There are many great reasons to install an artificial grass lawn, a number of which we’ve covered here on the Purchase Green blog. Generally, people considering artificial grass are concerned with benefits such as reducing water consumption, saving time and energy on lawn maintenance or just simply having a great-looking lawn year-round.
As difficult as it may be to believe, some people aren’t considering artificial grass! Generally you will find having artificial grass installed costs more than installing a natural lawn. A good, experienced installer will charge somewhere in the $8-$12 per square-foot range. Two-thirds of that price goes to the installer. If you do it yourself, you’re looking at a $3-$4 per square foot price, which is very close to the cost to install natural turf. The good news is Purchase Green artificial grass pays for itself in just a few years’ time if you have it installed and even sooner if you do it yourself. There are also a variety of financing options available.
At Purchase Green our artificial grasses are actually very affordable. The escalation in cost – and what people often think is the price of artificial grass – comes with the aforementioned professional installation. The artificial grass installation process is not a complicated one. It is, however, a labor-intensive one. But, depending on certain factors, it may be a job you can do yourself.
We’ve got a great, free eBook on do-it-yourself artificial grass installation. So if you’re willing and able to put in a few days of good, old-fashioned manual labor you might find that you can in fact afford artificial grass – and you may wind up with bigger muscles too!
Can I Really Do This?
We get asked this question a lot and the answer is a resounding…probably. The reality is there are some jobs that are better handled by professionals. Yards of extreme size that require a lot of seaming, those with severe grades and/or soils that are exceptionally rocky may prove too much for Jane and Joe Homeowner. But for a flat-ish, moderately-sized yard with minimal seaming requirements and unexceptional soil conditions, doing it yourself is certainly an option.
To figure out if you can install artificial grass yourself, begin by examining the potential job site. Will you need to excavate out concrete, asphalt, soils, or other existing materials? Will you be able to get sub-base materials imported onto the site? Are there any accessibility requirements that will have to be taken into consideration? Does the area currently drain properly?
Take stock of your native soil. You’ll need to excavate out at least 3 inches worth. Figure out if the soil can be dug easily. Will you be able to repurpose the soil after excavation or will you need to pay to dispose of it? You’ll be replacing those three inches of native soil with either road base or decomposed granite. Stop by your local gravel and rock supply store, if available, and find out how much 3 inches by the square-footage of your yard is going to set you back.
By now you’ll start to have some idea of what your project is going to cost. Don’t forget to factor in the price of infill, too. Don’t skip this part – it might seem like you can get away with forgoing infill but neglecting it may void your lifetime warranty.
Tally up these expenses and add them to the cost of your grass. You’ll also want to rent a vibrating plate-compactor to properly set your sub-base and a power broom to finish off the grass after you’ve installed it. You’ll also need to buy a whole bunch of nails (hopefully you already have the hammer…if not then, uh, this blog post probably wasn’t for you).
Get to Work
Assuming all the aforementioned details pencil out for you financially, it’s time to get to work. Make sure you have a couple of decent shovels, a wheelbarrow that is in good working order, some quality work gloves and maybe even a turf trolley. Invite some of your closest friends (or enemies, depending on the degree of difficulty); have some water, pizza and maybe some suds on hand and get to it.
Make sure you read the eBook first. Figure out with certainty what all the materials will cost. Clear some time on your calendar – it may be a weekend or it may be several weekends. It’s going to be hard work. That’s why it costs more to have it installed. But it’s work that, if you decide you’re up to it, you can do yourself (and with a little help from those friends).
And if you get stuck or come upon something you didn’t expect, you can always call your local Purchase Green store. We’ll be glad to share our expertise to help you and your project succeed