Why does Bona Traffic Polyurethane cost more than Bona Mega? Is there a real difference between the two and is it worth it?
Please note that this article may contain affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure at the bottom of the page.
The short answer is Yes and Yes! Bona really makes the best water borne polyurethanes, hands down. And, Bona Traffic HD is the best of the best. If you ask most experienced professional floor refinishers and if you read the reviews online, hands down Bona Traffic HD is the best water borne polyurethane.
What’s the price difference between Bona Traffic HD and Bona Mega?
As a general rule, Bona Traffic HD costs about twice as much as Bona Mega. And, there is a good reason for that as you’ll read below. Please note that the cost of polyurethane is only one aspect of the cost equation (you also have to factor in the labor cost for sanding/refinishing as well as the cost for the stain (if you are staining).
So what’s the difference vs Bona Traffic HD and Bona Mega?
1. Bona Traffic HD has higher durability. It simply holds up to scratches better and lasts longer. How much longer? We’ll that’s tough to say as wear and tear differs by household based on foot traffic, whether you wear shoes, care and maintenance, etc. But, as a general rule, I’d venture that for the average household, it will probably give you an EXTRA 2 to 4 years of life. (And, if you are an extremely tidy household and have low foot traffic, no shoe policy, it could be even longer).
Bona Traffic HD comes with hardener that you mix in for even stronger durability.
2. Bona Traffic HD amberizes less. Nowadays, the majority of people want to avoid the yellow/amberizing effect that occurs over time (this is driven mainly by sunlight, but also interior light), and Bona Traffic provides much better protection for your floors. It gives you a more stylish, contemporary and natural look.
It’s also a more neutral color so it looks better (and looks higher quality) and it goes with more decor styles. Bona Traffic HD comes out lighter AND amberizes less over time compared to Bona Mega (as well as when it’s compared to oil based poly and all other water borne polyurethanes)..
This is especially important if you are staining hardwood floors gray or white washed floors, or if you have natural maple floors. On all of these, you want to avoid the yellow. We won’t use anything other than Bona Traffic for Gray or white washed floors.
3. Bona Traffic HD has lower VOCs than Bona Mega. VOC’s are Volatile Organic Compounds, and the lower the number, the better. Bona Traffic has less than125 VOC’s while Bona Mega has 200 VOC’s.
4. Bona Traffic smells less. Because Bona Traffic has lower VOC’s, it just smells less. And, the odor dissipates faster. This can be a real advantage to those with young ones as well as those with sensitive noses. Well actually, it’s better for all of us (after all, who likes the smell of polyurethane?)
5. Bona Traffic HD cures faster. Both lines of Bona Mega and Bona Traffic dry equally as fast, but Bona Traffic CURES much faster. Many don’t understand the difference between drying and curing – they are both important, so let me explain.
Drying occurs when solvents evaporate from the surface of the film, leaving it tack free. This means you can walk on it (socks only). Curing occurs when residual solvents leave the film and it begins reacting with oxygen from the air. This allows it to develop strength, hardness, abrasion resistance (i.e. resistance to scratching) as well as chemical resistance.
One of the great things about Bona Traffic is that it is 80% cured after just 24 hrs and 90% cured at 72 hrs. It reaches full curing at 7 days (Oil based poly takes 30 days to cure).. This is really helpful for those who are looking to move into a new house quickly as well as busy households with dogs. The harder the floor gets before movers, kids and/or dogs walk on the floor the better.
Please read my guide lines in this article How long does it take polyurethane to cure which explains when you can move furniture back, when pets can walk on floors, put area rugs down etc. And, you may find this article handy on how to prevent scratches in hardwood floors. There are a few items you may want to buy ahead of time to help out (e.g. felt pads, doggie socks). You can also find some of these at the end of this article.
Where can you buy Bona Traffic HD and Bona Mega?
Often you can buy this at a local hardwood flooring store. It would be rare to find this in a local carpet store or a Big Box store. And, please note that this item may not be in stock in some areas of the country. But, a much easier and less expensive way to buy it would be on Amazon.
- What are the best brands of Polyurethane?
- Bona Traffic vs Bona Traffic HD – Is there a difference?
- How to refinish hardwood floors gray – the right way.
- How long does it take polyurethane to cure?
- How to prevent scratches in hardwood floors
If you live in Westchester County NY, I offer color consultations to advise customers on paint colors and stain choices. My designer discount at the paint stores usually more than offsets the cost for the hour consultation. Read more here.
Complementary products that will prolong the life of your hardwood floors