There are many advantages and reasons to choose artificial grass, however, it’s not for everyone. In this article we’ll go into the top ten problems with artificial grass (and how to solve them!) so that you’re best informed when it comes to making your decision.
Probably one of the main problems with artificial grass – synthetic lawns are expensive to install, regardless of how good a deal you get. Costs to consider include; grass removal, ground preparation, buying the artificial grass and labour costs of installing it.
Ensure that you are buying the right amount of grass for your area – the more accurate you are with measurements, the less wastage there will be, therefore reducing costs. It can also be helpful to find an installer that will match or beat prices with a higher quality product.
2. It is not as soft as you think
There are a lot of artificial grass varieties, and each type is designed for a specific use, with qualities that reflect that use. It can hurt if you fall while playing sports or running around with a dog, especially if the chosen grass doesn’t match up to the right requirements. Skin abrasions are possible, and this problem with artificial grass is important to consider when installing at schools or in playgrounds.
Make sure you know exactly what you want your grass to be used for. Then, make sure you get lots of samples – many companies provide them for free. Most companies will tell you which type of grass is best for your needs, however samples will ensure you get what you like – and it means you can feel whether the grass is soft or not before purchasing!
3. Surface Heat
Artificial grass holds a lot more heat than natural grass. Because of this, and because it doesn’t have a cooling effect like real grass does, the air around artificial grass can feel hotter. Not only this, but when you are walking bare foot on artificial grass, it will feel hot to the touch!
Try to find an artificial grass that has special cooling properties, or go for a style with a lighter colour blade that will keep the grass cooler. Check to see if the infill used with your artificial grass will raise surface temperature.
4. Forgetting about weed growth
A huge benefit of installing artificial grass is not having to worry so much about weeds. However, some tougher weeds can still grow underneath your turf. Forgetting to install a weed membrane could mean that weeds are still a problem with your artificial grass.
Make sure to ask your grass installers to use a high quality weed suppressant membrane (also known as terram) that will prevent weeds from growing up through the artificial grass.
5. You will still need to maintain it
Whilst artificial grass does have significantly less maintenance than a real lawn, you will still need to care for it, especially if you want it to stay looking perfect for many years to come. Keeping your lawn free of contamination is also of huge importance, as foreign matters won’t necessarily wash off naturally.
6. Drainage issues
Drainage problems are some of the worst issues when it comes to installation of artificial grass. A poor draining lawn will collect water in all the wrong places and lead to puddles. If not sorted early, you are looking at a future issue that will cost you a lot of money.
A good, solid sub base will make sure drainage is not a problem. It will hold everything together. This will also stop your grass from sinking and prevent all other problems that come with it.
7. Lifting Edges
If the artificial grass is not installed properly, or the edging detail is not secured, a problem can occur where the edges of the grass start to lift. Not only will this ruin the appearance of your lawn, but it will also create a trip hazard.
Ensure the installers use sturdy fixings and edging details that are guaranteed to last to secure the edges of your new lawn. Installing ramped edging strips will ensure a smooth transition from the edge onto the artificial area.
8. Materials used
It’s no secret that artificial grass is made from plastic. However, the environmental impact of artificial grass is still up for debate.
Do your research! Look into how environmentally friendly artificial grass is (or isn’t), read lots of sources, and make the decision for yourself.
9. Visible joint lines
Aesthetics is one of the reasons why people choose fake grass in the first place. A line on a joint that runs all across the turf is the last thing you would want to see. Joint lines are caused by light bouncing off the grass blades that are pushed together. Trying to fix this error at a later stage is often very costly.
Use a reputable installer that has got numerous years of experience! You want to make sure that the people who install your new artificial grass knows what they’re doing. It’s also a good idea to go with someone that has an Installation guarantee, so that if something does go wrong, it’ll be fixed.
10. Limited or no Warranty/Guarantee
Less expereinced companies will have limited warranties or guarantees, and in some cases may not have anything in place at all. If you have a problem with your artificial grass, having no warranty or guarantee to fall back on could cost you a lot of money!
Go for an experienced seller, who has long guarantees and warranties on their grass and installation process. Buying from local companies that offer a no quibble guarantee is often a better idea than buying from a big corporate company, who may take weeks of phone calls to get the problem solved.
Not all artificial grass is created equal, and this is probably the most important factor to consider when weighing up the pros and cons of artificial grass. Choosing the right grass for you should be the number one priority. Then, once it’s installed you want to get outside and enjoy it! The problems with artificial grass we’ve listed above all have solutions, so as long as those solutions are kept in mind, you’ll be able to fully appreciate your fabulous new artificial lawn for many years to come.