P.C. Hardwood Blog

Water Base vs. Oil Base – Which Comes Out on Top?

So, you’ve already installed the floors, sanded, and put the sealer or stain down. Congratulations! Now it’s time to choose a finish. There are a bunch of options when it comes to hardwood floor finishes, but it mostly comes down to water base vs oil base.

The truth is, you can’t go wrong either way. They both look great, and will keep your floors safe and protected.

Oil-based finishes generally look darker, and have a classy, traditional, amber finish. Some water bases keep that amber look, while others remain clearer, so, if you want a clear, natural look, go ahead with a water base.

And of course, there’s the odor to consider: Oil-based finishes, with a higher VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) count than water-based finishes, have a much stronger odor than their water-based counterparts. And water-based finishes, with a lower VOC, are more environmentally friendly.  

Water-based finishes can dry in as little as 2-6 hours. Oil based finishes, on the other hand, can take 2-3 times as long to dry. Because water bases dry faster, going with a water-based finish means you may be able to finish up a project in one day, rather than stretching it out over a couple days. Time is money!

Voila! Enjoy your finished home!

Leave a Reply