There’s a casual assumption that artificial grass requires no maintenance beyond washing and debris removal. Most people think of artificial turf as a “set and forget” solution, but in fact, while it is less troublesome than grass to maintain, it still requires regular maintenance if it is to be long lasting and durable.
Artificial turf first appeared in the 1960s in American sporting stadiums. It consisted of a pile of synthetic fibres coloured to resemble grass and woven into a textile base. Early “turf” provided a much harder playing surface than genuine grass, leading to an increase in sports injury. In addition, ball play became far truer, leading to changes in playing style to which traditionalists objected.
Manufacturers responded to these shortcomings by lengthening the pile and introducing a sand infill, which restored the cushioning properties of natural grass, together with its traditional unpredictability as a playing surface. More recently, they have begun using an infill made of granulated recycled rubber.
These infills deserve some attention, as they tend, over time, to “migrate” from areas of heavy usage to less frequented areas. In addition, whether sand or rubber, it will over time break down, be carried away by wind, rain or footfall, and need replenishing. The infill has a vital, cushioning effect in turf used as a playing surface, and its maintenance is an important safety measure.
As well as concern for the welfare of its users, there are other compelling reasons for adhering to a rigorous maintenance schedule. Organisations such as FIFA prescribe rigorous standards which venues with artificial turf must meet.
Here are some more tips for maintaining your artificial turf, and extending its life:
At Tquip, we are distributors for SMG, manufacturers of turf maintenance equipment and tools. We offer two ranges of turf care machinery:
Turf Care – a tow-behind range of machinery for tending artificial turf. Its wheel drive means that it requires no external power, and can be towed behind a wide variety of small tractors and quads.
Sport Champ – a range of ride-on machines that combine all the functions needed to care for artificial turf:
If you’d like to learn more about our artificial turf care machinery, send us a contact request here.