Dyeing Stroller Material (5% Polyester, 95% Polyurethane)
  • I'm trying to refurbish the faded fabric of a stroller (pram) that I bought in used condition. The tag says the material is 5% polyester, 95% polyurethane. What is the best dye (not paint) for polyurethane?

    Keep in mind that it is practically impossible to submerge the parts that need dyeing into boiling water with something like iDye poly... (although I'm not sure that would work on this material anyway). The other suggestion I read on a forum here was to use Dye-na-flow, but I have a hard time finding out specific information about this product. Is it an acidic or basic dye? (the safety sheet seems to suggest it's acidic). Does it need to be heat fixed? Does it work on polyurethane fiber? Thanks in advance for any information/advice, and I would particularly welcome a discussion of the chemistry involved!
  • You might be able to use basic dye dissolved in alcohol for this project, but a stroller is outside a lot and the basic dyes are not very fade resistant, so I think my best advice is to go with dye-na-flow.

    The advantage to dye na flow is that it doesn't matter much what the material is. It should color it back and it will not fade at some later date. That is because Dye na Flow is a very thin acrylic paint made for synthetic and natural fibers. It should color the pram fine, and last a long time.

    Now, normally you would heat set Dye na Flow with an iron, but this is impractical for this purpose. Instead I would add our heat set catalyst in the amount of 1 teaspoon per 2.25 oz jar. I think you will only need one. That will cure the paint in 3 days so that it will adhere better to the synthetic material. Car guys use this on seat belts all the time for similar reasons, it is impractical to submerge. I think it will turn out great.

  • Thanks so much for your response! I guess this means Dye na Flow IS a paint, but because it's so thin it appears to coat individual fibers? Is this why multiple coats are usually needed? That is great news because I was afraid a basic dye would be inappropriate for a pram being more biologically hazardous... Thanks!
  • Basic dyes are the other option. I wouldn't use them as the stroller is used outside mainly and basic dyes fade when they are outside a lot getting UV exposure.

    Yes, some basic dyes are biologically hazardous, but the ones we offer are pretty much harmless. They like other dyes are not safe to breathe, but we chose basic dyes that are specifically not dangerous for our most recent palette.