot may reappear if the rot is not completely eradicated.

Step 3: Cleaning the Surface

I advise you properly clean the wood with an industrial degreaser if it is especially oily to make it cleaner. It makes the subsequent treatment’s penetration easier. It is important to thoroughly rinse to eliminate any product, grease, or dirt traces.

Part 2: Fill the Hole with Wood Paste

First, ready the wooden piece before using the paste to plug a hole. The hole needs to be dry, clean, and devoid of whatever material can prevent adhesion.

Step 4: Kneading the Paste

To create the most uniform wood paste, it must be well mixed before use. Work the wood filler thoroughly for at least two to three minutes. It has to be put in the crack, hollow, or hole that needs to be filled. Additionally, because it dries quickly, it needs to be handled as soon as possible.

Step 5: Spread the Wood Filler Out

The filler should stick out a little from the hole in the wood that needs to be filled. An appropriate spatula must then spread the paste out, so there is no visible lump. Allow enough time for the filling paste to dry thoroughly. It must be able to move with the wood’s distortions without ever collapsing.

Step 6: Get Rid of Excess Paste

When the paste has fully solidified, all left is scrape off the excess using a fine abrasive, such as sandpaper or # 0 or n° 000 steel wool. To provide a superior surface finish, it is advised to softly sand the mastic to eliminate any roughness, reliefs, or burrs.


Method 2. Using Carpentry Adhesive Mixture and Wood Chips

Filling holes in wood can also be done with a mixture of (carpentry) adhesive and small wood chips. This method is not appropriate for repairing large holes or leveling large surfaces, but it’s a dependable alternative to putties for home or local repairs.

In contrast, the same putty which fills the recesses and has many advantages over the filler, which is made of wood glue and shavings, also helps to ensure good adhesion.


Method 3. Using Toothpicks and Matches

This is the easiest technique for filling a drilled hole in wood, requiring only PVA glue and wooden toothpicks or matches.

Step 1. Arrange the needed number of toothpicks to fit as snugly as possible into the wooden hole. Then, dip them in PVA glue and add them into the hole.

Step 2. Take a hammer and gently strike them into the hole until the glue stiffens. Use a clerical knife to remove the remnants sticking out of the hole. Use a clerical knife to remove the remnants sticking out of the hole.

Step 3. Clean the hole with sandpaper.


Method 4. Using Sawdust and Glue

This technique is similar to the method of using prepared putty for wood, except that in this case, you make the putty yourself if it’s not readily available and you don’t want to run to the store. You’ll need wood glue or PVA glue to make homemade putty, but the joiner’s glue is preferable.

Then you’ll need fine sawdust made from the same material as the sealant. Those tiny chips should ideally be sharpened with a file (you can use coarse sandpaper).

Mix the sawdust with the glue until it “becomes” thick. Cover the hole with a spatula. Allow the glue to dry before cleaning it with sandpaper.


Method 5. Use Wooden Plugs in the Wood

Wooden plugs are commonly used as guiding components for board end merging, but they can also be employed to fill a hole in wood.

To fill the hole with this approach:

Step 1. Drill the diameter of the wood plug, which is typically 8 mm. Then, moisten the plug with wood glue and hammer it into the drilled hole.

Step 2. Wait for the wood glue to dry before inserting the wooden plugs into the wooden hole and removing the remnants with a hacksaw.

Take a look at some of our related articles below.




Video Reference

Alain Vaillancourt

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About Sam Orlovsky

AvatarCertifications: B.E.E.
Education: University Of Denver - Electric Engineering
Lives In: Denver Colorado

Electrical engineering is my passion, and I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years. This gives me a unique ability to give you expert home improvement and DIY recommendations. I’m not only an electrician, but I also like machinery and anything to do with carpentry. One of my career paths started as a general handyman, so I also have a lot of experience with home improvement I love to share.

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