6 Canny Methods on How To Prevent Wood From Splitting

Splitting wood is the most common incident for woodworkers. It can happen for many reasons like screwing careless work, storing in a bad place, choosing inappropriate products, etc.; it also occurs in many situations like drying, screwing, nailing, and many more. This is why learning how to prevent the wood from splitting is key. 

Perhaps, It’s important to know how to prevent the wood from splitting. Splitting makes the wood weaker, which will cause problems later. There are so many techniques and methods to avoid splitting. Also, some products help the wood for protection. So a worker who is working must learn about these for wood safety. 

Reasons Why Wood Starts Cracking Out

Splitting wood while working is a common incident for woodworkers. If you find broadly, there are thousands of reasons for splitting wood. The main reasons are excess or less moisture, temperature, abnormal wood, and concerns while screwing. Sometimes woods are affected by various dangerous factors while growing on trees. It makes wood abnormal.

Moisture level in wood is important to prevent splitting. When it is dry, boars can crack because these boards are narrow. The swelling and shrinking behavior is also a reason for cracking. In addition, there are pores of thin fiber in wood; these pores can absorb moisture. High temperatures can also affect the moisture level.

6 Canny Methods On How To Prevent Wood From Splitting

Splitting wood is an unwanted incident while working. It causes many hassles for workers. Splitting should be avoided. But it needs many methods and products; products are the easiest way to avoid the incident. There are some ways. 

Go for Sealant or Stabilizer

The wood stabilizer is a water-based product that makes the wood more durable and less prone to cracking. It is also called wood sealer. Wood stabilization reinforces the weak point of wood. This stabilization process almost stops the movement from contraction. It also makes the wood a little bit stronger. 

Using this method is the easiest way to keep wood from stripping. First clean the wood or around the cracked area. Then sand it well on the surface. Then apply sealant or stabilizer evenly on the surface without missing any parts. Missing parts will cause cracks later. Then wait 48 hours to dry it thoroughly.  

Use Salt Pase

The salt paste is an effective product that naturally dries the wood out and restricts shrinkage. Salt is a natural drying agent. Salt helps the wood remove moisture and reduces the speed at which the wood shrinks as it dries. This paste doesn’t contain any harsh chemicals. Using salt paste is one of the simplest to prevent cracking. 

The salt paste needs other side products for mixing. First, take a bucket full of water. Then pour salt into it in a ratio of 1:1. After 4 hours, put cornstarch according to the amount of past mixture. Then add three eggs to it. Mix these well. Then apply this paste all over the wood. Leave it to dry in a warm area.     

Using Varnish

Varnish is a protective coating for woods. It is a more or less transparent liquid that protects the surface as much as paints do. A transparent feather allows you to show the original surface. Varnish gives the wood a shiny look. It combines drying oil and resin and a thinner or solvent. 

Applying varnish is another successful method to avoid stripping the wood. First, clean the wood. Then mix aluminum paint and varnish equally together to make the mixture. Then make a sealer by mixing wood glue and warm water. Then apply the varnish all over the wood. After the final varnish coat has dried, fully apply the sealer. Make it dry.

Using Anchorseal

Anchors are a classic and premium product. It is a wax emulsion end sealer. An anchor seal is used for the prevention of end cracks. It dries, and the end splits into hardwood and softwood. It works as a sealer but works a little advanced.

It is easy to use. First, clean the surface. Next, apply an anchor seal with a brush or roller and sprayer. Spread all over the surface. Ready-made anchor seals don’t need any mixture. Then wait until it dries out. 

Go for Paintable Wax

A combination of melted wax and paint thinner is called paintable wax. This is one kind of DIY sealant. It is ineffective as a jar sealant but can still protect the wood from splitting. To make paintable wax, you need many candles, paint thinner, a canning jar, and a measuring scale. It is important to remember that paintable wax is only suitable for green wood. 

First, take a scale to measure all elements. Then melt all the candles in a canning jar with the help of a stove. Then add paint thinner into it with ¼ amount of candles. Mix them well. After making paintable wax, apply it to the wood. Apply a thin coat using a brush. Let it dry fully. 

Boiled Linseed Oil

Linseed oil is the most famous wood finish in the world. It saturated deep into the wood to protect against scratches and changes in humidity. There is no boiled or heating involved in boiled linseed oil. It is also a protective coating for wood grain to protect from cracking. 

It is also an easy technique for avoiding any splitting. You need to sand the wood first. Then clean the area where the oil will be applied. After cleaning properly:

  1. Apply the oil to the wood end.
  2. Let it dry completely before applying another coating.
  3. Keep away from direct sunlight, which can damage the oil.   

Preventive Measures to Prevent Wood Splitting

Below are the options you should follow.

Always Use The Accurate Wood

There are several types of wood available in the market. But all woods are not suitable for furniture. Every wood has different strengths and qualities. So choose the quality materials and make sure to store wood properly. Storing in a wet place causes splitting. 

Go for Right Screws

There are lots of screws available in stores. Every screw has a different size, length, strength, etc, so screws depend on work. Some screws are good for joining, while some are good for attaching threads. Every different screw is suitable for different wood types. Be sure to choose the right size of screw for your particular application.     

Always Store Woods In Right Place

Storing is important to keep wood material in place. Wet or too dry areas can substitute the moisture level of wood. Wet places can cause wood to rot. Rotten wood lost its power for furniture. Also, it smells bad. Weather change can also affect the wood quality. To avoid splitting store woods in suitable places. 

Steps on Fixing Up the Split Woods

Fixing split wood is such an easy process. There are lots of ways to fix split wood. Wood splitting can cause various reasons like storing in a bad place, using bad quality wood, working horribly, using the wrong types of screws, and many more. You can use a product or method to fix this problem.  

Wood glue and wood fillers are popular products for wood. No doubt, these are most easy to fix and get into. Glue or filler hardens the missing area and gives you an extra surface. You can also adapt any method. Filling with a dowel, toothpick, matchstick, or sawdust is easy for you. Better to take care of wood before it gets ruined.

Related: Why Use Dowels Instead of Screws: Expert’s Guide

Preventive Measures to Prevent Wood Splitting

Wood can split into many situations. So let’s learn solutions for each situation like drying, screwing, nailing, etc. 

While Drying

Wood can split while drying. While drying the wood, its moisture level can be changed, which causes cracking. Also, weather situations can affect your wood drying time. Use any product or apply a method to keep the moisture in place. It is good to take care of wood before it splits. 

Many products like sealers or stabilizers, salt paste, and wax protect the wood while drying. These products coat the upper layer to protect from weather. These work as a barrier to moisture. It dries the wood fast to avoid any issues.  

While Screwing

Wood split during screws most of the time. However, sometimes workers get careless while screwing. Putting too much pressure or tightening too strong can cause the wood fibers to be torn off. Also, using an inappropriate screw is harmful to wood. It weakens the wood parts. 

You can easily avoid this situation while screwing using pilot holes. First, pilot holes can make the screw holes bigger. So it will be easy to measure your future work. It helps the wood thread to cut into holes easily. So they won’t force against wood fibers. So first, make a pilot hole and then insert a screw into the holes.     

While Nailing

Nailing is also the same situation as screws. Careless nailing causes splitting or cracking of wood. You can avoid splitting by turning the edge into the punch. Pond down the tip to the nail before hammering the nail in the woods. The blunted nail will easily insert into the wood without splitting. 

Using different wood grain lines can also save you from splitting. Keep a little space from the used grain line. Better not to place two nails in the same lines. Lubricant is also an effective way to avoid wood splitting while nailing. 


We have given you all the information about splitting wood, including solutions, situations, and methods on how to prevent the wood from splitting. It would definitely help avoid further wood splitting in your projects.

We have given the product name to avoid splitting in the woods. Also, we gave various methods to use these products. So use a product that is helpful for you and adopt those methods which are easy for you.   

There are also some tips about how to choose the right product. Learn those tips perfectly. Also, learn how to fix when the wood is split or cracked. 

Read the full article and find your problems and make solutions. 

Hey, I'm George Fanton. I've over nine years of experience in the woodworking industry. I've cultivated a deep interest in practical wood and tasks. I enjoy sharing new information on woodworking technology to maintain my expertise in the current woodworking industries.

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