Do you have a damaged door frame and are debating whether to repair it or replace it with a new one? We’ve all been there, and the dilemma inspired this blog post on how to repair a door frame with wood filler.

We know it’s expensive to replace an entire door, so we recommend repairing it. The right wood filler will help you restore the door frame’s structural integrity and aesthetic appeal.

Read to the end to find out how to choose the right door frame wood filler, the supplies you will need for the wood repair process, and the detailed procedure to get the job done.

Let’s get started.

How to Repair a Door Frame with Wood Filler

  1. Prepare the damaged door frame area by cleaning and sanding.
  2. Mix the wood filler as recommended.
  3. Apply the filler to the damaged door frame using a putty knife.
  4. Wait for the door filler to dry.
  5. Sand the excess filler clean and recoat the patched door frame.

How to Choose the Right Wood Filler for Door Frames

Wood filler is a product of wood fiber and a binder. The binding agent might be water or petroleum-based products. Water-based fillers combine sawdust and water, while solvent-based fillers are a mixture of sawdust and petroleum-based products.

Use water to mix and clean up water-based fillers and solvents like turpentine or mineral spirits when working with solvent-based fillers.

As the name suggests, wood fillers are the best solution for filling cracks, dents, and holes in wood. Consider the factors below when shopping around for the perfect wood filler material for your door frame.

Strength of the filler

You need to use a material that will match or add to the structural integrity of the damaged wood surface. Fillers from reputable brands guarantee that your damaged door will have a sturdy and longer lifespan after the filling.

An excellent example of a strong wood filler is DAP plastic wood filler. It looks like real wood but is three times stronger than natural wood. This filler also responds well to paint or wood stains and is great for significant repairs.

Wood filler’s dry time

Wood filler’s drying process is another important factor you need to consider. But, again, the product choice will depend on the gap size you need to close.

For example, Bondo wood filler is perfect for smaller holes or shallow cracks. This filler has an open time of about 15 minutes and will be dry in 30 minutes.

This product is also excellent when you’re pressed for time but want to fix the spot. On the other hand, choose wood filler with a longer open time if you have large gaps and wide cracks to repair.

A product like epoxy wood filler will let you choose the amount of open time you need to mix and apply it to wood and still be able to fix errors before it hardens.

Size of the crack on your door frame

There are fillers designed specifically for small repair jobs, while others are better suited for larger ones. For example, choose a suitable wood putty to repair a wide gouge on the door frame.

However, trust the traditional wood grain fillers to get the job done if you’re fixing a ding or thin crack in the door frame.

Can you paint or stain over the filler?

Does wood filler stain? If the damaged door was painted or stained, you need to use filler material that you can coat to blend with the existing finish.

Fortunately, most wood fillers are both stainable and paintable. So if you’re looking for the best stainable wood filler, look no further than Minwax Stainable Wood Filler.

However, if you have a painted door, use a paintable filler like Goodfella Wood & Grain Filler.

Sometimes recoating the filled spot will only highlight the cosmetic imperfections. Therefore, it’s best to recoat the entire door frame area for a flawless look.

You may also like our review article of the best putty for nail holes.

How to Repair a Door Frame with Wood Filler

You need to repair the damage to your door frame as soon as it occurs to prevent a crack from spreading. Now that you know what to consider when choosing wood filler for your damaged door frame, here’s a list of supplies you will need to complete the job.

Find out what you don’t already have, and then buy it from your local hardware store.

Supplies you will need

  • Wire brush
  • Putty knife
  • Vacuum with a brush attachment
  • Wood filler
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • Primer
  • Wood stain or paint
  • Paintbrush

Step-by-step procedure

Step 1: Prepare the damaged door frame

Line the floor with a drop cloth to catch drips, dust, and other debris. Scrape off the flaking paint and stubborn lumps using a wire brush. If the door frame has deep holes, splinters, or cracks, brush it to remove wood chippings.

Use a utility knife to cut out the jagged edges of the damaged door frame. Sand the damaged area and surrounding surface using 100-grit sandpaper to remove the remaining paint or stain.

Clean up the dust and debris using a vacuum’s brush attachment. Next, wipe the prepped surface using a microfiber cloth.

Step 2: Prepare the wood filler as recommended

Prepare the filler you chose according to the manufacturer’s instructions. In this case, we’ll use the two-part polyester filler. But, first, mix the resin with the catalyst on cardboard.

Only prepare enough filler for the surface you want to patch, because any leftover product will be hard and useless.

Step 3: Apply the spackle or wood filler to the door frame area

Scoop the filler using a putty knife and press it into the crack. If you have a deep hole, push the filler into the gap for a compact fill. Whether you use a wood filler or spackle, overfill the hole with filler to counter a potential divot when the wood filler dries and shrinks.

Step 4: Wait for the door filler to dry

Wait for the wood filler to dry for the recommended duration. Most wood fillers have a short open time and will dry rock solid in a few hours.

If you notice a depression as the filler dries, you can reapply more grain filler material.

Step 5: Sand the patched spot and recoat

Sand down the excess material with medium-grit sandpaper. Once the filled spot is level with the surrounding area, sand lightly with fine-grit sandpaper to even out any marks and wipe the sanded spot with a tack cloth to collect the debris.

Finish the repair job by applying primer to the salvaged door frame. Once the primer dries, apply thin layers of the same coat of stain or paint to match the rest of the door frame. Allow sufficient drying time between coats.

If you want a flawless door frame, recoat the entire door.

See Also: How to Keep Bed From Sliding on Wood Floor

How to Repair Holes in Hollow-Core Doors using Fillers

Hollow core doors are made of a thin veneer that makes them appear solid from the outside. These doors are easy to break with moderate impact. Fortunately, you can repair the damaged door and spare yourself the expense of buying a new one.

Follow these steps to repair holes in hollow-core doors

Step 1: Line the floor with old newspapers to catch paint, fillers, and dust from the repair process.

Step 2: Cut the splintered edges of the hollow-core door using a utility knife.

Step 3: Insert a crumpled piece of paper into the hollow hole to surround the hole’s perimeter.

Step 4: Spray low-expansion aerosol foam insulation into the hole. Once it dries, trim the excess bulge of insulation foam using a sharp knife. Get as close to the wood surface as possible.

Step 5: Mix polyester wood filler and apply it to the foam in the hole. Trim excess filler once it dries and has a rubbery texture. Sand it down with 100-grit sandpaper.

Step 6: Prepare and apply paintable spackle over the polyester filler. Once it’s dry, sand it smooth and wipe away the dust with a tack cloth.

Step 7: Repaint the door with matching paint to flush the patched spot with the surrounding surface.

Read also: How to remove scratches on wood furniture

How to Repair Irregular Holes on Solid Doors using Wood Fillers

Solid doors are sturdy and expensive. But if you have accidental nail or screw holes, or other deep damage caused by other hardware accessories, we’ll show you how to repair the damage on your solid door using wood filler.

Follow these steps to get the job done

Step 1: Clean the hole in the door and the surrounding area.

Step 2: Prepare the epoxy wood filler by mixing the hardener with the putty if you choose the two-part formulation.

Step 3: Apply the epoxy filler to the hole using a putty knife. Make sure to allow room for a slight concave at the center of the patch.

Step 4: Apply spackle to fill the concave once the epoxy filler dries.

Step 5: Sand the patched spot once it dries completely. Wipe away the dust.

Step 6: Apply a fresh coat of paint or stain over the patched area to make it flush with the rest of the door.

Also, remote on adding slats to bed frame to learn more.


How do you repair rotted wood door frame?

To repair rotted wood door frame, first, remove rotted wood using a sharp tool. Next, remove wood chipping and debris using the vacuum’s brush attachment. Finally, apply a wood hardener to the rotted door frame area and let it dry completely. Mix polyester wood filler, apply it to the gap using a putty knife, and let it dry. Next, sand the filler smooth, clean it up, and then recoat it flush with the surrounding surface.

(Learn about wood putty that hardens for more).

Can I use wood filler on the door frame?

Yes, you can use wood fillers to repair every type of damage on door frames. Your choice of wood filler will depend on the size of the repair job and the filler’s strength. Depending on the existing door frame’s needs, you can choose a paintable or stainable filler material.

What is the best wood filler for door frames?

DAP Plastic wood all-purpose filler is the best wood filler for door frames. This water-based filler material is formulated with real wood fibers and is three times stronger than real wood. In addition, this wood filler doesn’t shrink, comes ready to use, dries in 2 hours, and is easy to paint or stain.

Read also: Best filler for wood floors.

What is the best wood putty for doors?

Bondo Wood Filler is the highest-rated wood putty for doors, furniture, or other surfaces. This fast-drying home solutions wood filler is great for newbies and skilled woodworkers. You can sand, drill, and shape this filler material to match the body of the damaged wooden door.

How to repair chipped wood door frame

Start by cutting off the jagged edges of the chipped wood door frame. Then sand it smooth with medium grit sandpaper and finish with fine grit. Next, wipe the dust with a microfiber cloth. Finally, fill the chipped door frame with polycell wood flex polyfilla. Let it dry and scuff it smooth.

Final Thoughts on How to Repair a Door Frame with Wood Filler

We’re confident you’ll do a great job following our detailed guide on repairing a door frame with wood filler. Remember, the success of the repair job lies in thorough prep work and the application of the correct wood filler.

Then, finish the repaired door frame with a fresh coat of paint or stain, and no one will ever know it was damaged.

Let us know how it goes if this guide helps you out with your woodworking project.

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