Why is water based polyurethane better than oil based polyurethane for floors?
You can get a good bit of debate on which is better. It seems many ‘old school’ pros prefer to use what they have always used and some will prefer oil based simply because it is cheap. Over the last decade, finishes have evolved quite a bit. Modern waterborne technology shows better wear and chemical resistance than oil modified polyurethane finishes. Our proprietary waterborne polyurethane is a much harder product. It dries much faster and has virtually no odor. Oil based products take much longer to dry and have a strong odor. They both do a great job of sealing the floor but our proprietary products do a much better job of protecting the floor.
We do use an oil based product on occasion. When we do a traditional sand and refinish job we usually seal the floor with oil based first, because the oil will make the grain in the wood floor stand out. Since the waterborne urethane products do not amber (turn a yellowish color with exposure to sunlight) a coat or two of oil based poly will sometimes be needed when trying to match nearby wood, like when making a repair. Ultimately it is the homeowners choice, but even in these situations, we like to finish with a top coat or two of our water based product to take advantage of it’s superior scratch and wear resistance.
dustless. odorless. done in one day.®