Installing artificial grass in cold weather conditions
Artificial grass installed during winter and cold weather conditions will take longer to 'acclimatise' or 'settle in', and very often it is only the arrival of warmer conditions which will allow the pile to lift and expand fully. Bascially it may take time for the newly installed grass to look and feel as good as the sample you may have seen when selecting your grass. This is normal and not something to worry about.
What are the possible problems associated with chilly weather and artificial grass rolls?
- The backing material, particularly latex, becomes stiff and difficult to work with when cold
- Minor roll ridges, humps, or creases in the latex remain evident, and are stubborn to flatten down, whereas they would disappear in warm conditions
- If unattended to, these ridges, humps, or creases will appear as 'air bubbles' under foot and they will not disappear without significant remedial work to unfix, flatten and refix the grass
- The pile and grass blades can be misaligned, compressed and remain very flat, making the fibres difficult to lift. You should keep an artificial grass comb to work on these stubborn areas.
How can you avoid these issues when installing your grass?
Keep the grass warm
Where possible, keep the roll or rolls in a warm place until just before installation - a warm room inside is ideal or a warm van will be sufficient if at all possible.
We know that this may be difficult but please remember that the grass may have spent months rolled up in a cold environment so the blades will be flat. However, rest assured they will open up with some time and warmth, once installed. The backing material, particularly if latex, will also be affected by the cold and requires time and warmth to become nice and flexible again. If you're able to warm the rolls as described above you should avoid leaving them outside for too long before you install.
Unroll the grass as soon as possible
If you are unable to warm the rolls inside or in a closed vehicle you should unroll them and lay them out for as long as possible.
Lay the roll or rolls out for as long as possible to ensure they are flat before cutting/joining/fixing. As the grass has been rolled up for some time the backing will be stiffer and less pliable than usual so it will help to unroll the grass and allow it to flatten as much as possible. It will help if the sun is out even if the weather is cold or cool!
Use hot water if necessary
If you have stubborn backing ridges, humps, or creases, apply hot water to the roll or rolls; this will loosen and flatten the backing. Be sure to apply hot water NOT boiling water!! You may need more than one application of hot water.
You may also see that some of the grass fibres are flat and misaligned as a result of being rolled up for a long time. This is almost always a simple issue to overcome by applying some hot water and using a Perfectly Green grass brush to lift and realigned the pile.
Don't fix down toon soon
Do not fix the grass around the perimeter until the roll or rolls have been allowed to flatten completely. It's vital that the grass is flat and pliable before fixing to ensure that the surface does not have any ridges or humps which will have nowhere to go otherwise! This is particularly important where you are gluing the grass to a concrete haunch perimeter as it will be almost impossible to unfix the edging once it is set. If you are screwing to a timber or batten perimeter you can unfix the grass if necessary but let the grass flatten first and there will be no need!
Lift the pile
Finish the job with a power brush
Use a power brush to lift the pile - you might need to run the brush over the pile a number of times if the weather is cold. If you don't have a power brush you may find that a good petrol powered leaf blower helps but we suggest a power brush.