Many consumers are seriously considering installing synthetic turf ( Fake Grass to some ) in their landscapes. The cost factor seems to not be as big an issue as in years past where paying $10.00 and up for installation of Synthetic turf was considered ridiculous. Now a-days, anything under $15.00 a square foot for installed synthetic turf is a steal of a deal.
Price should not be the only factor to consider though when deciding whether or not to go the "Fake Grass" route.
Budget -Desired Installation Location -Intended Use -Product Quality, and Installation System is very important when deciding to go synthetic.
1. Budget : If you plan on paying a few dollars ( $8.00- $10.00 a square foot for synthetic turf opposed to $10.00 to upwords to $15.00 a square foot ) for synthetic then you best do your homework on the quality and installation procedures that are going to happen at your home or business site. My suggestion is to pay a fair price for quality turf and educated installers. You can go "Cheap" and get cheap results. You can go "High End" and get funky results too so, do your home work on the installer and their past track record on turf installations.
2. Desired Location : Is this new turf going in the parkway,back yard ? special focal zone in your landscape ? The decision to install synthetic turf should be motivated by the intended use of the area where the turf is to be installed. Parkways are a great zone for synthetic as freedom to get in and out of vehicles and not worry about stomping on "Drought Tolerant" landscaping shrubs and ground covers is always welcomed. Synthetic turf in the backyard ? Really ? I would prefer natural grass for entertaining, beauty, environmental benefits and flexibility. Have you seen very many kids and for that matter, pets hanging out on a lush green synthetic lawn in the hot summer months.... I wonder why ?
3. Intended Use : Is the synthetic turf going to be used as a replacement for a extra thirsty non-functionable/useable parcel of lawn area ? A proposed pet run area ? Or, a zone where high traffic and activity such as sports are to take place ?
By figuring out the intended use of the turf, this will better assist the contractor on helping you choose the right "Variety" of synthetic turf for the area to be installed.
4. Product Quality : Most synthetic turf is composed of Polyethylene. This is a durable plastic used to make products such as water pipes, and Tupperware. Polyethylene is a non-toxic and environmentally friendly. here are other types of synthetic turf out there that are composed of nylon and a possibly used in combination with some polyethylene but usually those types of products are often used in " Astro Turf" which is normally used in sports fields. Installing turf that is latex backed and 100% recyclable and is lead free are the standards you want to look for in quality turf along with a standard product warranty of 10 years or more against fading and at least a 1 year warranty on workmanship.
5. Installation System : To install a quality product you should inquire what type of installation process will be incorporated for your project. The one that we choose to use is a three point system.
A. The base: installing the turf over a three (3 ) inch base of compacted crushed miscellaneous (CMB ) base material provides support and drains quickly.
B. The Grass: Use only a specialized product . A product designed to simulate the softness,texture,density,and color of natural grass.
C. The No In-Fill System: Use a synthetic turf that integrates a thatch zone into the system fibers of the grass that create a natural feel and softness in the surface with out any actual loose infill material. By utilizing this advanced technology, this helps reduce additional labor expenses and addresses urban run off of materials into storm drains.
With all this "Ammo" in your holster you are in my opinion a little better equipped to decide whether to go synthetic of not.