You’ve made a significant investment in the installation of a synthetic turf surface. Let GreensGroomer help you maximize the aesthetics, performance, and life of your field. GreensGroomer offers a wide variety of commercial grade equipment to make turf maintenance easier, less expensive, and more efficient. When it comes to cleaning, grooming, disinfecting, or de-compacting, GreensGroomer has the right products, at the right price. Our Integrated Sports Turf Groomer has brought together the industry leading Synthetic Groomer with a fully-adjustable Spring Tine Rake creating a new level of performance and efficiency.
The most important development in our synthetic product line-up is the launch of the GreenZapr, the simplest, most-cost-effective field sanitation solution in the marketplace. Although Germicidal UV may be a new to turf management professionals, it's long been used in a variety of applications, such as food, air and water purification.
Since the advent of synthetic sports turf fields with infill, many sports turf managers have realized that maintaining these systems has not been as inexpensive or as “labor free” as some people may have been lead to believe. This fact has required sports turf managers to review their maintenance practices and determine the right activities and techniques to provide safe and playable surfaces for their athletes.
This primer is designed to help the turf professional keep basic methods in the forefront of their activities. It also provides helpful tips that create efficiencies in these maintenance practices.
For most sports turf managers, there are three reasons to create a specific maintenance routine:
Safety for Athletes – Providing a surface that is stable and provides sufficient footing and minimizes the threat of bio-fluids and other contaminants. Playability – Providing a surface that is consistent and provides confidence to the athletes. Aesthetics – Providing an attractive, professional “product” to the athletes and spectators.
One of the biggest differences of these newer synthetic fields from the first generation of artificial turf fields installed 40 years ago is the so-called infill material. Synthetic sports fields today are rarely installed without a layer of infill material. In the United States this material is almost always a mixture of sand and crumb rubber or crumb rubber alone. Most of this crumb rubber is shredded and processed recycled tires.
Over time, this infill changes, settles, and shifts – creating the potential for field variations and unsafe inconsistencies. Managing this infill is the single most important requirement.
After a few years, the Gmax values (a measure of hardness) can vary quite a bit in different parts of a synthetic field. It is important to test these areas and rake/groom them as needed to reduce the Gmax value. When managing these maintenance efforts, the target should be plus or minus 5% across all areas of the field. This goes a long way in providing the best surface safety and playability.
Regularly raking or “grooming” the field can best be achieved with specialized equipment, like the GreensGroomer with the Spring Tine Rake attachment. Raking the field pulls up the settled infill and redistributes the material back into the synthetic turf fibers. This re-distribution helps to lower the Gmax value (makes the field softer and creates a greater bounce). Raking also raises foreign, undesirable matter which can be swept away with field sweepers.
Sweeping on a frequent basis gives the field (and infill) a better chance to stay at a high performance level. Before objects have the time to nestle down deep into the infill, regular sweeping removes the objects and also helps to redistribute infill material.
Frequently, we encounter reports in the media concerning poor maintenance efforts from facilities with synthetic turf fields. Most of the articles focus on surface conditions as it relates to player safety, most notably field hardness. To read an article from the WYHR television titled "Trouble in the Turf: Lack of Synthetic Turf Testing & Maintenance Puts Athletes at Risk", click here.
The report highlights the basics of in-filled synthetic turf systems, compares different maintenance programs (such as the NFL), and highlights the fact that many facilities have not maintained their fields. The report further exposes a list of public school facilities, including high schools and universities, that have no record of maintenance effort. We've also made the article available on our website, click here.
Our sales, parts, and manufacturing staff is ready to assist you with any questions you may have concerning specifications, maintenance, replacement parts, and performance.
Don't hesitate to contact us (or one of our dealers) to get the answers you need.