Synthetic turf boasts dozens of benefits that real grass just doesn’t have. It doesn’t require water. It cannot turn brown from lack of shade. It doesn’t need to be mowed. You won’t have to spend a ton of your hard-earned money on expensive fertilizers to keep it healthy. Synthetic turf is also incredibly resistant to wear and tear, whereas real grass can get chewed up and damaged by daily use.
The environmental benefits alone make synthetic turf well worth it, especially in drought-prone areas where it’s important to conserve water. But many homeowners don’t consider synthetic turf a practical option, only because they aren’t aware of how simple the installation actually is. It’s not necessary to have a massive budget or a large commercial space to reap the benefits of a synthetic lawn. Below, we’ll discuss how synthetic turf is installed and whether it’s a practical option for your home:
It Begins with the Removal of the Existing Lawn
Before synthetic turf is installed, everything that was in the area previously must be removed. This includes the original lawn, but also extends to sprinklers, gravel, and potentially underwater pipes and wiring. The last thing you want is for the nails securing your artificial turf into place to puncture an underground pipe or to pierce an electrical wire. Anything that’s at risk should be moved out of the way, to a perimeter of at least a few inches before the installation process can begin.
If the synthetic turf will be installed on top of soil, the soil must be tamped down in order to ensure that it’s firm. If the soil is too loose, you can end up with sunken pockets. Before any installation can take place, the ground must be both firm and level.
Next Step: Installing a Drainage System
Of course, when it rains on your artificial turf, you will need a way for that water to drain away. If you’ve installed it on top of soil, then you won’t have a problem. The soil can carry the water away naturally. However, in many cases, your new lawn won’t sit on top of any actual soil, in which case you’ll need to have an artificial drainage system installed.
Drains can be built right into the synthetic turf, but the whole thing may need to be constructed at a slight elevation in order to allow rainwater to properly flow away. Drainage pipes, installed underneath the turf, can then redirect the water away from your lawn, preventing unsightly (and potentially dangerous) puddles from forming.
Adding the Sub-Base
The next step is to build up a sub-base, which the turf itself will sit on. This sub-base is laid on top of the soil, gravel, concrete, or whatever surface that is in place. Synthetic turf is extremely versatile and can essentially sit upon anything, as long as there is a proper sub-base in place first. The sub-base needs to be of a firm, heavy-duty material. Sand is often used, as it allows for effective water drainage and can easily sit on top of a layer of soil or gravel.
Measuring Out the Turf
Before the synthetic turf is laid down over the sub-base, it must be properly measured. It’s usually rolled out on the street first to ensure that it has been cut to the correct size. Professional installers usually leave an extra inch or two as an insurance policy, as it’s better to err on the side of the turf being a little too big, as opposed to a little too small. Once it has been double-checked to ensure it’s the proper size, the turf is inspected for any flaws. It may need to be stretched out with a tool similar to a carpet stretcher, preventing it from curling or bunching up in any areas.
Placing It on the Installation Surface
It’s then lined up over the installation surface. This part of the job is actually fairly challenging since the turf cannot be just dragged over the surface; the installation surface has to remain level. The professionals performing the installation will carefully lay down the turf, taking pains to ensure there are no bubbles or other flaws. The turf is placed in multiple pieces, which are carefully laid alongside one another with no more than about 1/8 of an inch of overlap. Seam tape is then used to hold the sections of turf in place, or it may be glued down, depending on what the contractor believes the job requires.
Finally, the contractor secures the turf into place with long nails, which firmly connect it to the installation surface. This part of the job can be a bit of a challenge as well because the nails have to be carefully placed in-between the artificial blades of grass. If they aren’t, they will end up pinning some of the blades down, which will be unsightly and ruin the pristine appearance of your synthetic turf.
Deciding If Synthetic Turf Is for You
Synthetic turf is becoming more and more common in residential areas because it’s so much less expensive and time-consuming to maintain than the real thing. It’s also visually striking, no matter what the weather outside is like, which makes it a popular choice for homeowners looking to boost their curb appeal.
Should you decide that you want to have synthetic turf installed on your property, contact a company with many years of experience, such as Sportech. With our expert, professional crew, Sportech will be able to create a synthetic lawn for you that saves you time and money and dazzles passersby. Contact us to ask for a quote today, and in no time at all, you’ll have the perfect lawn for your home.