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Can You Use Spackle on Wood? (Read This First!)

Spackle is a product made of gypsum and binder compounds that helps to repair, plaster, fill up holes etc. Spackle works on many different objects. But do they work on wood? Can you rely on sparkles for your wood project? How well does it work compared to other options? 

This article has all the answers, tips and guides about sparkle on wood.

Can you use spackle on wood?

You can use spackle on wood. Sparkles can help fill up holes, cracks, nail holes, imperfections and joints of the wood. In many situations, sparkles are even better than traditional wood filler. It takes time to be ready to color, but it is an excellent choice for the best finish.

It’s widely accepted that spackles do work in wood. Even the spackle companies also say it does a great job to bind with wood. First, let’s find out how and why it works on wood.

Wood is actually a collection of compactly arranged tiny tubes of cellulose. The surface of the wood is very rough on a microscopic level. On the other hand, Spackles are made of gypsum and binder compounds. 

After applying spackles, the liquid portion evaporates quickly and makes the spackles hard. 

When you use spackles on wood, the spackle molecules can easily bind with the rough surface of the wood. However, spackles can even stick with a smoother surface like metal. But wood makes the bond even more robust.

Spackles are used in drywall, metal items, and all types of wood. It can heal any kind of imperfections in most tangible things. The main advantage of spackles is that they can be sanded with sandpaper, making the surface smooth.

Once you apply spackle perfectly, there will be no sign of imperfection after you color that. Why will you choose spackles instead of wood filler when working with wood? 

It is easy to apply, and you can fill a crack or hole so perfectly like it was never there. Normal spackles can take 1-2 hours to dry, and we recommend applying color after 24 hours.

You can take that as a downside of spackles as it takes time to get ready for coloring. But not all our wood projects need to be perfect. You can avoid spackles if you don’t have time and your wood project does not require a perfect outlook.

Sparkles are expensive too. A jar of Drydex spackling costs around $12, while the average price of a wood filler jar is $5 – $6. It is almost double the price of wood fillers. 

We discussed the advantages and disadvantages of spackles. The choice is yours. Now let’s focus on different types of sparkles and find out if they work on wood.

Drywall spackle:

Drywall spacklers work on wood, wood board, wall, metal, and most solid stuff. It is a popular product for DIY home improvement projects. 

Vinyl spackle:

Vinyl sparkles are water-based spackles that work nicely on the wood. As it is water-based and the water evaporates from the spackle,  those sparkles shrink after it dries. You need to overfill the hole or crack with a vinyl spackle slightly. After it dries, use sandpaper to make it perfect.

Is spackling good for wood?

Spackling is suitable for wood, especially if you are looking for a good finish. Unlike wood filler, sparkles are not just for filling cracks or crevices. It gets solid and creates a bond that lasts forever. 

Spackling does not damage the wood. If you plaster wood with spackling, you may get some protective benefits from it. Another issue is spackling does not usually come in wood color. 

Most of the spackles come in white color, which can look unnatural if you do not color the whole thing. After applying spackles on wood, you must wait 24 hours for perfect coloring.

Spackling needs 1-2 hours to dry primarily. After two hours of applying, you can come back for sanding. 

Can you use a spackle on the wood outside?

You can use sparkles on the wood outside. Most spackles work great to resist water, so there is no issue with applying it on outside wood. Chalk is a similar alternative used to spackle to fill gaps, cracks or holes. Chalks get hard but can not resist water.

Once you apply sparkles on the wood outside, you don’t have to worry about the spackle. You should focus on the wood as wood can easily get damaged by the water, weather, fungus and insects. 

To protect the wood from outside weather, you can apply epoxy or other layers that can protect the wood.

Can you use spackles on these woods? 

Let’s talk about the usage of spackle in more detail. We will try to find which wood project is worth using spackles. Check out the following points.

Wood paneling:

Spackles can be used between the gaps of wood panels. Sparkles can help to hide the nail holes of wood panels. Wood filler is not usually consistent enough to apply on wood paneling. Spackles work best on them.

Wood furniture:

You can use both spackles and wood filler in wood furniture. If there is a defective part or significant gaps in your furniture, you can use spackles to fix that. If there are some small gaps and nail holes, the wood filler will be enough for those.

Wooden door:

You can use spackles to heal cracks, dents, nails holes, and imperfections with sparkles. Make sure to color the door after the spackle dries perfectly.

Rotted wood:

It is possible to apply a spackle on rotted wood, but the spackle will not protect the wood from rotting.


Spackling on the plywood is not usually recommended.

Can you spackle over wood filler?

It’s possible to spackle over wood filler, but we recommend using just one. If you are using wood filler, use only that. The same applies to the spackle.

If you want to use spackle plaster over wood filler, you can do it. If you want to apply spackle on a hole or crack previously filled with wood filler, you can use a knife or similar tool to take some wood filler out and then apply spackle on it.

How do you apply spackle to wood?

Here is a simple step-by-step guide to applying speckles on wood.

Sand or clean the place:

Sand or clean the place you want to apply sparkles. Remove all the dust from the area.

Start applying the spackle to the wood:

Take the spackle on a putty knife and start applying the spackle to the wood. After you use the spackle on the gap or hole of the wood, scoop off the extra spackle. You will not have to be perfect at this stage. 

It’s okay to keep some imperfections that you can fix later.

Make the surface smooth:

Wait for 1-2 hours and return with a sand cube and sandpapers. Use the sand cube to make the surface smooth. Use sandpaper for a smoother finish.


If you don’t want to wait, you can start painting after sanding. But it is best to wait 24 hours before painting.

What is the difference between spackle and wood putty?

There are some significant differences between spackle and wood putty. Here are the following points.

They are made of different materials:

Wood putty consists of cellulose, binders, epoxy or vinyl. There are two types of wood putty, water-based and oil-based.

 Water-based wood putty contains cellulose, while oil-based wood putty contains epoxy and vinyl. Spackle is made of gypsum powder and binder components.

They have differences in usage:

Spackle is a versatile Item that can fix holes, cracks, and imperfections in wood, wall, metal, etc. Wood putty is only to fill wood holes and gaps.


You can get a perfect finishing after sanding the spackle. But most wood putty can’t be sanded.

Drying time:

The drying time of spackle is about 1-2 hours usually. It actually depends on the size of the hole or cracks. Small nail holes will dry in 30 minutes. 

Water-based wood putty needs at least 2 hours to dry. Oil-based wood putty needs up to 1-2 days to dry.


Spackles can be painted after 24 hours, while wood putty can be painted after its primary drying.

Spackle or wood putty, which one is better?

Spackle or wood putty both have their advantages and disadvantages. We think spackle is better, as you can keep that for other projects. Wood putty will be handy for just wood projects.

If you want a perfect finish, spackle is the best option. If you want a cheap solution and a good finish is not that essential, wood putty will be better. 

Final thoughts

Spackle is an excellent product to fill cracks, holes, and uneven wood parts. Spackle gets hard in a short time and is pretty easy to use. One can also get a smooth finish after sanding the spackle. It can be a bit expensive but worth the money if one uses it in the right places.