CLEVELAND - Historically, solvent-borne coatings have maintained the largest share of protective and specialty coatings. However, waterborne coatings are projected to surpass solvent-borne coatings by 2020 as regulatory concerns continue to impact the protective and specialty market. Solvents will continue to lose share to other formulations, with trends favoring the use of waterborne, high-solids and other coatings, which have lower or no VOC emissions. These and other trends are presented in Protective & Specialty Coatings Market in the U.S., a new study from The Freedonia Group, a Cleveland-based industry research firm.

Demand for waterborne coatings in the protective and specialty segment is predicted to expand at an annual rate of 2.5% to 85 million gallons in 2020, supplanting solvent-borne coatings as the market leader. The trend toward waterborne coatings in the automotive refinish market, which historically has widely used solvent-borne coatings in an array of applications, is of particular importance for this formulation. End users of automotive refinishes have increasingly adopted waterborne coatings due to their improved color matching capabilities and faster drying times than their solvent-based counterparts.

Waterborne coatings are also gaining a foothold in protective marine coatings as several worldwide treaties and U.S. regulations have put stringent limits on harmful emissions produced by marine coatings. Waterborne coatings provide good adhesion to the market’s primary substrate - metal - and offer solid resistance to weather, chemicals and other harsh conditions in which all varieties of watercraft are exposed.

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