March 1

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What’s the Difference Between Polyurethane and Epoxy?

Polyurethane and epoxy resins are both widely used in the world of crafting, DIY, and industrial applications. These two types of resins have some similarities, but they also have some significant differences in terms of their properties, performance, and applications. 

How do you know which is best for your project?

Here’s what you need to know.

What is polyurethane?

Polyurethane is a type of polymer that can be produced in various forms, such as foam, solid, and liquid. These resins are often used for coating, sealing, and casting applications due to their excellent durability, flexibility, and chemical resistance. Polyurethane resins can be cured by a chemical reaction between a polyol (an alcohol with multiple hydroxyl groups) and an isocyanate (a molecule with a reactive N=C=O group).

What is epoxy?

Epoxy is a type of resin that consists of two components: a resin and a hardener. The two components are mixed together and then applied to a surface. Epoxy resins cure through a chemical reaction between the resin and hardener, which creates a thermosetting polymer that is hard, durable, and resistant to chemicals and heat. Epoxy resins are commonly used for bonding, coating, and casting applications.

Differences between polyurethane and epoxy

While both polyurethane and epoxy resins are used for similar applications, they have some significant differences in terms of their properties and performance.


Polyurethane resins are more flexible than epoxy resins, making them more suitable for applications where flexibility and impact resistance are critical, such as coating and sealing outdoor surfaces that are exposed to temperature changes and mechanical stresses.

UV resistance

Polyurethane resins have better UV resistance than epoxy resins, which makes them more suitable for outdoor applications, such as coating and sealing wooden surfaces, concrete, and metal structures.

Chemical resistance

Both polyurethane and epoxy resins are resistant to chemicals, but polyurethane resins have better resistance to solvents and oils, making them more suitable for applications in the automotive and industrial sectors.

Polyurethane resin has some clear advantages over epoxy resin for many applications. While both resins have their unique differences, polyurethane resin is the better choice in many situations due to its superior flexibility, UV resistance, chemical resistance, and more. 

At Mark Tool & Rubber, we’ve been a worldwide polyurethane manufacturer for decades. There’s a reason why we’ve been trusted industry leaders for so long. Contact us today to request a quote for your next urethane project!

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