The saying goes “preparation is half the victory.” You want your artificial turf placing to be successful, right? Right! That’s why we’re giving you a step-by-step guide on how to prepare your home for easy artificial grass installation.
Think of it as a recipe. Before you start, you need to have all your ingredients ready in front of you because this saves you the trouble from finding out you need milk and realizing you don’t have any. It also gives you a chance to write a grocery list so you can shop for everything before you start. Trust us, you’ll be thankful for the time you save by having everything on hand.
We understand your time is precious, so we want to make sure your turf installation is a breeze. Ready to find out how easy it is to lay artificial grass?
Preparing the artificial grass for soil and dirt surfaces
Pro Tip: Before digging out your soil or dirt, plan on where to put or dispose of it.
1. Weed Killer
3. Hand Tamper / Plank and Hammer (optional)
This can be used to compact your base.
4. Turf Cutter
There are available materials in the market that can cut and dig your soil out in a cinch! Check out your local hardware. Try them out for yourself. Find one you’re comfortable using.
5. Gopher wire (with u-shaped staples, wire cutters)
If your area is a go-to place for gophers, moles, or voles, you shouldn’t ignore this extra precaution. But even if they don’t frequent your place, a gopher wire is a great defense for unwanted visitors.
6. Weed membrane/weed matting/weed barrier
Depending on where you are located, weeds may still persist despite having artificial turf. If you live in an area where weeds grow uncontrollably, weed membrane can help lessen their presence in your lawn. However, if weed only grows occasionally in your place, you’ll be fine without it. As long as you properly kill them from the roots before installation.
Artificial turf is not prone to weed infestations. But it could be a problem if left alone to scatter and grow. They’re likely to sneak up on you if leaves and other garden debris clog your turf’s drainage. So to avoid them, it’s good practice to regularly rake and brush your synthetic turf.
Pro Tip: Install a weed membrane twice. Over and under your base, for security against weeds.
Pro Tip: We don't advise using weed membrane if the turf will be pooped and peed on by your fur baby. because membrane or matting can soak up your pet’s urine or diluted poop and the smell might linger leaving you with stinky turf.
1. Check for underground hazards
Water pipes and electric lines may be found under the surface of your desired installation area. Cover sprinklers at the pipe level or remove them if you don’t need them anymore. Add required drainage pipes for easy water clear out. Mark the location of unused sprinklers to avoid uneven surfaces.
Protect your electric wires by moving them away from the perimeter by six to eight inches. Keep them out of the way so they won’t be damaged when you secure the turf edges. Lay them on the top of the subgrade (crushed rock) surface with u-nails later on.
Procedure for installing artificial grass on soil/dirt surface:
1. Get rid of weeds
Weeds shouldn’t ruin your newly installed artificial lawn. Nor should weeds ruin your lawn years later. The first thing you do before installing your grass is to kill grassroots and weeds.
Spray the area with a trusted non-toxic weed killer and spray at least two weeks before your desired installation date. Weed killers need ample time to work. Thoroughly fill your place with weed killers to make sure there’ll be no sign of life on your lawn.
Double check to see if there are any vegetation left because they could make lumps or pierce your artificial grass if they grow from underneath. They can create dangerous uneven spaces for your family and pets. Pro tip: When excavating wet soil, let it dry for a few days. Drying it will minimize slumping.
Pro Tip: When excavating wet soil, let it dry for a few days. Drying it will minimize slumping.
2. Remove the top layer of your soil
To make room for your new base, dig the top layer by three to four inches. Then walk over the area or use a hand tamp to apply pressure to loose soil
Pro Tip: If you don’t have a hand tamp, use a plank and hammer on it!
3. Plan your drainage
If you’re installing artificial grass atop well-draining soil, you’ll have little to no problems. This is because synthetic grass drains great. If on top of poorly draining soil, install an efficient drainage system. If your location experiences very light rain, drainage gaps every six inches around the perimeter should be enough.
Pro Tip: Drainage is the most important thing you have to take into account when it comes to artificial grass. Poorly draining artificial grass is the worst!
4. Install a bender board
Map out the perimeter so you have a clean line to separate your turf area from the other components in your lawn. Fence it as a guide so your turf won’t crawl out of its designated space.
Pro Tip: The height of your boundaries must be shorter than your grass. Otherwise, it could be a drainage problem. For example, if your grass ends in concrete pavement, the concrete should not be taller than the grass. The water won’t have anywhere to go. It will remain trapped underneath grass rather than flowing to waterways.
5. Place your Gopher Wire
Roll your gopher wire out on the installation area little by little. Secure the laid parts by putting u-shaped staples on every few feet so it doesn’t move over time. After fully unrolling, use a wire cutter to trim it down to size.
If one roll of wire is not enough, lay more down. Overlap the mesh by at least 6 inches and secure them together. There shouldn’t be any gaps so rodents won’t be able to dig up your upper layers.
6. Add your weed barrier
The weed barrier is the perfect addition to your project because his extra step lessens the likelihood of having weeds poking through your synthetic turf. It’s an investment that won’t break the bank to include in your installation. Aside from weed, the barrier can also help deter gophers and earthworms.
Layout a geotextile layer at the bottom of the dug-up area. Before the artificial grass base material. This barrier is a bit heavy, though. You may need extra hands for help.
Pro Tip: You can add another weed barrier after laying your artificial grass subbase material.
Preparing the artificial grass area for concrete surfaces
Not all concrete can be used as a base for installing artificial grass. It has to be a solid foundation. If there are large cracks causing loose and edged pieces, it’s likely your grass won’t be installed properly. If this is the case, it’s better to break your concrete and follow the installation procedure for grass and dirt. Surfaces which are not leveled will be a future hazard.
However, you can use self-leveling compounds to fix minor cracks. If the surface is stable and flat, then it’ll be okay to have artificial grass installed. Ensure proper drainage when it comes to concrete surfaces because mold and mildew can come from water settling.
- Hose and Water
- Free Drainage foam/shock pad
- Artificial Grass Glue
- Gaffer Tape
- Masking Tape
- Self Leveling Compound (optional) - This can be used for uneven surfaces.
1. Clean existing concrete
During this step, hose your area thoroughly. Check to see if there are puddles that form. If there are, drill drainage holes. Use a 16mm bit for drilling holes and fill them with 10mm shingle to prevent puddles when it rains.
Check uneven surfaces. If they aren’t too uneven and can be fixed, use the self-leveling compound. Follow the instructions on the packaging.
2. Install free drainage foam/shock pad
Cover your entire area with foam/shock pads. Because concrete is a hard surface, you’ll need the foam/shock pads for support in case anyone falls on the surface. If there are different sections of foam or shock pads (as opposed to a whole roll) join them together with gaffer tape. Lift it to one side so you can easily spread the glue.
Mix the glue and hardener. Apply it directly to your surface and scatter. Use about 2-3mm of glue to make sure everything sticks. Work quickly because the glue hardens fast.
Note: If there are no drainage holes, leave gaps in your glue so that the water can run down to the concrete.
Preparing the artificial grass area for balconies and other hard surfaces
- Artificial Grass
- Measuring Tape
1. Measure your area
Use a measuring tape to size up your area
2. Get your grass
Purchase artificial grass the size of your balcony plus a few inches on every side. It’s better to be safe having too much, than not having enough.
3. Clean the area thoroughly before installing
Sweep debris off. Mop the floor with water and anti-bacterial cleaners or bleach to ensure that it’s spick and span.
4. Plan your drainage
Ensure that you have drainage if your artificial grass is too heavy to clean elsewhere. If your balcony is only a small space, you can wash the grass inside and hang it out to dry.
Check out our blogs for more turf on balcony inspiration!
Artificial grass is a flexible carpet of greenery. Like all carpets, it works well with solid and sturdy surfaces. We strongly advise against laying them down on soft areas like sand. Imagine how problematic it is having to walk on a holed carpet with sand underneath. And if your surface is grassy, it is advised to dig out your grass and use the procedure for soil and dirt.
Infills and other accessories.
Toward the end of your installation process, you will need infill because it will keep your grass standing upright. Infill is usually made from the ground up stones or volcanic ash. You can find more options at the MegaGrass shop.
Accessories mentioned above and other tools are also available in the shop.
To find out how to install the best sub-base for artificial grass and what sub-base to use for artificial grass, check out “Installing The Base for Artificial Grass.” This also includes artificial grass installation tips for your turf sub base. You’re on your way to installing the best base for turf, and we’ll be right here to guide you through it all!
Why choose MegaGrass?
MegaGrass is Safe. It’s a Non-toxic. Convenient. Inexpensive.
Freshly-trimmed looking grass all the time.
It doesn’t need lawn care, mowing, or watering
It’s gorgeous every day of the year
Eco-friendly, kid-friendly, and pet-friendly grass that’s a cut above the rest
MegaGrass is The Grass of the Future
And it’s here now.