Artificial grass can be laid on a range of different surfaces, with each one having its own pros and cons. So can artificial turf be laid on concrete? And is it a good choice?
You can lay artificial grass on concrete. However, there are several important considerations to take to ensure it’s installed properly. These include installing a foam underlay, making sure the concrete surface is level, and providing adequate drainage. Dogs owners may want to consider an alternative to concrete.
In this article, you will learn:
- The benefits of laying on concrete
- Important installation requirements
- When you might want to consider an alternative
- How to ensure a professional finish
Benefits of Laying Artificial Grass on Concrete
Concrete is a practical material, but it lacks character and can ruin the fresh and vibrant appearance of a well-kept flower bed. Artificial grass is easy to install and look after, and you never have to worry about weeds, water shortages, or nutrition.
You do not need a sprinkler system since artificial grass does not need watering. Artificial grass is the solution for anyone looking for a green lawn without having the hassle of weeding and mowing. If you take care to prepare the ground and follow installation instructions, the lawn should look perfect for years.
Concrete, gravel, and dry soil are hard materials that are unpleasant to walk on but can also be a danger to children. Artificial grass offers children and pets a soft and bouncy surface to play on, especially when combined with underlay.
Natural grass needs regular spraying for weeds and fertilizers to stay green and healthy. These chemicals both smell strong but, in some cases, can be harmful to children and pets if they happen to ingest them. Artificial grass will need occasional spraying down with water but no chemicals.
Artificial grass can be both less expensive to buy and far cheaper to look after. No need to spend thousands on having to water the lawn or for chemicals. With fake grass, you do not need expensive tools that need constant maintenance, such as a lawnmower.
To keep natural grass looking its best, you need to spend money (and time) caring for each blade of grass. Artificial grass always appears fresh cut to the perfect length, as if it is living off a perfect balance of water and nutrients.
Fake grass adds color to where it is lacking, such as in concreted and paved areas.
Important Considerations Before Installing Artificial Grass on Concrete
Concrete presents several issues, and an underlay can help with safety and drainage. But pets and uneven concrete can cause problems for fake grass.
A foam underlay serves a few purposes, including helping with drainage. Artificial grass does offer a small amount of cushioning, but not enough to protect a child from a low-level fall. Foam pads absorb shock, so create vital cushioning between the grass and a firm surface such as concrete.
Common shock pad thicknesses for domestic use range from a half to one inch, but for sports fields, you may want to double this. Even without kids or dogs, shock pads beneath the turf are much nicer to walk on in bare feet and help hide any gaps in the concrete.
Artificial grass will allow water to pass through and down to the concrete surface, and an underlay will help disperse water. You can also drill 10-inch holes into the soil every two to four feet to help with drainage in solid concrete or paving stones.
Uneven concrete will cause puddles to form under your fake grass, which can lead to unpleasant smelling stagnant water and mold.
If you end up drilling drainage holes, try to drill them into the middle of the dip in the concrete. You may also want to try cracking the concrete with a sledgehammer to improve drainage.
Dog owners may want to reconsider before installing artificial turf over concrete. A pet will have accidents, and cleaning away dog mess can be a problem.
Even though it is possible to spray off the grass, concrete will trap the dirty water in and under the turf. The same applies to urine, which will permeate the concrete and create a challenge in trying to eradicate the smell.
How to Lay Artificial Grass on Concrete
- Yard Broom (for a clean surface)
- Hose (for washing down)
- Box Cutter (for cutting the turf)
- Scrapper/ Putty Knife (for spreading glue)
- Pressure Washer
- Electric Drill
- 1-inch (25mm) Masonry Drill Bit
- Paint Mixer Attachment
- Underlay Tape – Gaffer tape or similar, something strong enough to hold sections of padding together.
- Joining Tape – To help to connect grass sections together for cutting and adjustments. You should also use joining tape for long sections of turf.
- Artificial Grass Glue – Often comes in two-part mixes, where you add and mix in the hardener when you are ready to glue the turf down. Also available in caulking gun tubes.
- Foam Underlay – Essential for concreted slabs and patios. Comes in six-foot-wide rolls.
- Artificial Grass – The wider the roll, the less joining you will need to do, but wider rolls are harder to move and adjust.
Sand, mold, and moss will all function as a barrier between the glue and what it is trying to stick to. The glue will have a better chance of sticking your underlay and turf to the concrete if you clean it first.
Scrub the area with soapy water and your yard broom to loosen caked dirt. Then if you have a pressure washer, spray off the soap and mud from the concrete. You can use a garden hose, but you will need to help it along with the yard broom.
When you are finished, you will see that some areas of the concrete are pooling water. These are places to mark out since you want to drill holes in these places for drainage.
Use a masonry drill bit of over 3/4 inches (19mm) and fill the hole in will gravel chips to aid the drainage and prevent blockages.
Start at the farthest corner from where you want to finish. Roll the pads out over the entire surface and make your adjustments.
Cut to size after you have all the pads in position and lined up.
You may be able to make small adjustments after cutting but take your time to get it right. You can secure the pads together with duct tape as you go.
Then you can glue the pads down with adhesive. Apply the glue in one-foot strips about an eighth of an inch deep. Once the shock pad glue is dry, you can move on to the turf.
4. Artificial Grass
Roll out all the grass over your foam. You want to make sure that the edges are straight along the border of your yard. If you need to lay several rolls, make sure that the edges of each matchup.
Cut the excess off and join any separate rolls with artificial grass tape. You can now glue the turf down the joins to the shock pads. Once the joins are glued and dried, you can continue to glue down the perimeter of your artificial turf.