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Choosing Polyurethane Material

Choosing the Best Polyurethane Material

Not sure what kind of polyurethane is best for your application? Each type of polyurethane has many different uses, and as such, each type has different properties. The qualities of each type concern everything from a material’s reaction to heat, to its ability to withstand tearing, to its level of abrasion resistance. Utilize our guide to determine which material is right for your use of polyurethane.

To begin with, there are two main types of polyurethanes: polyester and polyether.

polyurethane material



A chemical building block of polyurethane that provides high resistance to solvents and good mechanical properties.


Also a chemical building block of polyurethane. It is sometimes used in place of polyester, providing high resilience and hydrolytic stability.


Within the polyester and polyether groupings there are TDI and MDI urethanes, MDI polyether, TDI polyester, and low-cost polyether.

TDI and MDI are both building blocks of polyurethane, and are base forms of urethane resin. However, MDI (methylene di-ioscyanate) needs non-Moca Type curatives, whereas TDI (toluene di-isocyanate) needs Moca Type curatives.

Guide to Choosing the Best Polyurethane Material

PropertyMost AppropriateLeast Appropriate
Abrasion Resistance: SlidingPolyesterLow Cost Polyether
Abrasion Resistance: Impingement (Colliding)MDI PolyetherLow Cost Polyether
Compression SetTDIMDI
Heat AgingPolyesterLow Cost Polyether
Heat BuildupPolyetherPolyester
High Temperature PropertiesTDIMDI
Hydrolysis (Reaction with Water) ResistanceMDI PolyetherTDI Polyester
Low Temperature PropertiesMDI PolyetherTDI Polyester
Oil ResistancePolyesterPolyether
ReboundMDI PolyetherTDI Polyester
Tear StrengthPolyesterLow Cost Polyether
Tensile (Tension) StrengthPolyesterPolyether

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