If you’re looking for an alternative to natural grass, synthetic turf is a great option. Not only does it offer a lower-maintenance option for residential lawns and commercial settings, but it also adds a unique look with its synthetic grass blades that resemble the real thing. But what materials exactly go under artificial turf?
We will explain this in detail, so you’ll know exactly what you’re getting into with this versatile option.
Artificial turf is primarily composed of a base material, infill material, and the turf blades. The base material is the foundation of the overall installation and the infill runs between the blades of turf, helping to keep the artificial grass upright and stable.
This infill can be made out of different materials such as sand, rubber, or another type of organic material. The turf blades are designed to replicate natural grass as closely as possible and they come in various sizes and colors.
All of these components are layered on top of each other and then fastened securely in place to create a high quality surface that looks and feels just like the real thing.
What Is Under Artificial Turf
Many individuals may not be familiar with the complex construction of artificial turf. Each layer, from the foundational base to the soft synthetic fibers on top, is carefully crafted from both natural and synthetic components to create a functional and safe playing surface.
While these components vary from one artificial turf field to the next, the overall goal is to create a safe and resilient playing surface that retains its functional capabilities in any environment or weather.
With an understanding of the vital components that build up the makeup of an artificial turf field, people can better appreciate why modern artificial turfs have come so far in performance and reliability.
Base of Artificial Turf
The foundation of any synthetic turf system is the sub-base, often referred to as the ‘base’ of the artificial turf. It is a critical component in ensuring the long-term performance and durability of the turf system and should be given careful consideration when installing artificial turf.
In order to maximize the benefits of the sub-base, it should be constructed from quality materials that provide a firm and level surface to support the turf’s infill, help with water drainage and provide stability to the entire system.
By building a strong and reliable sub-base, homeowners and commercial businesses alike can enjoy the look and feel of natural grass with all the advantages of synthetic turf.
If the base is not installed properly, the turf structure might fall apart.
Contrary to popular belief, artificial turf doesn’t require soil or dirt as a base. Instead, you can lay the turf directly onto an existing paved surface, such as concrete or asphalt.
This is in fact much easier and faster to install than traditional turf, as you don’t need to prepare the ground prior to laying it down. Since the turf is supported by the existing flat, hard surface, it provides a beautiful, even, and durable layer to your outdoor space.
And, unlike soil-based turf, which can be messy and require frequent watering, artificial turf does not require watering at all.
So, if you’re looking for an easy, low maintenance option for your outdoor space, then artificial turf laid directly on a paved surface might be the perfect solution for you.
- Pool areas
Placing the turf indoors is a great option, but if you’re looking to place it outdoors, you’ll need to take extra steps to ensure that it’s secure.
This includes installing a stable sub-base beneath the turf, one that will help provide a supportive foundation for the turf and protect it from shifting weather and potential erosion.
This sub-base will also prevent weeds from sprouting up through the turf, leaving you with a pristinely lush lawn that’s beautiful to look at and comfortable to walk on.
Purpose of Base for Turf
The base of artificial turf serves several important purposes:
- Increases the life of your artificial turf
- It strengthens the turf
- Allows it to bear the load of foot traffic and any other items that are placed on top of it
Intrinsic properties of soil cause it to contract and expand in response to varying temperatures and climates.
Proper installation of the sub-base is essential for a great playing surface. If it’s not done correctly, you may experience a number of problems such as water accumulation, wrinkles, and gaps in your turf.
These could not only be aesthetically displeasing but also result in an uneven surface with dangerous dips that can cause serious accidents. The base layer ensures adequate structural support for the synthetic grass, allowing it to maintain its shape no matter the conditions.
Ultimately, by ensuring a proper fit, you can ensure that your synthetic turf provides an even playing surface for sports and recreational activities to be enjoyed safely and worry-free.
Weed Fabric / Barrier
Before you lay the sub-base for your artificial turf, it is essential that you properly excavate the selected site. Not only does this ensure a safer and more secure installation process, it also gives you an opportunity to check for any underlying debris or vegetation that need to be removed.
Excavation needs to be done carefully, as it ensures the area is level and even before laying the final layer of turf. This allows for the maximum benefit of the turf to be achieved, as it can evenly spread over the entire area.
Proper excavation may help prevent any issues such as drainage problems from occurring in the future. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you take the time to fully excavate the area prior to laying your new turf.
However, if you didn’t do enough excavation, or there is contamination in your sub-base, it may result in an outgrowth of weeds from between the drainage pores on the turf surface.
To protect your garden from pesky weeds and keep it looking its best, a weed barrier is the ideal solution. This barrier helps to discourage the growth of weeds and keeps your garden looking clean and well-maintained for longer.
Installing a weed barrier can help reduce the cost of garden maintenance and save you time by preventing the need for regular weeding.
A weed barrier can help improve the health of your plants by blocking out unwanted weeds that could otherwise compete with them for water and nutrients. Investing in a weed barrier is a wise decision to ensure that your garden looks its best all year round.
Why Use Weed Barrier Under Artificial Turf?
Installing a weed barrier or weed membrane is the best way to keep weeds at bay and maintain the perfect aesthetic of your artificial lawn.
Placing it beneath the sub-base material is the most effective method, however, if desired, it can be laid atop the drainage layer – such as granite dust – and still provide excellent weed protection.
Depending on the size of the project, more than one membrane may be necessary to cover the entire area. With proper installation, your artificial lawn will remain looking great for years to come!
The turf has excellent structural stability and resilience due to the presence of the membrane.
The modern weed barriers are especially designed to be well-perforated, which allows for the smooth passage of water and other essential fluids.
This ensures that your lawn is kept healthy and nourished, avoiding any kind of blockage that could lead to harm.
The membrane also acts as a barrier to the growth of unwanted and dangerous weeds, leaving the turf free from damage and potential contamination.
Pet owners may be concerned about draining waste fluids from their artificial turf, but this feature can be incredibly helpful!
It eliminates the need to frequently empty the liquid tank and helps keep yard cleanliness in check.
Furthermore, it allows pet owners to rest assured that the liquid will safely be drained away rather than sitting on the grass and potentially causing health risks or other issues.
This feature can also help preserve artificial turf as it is designed to quickly and effectively drain away waste and therefore reduce the wear and tear on the grass.
Ultimately, this can lead to a longer life for the turf and greater satisfaction for the pet owners.
Overall, this feature is an invaluable addition for those worried about the drainage of waste fluids from their artificial turf.
Stones or Crushed Rocks
Gravel is an essential component of any synthetic turf system’s sub-base.
Made up of a blend of crushed stones, rocks, and granular sediment materials, gravel helps to protect artificial grass fibers from tearing and shifting.
It also serves as a shock-absorbing layer, providing structural support and stability for the artificial turf.
Depending on the application, gravel can be used in varying sizes and amounts to create a strong foundation for the artificial grass.
Typically, the gravel materials used in the preparation of the sub-base include:
- Crushed granite
- Other aggregates
The size of the stones used in compaction should be in the range of three-eights to three-fourths of an inch.
This is because larger stones can lead to a lumpy, uneven surface, and may not hold the soil in place effectively.
On the other hand, smaller stones may not give enough stability to the soil to support the grass’s root system.
With stones in the right size range, the grass is able to stay flat, making it easier to walk on and aesthetically pleasing.
It leads to better air exchange between the soil and atmosphere that is essential for the health and growth of the grass.
Why Use Stones Under Artificial Turf?
Using stones and crushed rocks, such as gravel, not only serves the purpose of providing a permeable yet compact sub-base, but it also helps keep the turf’s drainage field intact.
This ensures that any fluid or water trickling down from the surface is not hindered, while also preserving the structural integrity of the turf.
Furthermore, this prevents the ground from becoming overly saturated, which can cause serious damage to the turf and its roots.
Therefore, having a well-functioning drainage network is essential for long-term stability and resilience.
Filler Material Like Limestone and Granite
Let’s start with the basics: what is filler material?
Filler material is commonly used in home construction, landscaping, and industrial applications.
It is a type of rock material that is used to fill in cracks, crevices, and other gaps.
It can be made from a variety of materials including limestone, granite, and more.
Now, let’s discuss these two materials more specifically as we break down their individual properties and uses.
Limestone is a sedimentary rock composed of calcium carbonate.
It is tough, dense, and durable, making it ideal for construction projects such as driveways and pathways.
Granite, on the other hand, is an igneous rock formed from cooled magma and is composed of quartz, feldspar, and mica.
Its strength, durability, and flexibility make it a great choice for countertops, floors, and other tiling projects.
Both limestone and granite can be used to create beautiful spaces that will stand the test of time.
What is Filler for Artificial Turf?
To ensure a strong, secure and stable turf structure, the process of sub-base installation begins by using larger rocks and stones as the base.
This is then followed by the addition of finer material, known as “fines” typically in the form of limestone or granite.
However, depending on the environment and installation requirements, other fines such as silica sand or simple dust particles may be used to complement the initial substrate base.
The fines should generally be between one-fourth of an inch to finely ground, allowing for perfect stability and a smooth surface finish.
Why Use Filler Material Under Artificial Turf?
Filler material, also known as infill, plays an essential role in the successful installation of artificial turf.
Infill is typically composed of rubber, cork, sand, or a combination of these materials and its primary purpose is to enhance the safety and performance of the artificial turf while keeping it upright and free from wrinkles.
Depending on the type of infill used, it can provide additional support to the artificial turf, allowing it to be more durable and provide a longer lasting finish.
Infill helps regulate the temperature of the artificial turf, keeping it cool even in hot weather.
Lastly, infill increases shock absorption, reducing injuries caused by falls and enhancing athletic performance.
Overall, artificial turf installation cannot be considered complete without the addition of infill.
Support Turf Fibers
The infill plays an important role in artificial turf, supporting the artificial grass blades and keeping them upright.
In this way, it is similar to the nutrients present in soil beneath real grass, helping to give the turf a more natural look and feel.
Not only is this beneficial for the turf’s aesthetic value, but its texture is softer to the touch than many other artificial turf infills.
Therefore, infill is essential in helping your artificial grass look, feel, and perform like the real thing.
Sub-base structures require a great deal of stability and longevity, which is why the use of filler materials such as limestone and granite is often essential.
Not only do these materials serve to maintain the structural integrity of the sub-base, but they also help to create an effective drainage field that allows fluids to pass through easily.
This not only helps enhance the structural stability of the base, but it also encourages better flow of water and other fluids, thus helping to prevent any flooding or seepage issues.
Rubber or Foam Padding for Hard Surfaces
If you’re looking to install artificial turf, putting a cushioning surface beneath it is an excellent idea to increase the safety and comfort of the area.
Rubber or foam padding are the most popular and cost-effective materials that can be used under artificial grass and provide excellent shock absorption benefits.
This makes them perfect for use in sports fields, residential backyards and playgrounds–places where you can ensure your kids and other people are safe from injury.
An additional bonus of using this type of padding is that it helps to prolong the life of the turf, as it is designed to reduce wear and prevent damages.
Why Use Rubber Padding Under Artificial Turf?
Installing a rubber pad underneath artificial turf has many benefits. Not only does it provide a cushioning layer, but it also helps to ensure the surface remains as flat and even as possible.
The artificial grass fibers and filler materials will naturally add some degree of padding, but a rubber pad will give an additional layer of protection, making the turf surface more plush and less harsh on impact.
Furthermore, the rubber pad will protect the underlying sub-base from damage caused by weather conditions and heavy use.
In short, investing in a rubber pad underneath your artificial turf will provide superior cushioning and durability.
To Prevent Injuries
Installing playground turf for kids is an important endeavor and adding a layer of rubber padding beneath the turf should be part of that process.
Not only will it provide cushioning and make the area safer in the event of a fall, but it can also help to prevent injuries from occurring in the first place.
It’s essential to take the necessary precautions when installing a playground turf, making sure to always include a layer of rubber padding for additional protection.
Doing so will ensure the playground turf is safe for children’s use and help to create a fun and enjoyable atmosphere for kids of all ages.
To Add Shock Absorption
Artificial sports turf can greatly benefit from the impact absorbing properties of rubber padding.
Adding this extra layer of rubber padding not only provides extra safety to athletes, but also increases the overall resilience of the turf structure.
It helps preserve the turf’s longevity and its ability to handle heavy foot traffic, allowing for more robust and reliable performance over longer periods of time.
It is an ideal solution for sports stadiums and fields that are subject to extreme weather conditions, as the padding can easily absorb the shock produced by powerful winds or heavy rains.
With its superior shock-absorbing properties, rubber padding is an excellent addition to any artificial sports turf system..
To Add Comfort
Rubber padding provides numerous advantages for residential lawns, making the turf more pleasant and comfortable to walk on. It’s softer than traditional surfaces and offers increased safety, reducing the risk of any serious injuries.
Furthermore, the rubber padding is designed to absorb the impact from high-impact activities such as running, jumping, or playing sports. This helps to keep the surface of the turf intact and prevent it from being damaged over time.
Rubber padding works to prevent excessive splashing of infill onto the turf surface. It does this by lowering the height of the fiber pile and increasing its density instead. This helps to ensure that the turf is even and level, resulting in a high-quality, aesthetically pleasing lawn.
All in all, shock pads are a highly versatile addition to any residential lawn and offer an extra layer of protection both for the turf and the people using it. From providing increased safety, to preventing damage and enhancing aesthetic appeal, they make an ideal choice for anyone planning to install a new turf lawn.
Drainage tiles are an essential component of installing artificial turf, as they provide a flow-through base for the synthetic grass blades.
The perforations within these tiles create a platform for water to drip down from the surface, ensuring that it does not pool between the artificial lawn blades.
Furthermore, having drainage tiles installed below the artificial turf allows airflow to pass through, which aids in the evaporation of moisture that has gathered at the subfloor level.
This not only keeps the area looking clean and dry but also helps prevent any unwanted growth of mold, mildew, and weeds.
When to Use Drainage Tiles
Installing drainage tiles underneath your turf is a critical component in ensuring that excessive discharges of fluids from your synthetic grass will be efficiently managed.
Without these tiles, you may experience flooding and pooling which could lead to water damage over time.
To avoid this potential issue, it is important to install the drainage tiles according to manufacturer instructions and with the appropriate preparation on the turf itself, such as a layer of pea gravel or other absorbent material.
If done correctly, this will ensure that your turf remains safe and dry even in cases of extreme moisture buildup.
For Pet Turf Projects
If you are a pet owner, the drainage tiles can be of great help in making sure that all waste fluids are properly drained away from your lawn or turf.
This helps keep it clean and sanitary, and also reduces the risk of any harmful bacteria or germs spreading throughout your outdoor spaces.
The drainage tiles can also help in maintaining lawn health as they prevent standing water which can otherwise lead to devastating damage.
With well-installed drainage tiles, you can ensure that your lawn is both clean and healthy all year round.
For Niche Projects Like Roof Turf Installation
If you are considering installing artificial turf on your rooftop, it is important to install tiles in order to make sure that moisture accumulation does not occur.
This is necessary in order to maintain the optimal aesthetic of your roof. Not only will this keep the surface of your roof safe from problems caused by moisture, but it will also ensure that the appearance of your roof remains aesthetically pleasing.
Furthermore, having tiles installed on your roof can provide additional benefits such as increasing insulation, reducing sound levels, and even helping to reduce light reflected by your roof.
In conclusion, installing tiles on top of your artificial turf is essential for protecting the roof from moisture and damage, and for providing a more attractive look.