The Importance of Drainage
So, you’re really wanting to make the switch to artificial turf. You’re a dog lover though, so you have dogs that would be using that backyard area. Chances are they’re going to want to go to the bathroom on that brand new turf. You’ve probably heard horror stories of people with pets regretting their decision to get artificial turf installed because of the smell. That’s because they went with the wrong product, infill and base. If you have dogs, drainage should be the most important factor to you when choosing the turf and company to use to do the installation. If you have horrible drainage, you’re going to have a horrible smelling yard. It’s extremely valuable to know and take into consideration the importance of drainage.
Not all pet turfs are the same. There are so many different types of pet turfs today. Just because a company says it’s pet-friendly, that doesn’t mean it’s going to be the best option. It could barely drain and the company could still be able to tell you that it’s “pet-friendly.” What makes artificial turf pet-friendly is the backing. Liquid needs to be able to drain through the artificial turf so that it’s not just sitting on top of the turf with nowhere to go. The best type of artificial turf is one that is nonabsorbent as well. Urethane backing is absorbent, so every time your dog goes to the bathroom on it, the urethane will absorb that liquid causing it to smell. The majority of “pet turf” today is an urethane backing with holes punched in the back. Unless your dog has impeccable aim and makes it in every hole, that’s not going to cut it. If the backing is not 100% permeable and nonabsorbent, liquids will barely drain through and the rest will be absorbed into the turf itself. ProLawn’s pet turf has a 100% permeable backing system and it’s nonabsorbent. We always still suggest hosing down the lawn at least once a month to make sure everything is able to completely drain through.
The second most important aspect in making artificial turf work for dogs is the base. Once that liquid gets drained through the turf, where it’s going underneath the turf can make all the difference as well. Most companies will use decomposed granite for their base underneath the turf. Decomposed granite doesn’t drain well. Decomposed granite will also begin to crack and get lumpy with too much liquid. After heavy rain fall, decomposed granite doesn’t do well with all that liquid. Having a lumpy, cracked base under your turf will make it look ugly. Of course, because decomposed granite doesn’t drain well, it will start to smell from your pet’s urine. ProLawn uses a road base that doesn’t crack or get lumpy from liquids and it drains well.
The last thing to take into consideration for your dogs is the infill. Infill is the sand that goes on top of the artificial turf to help weigh it down and give it resilience. Most companies will use silica sand for their infill. If you have one or two small dogs, it should be perfectly fine to use. If you have large dogs though, especially if it’s a smaller area, you’ll want an antimicrobial sand infill. This green sand will help with odor. It won’t completely eliminate the odor though because it’s not magic. It will definitely help with the odor though.
Now that you know the importance of drainage, be sure to ask about these elements when you’re getting estimates because it could make or break the smell of your yard. Make both you and your dogs happy with the right choices. To get a free estimate from ProLawn Turf, give us a call at 877-405-5296 today!