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Get the Facts: Three Common Myths About Polyurethane

From furniture to clothing to electronics and building products, polyurethane is included in many of the products you use daily. However, misconceptions about the material and how it’s used abound.

Polyurethane is frequently chosen as an affordable alternative to stone and other materials. It is an increasingly popular choice among homeowners for both interior and exterior architectural details because of its durability and weather-resistant properties. Polyurethane also often viewed as a more sustainable choice because it helps conserve natural resources such as wood.

Three Common Myths About Polyurethane

MYTH #1: Polyurethane is a new material.

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FACT: Polyurethane has been around for more than 75+ years and was first used in WWII as a rubber replacement.

Its application moved into everything from coating and finishes to protective clothing. Advancements in technology mean the material is now found in a variety of products used for daily life from furniture to building products.


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MYTH #2: Polyurethane is only used as a varnish.

FACT: High-density polyurethane is commonly used on home exteriors due to its appearance, durability and longevity. Unlike its wood or stone counterparts, polyurethane’s closed-cell structure makes it resistant to warping, cracking, rotting, splitting and insect damage. It’s also lighter than wood and stone, making it easier to install and create custom designs that maintain architectural authenticity.


MYTH #3: You can’t get the same detail in polyurethane products as wood or stone details.

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FACT: Polyurethane millwork is available in finishes that look almost identical to smooth or woodgrain and stone products. The manufacturing process allows for intricate details – like that of the dentil moulding pictured — to be included in the design, and the products can easily be painted or stained to suit a variety of applications.


Learn more about polyurethane and its various applications through the American Chemistry Council.