Water Based vs Oil Based Polyurethanes 

Oil Modified Polyurethane 

Water Modified Polyurethane 

Hard Wax Oils

Rubio or Pallman Magic

Oil or Odies Oil

Color: Oil Based Poly has an amber hue. 

Ageing: Oil Based Poly will  continue to darken and amber with time. 

Drying Times: Oil takes much longer to dry - Up to 24 Hours of Drying may be needed between coats. 

Smell: Oil based poly emits a strong chemical odor and noxious fumes while drying that should not be inhaled. 

Pets: Should remain away from the home for may days after completion. We recommend our customers request an additional coat if large dogs are present in the home.

Remain in Home:  We recommend that the home remain vacant if Oil Modified Polyurethane is chosen. 

 

Thickness & Hardness:  Oil based poly is a thicker poly but the solids are also softer. Oil can be more susceptable to showing dents.  

Cost:  The products are much cheaper to purchase than waterbased. Be careful if your contractor isn't charging more for waterbased polyurethane. 

Color: Water Based Poly will remain clear for the lifetime of your floors.

Ageing: Water based poly will not amber. 

 

Drying Times: Waterbased polyurethane drys super quickly and can be walked on with socks in 2-4 hours. 

Smell: Waterbased poly is safe to apply without a respirator and has almost no smell. It is safe to occupy the home with water based poly. 

Pets: Can remain in the home after the floors have dried. The curing time is much less for watebased floors and are a great option if you have pets in the home. We recommend the higher grade waterbased if you have large pets. 

Remain in Home:  We recommend that the home remain vacant but if you need to stay, we highly suggest chosing waterbased.  

Thickness & Hardness:  Waterbased poly is a harder coating and is an acrylic product. We recommend an extra coat if you have larger pets or lots of traffic in the home. 

Cost:  Watebased is more expensive. The cost for waterbased is up to 5 times more than oil modified. We recommmend either Pallmann or Bona Brands 

Color: Unlimited Colors

Ageing: Hardwax Oils can be maintained using maintenance oils and can easily be maintained. 

Drying Times: Oil takes much longer to dry - Up to 24 Hours of Drying may be needed between coats. 

Smell: Oil based poly emits a strong chemical odor and noxious fumes while drying that should not be inhaled. 

Pets: Should remain away from the home for may days after completion. We recommend our customers request an additional coat if large dogs are present in the home.

Remain in Home:  We recommend that the home remain vacant if Oil Modified Polyurethane is chosen. 

Thickness & Hardness:  Oil based poly is a thicker poly but the solids are also softer. Oil can be more susceptable to showing dents.  

Cost:  The products are much cheaper to purchase than waterbased. Be careful if your contractor isn't charging more for waterbased polyurethane.