How to Fix a Broken Wooden Door Panel

Broken door panels are an easy fix. Here in this article, we will show you how to fix a broken wooden door panel with a few tools, and in no time, your panel will be good as new. The first thing you’ll need is a chisel and mallet to remove the broken wood from the frame. You can use a saw if you don’t have these items on hand, but this method takes more time.

Next, take some putty or spackle and fill in any gaps or holes left by the removal of the old adhesive material. Let this dry overnight before sanding down smooth with fine-grit sandpaper followed by medium-grit sandpaper for best results. Read this full blog post below to know the full step-by-step instructions.

How to Fix a Broken Wooden Door Panel

10 Reasons Why Wooden Door Panel Cracks

  • Door panel cracks are common among wooden doors as it’s one of the weakest points on a door.
  • The most common reason for a wood panel to crack is due to improper installation during construction. For example, the installer may have left out screws or failed to properly anchor the panels on either end, making them loose frame and susceptible to cracking.
  • Small cracks can occur due to outside factors such as temperature change; however, if you live in an area where the weather is consistently hot or cold, it may be best to replace your door and improve the overall look of your home.
  • Lightly tapping on wood panels with a hammer will help identify if they are loose joint. If there’s an audible creak, then it’s best to have the panel replaced.
  • If your door is painted with latex coat of paint or low-quality oil-based paint, this can cause the panels to crack over time as well. Again, paint adhesion and durability become an issue here, even if you’ve chosen the right type of paint for your project.
  • Another common cause of the crack is due to water damage. This happens when there’s an accumulation of moisture in the natural wood over a long period of time, resulting in warping and cracking.
  • Other causes may include using low-quality materials during the construction of your home, for example, cheap plywood or low-grade lumber that’s not dense enough.
  • Homes that have been subjected to physical damage such as hurricanes can also experience cracking panels for a similar reason: low-quality construction materials and improper installation.
  • For homeowners in areas with high humidity levels, wooden doors may suffer from shrinking over time, resulting in indoor panel shrinkage and warping.
  • Lastly, as with all solid wood doors products, insects can get to it through cracks in the door’s exterior and interior seals. These include bugs such as termites looking for a new habitat or food sources. Good thing DIY methods work just fine to fix your wooden doors panel! Read below on how you can do this easily.

What Tools & Materials You’ll Need

  • Putty knife or chisel & mallet
  • Varnish / Glazing compound and a putty knife
  • Sandpaper (fine, medium, coarse)
  • Paint

Instructions: How to Fix a Broken Wooden Door Panel

Step 1: Remove the Damaged Section of Wood Paneling

Begin by tapping around the door panel to loosen the wood movement. If you’re lucky, the panel will come off in one piece, and you won’t have to fill any holes or cracks. If not, use a razor blade or chisel to cut out the damaged section of dimensional wood. Don’t worry about cutting into other parts of the door at this point. You’ll be fixing that later.

Begin by Tapping Around the
Door Panel to Loosen the 
Wood Movement

Step 2: Replace the Damaged Section of Wood

Once you have cut out the damaged section, clean the area thoroughly. Fill gaps with bondo wood filler. Hold back the quality wood filler so that it doesn’t drip over onto another piece if it can. Smooth the wood filler using a small colors of wood putty knife or painter’s trowel. Let the epoxy wood filler dry for 24 hours.

Step 3: Prepare a Wood Patch

In order to cover up any of the wood filler that shows between the patch and the existing door, you’ll need to prepare a piece of wood. Cut out a small section of untreated piece of wood from scrap stock to use as your patch. Sand down one of the edges so that it’s perfectly flat.

Step 4: Prime & Paint the Patch

Before you paint the patch, sand it to remove any splinters or rough surfaces. Then prime it with a wood spline primer and let dry. Finally, apply two coats of your choice of paint color over the top using a proper brush. Allow at least 24 hours for the paint to dry thoroughly.

Step 5: Redo Your Final Paint Job

When you’ve finished painting, replace all of your door panels. You may need to tighten them up if they don’t fit perfectly. Also, add any other hardware that you have removed (like doorknobs and hinges). Once everything is in place, paint the entire door using your chosen color. Let dry, then add a coat of varnish or glazing compound to protect your finish.

Step 6: Replace the Door

Finally, you can replace your door on its hinges and push it back into place. Once again, make sure that everything is properly secured and locked in place before you walk away.

Step 7: Enjoy Your New Wood Door Paneling

Finally, enjoy your new door! You’ll be pleased to know that it will be easy to keep it looking great for years and years – as long as you give it a quick coat of varnish or glazing compound once a year.

You Can Check It Out to Build a Garage Door Panel

Other Alternative Methods To Fix Broken Wooden Door Panel

1. Ensure the Door Is Clean and Dry:

Check the door panel to ensure it is clean and dry. Remove any paint bond or dirt that has accumulated on there.

2. Use a Hot Glue Gun To Fix It:

A hot glue gun can be used to fix a door panel if the heat does not damage the finish of your door. The heat from a hot glue gun acts as an adhesive and also softens the wood glue to ensure a secure bond. Always check with your local hardware store that hot glue can carry the weight of the door in question before you proceed.

Use Hot Glue Gun to Fix a 
Door Panel if the Heat Does 
Not Damage Your Door.

3.  Use Wood Putty Into the Cracks:

You can use wood putty to fill in the cracks of your door. It will also function as an adhesive to secure the broken panel back into its original place. You can buy this at any hardware store or online store for around $3 a pack.

4. Use Bamboo To Replace A Broken Wood Panel:

Get some bamboo and cut it down to size to fit the door panel. Attach it using bamboo nails and fill in the cracks with wood hardener or glue so that there is no exposed nail.

5. Use Crack Wood Filler:

If your door panel is cracked, you can put some crack wood filler on the cracks to mend it. This fix will work on small cracks.

Difference Between Wood Filler and Wood Putty

  • A filler is used to fill gaps and cracks in the rotten wood repair. A putty is softer with more flexibility than a filler. It is stronger and more resistant to water. Filler can be sanded, drilled, or modified later on, while putty cannot.
  • In most cases, putty is used to repair a hole in wood. Because it can be molded into shape, it provides a smooth finish, and any excess may be removed with ease. It can be used for filling narrow holes as well as large ones.
  • High-quality minwax wood putty products are sometimes color paint after drying to give a seamless finish. However, the drying time may vary depending on the brand, the amount of wood putty used, and the temperature in your room.
  • Filler and putty both can be sanded later, but only filler can be painted.
  • Putty dries faster than filler which is why it is a preferred choice for quick jobs. A little putty can be used to fill holes but filling large areas requires more filler.
  • Putty dries, hardens quickly, and is less likely to crack than filler as it sets. Filler has a longer working time and should not be mixed with water until they are completely dry.

Should You Attempt Replacing or Repairing Your Wooden Door Panel Yourself?

Doors are frequently exposed to a lot of wear and tear, especially exterior ones. Because they are in frequent contact with the elements, such as wind and rain, it is no wonder that they need to be replaced from time to time.

However, just knowing that you have to replace your door can be very distressing for some homeowners who have particularly beautiful doors that are in great shape otherwise. When a door is badly damaged, whether the damage is caused by wear and tear or simply bad luck, it can still be possible to repair it rather than replace it altogether.

If you are wondering if you can repair your broken or damaged door yourself, take a look at the damage it has suffered and ask yourself:

  • Is there anything wrong with the hinges?
  • Are all of the panels still intact and in place?
  • Is there any chance that some wood working tools would be required for the job?
  • Is the door no longer functional, and if not, how much will it cost to fix at a professional woodworking shop?
  • Have you ever attempted anything similar before?
Have You Ever Attempted Replacing 
or Repairing Your Wooden
Door Panel Yourself Before ?

If you can answer these questions honestly, then this could be your lucky day because fixing a broken or damaged wooden door panel yourself can actually be easier, especially if the door has already been removed from your home.


If you have a door panel that is cracked or has split in two, repairing it may not be as difficult as you think. In this blog post, we have covered how to fix a broken wooden door panel and ensure your doors are strong for years to come! 

The process of fixing these types of issues can vary depending on what caused them originally (wind, water damage, etc.), but there are some general steps that will work for any situation. So be sure to check this article if you haven’t yet repaired your damaged wooden door panel.

You may read also – How to Frame a Painting on Wood Panel

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