Navigating the web in search of an artificial turf installer can be challenging. Yelp sells the top 10 positions so you can’t be sure the companies actually produce...
Comparing Turf Installers: 5 Questions That May Prevent A Disaster
To help you potentially save thousands of dollars in repairs and insurance claims, we've created a list of questions to ask a contractor or turf company before selecting them for the job. These questions and tips will help you compare quotes and determine which turf installation companies are the most trustworthy and qualified.
Artificial grass installation often requires a fairly large upfront investment, so it's important to really do your research before selecting a company or contractor to work with. Choosing the wrong company can result in insurance scams, installation mishaps, and costly repairs. To prevent any financial or legal troubles ask every installer these questions:
1. What Kind Of License Do You Carry?
The answer to this question should be a B or C27 license. If they hesitate or sound unsure, you can check their license and insurance status at www.cslb.ca.gov. Any legitimate contractor or installer will have their insurance information readily available. Without these insurances, you will be responsible for any injuries on your property.
2. Will You Be Outsourcing this job?
Very often salespeople over-promise the outcome and have nothing to do with the installation itself. Large nationwide turf companies will post ads offering competitive pricing but they're outsourcing these jobs to local contractors that they don't supervise. We'd recommend opting for a local company with their own crews because there's more supervision and accountability.
3. What Types of warranties do you offer?
All high-quality artificial grass should come with its own product warranty. Check with each installer you're comparing to question whom they source their grasses from to understand what's covered. If they're using low-quality and cheap materials, premature fading and damage are more likely to happen.
You should also be looking for some type of warranty on labor. If the installer is not offering any warranties on the installation itself, we don't recommend working with them. You want to protect your investment. For example, InstallArtificial offers a 2-year workmanship warranty that covers ruptured seams, edges uplifting, or soil settling.
4. Will You Be Using Recycled or leftover Material?
Sometimes we find artificial grass installers who offer low prices will save on materials by completing the job with leftover pieces from other jobs. This can look patchy and often leads to visible seams and a shorter lifetime of the artificial grass. Make sure the installation crew uses grass from a fresh roll.
5. How Do you Guarantee Invisible Seams and a Level Surface?
If a contractor cannot offer explanations about how they grade and create a level surface then don't expect their work to be quality. Base prep is arguably the most important step of turf installation because it provides the installation with stability. Often issues with base prep will go unnoticed for a year or two and once you begin to notice the installers are long gone.
Also, ask them how they seam turf pieces together. If they simply attach the two pieces as is, this will create visible lines within your yard. The correct answer is that they seam in an "s" or zipper shape to create an illusion to the eye that makes the seams less visible.
Comparing Companies: What to Look For
Reading client reviews is the quickest way to learn more about the company you're considering. If a company has no reviews or bad reviews, often this is a telling sign that you will run into trouble. Look for customer-submitted photos to assess the quality of work. Often these photos will be less edited than those submitted by the company.
However, reviews can be misleading. Ensure that reviews posted are coming from people in your area, especially when working with large companies. If the reviews are coming in nationwide and reference different names and crews, this can sometimes be a sign that they're reselling jobs. The more reviews they have, the less power you have to negotiate. In our experience, mid-level companies with between 30-80 good reviews typically offer the best service, materials, and quality.
Portfolio of completed jobs
Really assess the photos of their past installations when comparing quotes between companies. While price is typically top of mind for homeowners, you want to make sure that you're not losing out on quality and longevity by choosing the cheaper option. Be on the lookout for visible seams, wrinkles, sloppy edging, etc. in their photos.
In conclusion, if installers are offering cheap prices there's usually a catch. Often they're not insured, skimping on the quality of materials and labor, or they're large agencies outsourcing your job to random contractors. Always question their knowledge of the installation procedures and ask the questions we've highlighted above. To get started with a trustworthy company with demonstrated customer satisfaction reach out to InstallArtificial today!