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Artificial Turf Cost: How to Get the Best Value for Your Home Project

Dec 14, 2007
Know what you are buying!

An educated buyer is a savvy buyer that knows how to spot a great deal and a worth-while value because they know what to look for!

If this is your first venture into the world of artificial turf for residential or commercial use - you want to explore artificial turf grasses and how they are manufactured as if you were purchasing any outdoor flooring solution.

What options do you have?

Realistically - your options are limited only by your imagination, willingness to shop and your budget!

Artificial turf materials are meant to be properly and permanently installed by professionals and handy do-it-yourselfers that can follow standard installation guidelines.

If you plan to build-it-yourself, budget for tools and equipment rentals for some projects!

What Makes Up the Artificial Turf System Costs

Artificial turf surface materials, infill, seaming tapes and glues or tacks, soil stabilizing fabrics, base materials, rodent control barriers (where needed), cups and other trim materials called for in the design specification are all costs associated with artificial turf grass for lawns, pet areas and putting green installations.

Surface styling, fiber quality, stitch count, backing materials, even UV protection and warranty are always reflected in the cost of these materials. Lower costs are generally a sign of a compromise in one of the factors just mentioned, just as it is normally found in the world of carpeting.

Where You Can Buy Artificial Turf

In the world of artificial turf there are only a handful of skilled tufting companies that focus on manufacturing artificial turf surface materials. Lawn, landscape and leisure sports uses all have "styles" of artificial turf manufactured to optimize look, feel and performance.

Higher-end, professional quality, branded solutions are generally sold through experienced, artificial turf installers; licensed builders and value added dealers, such as professional construction landscape materials and building supply centers.

How Do You Determine Quality

Unless you are willing to replace materials every few years, you should consider the purchase of your new artificial turf installation as a long-term investment. The difference in pricing between products and contractors may be as dramatic as the quality, durability, look and feel of professionally installed veneered flooring to hand-rubbed oak; and for those differences, expect to pay more for better quality, service and building standards.

Artificial Turf Warranty

Many styles of artificial turf are warranted to resist fading, stains, blade and backing failure for 8 years or more; and with low traffic, well cared for artificial turf could last even longer.

The type of surface materials you choose only make up half the installation expense. Properly planned and executed site preparation, appropriate drainage, base and surface installation are keys to having your project remain structurally sound, for years.

To overcome issues of wear-and-tear and blades matting down, plan to design a walkway through high-traffic areas; use concrete, paver or stone patios for out-door dining that can be easily cleaned if you have food or beverage spills, and your artificial turf, like any natural lawn, will provide you with a beautiful and lush green area to offset the hardscape and rock you use elsewhere.

How Large Is a Roll of Turf?

Rolls of surface materials are 15 feet wide and many bulk rolls are up to 100 linear feet long; a total of 1500 square feet per roll; and about 600-800 pounds of dead weight.

I Just Have A "Little" Area I Want to Cover

To locate smaller quantities for purchase and self-installation, materials can be found on the internet and some discount carpet wholesalers. Landscape and building supply centers may carry products locally. Request samples before you buy products, sight unseen, and ask about support for installation questions.

Artificial Turf Wholesale

Artificial turf wholesale pricing for surface materials can be found from the low-end at $2 to over $5 per square foot for professional quality materials. Expect to pay another $2 to $3 dollars per square foot for other job materials, if you are doing the work yourself.

Professionally Installed Artificial Turf

Professional installations of lawn and landscape projects can cost from $8.00 to well over $20 per square foot. Required equipment, job materials, site preparation needs and other factors, such as access to the area and local labor and fuel costs will all have an impact on your final estimate.

Artificial Turf Infill Material

All turf surfaces require some weight and anchoring to insure the materials won't shift, wrinkle and buckle. The material we use as ballast is called infill and there are several types that are used, depending upon the artificial turf system you select.

Infill materials are particles of either silica sand or crumb rubber and are distributed across the surfaces after the turf has been seamed and trimmed to fit. Infill does not go under the grass surfaces, it is always installed across the top.

Recent developments in resilient pads and mats systems that can be used under the turf to increase resiliency and surface stability are bringing more options to market.

If you are building your own project, your artificial turf supplier will provide you with the materials and recommended amount to use to achieve maximum results.

Artificial Turf Price Savings

If you're trying to stretch your budget by buying materials and then installing the job yourself, guidance is priceless!

Download ASGi's Artificial Turf Buyer's Guide to help you estimate your needs and ASGi's Standard Installation Guideline, [see "Author Bio" for link] to help you with step by step design tools, installation suggestions, recommendations for estimating, site preparation, job materials required and tools needed.

You can easily get answers for frequently asked questions and see lots of design ideas at ASGi's website, the industry's first trade association for synthetic grass installers, available online. The website is crammed full of photo-rich content, simple to navigate pages, lots of resources and guides to help familiarize you with the world of options you have to choose from.
About the Author
If you're researching artificial grass; the Association of Synthetic Grass Installers (ASGi) hosts a content rich site at http://www.asgi.us/index.htm. Annie Costa, an artificial grass installer since the late 1990s and one of its founding members, serves as Executive Director of ASGi.
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