Our guide on how to lay artificial grass gives you the knowledge required to DIY your fake lawn. Installation can be challenging, but if you’re fully prepared and have the correct equipment, then the process should be relatively simple.
How to lay artificial grass to replace an existing lawn
- Before starting, plan out the area to cover. Ensure that cables and water pipes are below the digging depth. We also recommend that you allow at least 5cm excess for your borders. (i.e. if the grass you order is 4m x 6m make the borders 3.95m x 5.95m to allow a margin for error)
- Remove existing turf and excavate to a depth of around 6 inches using a turf cutter and digging equipment. Once finished, wacker-plate the area until it’s nice and compacted.
- If there are no perimeters for the product to butt up against, you can use treated timber to create a frame. Knock the edging into the soil with a hammer and piece of wood: leave around 3cm exposed. Providing an edge to butt up against allows you to hide the edges of the backing.
- The key to a great lawn is a solid foundation! Once the turf is removed, remove any large stones, bricks, or other obstructions. Infill approx 4inches of hardcore/aggregate to provide a solid but porous base layer. Wacker-plate until level. Fill the remaining couple of inches with granite dust or sharp sand so it’s comfortable under foot. Use a piece of timber to drag the sand or dust across the application area to provide a smooth surface.
- Once the base is compacted, apply ;weed membrane to the area. This will prevent weed growth whilst allowing water drainage. Trim off any waste membrane from the edges. If any joining is needed, overlap the edges then attach them with gaffer tape. (n.b. if you have pets or animals that will be using the lawn to ‘do their business’ then we recommend putting the membrane before the hardcore to avoid it soaking up odours)
- Unroll the artificial turf; over the area, being careful to not move the weed membrane. If you are using Fylde Grass to replace a lawn, running the product toward the house will give the best look from the windows of the house.
- Prize apart the pile of the grass to expose the black backing of the grass and punch at least 4 inch long, galvanised (!) nails through to the foundation. Pin it approximately every 30cm round the perimeter. It is also common to use a treated-timber perimeter bedded into the base to screw the edges into.
How to lay artificial grass on a hard surface
- Thoroughly clean the surface you plan to install the artificial grass on. The area needs to be free of dust, grease and grime to allow the adhesive to properly cure.
- Like any artificial grass install, it is recommended you unroll the turf and allow it a minimum of an hour to settle. This is due to it being flattened after being tightly rolled up in storage.
- Once your decking is clean you can begin fitting any weed membrane or underlay that needs installing. If joining multiple strips of membrane is required, ensure there is an overlap of at least 10cm when the two strips meet. If you are using underlay ensure it is completely flat by walking around the area and allowing it time to settle before adding the artificial grass.
- Once your artificial grass has settled you can begin trimming it to size and fixing it in place. Using our specially formulated Aquabond adhesive, begin applying the glue round the perimeter of the backing of the grass in a zig-zag pattern as close to the edge as you can. Once you’ve applied the adhesive, position the grass how you’d like it then wait 2-3 hours for the adhesive to cure. It is at this point you want to be pulling the piece (or pieces) taut to ensure there are no creases or trapped air. nb. It is worth noting that some artificial grass has a grain or “pile direction”. This affects its appearance from different angles and should be considered when positioning the grass on the area. It’s generally best to point the pile towards the main viewing area.
- After the grass has set in place it’s worth brushing the pile up against the grain with a stiff bristled brush.
How to lay artificial grass that requires joining
1. If a join in the turf is required, butt both of the surfaces together ensuring the pile is running in the same direction. Fold back approximately 30-40cm on each side along the length of the join. Trim approximately 20-30mm from each edge cutting between tufts.
2. Unroll join tape shiny side down, along the entire length of the join, ensuring that the tape is centred with equal tape on both sides. Apply the adhesive along each edge of the backing of the surface in 2 lines (approximately 10mm and 40mm into the back). Fold one side of the artificial turf onto the join tape. Then slowly fold over the other side of the join, working to ensure that none of the grass is crushed under the join. A gap of 2-3mm between the sections generally gives the best results. Once joined, laying weighted planks along the join is a good idea to ensure an invisible joint.
3. Allow 2-3 hours for the adhesive to cure. After this apply kiln sand to the turf. This can be done using a blower and stiff brush or a lawn fertiliser spreader. We recommend 6-8kg’s of sand per square metre or product. This step is vital to ensure the most natural looking synthetic turf. For the best results we recommend brushing the pile before, during and after. This sand dressing should be done on a dry day and the same day as lawn installation.