wood hardner

Best Wood Hardener – Restoring Rotted Wood With the Best Hardener

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There are so many uses for wood from building boats to houses and furniture. Wood in itself is a sturdy material but if not treated can be damaged and even start to rot. Moisture, exposure to the elements, and insects can cause serious damage. Thankfully, today you have a choice of wood hardener products to choose from. Use a rotted wood restorer to help strengthen the wood and, therefore, you will be able to keep the wood looking good for longer.



Reasons You Should Use a Wood Hardener

Wood is a commonly used material and can be used for decorative purposes, but some can also be load-bearing pieces. In either case, you will need to maintain the wood to keep it looking good and to prevent problems from occurring. Applying a liquid wood hardener can help to repair damage from rot, extend the life of your wood piece, and keep it looking good.

Sometimes, there is no saving a piece of wood as it can be too damaged. However, if a small part of the wood is only partially damaged, it can be cheaper to just add a wood hardener than replace the piece. All of the liquid wood hardener products are simple to use and can easily be applied by do-it-yourself enthusiasts. Selecting the best wood hardener is the challenging part, as there are a variety of options on the market. This is where we come in, we will show you what to look for and give you a few recommended product selections.

liquid wood hardener



Why Wood Hardener Thickness is Important

The thickness of the rotted wood restorer plays an important role in the restoration of your wood piece. Choosing the right consistency depends on the wood surface itself, is it located outside or inside, and how much damage there is?

The thickness of the wood hardener will also indicate the type of application. Thinner wood hardener products are easier to use and can be sprayed on for the best outcome. Severely damaged wood can also be soaked in the wood hardener product. The thicker the wood hardener, brushing on is the best way to apply it.

Flat surfaces are particularly easy to work with, here you can either apply the thicker or thinner liquid wood hardener. However, vertical surfaces take a thicker consistency better, as there is less dripping involved. Using a thinner wood hardener is best for severely damaged wood. This is because the product can soak into the wood better, acting as a more complete rotted wood stabilizer. Wood with minor damage can easily take a thick consistency for the best results.

When it comes to wood outside, like a fence, you might want to consider using a more durable wood hardener that will seal the wood. For instance, there is the PC Petrifier rotted wood restorer. This thick wood hardener also acts as a paint primer and will seal the wood protecting it from further moisture damage.



Recommended Best Wood Hardener

Since there are so many wood hardener products on the market, it can be difficult to make the right choice for your needs. You also want the best wood hardener at the best price. Say you want a liquid wood hardener for outdoor use, it must offer the best protection from moisture and help to prevent any further damage.

best wood hardener


Best Value: J-B WELD Wood Restore Liquid Hardener

The J-B Weld Liquid Wood Hardener comes at a great price and is used by many woodworkers themselves. The product works great to reduce the amount of moisture in the wood, which can prepare the wood for further repairs and painting. Many other wood hardeners do not soak into the wood as well, which leaves the door open to future problems. This product does not have that problem and penetrates the wood effectively.

J-B WELD Wood Restore Liquid Hardener
  • Seals and reinforces decayed and rotted wood
  • Versatile for various wood surfaces
  • Quick-drying and forms a solid base for filling
View on Amazon

You do not have to do anything with the product beforehand, you simply apply it to the wood surface. So, it is extremely easy to use and can be applied to small and large surfaces. This liquid wood hardener is tough and will last a long time. Another benefit is that it dries quickly, so you can easily apply it to vertical wood surfaces.

There are a few shortcomings to this specific wood hardener. The main issue is that it is toxic, and you must be cautious when using the wood hardener. Also, store the product in a safe place, away from little hands. For safety reasons, you should use a mask while busy with the product. Also, it may take some time to apply the coats of the rotted wood restorer, as you have to sand each time before the next layer.


  • Great price
  • Pulls moisture from the wood
  • Durable
  • Dries quickly
  • Easy to apply


  • You need to sand in-between coats
  • Toxic and must be handled with care

Even though it has one or two disadvantages, the product remains versatile and is excellent to use on your wooden windows, fences, garage doors, door frames, furniture, and more.


Most Budget-Friendly: PC-PETRIFIER Water-Based Wood Hardener

The PC Petrifier wood hardener is another affordable rotted wood stabilizer product. This versatile product can be used on damaged wood using a sprayer, a brush, or you can inject it into the wood pores. This wood hardener can be used as an outdoor primer, as it is quite thick.

PC PRODUCTS PC-Petrifier Water-Based Wood Hardener
  • Restores, strengthens, and salvages rotten wood
  • Can be brushed, sprayed, or injected into the wood
  • Prepares wood for filling, priming, and painting
View on Amazon

This particular liquid wood hardener is water-based, which makes it less toxic than its solvent-based alternatives. This makes it simpler to clean, however, this particular wood hardener is not recommended for heavy-duty repairs. Since the PC Petrifier is water-based, it is eco-friendly and safe to work with.

The PC Petrifier is slightly thicker than the J-B Weld and Minwax wood hardener. This makes it easier to apply to vertical wood surfaces using a brush. Unfortunately, the thickness is also a disadvantage, as it does not sink into the wood as effectively. It is, therefore, not the greatest product for structural repairs.

There have been some wood hardener reviews that say the nozzle does not work properly and delivers large globules of hardener that is not easily smoothed out. The product is also not compatible with certain wood fillers that contain borate.


  • Cost-effective
  • Can be used as an outdoor primer
  • Thick consistency that can be used on vertical surfaces
  • Easy to clean using water
  • Eco-friendly
  • Not toxic


  • Problems with the nozzle releasing large globules
  • Is not compatible with certain wood fillers
  • Cannot be used for structural or more serious wood repairs

No mixing required to use, eco-friendly, affordable, and non-toxic, the pc petrifier has a lot going for it and might be the right choice for your wood repairs.


Premium Choice: MINWAX High-Performance Wood Hardener

Minwax offers a high-performance wood hardener, which might be slightly more expensive, but it offers some great benefits. The product contains a resin within a solvent mixture and is quite thin, this then soaks deep into the wood. The solvent then evaporates, and the resin remains bonded to the wood. The resin helps to seal the wood from further damage.

MINWAX High Performance Wood Hardener
  • High-quality hardener - penetrates deep into the wood
  • Seals rock hard to prevent any more moisture penetration
  • Works on a wide variety of wood surfaces
View on Amazon

The thin consistency also has a few disadvantages. Using this product may not be the best choice when applying to vertical surfaces, as it will drip. The wood hardener is quick-drying; however, this makes it difficult to fix mistakes that can occur. A big disadvantage is its high toxicity, which can be dangerous to your health and the environment.

You will need to use rubber gloves and a mask, and you want to make sure you do not get any in your eyes or on your skin. There have been wood hardener reviews that recommend you use bristle brushes for application, as the foam brushes will dissolve. The Minwax wood hardener remains a popular choice amongst professionals, for its exceptional penetration and sealing properties.


  • Soaks deep into the wood
  • A great all-round product
  • Product is clear
  • Absorbs into the wood and dries quickly
  • A popular and established brand


  • Not suitable for vertical wood surfaces
  • Have a short working time
  • Toxic and you need to wear rubber gloves, as latex will dissolve

The Minwax wood hardener is perfect for outdoor surfaces like fences, garage doors, decking, and window frames.



How to Select the Best Wood Hardener

Even though most of the rotted wood restorer products are reasonably priced, you still do not want to waste money unnecessarily. You should consider things like how durable is the product, how long are the drying times and even the color of the wood hardener. All of these elements can affect the final results.

rotted wood restorer


Wood Hardener Drying Times

The best wood hardener dries quickly, which means you can do more work. Quick-dry times are also the best to use outdoors. However, if the wood hardener dries too quickly, it might be difficult to fix mistakes that could occur.


Is the Wood Hardener Durable?

A wood hardener needs to be durable; this is particularly true if the wood is exposed to moisture and other elements. You do not want to land up applying another coat after only a few months, it will not be worth it. The J-B Weld wood hardener is recommended, as it is extremely durable and will last for many years, and is perfect for outdoor wood surfaces.


What Color is Wood Hardener?

You can get liquid wood hardener products that come in different colors and in various wood stain colors. You can also get wood hardener products that are clear. It is up to you what product to purchase, if you do get one with color, it should match the surrounding wood. This also goes for the wood filler; you want things to match and look the same.



Wood Hardener Application

So, you have chosen your wood hardener for your damaged wood, what now? To do a job properly, you need to make sure the wood surface is cleaned and prepared correctly. Once done, use a wood filler to fix any holes and finally prime and paint the wood.

wood hardener reviews


Wood Preparation

The first thing to do is to dry the wood thoroughly, if you do not any remaining moisture will be trapped and will only cause more problems. Larger wood items can take a few days or even months to dry properly, all depending on the time of year. You can try and use a heat gun to speed up the process, however, dry and rotting wood is flammable.

When the wood is dry, you will need to take out any loose pieces. Use a brush to take away any other dirt or dust. Once the surface is dry, smooth, and clean, it is time for the next step.


Wood Hardener Application

When working with a wood hardener, you will need to act fast, especially if the product is quick-drying. Have all you will need ready before you start and put on any gloves and a mask if necessary. Several coats may be needed depending on how damaged the wood is.

Larger wood surfaces like decking may need several days between coats, so you will need time and patience for this type of project. While the wood hardener is drying, it is essential you keep the wood dry. You can either apply using a brush or a sprayer, depending on the thickness of the wood hardener and the type of surface you applying to. Some also inject the wood hardener into the wood.


Maintenance of Wood Hardener

Once the rotted wood restorer has been applied you can then start to any holes with wood filler. Some wood hardeners are considered sealants, but if your wood piece is going to be outside, we recommend you also add some varnish, or a primer and paint to improve water resistance. You can get a wood hardener that also acts as a primer, the PC Petrifier is one such product and you can then easily paint over this.

minwax wood hardener



Frequently Asked Questions


Will Wood Hardener Still be Effective When Applied to Wet Wood?

No, this is not recommended. Before applying the wood should be completely dry. Even if you apply a wood hardener and the wood is wet, the rot will continue to spread.


Is There Only One Way for Applying Wood Hardener?

Applying a wood hardener is easy, there are two ways you can do this, by using a brush or a sprayer. The choice is dependent on the thickness of the wood hardener. A thinner wood hardener is best applied using a sprayer, also if the wood surface is vertical. Using a brush is best with a thicker wood hardener, which you can also use on a vertical surface to help prevent any dripping. If possible, the wood can also be soaked in a wood hardener for even better absorption.


Is Wood Hardener Effective Against Rot?

The liquid wood hardener is effective in stopping the rot and the resin that is in the wood hardener forms part of the wood fibers improving the overall stability of the wood. Always ensure the wood is thoroughly dry before applying, as the rot can remain if still wet. If the wood is going to be outside and exposed to moisture, it is a good idea to also apply a primer or varnish for better protection.


What is a Wood Hardener?

The rotted wood restorer consists out of an acrylic resin that is dissolved in a solvent. The solvent carries the resin into the wood and then evaporates. The solvent is the ingredient that is dangerous to work with, so rubber gloves, safety glasses, and a mask are recommended for protection. You do get water-based wood hardeners like PC Petrifier, however, these can be less resilient.


Finding the best wood hardener can help you to transform old and damaged wood surfaces. These hardeners add a new level of strength and durability, allowing you to continue using the wood surface for a long time to come. This guide should have coevered everything you needed to know to help you find the best wood hardener for your project.


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