1. Oil-Based Polyurethane is generally the most common surface finish. It is a petroleum base with a blend of synthetic resins, plasticizers and other film forming ingredients that produces a durable surface that is moisture-resistant. It is a solvent-base polyurethane that dries in about eight hours. This type of finish ambers with age and comes in 3 different sheen levels. Satin, semi-gloss, and high gloss.
2. Water-based urethane is a water-borne urethane with a blend of synthetic resins, plasticizers and other film forming ingredients that produces a durable surface that is moisture-resistant. These finishes are clear and non-yellowing and are available in different sheen levels. They have little odor and they dry in about 1-2 hours. Water-based urethanes are generally more expensive.
3. Moisture-cured urethane is a solvent-base polyurethane that is durable and more moisture resistant than other surface finishes. Moisture-cure urethane comes in non-yellowing and in ambering types and is generally available in satin or gloss. These finishes have an extremely strong odor. It is not recommended to stay on premises while this finish is being used. Curing of this type of finish is by absorbing minute quantities of moisture vapor from the air, which causes them to dry and harden. The curing process is very dependant on relative humidity.