After talking with a few wood floor experts, I decided to give a water-based polyurethane floor finish a try. This is one of the few water-based polyurethanes that is listed for use on floors. It is resistant to dings, nicks, scratches, and chips.

If you want a rich color without having to reapply coats, an oil-based poly is your best bet. If you’re looking for a more natural appearance with a low odor, going with a water-based poly is the right decision. A perfect choice for finishing everything from boats to outdoor furniture to garage doors, this transparent amber-tinted polyurethane is ideal for outdoor use. A high-performing sealant, this solution renders surfaces both waterproof and UV resistant. The cured varnish is flexible, which means it expands and contracts with wood during seasonal humidity and temperature changes, which eliminates the risk of a cracked surface. The solution dries fast and allows you to recoat in just one hour.

Water Based Paints

If that doesn’t work, it might help to apply another coat of lacquer. To get rid of the excess stain now, take a cloth dampened with mineral spirits and use that to scrub down the piece. Alternatively, apply another coat of stain, wait a couple of minutes for it to soften up the old, tacky, excess stain, then take a cloth and rub away the excess. To achieve a darker stain color, use coarser grit of sandpaper (#150-#180) on the last sanding you do prior to staining. Before you apply stain to your piece, try it out either on an inconspicuous area of the piece or else on some sample wood that you used when you built the piece.

Both Minwax and Varathane are excellent choices for staining and preparation. If you prefer water based, their Ultimate Polyurethane Water Based is just as effective as oil, with the main difference being the 4-coat application. Their Ultimate Polyurethane Oil Based finish provides clarity over the wood and goes on in two easy coats. That specific finish is perfect for adding a nice, warm sheen to your wood.

Oil Vs Film, Choose Your Finish

This will burst and smooth out any bubbles that may have been created. To avoid breathing vapors or spray mist, open windows and doors or use other means to ensure fresh air entry during application and drying. If you experience eye watering, headaches, or dizziness, increase fresh air or wear respiratory protection or leave the area.

Oily Paint Rags Can Spontaneously Combust – ConsumerReports.org

Oily Paint Rags Can Spontaneously Combust.

Posted: Wed, 27 Apr 2016 07:00:00 GMT [source]

This topcoat has a clear finish so it can be used on a range of wood, even if it has been painted before. It is very protective and will keep your doors, floors, and furnishings in good quality for years to come. If you are looking to add some color to your wood and protect it all in one step, look for a wood stain and polyurethane combo.

It is one of the more expensive products, but it is well worth the extra cost. Since it only requires a few applications for a perfect finish, you will save time and money by conserving materials. Although it’s not designed specifically for exterior use, many customers have reported some success in using it on outdoor-based projects. This finish dries without any residual odor, making it optimal for indoor projects. Again, this finish should not be used outside, but will work wonders for any indoor furniture or cabinetry. It will seal and protect any piece in no time, and hold up to normal wear and tear over the years.

The clarity of water-based finishes makes them ideal for light woods such as maple, where you want to preserve the wood’s natural color. But avoid it for any project that requires moisture or abrasion resistance, especially outdoor projects. Oil provides almost no surface protection and does little to block moisture vapor, making it a poor choice for most furnishings you’ll use every day. Polyurethane varnish mixes alkyd and polyurethane resins with different types of drying oils. Unlike an oil/varnish blend, however, the ingredients are heated until they combine. Reducing the ratio of oil to resin creates a hard finish for indoor use.

Minwax Water Based Polyurethane

This semi-transparent water-based stain comes in 1- and 5-gallon sizes, and you can select from seven natural colors, all of which will enhance the wood’s natural grain pattern. This wood stain is available in any natural shade you can think of, and for additional protection of the material, you may want to apply a polyurethane coat on top of it. The Varathane stain cleans up with mineral spirits, and reviewers love that it delivers beautiful, rich color with just a few coats. This is a water-based polyurethane finish with an elegant design. It provides world-class protection for hardwood floors with superior durability, abrasion resistance, and scuff resistance.

minwax vs varathane polyurethane

Because of this, they are often less affected by the condition of the wood, and can help you get a more even appearance on difficult woods. Repair any cracks, gouges, nail holes and other defects. Once the repairs are done, sand to obtain a smooth, uniform surface. Turn to Minwax® minwax vs varathane polyurethane to add rich color and durable protection to your wood project in a single step. The better the wood preparation, the better the final result. Minwax® preparation products are the first step to ensure your wood surfaces show their most beautiful colors and smoothest finishes.

Top 5 Water Based Polyurethane For Hardwood Floors

Polyurethane and lacquer are two of the common wood finishes used to add a smooth and glossy coat. The other closely-linked finishes include shellac and varnish. Polyurethane and lacquer are oftentimes used interchangeably mainly due to the confusion of their identities. There is a significant difference between these finishes, and this article unfolds that. Below, we’ve arranged these finish types with durability increasing from beginning to end. As durability increases, though, ease of repairs decreases.

Being a household name, this polyurethane product is one of the best products out there with maximum durability. It has an awesome coverage capacity as one gallon could cover up to 500 square feet. For this particular reason, it is very useful if you have a large surface to cover. The reviews from customers of this product are equally amazing as it rains praises of its durability and an ability to form uniform coats with minimal troubles.

Wood Floor Sanding Wood Floor SandingEverything from basics on running the big machine to detailed buffer techniques and more are in these wood floor sanding articles. Polycrylic, on the other hand, leaves a clear, non-yellowing surface, so it won’t change the appearance of lighter woods such as maple or birch, or anything painted white. Polycrylic is not recommended for use over dark-colored paints or red mahogany stain, however, where it’s clear appearance can become somewhat opaque or milky. Often, older pieces of furniture, especially tables, have white rings in their finish. These rings are caused when glasses and cups have been put on the surface, and the moisture from these objects has seeped into the finish and damaged it.

  • Be sure to maintain a wet edge — where one pass with the brush touches a prior pass — so that the areas blend together once they are dry.
  • Obviously, water is always going to be cheaper than oil.
  • Putting this all together, we basically come down to two categories, interior and exterior use.
  • But on hot days when the skinning-over occurs faster and traps the bubbles, you may need to help the popping along by “tipping-off” using your brush.
  • This is an oxygen-crosslinking polyurethane that has a waterborne formula making it easy to use and durable.
  • Contain 45 to 50 percent solids, which creates a more protective finish.
  • For these an additional step between sanding and staining is recommended – applying a layer of a sealer.

They come from a wide range of animal, vegetable, and mineral sources. Also, they go in solid stick, paste, and liquid forms. You can find them in amber, clear, white, and various other wood tones. However, they offer little protection against wear and scratches.


In other words using there old methods on new finishes may not yield the same end results. Plus the fact that it’s one part which would be simpler for home owners to in fact use as compared to the cross linked urethanes. With that being said and just for my own curiosity, what are the main complaints or better worded causes you have personally witnessed on job sites with finish failure? I’d be interested to hear your experiences since working for Bona you are a valuable resource.

Medium oil varnishes are best used indoors where a lot of wood movement does not occur and a harder finish is desired. The resin contained in a varnish is also important in determining what type to use for your project. Some resins are more elastic than others, making them best suited for exterior uses.

With this polyurethane, you can be sure to give your hardwood floors the best treat in a beautiful state by keeping them in a long-lasting thick film. This product gives your surfaces a semi-gloss finish with one of the hardest protective layers there is. You can add a lot of value also to your furnishings as it can be used on both finished and unfinished wooden surfaces. It has a super-fast drying quality and levels out evenly on application. 1-quart container of this gloss finish can cover an area of up to 125 sq ft.

A well-engineered water based poly usually contains little or no ingredients considered “hazardous chemicals” as defined by OSHA. Likewise, a good water based poly will have significantly lower (up to 50% lower) volatile organic compounds or VOCs. With that in mind, here is a head-to-head comparison of how water based polyurethane and oil-based polyurethane stack up.

Source: homemakerguide.com

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