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BY Shawgrass

How to Clean Synthetic Grass


While synthetic turf is low maintenance, it doesn’t mean there’s NO maintenance. Here are a few tips we’ve gathered from turf owners just like you to keep your grass looking good.

Unique Cleaning Needs

Fake grass doesn’t have the same needs or threats as real grass. Artificial lawns won’t become overrun with weeds or pests because of their synthetic surface. However, it can be susceptible to tearing, melting, and flattening. These tips will help you avoid these kinds of issues easily.

Loose Debris

Start by removing objects like toys, dog bones, or large branches by hand. Then, you can use a leaf blower to quickly remove small waste like fallen leaves and twigs. Next, blow all the debris that the leaf blower can move toward one corner of your yard to make clean up even faster. Then you can collect the whole pile for removal.

Mild Stains

Life happens. Sometimes it happens on grass. Plates fall off tables at barbecues, beverages get spilled, and pets use grass as their bathroom. Cleaning steps are simple for stains like soda, alcohol, coffee, tea, urine, blood, and other common substances. You will need to:

  • Clean spills quickly so they won’t leave a long-lasting stain by blotting up the spilled liquid with a towel or dry absorbents (kitty litter).

  • Rinse the area with a mix of water and mild household detergent (like dish detergent).

  • If you need a stronger stain removal aid, consider using a turf-safe disinfectant/cleaner.

  • Rinse thoroughly with a hose to remove the cleaner.

  • If stains still appear, repeat the process.

Tough Stains

If you’re dealing with something more stubborn like motor oil, grease, ink, cooking oil, or melted crayons, it can be a little harder to remove than just spilled a drink. If you’ve tried removing the stain with the mild household detergent more than once, you can give mineral spirits a try. 

  • Take precautions and wear protective gear like gloves and heavy overshirts/pants to avoid skin irritation, and wear a respirator to avoid toxic fumes.

  • Start by soaking a soft cloth in mineral spirits. 

  • Next, gently wipe off the soiled blades of your turf. 

  • IMPORTANT: Make sure that the solution doesn’t go past the grass blades and beneath the turf, as this can result in serious damage to your artificial grass.

  • Gently rinse the area with a hose and blot up any excess liquid.

Sticky Stuff

If you’re dealing with sticky items like chewing gum, dried paint, crayons, lipstick, or tree sap, you can start by trying to gently scrape it off the grass. Be cautious that you don’t cut off the blades as you are scraping. Follow the grass in an upward direction with the knife to avoid damage. If you can’t remove it like that, try freezing the sticky material first with ice or dry ice and scrape again.

Pet Waste

If you’ve got dogs, you’re familiar with cleaning up their waste in the yard. With artificial grass, you won’t experience the dreaded dead spots from urine — your grass will always be green! Cleaning up pet waste on artificial turf isn’t difficult. Simply allow solid waste to dry before removing it. We do recommend specific pet turf, which has special backing and infill to let urine drain quickly and efficiently without odors.

Avoiding Damage

While most stains are easily removed from synthetic grass, there are a few safety measures to keep in mind, so you don’t damage the turf.

No Open Fires

You should take great care not to have open fire near your artificial turf. Even the tiniest ember can fly out of the fire. Your lawn won’t catch fire, but the embers will melt sports in your turf. Consider adding a patio area using stones or gravel large enough to accommodate seating and install a fire break for the fire pit. Take care not to set off fireworks or anything else that can cause fire damage.

Don’t Drive On It

While synthetic turf can handle a lot of weight, driving on it is not recommended. The twisting of the wheels in motion can damage the fibers and infill. This will cause the fibers to start pulling away from the backing material and eventually lead to tears. Too much weight will cause the surface to flatten and you’ll have ruts that are difficult to correct.

Use Chemicals With Care

Pesticides and herbicides will react negatively with your synthetic grass, so it’s important to take great care when using caustic chemicals near the surface. You could be left with patches that look burned, melted, or changed color from the reaction. Keep gasoline and all vehicle fluids away from your grass, too! If you have to use chemicals or paint near the turf, consider laying a heavy duty protective tarp over your grass. 

Be Mindful of Sharp Items

As you might guess, sharp objects can tear into your artificial grass. The sharper the object, the greater the risk. Sharp-edged garden tools, sharp furniture feet, and household tools have the potential to put a slash into your beautiful turf, so be mindful using any of these items. We recommend using furniture feet covers to avoid tears.

Routine Care

In addition to the everyday wear and tear, fake grass owners should take some time for a routine cleaning schedule to maintain the quality and longevity of their product. By following a routine of removing debris, rinsing regularly (in drought prone areas), and cross brushing will keep your grass looking great for many years to come. 

Equipment You Need

To keep your grass looking brand new, there are a few essential tools you’ll want to keep handy. Here’s a list:

  • Garden Hose: If you live in a rainy area, this will be less of a necessity, but still helpful for rinsing the grass during dry times. 

  • Leaf Blower: You can use a leaf blower to remove a light of light debris efficiently. Spring for one that has a reverse option, so you can use it like a vacuum, too.

  • Plastic Bristle Rake: Avoid metal rakes because they are too harsh, but plastic rakes will help you fluff the grass to stand perky again.

Clean, Rinse, Brush, Repeat

There are four main steps to taking care of artificial grass regularly. These steps should be carried out monthly, and if possible, weekly:

Step 1: Remove debris from the grass. This is critical after high winds or thunderstorms. Removing tree debris such as leaves and branches will protect your grass from damage.

Step 2: Rinse regularly with a hose. Cool, clean water is all you need to remove dust and pollen. If you are in a rain-prone area, you won’t have to rinse the grass nearly as much.

Step 3: Brush the grass against the grain, especially in high-traffic areas. Cross brushing against the grain will stop the turf fibers from becoming matted. 

Step 4: Let dry for 30 minutes to an hour before resuming normal activities.

Final Thoughts

Artificial grass is an excellent choice for some homeowners and commercial properties alike. Although it needs way less maintenance than traditional grass, there are still a few things you’ll have to do to keep it looking great. By following the cleaning guidelines above, we’re confident you can have a perfect lawn all year long!

If you haven’t gotten an artificial lawn yet and are on the fence deciding, contact us today for a free consultation. 

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