An artificial lawn provides an attractive and durable way of greening up your yard or garden without the hassle of traditional lawn maintenance. Not only is lawn upkeep work dramatically reduced when you opt for artificial lawn (there’s no need to weed, irrigate, plant, mow or aerate artificial turf), it’s also robust. No matter how much synthetic grass is walked over or played on, it won’t be affected. It also stands up exceptionally well to challenging weather – rain and wind don’t affect artificial turf. Provided it’s kept clean and groomed, artificial grass will keep looking good for decades.
All that said, synthetic grass does require some maintenance to stay in top condition. Here we take a look at how best to care for your artificial turf, including tips for stain removal as well as suggestions to keep your lawn inviting and fresh.
Pick a lawn that’s right for your home
If you haven’t yet installed your lawn, it’s worth considering what sort of artificial turf is going to work best in your garden. There are lots of options when it comes to synthetic turf, including:
– High-density options.
– Turf that provides additional drainage.
– A deodorising underlayer.
– An underlayer that provides additional shock absorption properties.
– Soft-touch lawns.
– Lawn that has been treated with anti-bacterial and anti-odour compounds.
For example, if you have pets, a lawn that includes anti-microbial and anti-odour treatments immediately makes life easier. Families with younger children will appreciate a soft-touch lawn. Picking the correct synthetic lawn is a straightforward way of reducing maintenance and providing an improved user experience.
The main problem that faces an artificial lawn is a build-up of dirt and detritus. The amount of build-up depends on variables such as:
– The presence of pets and/or children.
– Whether you have flower borders, trees or other greenery surrounding your lawn.
– The amount of traffic your lawn experiences.
– How much time is spent out on the lawn entertaining or dining.
Some lawns will stay looking lovely with less care; others will need more, depending on usage and the external environment.
On average, we recommend giving your lawn a quick once over with a hose (or a couple of buckets of water) once a week to wash away dirt and grime.
Pay particular attention to areas that have received heavy wear, such as the grass that’s under furniture legs or which have seen heavy use due to play. These may have become matted or stained.
For a matted area, we recommend using a stiff-bristled brush to fluff up the individual grass fibres. You may also need to clean away stains and stubborn detritus using one of the methods given below.
More intense cleaning
For most artificial lawns, a deep-down clean is only needed about once a month. In the same way as the weekly clean, some people will discover that they need to deep-clean the lawn more frequently (if you are affected by a series of storms, for example, you may need to clear away fallen leaves or branches more often), whilst others will discover that their lawn needs less work.
Once a month, we recommend giving your lawn a good going over with a stiff-bristled brush. This will dislodge any grot and grime, as well as helping to keep individual blades standing straighter. A stiff brush will also sort out any areas of matting that have built up.
We also recommend hosing the lawn down and spending a few minutes clearing away any small stains or stubborn detritus that remains.
In most cases, you won’t need to use detergent or any other cleaning product to keep your lawn in pristine condition – water from the hose is ordinarily sufficient. Occasionally householders will encounter a stubborn stain or want to make sure their lawn is immaculate. Detailed below are the recommended treatment options for a selection of common, stubborn contaminants.
Pick up solid waste using a doggy bag. If regular hosing isn’t enough to keep your lawn odour-free, you may need to deodorise it. We recommend mixing equal parts of white vinegar, warm water and an enzyme-neutralising cleaner (which you can get from a pet store) to freshen the lawn’s surface. This is a safe, non-toxic cleaning option that’s effective, at the same time as being suitable for use in an area where pets or children spend time.
If you discover gum on your grass, the easiest way to get it off is to apply a few ice cubes in a plastic bag to the gum. This solidifies it so that it can be scraped away using a blunt knife or similar utensil. Any gum fragments that remain can be gently eased off using a few drops of olive oil and a cloth. Apply the olive oil to the gummy grass strands and carefully rub with a dry cloth.
Oil or petrol
In the first instance, clear up any oil that’s still lying on the lawn using a rag or similar. Mineral spirit (also known as white spirit or mineral turpentine) is the go-to product for removing oily detritus. Apply the spirits with a cloth and mop at the stain to remove the remaining oil. Hose the area down thoroughly to ensure that no traces of oil or mineral spirit remains.
Prevention is better than cure in the case of lawn burns. Keep naked flames away from your lawn, and don’t allow people to smoke on it unless they are conscientious about using an ashtray! In the unfortunate event you do end up with a burned spot, a professional turf installer can repair it for you.
Top five artificial lawn maintenance tips
There are a few general rules that apply to artificial lawn care. These include:
1. Avoid the use of bleach or other harsh chemicals on your lawn.
2. Don’t use the lawn for hazardous activities (working on engines, smoking, fire pits etc.).
3. Hose your law regularly.
4. Clear any stains or detritus promptly.
5. Keep the lawn clear of glass and/or mirrors. They can cause injury and, in direct sunlight, may cause your lawn to burn.
Use our guide to keep your lawn in top condition throughout the year. Get in touch for more tips on lawn care and to discover the wide range of high-quality artificial lawn products currently available.