So, you’re interested in artificial turf for your landscape. You may have already checked out some grasses, talked to dealers, and even gotten a few estimates. So far so good, but then, as if you needed one more complication to consider, someone mentions infill.
“Wait, wait, what’s infill?”
Infill is the hidden hero behind every high-performing and great-looking artificial turf installation. Because it’s such an important component, in this post, we aim to give you the essential info you need to make choosing the right infill simple and straightforward.
What is Infill?
Infill is basically specially-designed sand. It’s one of the last things added to the grass during the installation process. Infill has many jobs, but primarily it supports the grass blades and keeps them from laying flat and matting. That’s an important job because matted grass is not very pleasing to the eye and prolonged matting will damage the turf. This is why we require every installation to use infill in order to for it to qualify for our lifetime product warranty (which is pretty awesome, by the way). As long as you apply infill – the right kind and quantity – your grass will be beautiful and cost-effective for years to come.
What Are My Infill Options?
There are several types of infill, each suited to a different use, or “application”. While there are really only a few types of infill, matching the wrong infill with your turf’s application can have some gnarly repercussions, so it’s important to give the process due thought. There are three tiers of infill that we offer, detailed in this handy infographic:
1. Herofill and Mellowfill
Herofill and Mellowfill and considered premium-grade because of the many functions they pack. They are the most popular for putting greens and pet owners whose pets might be doing their business on the turf. It’s also the most expensive – around $23 per 50-pound bag.
2. Zeolite/ Zeo-N-Fill
Zeolite is very similar to the above, except that it lacks the biocides that kill microbes and bacteria. It still reduces odors through an absorption process that holds ammonia from pet urine until rain water can carry it away. This option is also popular with pet owners, but requires additional antiseptic treatment from time to time to keep it free of microbes. Zeolite runs $15 per 50-pound bag.
3. Silica Sand
Silica sand is most basic option. It’s a high-quality infill, but doesn’t have all the fancy features the others do. It does what infill is made to do: support the blades and prevent matting. Silica sand is often used for putting greens and aesthetic installations where pets and kids won’t be playing often. You can see why this infill would be a poor fit for areas where pets will be using the bathroom. It is, however, the most cost-effective option at $8.50 per 50-pound bag.
How Much Should I Get?
Anywhere from 1 to 2 pounds per square foot is the typical range, but more or less than that may be needed depending on your specific application. How much foot traffic is the turf going to get? How hard will it be used? The more the traffic and the harder the use, the more infill will be needed. For a purely aesthetic installation that will get little foot traffic, 1 pound per square foot is sufficient. For a sports field or a playground, 2 or more might be needed.
Well, that’s it! We hope this has helped you to drill down on your infill options for your artificial turf project.
Of course, if you have any questions or would like further guidance, give us a call or visit one of our stores and our turf experts will be happy to help!