24th January 2019

Waterborne polyurethane coatings match performance of solventborne coatings in metal applications

Tighter government regulations and heightened consumer awareness have led to demand for increased use of waterborne paints and coatings.

Today’s waterborne polyurethane coatings can be formulated to exhibit properties that rival the performance of their solventborne counterparts for metal coating applications, allowing for more widespread use of low volatile organic compound (VOC), low-odor paints.

A comprehensive study recently conducted by Bayer MaterialScience LLC tested 60 coating formulations applied to steel panels, and concluded that properly formulated two-component waterborne polyurethane coatings will match or exceed the performance of solvent-based, two-component polyurethane coatings in gloss retention, color retention, pendulum hardness, impact resistance and chemical resistance. Further weathering testing for gloss retention and color retention is underway. The paints that were tested are the three most prominent colors used in the agricultural, construction and earthmoving (ACE) market – green, yellow and red.

Findings from this study are summarized in a paper, “The case for two-component waterborne polyurethane coatings,” authored by Peter Schmitt, field technical service manager, Coatings, Adhesives & Specialties; Kathy Allen, senior scientist for transportation applications; and Joe Pierce, technical service rep for transportation applications, all of Bayer MaterialScience LLC. It was presented during the Coatings Trends and Technologies Conference, in Chicago, September 2014.