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Most Common Ways Artificial Turf is Damaged

Learn the most common ways that homeowners damage and compromise the life of their artificial grass. Hear what to avoid to ensure a long-lasting turf installation. Avoid costly repairs by taking care of your investment.

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Artificial turf is as durable as it is beautiful. You can keep it looking new for years and years, as long as you take the right steps to protect it. There are a few things that can damage your investment, so we're here to tell you what those are. Protect your artificial lawn and avoid accidental damage with this helpful information! 

Harsh Chemicals

Artificial turf is easy to clean, but it can be ruined by toxic chemicals. You should never use petroleum-based products or oil-based paints near your grass because they can dissolve the blades and melt the backing if spilled and not cleaned correctly.

Paint: Water-based paints and acrylics are safe to use, but you must clean up spills before they dry. If a spill occurs, wash the area with a mild cleansing agent immediately to remove as much of the solution as possible. When painting a fence near your grass, you should use a drop cloth just as you would in the house to avoid accidental spills.

Oils: Polyethylene fibers can also be stained by oil, so oil spills should be cleaned up as soon as possible. Oil residue may not completely come off, and can even stain the grass permanently. Remember: oils used in tiki torches are flammable and can cause a fire hazard if spilled onto artificial lawns.

Pesticides and Cleansers: Heavy pesticides and harsh cleaning agents may also result in damage and discoloration if applied in large amounts. We'd recommend diluting any chlorine-based cleansers before applying them to the lawn. 

Extreme Heat

Synthetic grass can't burn in the traditional sense, but it can melt when exposed to high heat. There are many common backyard amenities that are sources of fire and heat. With a few precautions in place, you're sure to steer clear of potential damage.

Fireplaces and Grills: The first risk for heat damage is outdoor fireplaces. Even if you understand the risk and keep it off of the turf, having a fireplace too close can still cause heat and smoke damage. Hot coals can also release embers that can travel and will melt synthetic blades. More commonly, grills can become a hazard on artificial grass. Whether your grill uses charcoal, propane, or natural gas, grills are a source of heat and smoke that can damage the surface or your artificial lawn. 

It is important that you surround fireplaces and grills with a hardscape perimeter or locate these amenities where they are not a threat to your artificial turf as pictured below. 

fire pit on hardscape to prevent burning artificial grass

Smoking and Fireworks: Don't forget about smoking. Cigarettes and cigars both produce ash, which can burn the turf you're working so hard to maintain. It's an easy risk to overlook, but it can be costly to repair. Similarly, ash and embers from fireworks will have the same effect near turf. 

Sun Reflection: Magnification is the achilles heel for artificial grass installation. Second-floor windows, chrome finishings, bicycles, and more can cause sun reflection to occur. When this happens, the sunlight is more focused on a small area which can result in the melting of synthetic materials on hot days. To avoid this, be aware of sun reflections in your space and monitor the conditions under the mid-day sun. 

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Excessive Weight

Outdoor Furniture / Play Sets: Heavyweight items can damage the structure of the grass blades over time. Large and bulky items such as outdoor furniture and play sets should be moved every so often to prevent permanent indentations from occurring.

Heavy Foot Traffic: Buying the wrong turf for your foot traffic is a major way to lose out on years of quality grass. For areas with high foot traffic such as schools, pet resorts, and commercial businesses, it's vital to opt for a grass that is durable and resistant to heavy traffic. 

The bounce-back rate of turf will change depending on the type of artificial grass you have. Shorter and more durable grasses will bounce back quickly and have a higher recovery rate. Taller grasses with soft pliable blades will require more brushing to recover and stand upright again and may show more permanent structure damage in a shorter amount of time. 

Sharp Objects

Probably the most common way turf is damaged is through sharp objects cutting or tearing the surface. Avoid this by ensuring all sharp objects stay away from your artificial turf. Rakes, shovels, spatulas, and knives can all cut through the backing. This can lead to snags and surface lifting in other areas. If you must use these objects while outside, lay them down gently on the surface to avoid damaging your artificial lawn. Similarly, if you have lawn decorations that need to be spiked into the ground, find an alternative way to place them.

Now that you know what to avoid to keep your artificial lawn healthy, you'll have a high-quality green yard for years to come. Haven't quite made the switch? Get started today by filling out a short form to receive a custom estimate below! 

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