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Best Roller for Water Based Polyurethane in 2024 [Top 7]

Roller for Water Based Polyurethane is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to and may earn from qualifying purchases.

Polyurethane is a versatile material with many uses. Most commonly, polyurethane is used as a hard-wood floor coating. With a roller, it gives a soothing feel while applying polyurethane to large wooden surfaces.

These coatings offer a durable, stain-resistant surface. They also help to seal the natural beauty of the wood grain. But a lack of polyurethane on your roller or running out while coating can cause catastrophic results. 

The best roller for water based polyurethane can help solve this problem by providing an even, consistent layer of coverage. You can also speed up the curing of water-based polyurethane with a roller.

If you seek a durable, easy-to-apply finish for your woodworking projects, you must read this article. This article discusses the top 7 most effective paint rollers for water-based polyurethane and explains how to choose one for your application.

Bates Paint Roller

AmazonBasics Paint Roller for Polyurethane

Pro Grade Roller for Polyurethane Paint

Can Water-Based Polyurethane be Applied with a Roller?

Absolutely, water-based polyurethane can be applied with a roller, but it is essential to choose the best roller for a polyurethane finish.

Even any type of polyurethane (oil-based polyurethane or water-soluble polyurethane) will have different results when applied with a roller. Polyurethane is easier to apply with a roller, and it dries quickly.

7 Best Roller for Water Based Polyurethane Reviews

A roller is an easy way to apply a smooth, even coat of water-soluble polyurethane. But not all paint rollers are created equal. Choosing the right roller can mean the difference between a messy job and a professional finish.

The following is a list of the seven best applicator for water based polyurethane:

01. Bates Paint Roller

The polyurethane roller by Bates Choice is a top-quality roller used for painting projects. The roller is durable foam and has a long handle for easy use. It can be used with both water and oil-based polyurethane, making it a versatile tool for any painting project or hardwood floor.

Key Features:

  • Long handle for easy use
  • Can be used with water and oil-based polyurethane
  • Comes with a tray, two roller covers, one roller frame
  • Includes two brushes of 2″ angels

This roller is a comprehensive set that comes with a tray, two roller foam covers (9″x1/2″), one roller frame (9″), and one roller frame (4″). It also includes two 2″ angel paint brushes and one high-density foam brush.

The paint tray set is an outstanding choice for a quality, long-lasting product. The rollers are easy to clean and provide a superior finish. They are also quick to use, making them an excellent option for getting the job done quickly.

Featuring thick synthetic filaments and a nap designed to hold more paint, this brush will help you save time and get the results you are looking for. The naps are 1/2 inch thick and durable, and long-lasting, so you can do the task efficiently and quickly.

This affordable, high-quality roller is perfect for perfectionists who want the best value. With durable construction, this roller can be used repeatedly to achieve flawless results. It also has a comfortable grip that makes it easy to hold and use.


  • Durable construction
  • High-density foam brush
  • Comfortable grip
  • 1/2 inch thick nap


  • Lint might accumulate on painted surfaces


It doesn’t matter if you are a professional or a beginner; this Bates Paint Roller can help you get the job done. The roller is made with a durable polyurethane material that can hold up against wear and tear. 

02. AmazonBasics Paint Roller for Polyurethane

AmazonBasics roller covers are a simple solution to get the perfect finish on your paint jobs. The high-quality construction and materials ensure that these covers will last, while the soft microfiber bristles help you achieve a smooth coating on the hardwood floor.

Key Features:

  • Made of high-quality materials for durability
  • Soft microfiber bristles for a smooth finish
  • 1/2-inch pile height for fast, even paint application
  • Resists shedding to avoid leaving tiny pieces of fabric behind
  • Works with smooth or semi-smooth surfaces

This microfiber roller cover is a great tool for efficient painting performance. Its 1/2-inch pile height can hold a lot of paint, making for fast, even application. This roller cover is sure to make your painting job much more manageable.

These roller covers are essential for achieving a clean, professional-looking finish. This AmazonBasics microfiber roller cover is designed to resist shedding, ensuring that you won’t end up with tiny pieces of fabric all over your freshly painted surface.

Whether you’re working on an interior or exterior project, this roller cover is versatile and suitable for all kinds of paint and stains. It also works well on smooth and semi-smooth wooden surfaces, making it the perfect choice for various projects.

This package comes with six covers, each of which is 9 by 3/8 inches in size. The covers are durable and can be washed and reused multiple times, making them a great value for your money. Also, these covers are designed to work with smooth or semi-smooth surfaces, so they can handle a variety of applications.


  • Six roller covers
  • Washable
  • Re-usable
  • Resists shedding


Whether you’re refreshing your home’s paint job or tackling a larger commercial project, this AmazonBasics Paint Roller for Polyurethane application lets you finish any project quickly and efficiently.

03. Pro Grade Roller for Polyurethane Paint

The Pro Grade 10-piece painting set is perfect for amateur or professional painters. This mini plastic paint tray set is ideal for small projects, and the mini roller frame and microfiber roller covers make it easy to complete projects efficiently and smoothly.

Key Features:

  • Ideal for amateurs and professionals
  • Comes with 1 each 4″ mini roller frame, 1 mini tray
  • Polyurethane microfiber roller covers
  • High-quality materials for durability and long-lasting use

This comprehensive set includes one 4″ mini roller frame, one mini tray, and 8 each 4″ x 1/2″ mini roller foam covers. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, this kit has everything you need to get the job done right.

With tons of colors and motifs to choose from, you’ll be able to paint or stain your walls, ceilings, floors, and decks with these roller covers. The high-quality roller for apply polyurethane ensures even coverage and a smooth finish.

Its professional results are easy to achieve, and you don’t need to be a pro to get great results. The roller gets the job done every time, making it an excellent choice for anyone looking for an easier way to achieve great results.

The high-quality construction means that it is durable and long-lasting, while the soft foam covers help massage your muscles and relieve tension. It is easy to wash and reuse.


  • Microfiber roller covers
  • High-quality materials
  • 10 mini roller covers
  • Included mini tray


  • Incompatible with oil-based products


If you are looking for an all-in-one set that has everything you will need to start your painting projects, then the Pro Grade Roller for Polyurethane Paint is a great choice.

04. Purdy Paint Roller Covers

A Purdy white roller cover is a wonderful tool around the house. The three-pack offers enough coverage for most projects, and the soft, white bristles help you apply the paint evenly and smoothly on the hardwood floor.

Key Features:

  • Dralon’s dense weave allows the paint to flow
  • Perfect for exterior stains
  • Miniature flagged filaments paint countless tiny areas
  • Suitable for all paint types

This lint-free roller cover is perfect for a smooth, even finish. The cover can be used with all paints and provides an excellent surface for your project. 

The high-quality white dove series paintbrush features a dense weave of the Dralon, allowing the paint to flow freely in and out, making it easy to roll on the paint and achieve a smooth surface.

The thousands of miniature flagged filaments help to leave paint from thousands of tiny surfaces, resulting in a beautifully even coat.

They’re perfect for all paints and exterior stains, and they leave your surfaces smoother & lint-free. Also, these roller covers are compatible with all paint types, so you can use them for any project.


  • Lint-free
  • Smooth & even finish
  • Dense weave
  • Miniature Flagged filaments


  • It may leave fuzzies in the paint


So, if you’re looking for a good quality paintbrush that will give you a smooth, even finish, then the Purdy Paint Roller Covers is a great option. They’re perfect for all types of paint, and they’re lint-free.

05. NANJA Paint Roller

The paint roller from NANJA is perfect for DIYs and miniature painting projects. This high-density foam roller cover evenly distributes paint quickly and gets the job done.

Key Features:

  • Even coverage with no fiber loss
  • Comes with a 4″ mini paint tray
  • Nylon screw-fit handle resistant to solvents
  • Includes 10 high-quality superfine foam refills

This roller has a comfortable threaded handle, and the mini paint roller cover fits into tight spaces. The set also includes a foam-covered paint tray for easy cleanup.

This 12-piece mini roller set is perfect for metal, furniture, cabinets, doors, cutting in shelves, painting flat surfaces, etc. With these high-quality foam rollers, you can make painting a breeze and look great.

With this 4″ Mini Foam Roller, you can apply solvent-based paints to smooth surfaces. This foam also provides a smooth finish and eliminates fiber loss.

This mini foam paint roller is perfect for projects that require a smaller surface area. The roller can be used with most paints, lacquers, shellacs, stains, varnishes, waterproofers, and urethanes. It’s an excellent option for small spaces or tight corners.

The lint-free mini frame is easy to use and fits all standard mini paint roller refill sleeves. The solvent-resistant nylon screw-fit handle fits most standard extension poles, making it easy to reach high or difficult areas.

This set includes a mini roller and a 4-inch mini paint tray, together with 10 x high-quality superfine foam refill. The collection is perfect for small painting projects, and the Superfine foam refill ensures smooth, even coverage.


  • Even distribution of paint
  • Lint-free
  • Comfortable threaded handle
  • No fiber loss


  • Not compatible with solvent-based paint


Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced painter, the NANJA Paint Roller is a great choice for small painting projects. This lint-free and high-density foam provides smooth, even coverage.

06. KUPOO High Density Paint Foam Roller

KUPOO paint roller set is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to refinish their bathtub, paint walls, or tile. The high-density foam mini roller cover refills provide smooth, even coverage, and the roller and tray make it easy to use.

Key Features:

  • High-density foam for smooth and even coverage
  • 6″ frame handle for easy maneuvering
  • Paint around corners and in tight spaces
  • Lint-free and shed free finish

This high-density foam cover ensures even and smooth coverage, while the paint tray makes it easy to apply the paint evenly. Also, the 6″ frame handle allows you to maneuver and apply the paint smoothly.

The fiber paint roller set is perfect for anyone who wants a lint-free and ultra-smooth finish. This high-density foam ensures that no fibers are lost, so your paint goes on smoothly.

This roller frame is made of steel and has chrome plating to reduce the likelihood of rusting. The tray is designed to contain a large amount of paint that will be sure to cover your surface quickly and easily.

The wrap-around ends make it easier to paint corners and other tight spaces. Also, this paint roller set is a great way to get a smooth, shed-free finish on your projects.


  • 6″ frame handle
  • High-density foam
  • shed free
  • Lint-free


  • The rollers are slightly big for the tray


If you want an all-in-one paint roller set that will allow you to paint smoothly and without lint, then the KUPOO High Density Paint Foam Roller is great. It has high-density mini foam paint roller cover refills and a roller frame and tray.

07. Magimate Paint Roller Kit

Magimate rollers are ideal for DIYers and professionals alike for indoor and outdoor painting. It includes a 9-inch roller frame, 4-inch roller cover refill, masking tape, angled brush, paint stick, and a durable paint tray.

Key Features:

  • 9-inch roller frame with 4-inch roller cover refills
  • 1.5″ angled brush included
  • Resists all solvents and lint-free
  • Improved thread style for attaching extension poles
  • Different types of roller covers for different finishes

The large roller handle comes with two roller covers replaced by 9 inches, so you can continue using it even after the original cover wears out.

Each of the four tiny roller refills of this small roller frame measures four inches in diameter, making it ideal for maneuvering through narrow spaces.

It comes with a 1.5″ angled brush that is ideal for corners, and in addition to the roll of 25-30 meters of painter’s tape, it includes a paint stick that is ideal for mixing paint and a 9-inch wide reusable paint tray.

The covers are resistant to all solvents, so they won’t damage your paint rollers like other covers might. They’re also lint-free, so they won’t leave any lint on your paint job.

The rubberized handle is comfortable grip, and the improved thread style ensures that any extension pole can be securely attached. Additionally, the roller covers can withstand all solvents, meaning they can be used with any type of paint without worry.

By using different roller covers, you can achieve the desired finish for your project. Whether you’re looking for a smooth, semi-rough, or rough surface, these covers will help you finish.


  • Lint-free
  • Rubberized handle for easy grip
  • Improved thread style
  • Four tiny roller refills


This Magimate Paint Roller Kit is perfect for both professional and DIY painters. This kit contains a 9-inch roller frame, a 4-inch shape roller cover refill, masked tap, an angled brush, along with a durable paint tray.

These are our top 7 picks for the most suitable roller for water-soluble polyurethane finish. We hope you found this helpful in searching for the perfect paint roller. But before you purchase one, you should keep a few things in mind.

Buying Guide for Water-Based Polyurethane Roller

Moisture cured poly finishes

You know what they say, “Never Judge a Book by its Cover.” The same can be said of rollers. You might not think that there’s much difference between a cheap paint roller and a more expensive one, but there is.

A good quality roller will make the coating process a breeze, while a bad one will leave you with streaks and an uneven finish. So, how do you choose the right paint roller for a water-soluble polyurethane finish? Well, the followings are some things you should consider before making your purchase:

1. Size of the Roller:

When it comes to choosing a roller for a polyurethane finish, size does matter. That’s because the surface area of the roller will determine how much paint is applied to the surface.

So when you’re planning for your next painting project, be sure to take into account the size of the roller to ensure the best possible results.

2. Thickness of Roller:

Another essential thing you need to consider when making your decision is the thickness of the roller. A thicker roller will deposit more paint onto the surface, leading to an uneven finish.

On the other hand, a thinner roller will provide less coverage and result in a smoother finish. Ultimately, the thickness of the roller you choose should depend on the specific requirements of your project.

3. Material of the Roller:

Consider the roller’s material when selecting roller for polyurethane. The three most common materials are natural fibers, synthetic, and foam. Each has its advantages and disadvantages.

Natural fibers, such as sheepskin, lamb’s wool, and Mohair, are absorbent and shed less lint than synthetic fibers. However, they can be more expensive and may require more frequent cleaning.

Synthetic fibers, such as nylon and polyester, are less absorbent than natural fibers but shed more lint. They are also less expensive and easier to clean.

Foam rollers are the least absorbent but shed the least amount of lint. They are also the easiest to clean. When choosing a roller for polyurethane, pay attention to its material and choose the one that best meets your needs.

4. Density of the Roller:

Applying oil-based polyurethane

For polyurethane, it’s essential to consider the density of the roller. A high-density roller will give you a smoother finish, while a low-density roller will likely leave marks and brush strokes.

In general, a 3/8″ or 1/2″ nap thickness is a good choice for most projects. Now that you know all about roller density, you’re ready to choose the right roller for your upcoming project.

5. Handle Bar:

Another important factor is the handlebar. The handlebar determines how easy it is to grip the roller and apply the polyurethane evenly. A flimsy handlebar will make it difficult to control the roller, resulting in an uneven application.

6. Grip of the Handle:

Picking the right roller for applying polyurethane can be tricky. There are a lot of factors to consider, from the type of finish you’re looking for to the porosity of the surface you’re working with. But one of the most important considerations is the grip of the roller.

The roller’s grip determines how well the roller will hold onto the paint or polyurethane as you’re applying it. A good grip is essential for a smooth, even finish. If the roller slips too much, you’ll end up with brush strokes and marks.

7. Lint Free Roller:

As you’re applying polyurethane, you want to ensure that the roller is lint-free. Otherwise, you’ll end up with a messy finish. A lint-free roller will give you a smooth, even application and ensure that your project looks the best.

After you’ve learned everything you need to know about choosing the right roller for polyurethane, you’re ready to start your next project. Be sure to keep these factors in mind, and you’ll choose the perfect roller for the job.

Application of Water Based Polyurethane with a Roller

roller for polyurethane

Oh, yes, the polyurethane project. You’ve sanded your wood floor (or maybe just your table/chair/door/dresser/whatever) down to bare wood, and you are ready to protect that beautiful grain with a layer of moisture-resistant coating.

Applying a water-based polyurethane to your multi-direction floors is a great way to protect them from scratches, scuffs, and stains. However, if you’re not careful, the process can be messy and time-consuming. 

To help you get the best results, here’s a step-by-step guide to polyurethane application with a paint roller:

Step 01: Prepare your Surface:

Start by sweeping or cleaning your wood floor to remove any dirt or debris. Then, using a damp cloth, wipe down the surface to remove any remaining dirt or dust.

If you’re working with a new floor, you may sand it down before applying the polyurethane. This will help create a smooth surface and ensure that the polyurethane adheres appropriately.

Step 02: Choose your Roller:

When selecting a paint roller for water-soluble polyurethane, keep these points in mind:

  • Firstly, you’ll want to choose a roller with a smooth surface. This will help avoid creating any natural bristle brush marks or streaks in the finish.
  • Secondly, you should pick a roller that has a dense foam core. This will help evenly distribute the polyurethane and create a smooth, even finish.
  • Finally,  make sure the roller has a comfortable grip. This will help to prevent any accidents and make the job easier.

Step 03: Pour your Polyurethane:

Once you’ve selected the perfect roller, it’s time to pour your polyurethane. If you’re working with a small area, you can pour the polyurethane directly onto the floor.

Otherwise, pour a small amount into a tray or bucket. If the roller becomes overloaded with polyurethane, it will drip and mess.

Step 04: Apply the Polyurethane:

It is essential to roll the polyurethane over the surface or area you intend to cover. Begin at one end of the room and work towards the door. Apply the polyurethane in long strokes.

If you’re working with a large area, you may divide it into sections. This will help to avoid the polyurethane from drying before you have a chance to apply it.

Step 05: Let it Dry:

Once you’ve applied the polyurethane, let it dry for at least 24 hours. This will give the polyurethane time to cure and create a robust and protective finish.

And that’s it. You can apply polyurethane to your hardwood floors (or furniture) like a pro by following these simple steps. Just be sure to take your time and work in small sections for the best results.


The following are some frequently asked questions regarding water-based polyurethane:

01. Can I Apply Water-Based Polyurethane with a Roller?

Yes, you can apply water-based polyurethane with a roller. It is the most recommended method as it provides even coverage and prevents bristle brush marks. However, for best results, we recommend using a foam roller. This will help to avoid any spots or streaks in the finish.

02. How Long Does Water-Based Polyurethane Take to Dry?

Water-based polyurethane usually takes around 4 hours to dry on hardwood floors. However, it may take up to 21 days for the water-based polyurethane to completely cure.

03. Do You Have to Sand Between Water-Based Polyurethane Coats?

It is a must to sand in between water-soluble polyurethane coats if your finish is smooth. Sanding will also help to remove any brush marks in the previous coat.

04. What Happens if You Don’t Sand Between Coats of Polyurethane?

If there is no sanding between coats of polyurethane, the finish will be rough and uneven. It may also lead to the polyurethane finish peeling off or deforming over time.

In Conclusion

Water-based polyurethane is a versatile finish that can be used on various flat surfaces, so choosing a roller that will work well with the type of surface you’re working on is crucial.

Applying water-based polyurethane is a fantastic way to protect your floors (or furniture) from scratches, scuffs, and other damage. The best roller for water based polyurethane is the one that fits your needs the best.

Be sure to test the roller on a small area before using it to ensure that you’re happy with the results. With a little bit of planning and preparation, you can find the perfect roller for your next project.

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