Uses of Alkyd Resin in Products
Alkyd resins are a staple ingredient in most synthetic paints, varnishes, and enamels. Around 200,000 tons of alkyd resins are produced each year and used as coatings and finishes in the protective coatings industry.
Here’s a deeper look into alkyd resin uses and why it’s one of the important types of surface coating available (and has been for nearly a century).
What is an Alkyd Resin?
An alkyd is an ester-based polymer resin that’s modified (modified alkyd resin) by adding fatty acids or other oils. They are the predominant binder in most commercial oil-based coatings. The resin is flexible, glossy, quick-drying, and less prone to chipping, making it ideal for paints, varnishes (stains), and commercial oil-based coatings.
Tip: You can learn more about modified alkyds here.
Products made with alkyd resins can be to protect metal, wood, or concrete from weather and natural wear & tear. In addition, coating a structure with an alkyd resin-based product can help prolong its lifespan.
Alkyd Resin Uses
This complex oil-modified polyester acts as a film-forming agent in some paints and clear coatings. The different types of alkyds you use will depend on what you’re trying to protect.
You’ll often find alkyd resin used in exterior painting products or in stains (varnish). Why? Because they’re durable, resilient, and offer a high-quality finish with excellent protection. Alkyd coatings are water-resistant, and they can adhere to various materials like wood or metal.
Alkyd Resins – What’s It Best For?
Alkyd resin paint is often used on surfaces where durability is essential. Typically, this modified alkyd coating is applied to wood and metal structures.
These paints are categorized by oil percentage. The different oil content helps determine which paint is best for a specific structure.
- 30-40% Oil – Low air drying times and used for metal surfaces, like in the automotive industry, or to help protect external building structures.
- 45-55% – Medium oil is the most versatile, and the paint is often used to produce various kinds of enamels.
- 55-70% – These often have longer drying times but are more resistant to aging and weathering. You’ll usually find this type of paint in the construction industry or any other surface that’s exposed to arduous conditions.
Alkyd Resins in Stains (Varnish) – What’s It Best For?
Alkyd resin varnish is a clear wood varnish made with good-quality alkyd resin. Alkyd varnish is ideal for interior and exterior wood applications. For example, a lot of spar varnish, a polyurethane-based finish, contains modified alkyd resins.
Resin varnish, like tung oil, is also suitable for both interior and exterior wood applications. In most cases, if you’re looking to protect a wooden structure from sunlight, water, and changing temperatures, an alkyd stain should keep your wood protected.
Advantages of Alkyds
Alkyd paints have been on the market since the 1930s. They often compete with water-based coatings like latex and acrylics, but they’re still the preferred coating for many applications. Alkyds create a durable, tough, high-quality finish with barrier protection, making them a top choice for machinery, architectural, industrial, and wood applications.
What about the environment? Are alkyds safe?
Modern alkyd products are different from the original solvent-borne formulations that have been under fire because of environmental restrictions. Newer alkyd coatings and modified alkyd coatings offer the same high performance as solvent-borne products but are formulated with reduced solvent content. Most modern alkyd products also use vegetable oils rather than petroleum-based oils, making them more environmentally friendly.
Alkyd Resin Suppliers
Depending on what you need modified alkyds for, it can be hard knowing which brands you can trust.
Archroma has been creating industry-leading paints and adhesives since 1912. They are known for supplying materials to the construction, textile, and paper industries. Archroma is committed to being environmentally responsible and is currently working on new developments to create more responsible and sustainable product options.
US Polymers creates high-performance resins for inks and coatings. They also have superior varnishes and are among the most trusted names for specialty coatings resins.
Worlée Chemie manufactures a range of alkyd products from solvent based short, medium, or long oil to water-thinnable alkyds like the WorléeSol E 150 W.
How to Find a Raw Material Partner
VHM is a raw material supplier for various industries. We’re here to help you source the high-quality materials you need to complete your projects. At VHM, we source the best easy-to-use formulations of alkyd-based products to make application as easy as possible. Most formulations are quickly applied with a brush, roller, or aerosol spray.
Contact one of our representatives today to learn more about our alkyd resin products or get advice on the best products for your unique needs. The next generation of surface coatings are here. Let us guide you through the process.