Artificial Grass installation in Carlisle
Read our Artificial grass installation guide to learn more about what we do.
The key to a good artificial lawn is a free-draining and smooth bed. To achieve this we strip away the top 100mm of soil or turf and place a permeable geotextile on the prepared subgrade. It’s important to remove the turf and root system to prevent grow back, if it can’t be removed it should be sprayed in advance. It’s good practice to smooth the subgrade as much as possible to minimise settlement later on. A mini digger and laser level make this task easier.
The area is backfilled with subbase and well compacted using a plate compactor. The subbase provides a stable and free-draining base for the lawn. The most common reason for fitting an artificial lawn is the old lawn was boggy, a subbase foundation helps overcome any issues with drainage further on. I have seen companies suggest that stripping the old turf away is enough prep and a dusting of sand sufficient…perhaps that’s the case in some areas of the country but Carlisle has heavy soil with a clay subsoil and drainage is generally pretty poor.
The finish layer is 25mm of course grit sand, this is compacted and screed bars set in to follow the profile final profile. The area is smoothed using a long wooden batten and the sections of carpet laid out over the prepared bed.
Moving the entire roll of grass isn’t easy, cut it into the lengths you need and move those to the work area. A carpet trolley is a great help but you can improvise and use a length of timber or pole inside the roll of grass to help pick it up.
On larger artificial grass installations it’s often necessary to join one or more strips of the carpet together, it’s also good practice to fix the grass down using adhesive bonded to a perimeter concrete strip. Wooden battens can be used but are not as durable.
Any joins need to be carefully aligned. It’s important to note that the nap of the carpet has to be matched, perpendicular or reversed joints will be visible and consideration given to the final layout to minimise unusable offcuts.
The carpet should be allowed to settle for a while to allow it to relax because the carpet will have been rolled up since manufacture. This is a good time for a cup of tea!
Glue the join
The joint itself is created by gluing a strip of geotextile across the underside of the two sections of carpet. The edges of the two pieces of grass are folded back then mixed adhesive is spread along the joining tape/textile using a toothed trowel or glue box. The join is created by carefully folding the carpet edges back down working along the length of the join. Press the join down with a flat object to ensure the glue takes hold. Sometimes is necessary to weigh the lawn down to prevent wind lifting the carpet while the join sticks. You can weigh the joint down too if you like but if you spread the glue correctly it should be fine.
Some manufacturers sell joining tape and tubes of glue, its fine to use but joining large areas is this way is costly. We use a two-part polyurethane special designed for the job that can be bought in bulk. Geotextile is much cheaper than the joining tape, does a better job and if you’re a contractor chances are you’ll have some onsite from the subgrade prep.
Once all the pieces are joined and cured the entire carpet needs to be trimmed to fit the area, it’s easier to cut the reverse of the carpet than the pile use a utility knife and take your time. Curves can be cut from the top side of the grass with care, an extra long blade is useful. When you’re happy with the perimeter cuts peel back the edge and prepare the concrete strip with adhesive. Work along the perimeter lowering the carpet down as you go. It’s a good idea to weight the edge down with bricks or blocks until the glue has set.
When you’re happy that the glue is fully set (leave it overnight if you’re not sure) the nap can be brushed brushed up using a power broom or a stiff brush. Some installations call for an application of top dressing such as sand or rubber chips, this is only really needed for sports pitches or areas of heavy traffic but each job is different. The main disadvantage of using a top dressing is that the sand or rubber will migrate about and can be trafficked back into the house by children and pets. If the lawn is purely decorative and is fixed down correctly it’s ok to give it a miss.
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Frequently asked questions
Is artificial grass suitable for pets? Yes the grass is non-toxic. It’s also very resiliant and easy to keep clean and you won’t get the muddy paws you get from a natural lawn.
Will weeds grow through it? No, stripping the old lawn away and placingthe memebrane beneath the subbase will eliminate the possibilty of weeds growing through the lawn.
How do I keep the lawn it clean? The lawn will need very little cleaning, it can be brushed to remove leaf litter and debris. We offer an anual maintenance package and can powerbroom the lawn to keep it looking great.
If my dog does his business on the lawn will it smell? If you install the lawn correctly and design it for pets then it will be fine, the grass carpet is porous and rainwater will rinse the lawn.