The Uses of Water-Based Acrylic Urethane Paint

Updated April 17, 2017

Water-based acrylic urethane paint offers all the durability and finish of an oil-based enamel but is easier to use and cleans up with soap and water instead of harsh chemicals. It is an excellent choice for direct application to ferrous and non-ferrous metals and can be applied with a brush, roller or airless spray. It is most commonly used on automobiles, but it can also be used as a finish for a variety of interior and exterior surfaces.


Water-based acrylic urethane paint is the coating of choice for cars because it is easy to use, dries quickly and creates its own hard shell to protect the pigment as well as the surface. Acrylic urethane in particular is resistant to alkalinity, so the finish lasts longer and doesn't fade with prolonged exposure to UV rays. Its consistency makes it easy to apply evenly with a sprayer. Additionally, some acrylic urethane products do not require a separate top coat or sealer.


Water-based acrylic urethane is available in many finishes from flat to high gloss. Its durability and fade resistance, combined with easy application and adherence to a variety of surfaces, make it a great medium for interior or exterior floors. Properly prepped, acrylic urethane can be applied to wood, cement or old acrylic floors. The high-gloss protective shell created by acrylic urethane offers protection from the elements so it can be used indoors or out.


The self-coating properties of acrylic urethane are designed to resist grease, oil, water and abrasions, making it a great paint choice for properly prepped wood and can be used for interior and exterior wood surfaces. It can be applied using a brush, roller or sprayer and is available in a one-step system for single-coat coverage. It is formulated to give the results found in enamel paint, but dries quicker and lasts longer.

Bath Fixtures

One type of acrylic urethane paint is known as a top coat resin and is usually used as the second step in a two-step system application. The acrylic urethane resin is highly waterproof and resistant to scratching and can be applied over a base coat of acrylic urethane to seal and finish bath fixtures. The resin can be tinted or clear, depending on the type and colour of system and base coat used.

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About the Author

Suzanne Smith Dickinson has been a professional writer since 1989. She currently maintains a humorous blog that has garnered national attention. Her articles have appeared in "Community Health Forum" magazine, and many of the Suburban newspapers and special sections in Michigan, Georgia and North Carolina. She attended Georgia State University as an Honors English student.