Artificial Turf Maintenance: How To Clean Artificial Grass

Artificial Turf Maintenance

The big day has finally arrived. 

Your Ideal Turf installation team is at your home and walking you through every step of the process. 

You step back at the end of the day and take in the beauty that is your new artificial grass lawn

Now that your install is complete and you have become the envy of all of your neighbors, it is important to properly maintain your investment. 

Artificial turf maintenance is vital to ensuring the longevity of your lawn. 

Care and maintenance of your turf may initially seem daunting but it is actually quite simple once if you follow these steps and keep a consistent routine. 

At Ideal Turf, we pride ourselves on years of experience installing the best artificial grass lawns and are here to help guide you through artificial turf maintenance, cleaning, and care.

Artificial grass maintenance and cleaning - Beautiful turf installation with cat walking across patio.

Artificial Turf Maintenance & Cleaning

While you may be thinking to yourself, “I bought artificial turf to cut down on maintenance! 

I do not want to spend time maintaining my artificial turf lawn!” 

Contrary to common artificial turf myths & misconceptions, manufactured grass is not zero maintenance.

Fear not, because artificial turf maintenance is quick, easy, and takes significantly less time than maintaining a natural grass lawn. 

While you will be spending more time enjoying your yard than maintaining it, dedicating a fraction of the time required to maintain natural grass to proper artificial turf maintenance and care will ensure that you’ll enjoy a lush, green, natural-looking manufactured lawn for years to come.

We’ll divide artificial turf maintenance into three distinct categories: 

  • Regular/Routine Maintenance & Cleaning
  • Removing Spills & Stains
  • Long-Term Turf Maintenance

What Tools Are Required for Artificial Grass Maintenance?

As with any investment, you’ll want to keep your synthetic turf looking presentable year-round. 

Although artificial grass maintenance is not as intensive as caring for natural grass, you’ll still need to take responsible steps to ensure you properly maintain your lawn. 

Thankfully, cleaning synthetic grass is manageable with a few tools and consistent upkeep.

Leaf blower: As leaves or other natural debris fall onto your turf, use a leaf blower to remove them with ease.

Garden Hose: A hose that extends far enough to water your entire lawn will ensure you wash all the turf fibers.

Hose Nozzle Attachment: Connect a nozzle-and-bottle assembly to the end of your hose to mix equal parts water and vinegar to sanitize your turf where pets have relieved themselves.

Push Broom: Sweeping the artificial turf with a stiff-bristled push broom will rejuvenate matted fibers and help them stand strong.

Rake: A simple gardening rake can help prevent the turf fibers from matting down.

Routine artificial turf maintenance - Well maintained synthetic grass lawn around patio & pavers.

Routine Artificial Turf Maintenance & Cleaning

As with most areas of our lives, routine maintenance of your artificial turf is important to ensure the longevity and beauty of your yard. 

Creating routines for cleaning and maintenance will help make upkeep a part of your already established habits around your home. 

While artificial turf does not require the same daily rigors that some other household spaces need for maintenance and cleaning, investing a few minutes each week will help to keep your artificial grass looking lush, green, and natural for years to come.

For general upkeep, a leaf blower is ideal to remove organic materials from surfaces while a soft-tipped rake can be used to remove heavier objects. 

The environment in which your turf is installed and its overall traffic/use will influence your cleaning and maintenance routine. 

Pets, kids, trees, and climate are a few of the factors that should be taken into account when determining how often or how little you should practice these routines. 

Weekly artificial turf maintenance - Spraying artificial grass with a garden hose.

Weekly Artificial Turf Maintenance

The weather and season will determine the best artificial turf maintenance for your lawn. 

Here in Texas, cities like Houston experience more humidity and more frequent rainstorms, whereas homes in the Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, and San Antonio areas may need to focus on extreme heat conditions. 

Rainwater can serve as your greatest ally in cleaning your turf by rinsing pollen, dust, dirt, and debris. 

If you live in an area that lacks consistent rainfall or has extended periods of drought, rinsing your lawn once per week with a garden hose is all that is necessary. 

Texas weather patterns are difficult to predict so keeping an eye on the weekly weather forecast will help you determine which course of action is best for your lawn. 

Monthly artificial turf maintenance - Brushing synthetic turf with a stiff bristled push broom.

Monthly Artificial Turf Maintenance

Like anything beautiful in our lives, keeping your synthetic grass lawn looking lush, green, natural, and inviting requires a little bit of effort on your part. 

Have you ever seen a classic car or antique piece of furniture in pristine condition? 

It’s likely, these items have been routinely cleaned, maintained, and serviced to ensure they outlast their counterparts. 

Frequency of use will determine the frequency of cleaning and maintenance. 

If your artificial turf lawn experiences high traffic from kids and/or pets, you will want to spend a little more time cleaning and maintaining it. 

The best way to remove dust, dirt, and leaves that cannot be removed with a leaf blower or garden hose is with a stiff-bristled broom/brush. 

Be sure to sweep against the natural grain of the turf to coax it into an upright position. 

Never use a brush with steel bristles on your turf as this can cause lasting damage. 

Removing dirt, dust, and debris frequently and consistently in high trafficked areas will help keep your faux grass lawn looking good. 

How to clean and maintain artificial turf long term

How to Clean & Maintain Artificial Turf Long-Term

One of the primary benefits of artificial turf is the decreased maintenance compared to a natural grass lawn. 

After all these years you get to retire your gas-guzzling lawnmower. 

That being said, there are certain things that should be removed or cleaned from artificial grass as quickly as possible. 

  • Pet Urine 
  • Solid Waste
  • Spills & Stains
  • Burns
How to remove pet waste from artificial grass - Dog poop on turf.

How to Remove Pet Waste from Artificial Turf

The use of fake grass for dogs among homeowners has risen rapidly in the last decade. 

One of the most common residential artificial turf applications is as a ground cover in dog runs and designated dog potty areas.

A primary reason for making the switch is to prevent brown dog urine spots from ruining natural grass, not to mention, your four-legged friend will love the texture and feel. 

Pets will still be pets though so it is essential that you clean up after your pup. 

For easy removal of animal waste, keep these tips in mind:

  • Wait for Waste to Dry: Wait time is important after your pet has done their business. Allowing dry time for solid waste prevents the potential of smearing into the artificial turf. 
  • Rinse Regularly: Keep your lawn surface hygienic by rinsing it with the hose on a regular basis. This promotes animal urine drainage. Rinsing your lawn often is especially important in regions that do not get a lot of rain.

One of the advantages of Ideal Turf’s “Pet Turf“ is our Antimicrobial Turf Backing which contains Microbe-Safe™ antimicrobial protection technology, preventing the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew that can cause stains, odors, and product deterioration. 

It also helps prevent the buildup of bacteria, which keeps your lawn free of pet urine smells.

For more specific advice on cleaning and maintaining pet-friendly artificial grass, you may find the following guides helpful:

Removing Spills & Stains From Artificial Turf

Spills and stains are part of everyday life. 

If you have kids, pets, frequent guests, etc. the traffic flow on your turf is likely to increase. 

Over time, accidents can happen. 

Not to worry though because cleaning your turf is similar to clean up in other areas of your home. 

For dry spills, use a shop-vac for removal. 

Be sure to hold the suction end of the hose off the turf surface to avoid removing the infill material along with the debris. 

Spills should be rinsed thoroughly and if necessary, use commercial disinfectants, just be sure to rinse afterward in order to flush the solution through the turf. 

For stains, such as paint, use a water-soluble solution for clean-up. 

Never use acetone or petroleum-based products on your turf as this could cause long-term damage. 

Entertaining guests, outdoor living, and a safe place for children to play are often cited as major reasons homeowners install artificial turf

With these activities though comes the potential for food spills. 

Make sure to remove food waste promptly to avoid attracting pests and if you find gum in your turf, use ice to help remove it from your lawn.

How to Clean Spills, Stains & Other Contaminants from Synthetic Turf

Accidents happen. 

Kids playing tag in the backyard or wrestling leads to a busted nose, a trip with a beverage or plate of food and of course there’s always that one person who always spits their gum out in the grass. 

While inevitable, response time to spills is critical to maintaining your artificial turf. 

Try not to give spills time to set as this can increase the difficulty of cleaning later or even lead to long-term damage. 

A few tips and FYI’s from some experts: 

  • Artificial turf is stain resistant, so cleaning spills & accidents is generally easy
  • Most spills can be rinsed away by spraying it with a garden hose
  • For stubborn spills that remain after hosing off the area, use mild natural soap + warm water OR Equal parts vinegar & water
  • Chewing gum and other sticky substances can usually be removed by hand
  • For stubborn chewing gum, an ice cube can help with the removal
  • For removing stubborn items a plastic putty knife can help

Important Note: Do NOT use harsh chemicals or solvents to remove spills or sticky substances from artificial grass.

How to remove bacteria from artificial grass - Hose spraying equal parts vinegar & water on synthetic grass lawn.

How to Remove Bacteria from Artificial Grass

The uniqueness of some of our turf products is the antimicrobial protection that contains Microbe-Safe™ set us apart from the competition. 

While bacteria buildup is not a major issue for our artificial grass, in some situations you may want to consider spraying your artificial turf with a solution of equal parts vinegar and water to help eliminate any lingering bacteria. 

A common scenario in which one might use this method to remove bacteria is homeowners with multiple dogs since over time, more bacteria can accumulate due to the number of pets using the lawn. 

How to Avoid Stains & Burns

If you have ever spent time trying to remove a red wine stain from carpet, you know how difficult, time-consuming, and frustrating spills can be. 

While a major stain or burn on an artificial lawn can be replaced, it is better to avoid them entirely.

Certain spills can discolor or damage synthetic turf, such as:

  • Cigarette burns
  • Grills & Firepits
  • Motor Oil, Grease, Battery Acid
How to remove snow and ice from synthetic grass

How to Remove Snow & Ice from Synthetic Grass

Depending on where you live, you may not have to worry about removing snow or ice from your synthetic grass.

Here in Texas, it’s certainly not an issue but, if you live in an area that does experience snowfall removing it from your artificial grass is pretty straightforward.

Allowing the snow/ice to melt and drain away as it would on natural grass is the most turf-friendly option for removal. 

However, if you need to remove snow/ice from your synthetic grass, do not use a sharp-edged or metal tool. 

A push broom is your best option. 

If there is a lot of snow, use a blower but do not go all the way down to the turf, leave an inch or two of snow and remove it with a broom. 

How to prevent energy efficient windows from burning or melting artificial turf

How to Prevent Energy Efficient Windows From Burning or Melting Artificial Turf

Texas heat can be brutal.

Heck, even the fall and spring months have incredibly hot days. 

Direct sunlight on artificial grass will not burn the turf, but it is possible for sun magnification or strong reflections from energy-efficient windows and/or sliding glass doors to damage synthetic grass. 

To prevent this, screens or protective films can be placed on the outside of the windows causing the reflection. 

The benefit of screen/protective films include: 

  • Low-cost solution
  • Energy efficiency in the home. The U.S. Department of Energy states that an outside window screen is 7 times more effective than interior blinds or window tint.
Final thoughts on artificial turf maintenance & cleaning

Final Thoughts on Artificial Turf Maintenance & Cleaning

Homeownership comes with an immense amount of pride and a feeling of achievement. 

Choosing to upgrade your lawn with artificial turf is a long-term investment that can give homeowners an additional amenity to enjoy. 

Our mission at Ideal Turf is to help you love your yard! 

When you invest in our product we want you to have all the information for not just your purchase and installation, but for the life of your lawn. 

Routine cleaning and maintenance are common with homeownership and caring for your artificial grass is no different. 

However, with a little routine and consistency, you can help ensure you have a yard you’ll love for decades to come. 

We will ensure that your yard, backyard dog run, or home putting green is a piece of your home that you and your family, especially your beloved four-legged members, will enjoy for years to come from the best artificial grass company in Texas

Tim Taylor is an industrial engineer and entrepreneur with years of hands-on experience in the synthetic turf industry. As a member of the Synthetic Turf Council, he dedicates his time, energy, and resources to finding real solutions to real problems for synthetic turf products and installation processes.

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