Top 9 Reasons to Use Polyurethane Crown Molding

Written by Milan Jara on 23rd Jun 2022

Polyurethane Crown Molding

Tired of the fussiness of traditional crown molding and ready for a change? Polyurethane crown molding has benefits that most homeowners rarely consider.

Crown molding nicely finishes a room, but whether you are using it to create a seamless look between the wall and ceiling, as a wall trim, or to cap wainscoting or a fiberglass cornice, this material has several applications. While most people are familiar with traditional forms, there are significant benefits to alternative materials like polyurethane crown molding as well.

Top 9 Reasons to Use Polyurethane Crown Molding

Polyurethane isn’t always a top choice when it comes to crown molding. However, it isn’t an overlooked one, either. When people decorate their house, they naturally gravitate towards the beauty of wood without considering that sometimes the alternatives can be much better depending on the room.

1. Resistant to Damage from Insects

Termites can be a problem for any product made of wood. Wood crown molding is an easy target for these insects that will damage the wood–or your budget to make your wood resistant to insects.

Polyurethane naturally resists insect infestations and will not incur any damage.

2. Resists Changes in Temperature

Traditional wood crown molding is inflexible. If you have archways or any bending, it will not be able to handle the job without splintering or breaking. Furthermore, wood products expand and shrink with temperature changes, meaning:

  • When it adjusts to differences in temperature, your once new moldings can leave gaps or buckle, making them appear unsightly. In areas that see large amounts of moisture, like bathrooms or basements, wood is not ideal.
  • If your basement is prone to flooding or seepage, you will quickly become frustrated at the constant cost of removing or repairing wood molding.
  • Wood will not stand up in bathrooms with high humidity. In fact, over time, it may rot, become riddled with bacteria, and appear unsightly.
  • Polyurethane is temperature-resistant, flexible, and can withstand the effects of moisture. Since it can better withstand the elements, it is a good choice whether used inside or outside your house.

3. Will Not Warp or Bend with Moisture

As mentioned, wood will absorb moisture from the surrounding air. After time passes, constant moisture/humidity provides the perfect opportunity for mildew, mold, or bacteria growth. This creates an unsafe environment health-wise for inhabitants. Heat rises, so it is easy for crown molding installed above to become warped or damaged.

If you apply crown molding at the baseboard level, then the moisture received as people exit the shower stall or bathtub can equally damage these boards, leaving them with unsightly brown stains in addition to bowing.

The polyurethane resists moisture and will retain its own quality over extended periods. It is perfect for areas with high humidity levels like bathrooms, house exteriors, basements, or kitchens.

4. More Durable

Since polyurethane resists insects, moisture, humidity, bacteria, cracking, and warping, it will last longer than traditional molding. While wood molding can last a long time, it can become expensive if you must treat it and creates more work to keep it intact than a polyurethane option.

5. Cost-Effective

Cost often plays a factor when installing crown molding. It is also often a consideration when installing any interior design element. Conscious buyers respect their need to receive a quality product at an affordable price.

Wood offers superior quality. However, wood that is high quality comes at a higher price tag. The more customized the millwork is, the pricier it is. Polyurethane provides an alternative due to its good qualities and low price point.

6. Numerous Design Options

This material is not limited to just simple designs. Polyurethane is a strong material, but it is also workable and soft, lending itself well to constructing different styles, colors, and designs. Homeowners can get a sophisticated finish using good-quality polyurethane without resorting to wood

Polyurethane is pre-primed, meaning that you can paint it, saving you money and time.

7. Easy to Paint

Painting the polyurethane molding is one way to ensure that it retains its original beauty. Polyurethane requires minimal maintenance. The best way to maintain this material is by painting it. You can also paint it for decorative purposes.

8. Appearance Is Similar to Wood

Polyurethane has the same appearance as wood. Most people will visually not be able to distinguish between the two. It is not easily spotted nor detected by the naked eye. Therefore, polyurethane can easily be substituted for wood to provide the same visual appeal with its own distinct advantages mentioned above.

9. Can Be Used on Uneven Walls

Polyurethane Crown Molding

Even though your walls may appear perfectly square and straight, they may not be. Foundations shift over time, and so do walls. Cracks can form, leaving uneven surfaces. Crown molding installed on these rougher surfaces can contain gaps and look shoddy. Since wood isn’t flexible, it can quickly become a victim of this phenomenon.

Polyurethane molds easily to uneven surfaces and even archways because it is pliable, allowing it to lie squarely on any surface and hide any imperfections. Small gaps are easier to hide by simply using caulk.


There are so many benefits to using polyurethane crown molding. While there are other alternatives, this type of material is more resistant to long-term changes in a house than most other materials available. It will resist moisture, insects, and humidity. These are common elements found in any home and can be problematic if you want to install crown molding.

Homeowners generally want their work to stand up over time. While it looks great as a chair rail or wall trim, wood tends to be fussier when it comes to installation, treatment, and maintenance. It is not conducive to every room in the house, leaving homeowners to be strategic in its placement. With polyurethane, you don’t have these issues.

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