Everything You Need To Know About Artificial Lawn Maintenance

Artificial grass is a gorgeous way to easily beautify your landscaping.  Beyond being eco-friendly and cost-effective, artificial grass lawns are incredibly low maintenance.  There’s no watering, no mowing, no weeding, no reseeding, and no toxic fertilizers.  You will never again have to spend your precious weekends maintaining your lawn.  Instead,
just a quick sprucing up here and there and your artificial lawn will stay in great condition for years.  So whether you live in a low-water area and want the look and feel of a grass lawn without the cost or simply want to say goodbye to your lawn mower forever, artificial grass is the perfect solution for you.

Even though artificial lawns are far less maintenance than real grass, there are still some things you will do to keep your new artificial lawn looking new and feeling great.  So once you’ve had one of our luxurious artificial lawns installed by our helpful, friendly professionals, here is how you can protect your investment and enjoy your new lawn for years to come:

Required Maintenance On Artificial Lawns

The amount of maintenance you will have to do on your artificial lawn depends on your circumstances.   If you live in an area with a lot of dust, a lot of rain, or high pollen counts, or if you have children, pets, or a lot of other landscaping like trees, shrubbery, or flowers, you will have more maintenance than if you do not.  You may also have more maintenance if you use your yard more often for leisure, entertaining, or simply as an outdoor living space.  So the amount of maintenance that is required for your artificial lawn depends entirely on your environment and how often you use your outdoor area.

Monthly Maintenance Schedule

If you are fortunate enough to live in an area where the environmental factors and your family’s situation do cause a lot of mess, you can easily maintain your artificial yard on a monthly schedule.  Here are the simple things you can do once a month to keep your artificial grass clean and looking great:

  • Groom your grass by sweeping it against the grain with a broom, stiff brush, or rake. This will remove any debris, prevents matting, and also keeps your grass blades straight and upright.  You can also groom your grass with a leaf blower for even easier maintenance.
  • Rinse your grass off with the hose. Rinsing your grass cleans any dust, pollen, and stains off and keeps it looking fresh.
  • Spot clean any areas where there have been spills.

Weekly Maintenance Schedule

If you use your yard more often or you live in an environment that creates more debris and dirt, you may want to also incorporate a weekly maintenance schedule into your care routine.  Weekly maintenance schedules should be done in tandem with a monthly schedule to keep your yard in top condition.  You may also consider switching to a weekly during Spring and Autumn when there is more lawn debris.  Here is our simple weekly maintenance schedule:

  • Briefly hose down your yard to remove any dirt.
  • Check for areas that have become matted like high traffic areas, where you have patio furniture, or where your children or pets have been playing. Groom those areas with a broom, stiff brush, or rake.
  • Spot clean any areas where there have been spills, stains, or pieces of debris.

Spot Cleaning Tips

If you keep a routine monthly or weekly schedule, your yard will stay in good condition.  However, there are times when there are more difficult spills and stains that may appear during use.  So here is our guide on how to clean and remove any of these stains:

Pet Waste:

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Artificial lawns are very pet friendly and can actually be better for pet owners because they are easier to clean and maintain.  They will also not wear down as quickly in areas like dog runs as grass.  Removing pet waste is simple.  To remove solid waste simply pick it up with a doggy bag.  To remove urine stains, hose down the area that your pet uses once a week.  If you notice after time, your pet area has started to develop an odour, you can wash it with a solution of white vinegar and water mixed in equal parts or an enzymic neutralizing cleaner found at a pet store.
Another important tip if you have pets is when you have your artificial lawn installed, let us know.  We have a variety of solutions for pet areas that can help reduce the maintenance and the odour like adding a membrane between the base and the turf layers that will improve circulation or the addition of turf deodorizer in the infill.  These easy additions will help prevent your yard from developing unnecessary pet odours.

Food And Beverage Spills:

If you have an outdoor kitchen or enjoy hosting barbecues, you may find yourself with food or beverage stains on your lawn.  Artificial grass is very stain resistant, however sometimes food spills will leave a nasty residue that needs a little extra care.  So if you’ve spilled food or drinks on your lawn, a little elbow grease with a mild cleaner will take care of the stain right away.  First you want to remove any solid material from the surface with a plastic spatula or cutlery.  If it is a drink spill, you’ll want to soak up the excess liquid with a towel.  Then rinse the area with your hose.  If that doesn’t remove the stain, you can scrub it with a mixture of a mild household cleaner like a delicate fabric detergent, a low-sud dish liquid, or an eco-friendly cleaner and warm water.  Then rinse the cleaned area with water.  Once the area has dried, you can groom it with a stiff brush to keep the fibres in good condition.

Remember when removing stains you never want to use a corrosive chemical cleaner.  Cleaners containing chlorine bleach or caustic cleaners with a PH above 9 or acidic cleaners with a PH below 5 can erode the grass blades and fade the colouring.  Plus these cleaners are very bad for the environment.  So just remember to only use natural, mild cleaning solutions to clean food and beverage stains.

Tree Sap:

Since your lawn is outdoors, it will be exposed to plant materials like tree sap.  Tree sap is very sticky and hard to clean with just water.  So if you have gotten tree sap on your lawn, place ice on the affected area until the sap freeze.  Then you can carefully chip off the sap with a plastic knife or spatula.  Once most of the sap is removed, you can scrub the area with a mild cleanser to remove the last bits of sap.  Then rinse the area with a hose and groom the fibres with a stiff bristle brush.

This stain removal method also works for other sticky stains like sugary foods, melted candy, and chewing gum.  If the stain is really difficult you can also use dry ice or an aerosol refrigerant to help freeze the material quicker.

Oil Paints Or Stains:

If you paint your home or are re-staining your patio or deck, you may have a spill or get drips of oil paint or stain on your lawn.  These stains are pretty difficult to remove from artificial grass, so you may need expert help.  However, before calling in one of our experts you can try to remedy the spill yourself.  First blot any excess liquid with a towel, be careful not to wipe the liquid because you may inadvertently spread it over a larger area.  Then use a foaming carpet cleaning detergent to spot clean the stain.  Apply the detergent as directed, making sure it sits for a decent length of time.  Then blot the area to see the detergent has started to remove the stain.  If it has, you can then rinse the area and groom the fibres.  You may need to reapply a few times to fully remove the stain.

If you cannot remove the stain, you will need to call one of our experts to help.  Depending on the chemical makeup of the paint or stain, we can find exactly the right cleaner that will remove it.  If it cannot be remove we can always patch the damaged area so it blends in nicely with the rest of your lawn.

Motor Oil Or Grease:

If you have artificial grass around your shed or garage, you may end up finding yourself with a motor oil or grease stain.  To remove these stains you will need to use mineral spirits.  Start by blotting up any extra liquid with a towel.  You want to be extra careful when blotting up the excess not to push it further into your lawn or spread it to a larger area.  Once you have removed the excess oil or grease, apply the mineral spirits with a cloth or sponge.  Clean the area thoroughly and wipe up any residual mineral spirits.  Then rinse the area with a hose.  Once dry, groom the grass blades with a stiff brush.  Grooming is especially important in areas that have been impacted by oil and grease because the oil can weigh the grass down, keeping it from standing upright.

This solution also works great for other oil-based stains like candle wax, cooking oil, and crayons.  However, if you are working on your vehicle or your lawn equipment on your artificial grass, it’s much easier to lay down a tarp to catch any spills than it is to clean up the stains later.

Bacteria And Mould:

It is extremely rare to find bacteria grow on your lawn.  Between the hot sun and the lack of food, most bacteria is killed before it can grow.  However, in some areas like pet runs or where food is cooked, you may be worried about bacteria growth.  Bacteria is extremely easy to remove from artificial lawns and simply requires mixing a one to one part solution of white vinegar and water.  Spray the affected area with the mixture, then rinse with a hose.  Once dry, groom the area so the fibres stay in good condition.

Mould on the other hand is more likely to grow on artificial grass, especially in shaded areas.  If you have found staining that you think may be mould, don’t worry.  Like bacteria, it is very easy to remove.  Apply hydrogen peroxide to the affected area with a sponge, then thoroughly rinse with water immediately.  If hydrogen peroxide sits too long on the area, it may lead to discoloration, but it is the quickest way to permanent treat and kill mould.  After the area dries, you will want to groom the fibres so they stay in good condition.

However, most highly-quality artificial lawns are installed with an antimicrobial acrylic-coated infill, so it is rare that there are ever bacteria or mould growths.  Plus if you are diligent about your routine maintenance, bacteria and mould will never even have the chance to grow.

Recommended Spot Cleaning Solutions

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For all other stains, you’ll want to use a light detergent to clean the affected area.  Since so many household cleaners are corrosive, you will need to exercise caution about what you use on your artificial lawn so you do not damage it.  Here are some cleaners that we recommend when spot cleaning your lawn:

  • Plant based cleaners that are safe for the environment and your lawn such as Simple Green, Resparkle, or Seventh Generation
  • Mild laundry detergents designed for washing delicates
  • Low-sud dish soap, natural soap, or washing powder
  • Natural cleaning agents like baking soda and white vinegar
  • Mineral spirits or perchlorethylene (dry cleaning solution)
  • Eco-friendly, mild carpet cleaners
  • Bio-enzymatic cleaners like pet stain removers
  • Cleaners designed specifically for artificial grass like Turfresh or Turf Renu

Burn Prevention

Beyond spills and stains, your artificial lawn can be damaged by burns.  Burns can happen when your lawn has been exposed directly to fire.  Cigarettes, grills, fire pots, candles, and fireworks, can all lead to burns.  So to prevent these, simply make sure that you keep fire sources away from you artificial grass.  Do not allow smoking or lighting off fireworks in your yard.  Then anywhere you have a fire sources like a grill, fire pit, or even citronella candles or torches, make sure they are on large paved patio surfaces, that way any sparks or embers from the flame do not land on your grass causing a burn.  Fortunately though, if ever you do have a burn issue from a dropped coal or cigarette, the area can be removed and easily patched by a professional installer.

As you can see, artificial grass maintenance is a snap.  With proper installation, stain removal techniques, and just a simple monthly or weekly maintenance schedule, you can keep your artificial lawn in top condition.  Also, if you want to be extra diligent and really protect your investment, you can always schedule a professional cleaning.  So rather than spend your weekends mowing, exposing yourself harsh chemical fertilizers, and spending thousands of dollars on watering to maintain your grass, have an easy-to-maintain, pristine artificial lawn installed.  That way you can spend your free time enjoying your yard, relaxing, and spending time with your loved ones.