Caparol PU Satin Review – Water-based Satinwood

Updated Jun 22, 2024 | Posted Dec 10, 2023 | Product Reviews, Paints | 1 comment

Caparol Haftprimer and PU Satin are products that Decorators have been raving about for 8 years or so now, so I thought it was about time I sat down and wrote a review. It’s a water-based paint system used inside or out, on wood, metal, and other trim.

Caparol Haftprimer is the adhesion primer / undercoat. You can use it on bare or previously painted surfaces before applying the satin. It’s tintable and has a recoat time of around 16-hours, which is quite a lengthy period for a water-based product.

Caparol PU Satin is the paint you’d use as the topcoat (matt and gloss finishes are also available). This is also tintable and has a recoat time of 12 hours. The sheen level in white is around 20%, which is on the low side for a satin.

Both products can be diluted with clean water as needed, or you can use paint conditioners on hot days to help with open times. You can apply these paints via brush, roller, or sprayer.


My Caparol Haftprimer Review


I thought I’d talk about each product in turn, starting with Caparol Haftprimer. It’s a great product, and a lot of Decorators regard it as one of the best water-based adhesion primers on the market. It grips well to all sorts of surfaces, including old oil-based paints, plastic, aluminium, and copper.

I think the quality that makes it stand out from the others is its opacity. You can almost achieve a strong colour change in one coat, which is brilliant considering it is fully water-based and very easy to apply. You can sand it after it’s cured, and it’s easy to avoid brush marks when using it.

If you use Caparol Haftprimer as your base coat, you essentially create the best possible base for additional products. For this reason, many Decorators use Haftprimer as an undercoat for every water-based satin and gloss products.

There is a downside to Caparol Haftprimer; it doesn’t block stains like most of the other adhesion primers on the market.

Neither does Caparol PU Satin, so if there are tannins or other nasties on the surface you’re painting, then there’s a chance your satin will discolour. For this reason, you probably wouldn’t use Haftprimer to paint over woodstain or varnish.

Overall though, Caparol Haftprimer lives up to its hype. It’s a product I rate a lot.

Haparol Haftprimer adhesion primer ready for review

My Caparol PU Satin Review


Another product that’s highly rated by Decorators, and it’s probably the one product that converted a lot of Decorators to using water-based paints rather than oil. You’ll find it easy to use, flows well, has a good open time, and very few issues with brush marks.

You don’t get those annoying ninja runs with Caparol PU Satin which you do with a lot of other water-based satinwoods. It’s a breath of fresh air to be able to paint something then walk away knowing the paint won’t run and ruin the finish. This also makes it great for spraying.

The finish is bob on too. You should use a mini roller over flat surfaces like doors or windowsills, then lay-off with a brush to achieve the best results. It always looks great, and it’s very durable.

Like the Haftprimer, there is one drawback to using Caparol PU Satin, and that is the number of coats needed to achieve a solid finish. Haftprimer is slightly grey, and PU Satin doesn’t have the best opacity.


Sometimes you need to apply one coat of Haftprimer and 3 coats of PU satin if you’re using white (tinted colours are much easier). Even though it’s quick and easy to apply, this can still be a pain.

There is a tip I can give you to help; Mix Haftprimer and PU Satin on a 50/50 ratio for your first coat, then apply PU Satin for your second coat. Working like this means you only need to apply two coats rather than four!!

tin of Caparol Aqua PU Satin ready to test and review

Final Thoughts


Caparol is a great brand which has been in the UK some time now. Their products aren’t the cheapest, but they’re generally very good. As a Professional Decorator, I use a lot of different water-based paints, but I’m never disappointed when I use the Caparol PU system.

It’s easy to use, robust, looks great, and can be used outside as well as in. There are a couple of drawbacks, but the overall performance is fantastic.

Review Summary

Caparol PU Satin Review - Water-based Satinwood - Decorator's forum UK

A water-based satinwood system used to paint wood and other trim around your home.

Product Brand: Caparol

Editor's Rating:


  • Available in many colours.
  • Interior or exterior.
  • Caparol Haftprimer is known as one of the best water-based adhesion primers on the market.
  • Awesome finish.
  • Very durable.
  • Sprays well.
  • Flows well from a brush and roller.
  • Good open time.


  • The Haftprimer doesn’t block stains like some modern primers do.
  • The PU Satin has poor opacity.
  • The finish will discolour after a few years.

Updated Jun 22, 2024 | Posted Dec 10, 2023 | 1 comment

About the Author

About the Author

Mike Cupit has been in the decorating industry since 2002 and has mostly worked as a Trade Decorator in the domestic sector (peoples’ homes). Self-proclaimed “product geek”, Mike has a passion for paint and decorating tools. Mike now spends most of his time testing paint products and tools, comparing them to similar products on the market, and blogging about the industry in general.
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1 Comment

  1. David Crossman

    Providing you don’t need a stain blocker the Haftprimer is excellent.
    PU Satin gives a great finish but I’ve found a problem with runs and looking on the web I’m not alone. The sheen level is lower than most but I personally like it. Recoat times can be reduced especially in warmer weather.


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