Urethane vs. Plastic

We often hear the question “Is urethane plastic?” and the answer is no. Urethane has many benefits that plastic does not! With plastics, the higher the durometer, the more likely a part is to crack and break under impact and shock loading. Not so with urethane. Urethane is not brittle like plastic. It’s a true elastomer capable of tremendous impact resistance even at very high durometers. More importantly, polyurethane retains it elasticity and strength over the complete range of hardness. Even at high durometers, urethane can be stretched to substantial elongations and will still return to its original dimensions. Stretch a plastic beyond a certain point and it remains permanently stretched.


  • Elastomeric memory: returns to its original shape when stretched
  • Non-brittle: won’t crack and break under impact and shock loading
  • Resilient: outstanding abrasion- and impact-resistance for longer life
  • Versatile: available in a wide range of durometers and densities
  To learn about how polyurethane can improve your product performance, including how it compares to rubbers, plastics and metals, download our white paper.

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