How to Select the Right Industrial Paint for Your Needs

Person's Hand Applying Industrial Pain

When it comes to industrial painting, selecting the right type of paint is crucial for the overall appearance and durability of the surface. With so many types of industrial paints available on the market, choosing the appropriate one can be perplexing, even for experienced engineers, because manufacturing processes, and research and development, continue to improve.

Whether you’re painting machinery, equipment, or a specific substrate, it’s important to understand the characteristics of each type of industrial paint. Our chemical engineers take a closer look at the most common types of industrial paint so that you can make an informed decision on the best one for your project needs.


Epoxy is a popular type of industrial paint well-known for its durability, strength, and resistance to moisture, chemicals, and abrasions. This type of paint comes from a two-part system of epoxy resin and a hardening agent. Once these two components mix together, they create a strong and resilient coating ideal for heavy-duty applications, much like epoxy you can find in stores.

Epoxy paints are available in a variety of formulations, including solvent-based, water-based, and 100% solids. Solvent-based epoxies have a high-gloss finish, fast cure time, and strong adhesion to various surfaces. Water-based epoxies work best for environments that require low odor and easy cleanup, while 100% solids epoxies offer the strongest and most durable option.

You’ll find epoxy paints on concrete floors, machinery, tanks, and pipelines. These industrial paints are extremely popular because they offer strong resistance to wear and tear. They work great as coatings for metal and flooring. Their costs come in relatively low due to widespread use.


Polyurethane offers excellent versatility, durability, and resistance to wear and tear. It is ideal for high-traffic areas and as a coating for floors, machinery, and equipment.

This type of industrial paint comes in different finishes, from glossy to matte. We can apply using a spray gun, brush, or roller. Polyurethane paint can also be tinted to match specific colors.

One significant benefit of polyurethane paint is its resistance to chemicals, UV rays, and abrasions. This makes it ideal for environments that require frequent cleaning or have exposure to harsh elements.

Unfortunately, polyurethane can succumb to chalking and yellowing over time. Therefore, it’s essential to choose a high-quality product and maintain it regularly to ensure longevity.

Extremely adaptable and durable, polyurethane coatings protect anything from concrete bridges to wooden deck chairs. It also helps objects hold up under pollution and severe weather.


Phenolic paint is a specialized industrial coating highly resistant to chemicals, abrasion, and heat. This makes it ideal for use in industrial settings where chemicals and high temperatures prevail. Companies manufacture phenolic coatings out of a combination of phenolic resin and a hardener, similar to epoxy, which results in a tough and durable finish that can withstand harsh conditions.

Think about phenolic industrial paints if your company works in petrochemicals, power generation, and manufacturing, where high heat and chemicals are common. Food processing facilities also use phenolics when they require a hygienic, easy-to-clean surface.

Phenolics have several benefits, including long-lasting protection against chemicals and other harsh materials. They also resist moisture, making them ideal for use in damp environments. Additionally, phenolic coatings have excellent adhesion properties, which means that they can adhere to a variety of surfaces, including concrete and metal.

If your business uses vats or tanks that need to resist chemicals, then a phenolic coating might offer the best protection. Phenolic coatings protect your products from solvents, salts, and acids.

Chemical Agent Resistant Coating (CARC)

Chemical agent resistant coating, or CARC, is a specialized type of industrial paint used in environments where chemical and biological agents are a potential threat. You’ll find this coating military vehicles and equipment, and in pharmaceutical and chemical processing facilities. CARC paint combines specialized resins with high-performance pigments and fillers to create durable and long-lasting paint.

Additionally, CARC paint highly resists abrasion and impact damage, which is why many military and law enforcement agencies use it when faced with harsh conditions. CARCs are also designed to withstand decontamination solutions.

When choosing a CARC paint, it’s vital to work with a knowledgeable supplier who can help you select the right product for your needs. Additionally, proper application techniques ensure the coating’s durability and effectiveness of the coating. 


Enamel paint offers a popular choice for industrial painting applications because it provides a high-gloss finish and a hard, durable surface. Companies make enamel by combining resins and pigments with a solvent, and the paint can be either oil-based or water-based. Enamels offer cost-effectiveness, hence their popularity.

Oil-based enamels resist wear and tear, and provide durability. They also reduce chipping and peeling. Oil-based enamels work well on a variety of surfaces, including metal, wood, and concrete. However, they do have a longer drying time, and they can emit a strong odor. But they are great when you want top-notch protection.

Water-based enamels are a popular choice for those who want a low-VOC (volatile organic compound) paint option. They dry more quickly than oil-based enamels and they’re less likely yellow over time. However, they are not as durable as oil-based enamels and may not be suitable for all industrial applications.

Enamel paint works well as a topcoat over other types of industrial paints to provide an extra layer of protection and a glossy finish. When choosing an enamel paint for your industrial needs, consider the surface that needs painting, the level of durability required, and the environmental factors that may impact the paint’s performance.


Polyvinyl, also known as PVC paint, represents a versatile option for industrial painting projects. You’ll find it in applications requiring excellent chemical and moisture resistance, making it a popular choice for pipes, tanks, and equipment exposed to harsh chemicals or extreme temperatures.

This type of industrial paint comprises a polyvinyl chloride resin, plasticizer, and pigments. We can apply it in a range of finishes, including gloss, satin, and matte. Its durability allows polyvinyl to resist abrasions, chipping, and cracking.

Additionally, we can customize polyvinyl coatings to meet specific project requirements. For example, resisting ultraviolet rays or having anti-fouling properties to prevent the buildup of organic matter on the surface.

Polyvinyl coatings serve as a base layer for other industrial paint applications. When applied as a base coat, they can improve adhesion, enhance durability, and provide added chemical and moisture resistance.

When selecting polyvinyl coatings, consider the substrate and the type of environment the paint will be exposed to. A qualified industrial paint professional, like the engineers on our team, can assist in selecting the best product for the specific application.

Hybrid Polyesters

Hybrid polyesters combine the best qualities of two different types of paint to create a more versatile and durable product. Typically, they blend epoxy resins with polyester resins to create a paint offering both strength and flexibility.

Think of these paints for environments exposed to high levels of heat, chemicals, or abrasion. They are often used to protect pipes, tanks, and other industrial equipment.

One of the advantages of hybrid polyesters comes from excellent adhesion to a variety of surfaces. They also resist UV light and can withstand exposure to the elements without fading or peeling. Hybrid polyesters also cure quickly, allowing for faster production times and reduced downtime during maintenance or repairs.

When selecting a Hybrid Polyester paint, it is important to consider the specific requirements of your project. Some Hybrid Polyesters are better suited for use on metal surfaces, while others may be more appropriate for use on concrete or other non-metal surfaces.

Contact Coating Systems for High-Quality Industrial Paints

Bring us your pieces, and we can formulate a custom industrial paint for them. We specialize in coating your industrial equipment, from trailers and pipes to fittings and fasteners, with the right industrial coatings.

Contact Coating Systems for a consultation. We can determine how to coat your industrial equipment for maximum performance and effectiveness.