The protection and preservation of wood is crucial to retaining its integrity and inherent beauty. Polyurethanes are commonly utilised for creating superior quality wood finishes for enhancing and maintaining the appearance of natural wood.
They are also highly capable of making the characteristics of timber-based substrates more durable, offering both protection and some colour.
Wood coatings based on polyurethane offer durable surface finish along with better resistance to scratches, solvents, and different types of chemicals. It is likewise resistant to damage caused by ultraviolet light, general deterioration, and severe variations in temperature. They normally come in water- and oil-based variants.
Oil-Based Polyurethane Wood Coatings
Oil-based polyurethane wood coatings are the most popular choice for home and commercial applications. They are extremely durable, cheaper than water-based polyurethane wood coatings, and lasts longer.
On the downside, they have a more pungent odour during application and contain a considerably higher content of volatile organic compounds. For superior results, two to three coatings is advisable. Note, however, that each coat may take up to eight to 10 hours to completely dry and you cannot stay in your home during the drying process due to the fumes.
Water-Based Polyurethane Wood Coatings
Water-based polyurethane wood coatings are more environmentally friendly than their oil-based counterparts since they contain lower concentration of volatile organic compounds. They are, additionally, tough, but not as durable as oil-based variants.
While oil-based polyurethane coatings provide an amber-coloured tint to wood, water-based varieties are virtually clear and will only slightly darken wood. It is easier to apply, but you’ll require three to four coatings for better results.
It is possible to apply water-based polyurethane wood coating over an oil-based variant. Just make sure that the oil-based coating is cured completely — two to three weeks at most. On the other hand, experts don’t recommend applying oil-based polyurethane wood coating over water-based polyurethanes since even professionals have major problems doing it.