The Guide on How to Deal with Visible Artificial Grass Joints
A seam is a joint between two artificial grass sections. Turf installation usually involves measuring and cutting the grass rolls to the set dimensions to fit well together. A visible joint occurs when you fail to correctly align and join two adjacent synthetic grass pieces during installation.
Artificial turf has many benefits. One of the many benefits of turf is its low-maintenance attractive appearance. The other benefit of turf installation is that it’s an attainable DIY project. However, visible seams and joints are one of the few issues with turf that can occur, and one of the few things that mars the beauty of a perfect lawn.
While hiring a professional is not required to install turf, we do recommend consulting experts in landscaping to ensure that you follow all the required steps for proper turf installation to avoid any hiccups. That being said, even professionals make mistakes during turf installation. This guide goes over how to prevent visible turf joints during installation for both professional landscapers and DIY property owners.
How do you get rid of turf lines?
You can see the joints between one section of turf and the next if you look closely. However, easy-to-see gaping spaces between joints are usually an installation problem. Although, it depends on the gravity of the lines. When turf is first installed it needs some time to settle.
Unfortunately, if the turf is secured and turf installation is complete and you can see joints, there are few things to be done to remedy them, other than remove the turf and reinstall it correctly. Ideally, you notice these lines as you’re laying the turf out prior to securing it, and you can remove the turf and relay it if you notice several visible lines.
It’s not wise either to try to mend the gap in the fibers. It only puts extra strain on the fibers and invites damage.
How to Hide Visible Turf Joint Seams
While you cannot undo the mistake, there are a few tips to make it less noticeable.
1. Brush the Turf & Add Infill
Hide joints by fluffing up the turf with additional infill and brushing. Doing so will help the turf fibers stand more upright and make the seams less noticeable.
2. Cover Turf Seams
Use the seams as creative inspiration for ornamentation. Cover them with decorative forms of landscaping ornamentation. Examples of things you can place on and around turf that hide the edges include bender board edging, rocks, planters, and furniture.
Why Do Artificial Grass Seams Show?
Causes of visible seams include mismatched pile direction, poorly aligned seams, and unsecured seams and/or edges.
1. Turf Fibers Facing the Wrong Direction
One of the biggest determinants in how neat your turf looks is the pile direction. Pile direction is the direction the fibers face – which should be the same from one turf to the next. If the fibers face in different directions, you get exposed joints and a shaggy appearance in one or several spots.
Another way to tell that the pile direction is multidirectional is a patch with greener or less green fibers than the rest of the grass. The cure is to ensure all the fibers face the same direction. Your best bet is to choose the direction facing your house. This way, the viewer gets a sweeping, even look.
2. Poor Turf Join Seaming
Due to the shape of your lawn, you may need to join multiple rolls of grass together to cover it. If your area needs several turfs, they have to be glued together to cover the required area. When aligning the adjoining turf, make sure they butt up against each other so there is no gap and no overlap. This way both edges of turf will be secured to the base with adhesive, as opposed to each other.
Synthetic grass tape comes with two different textures. The smooth part should go down while the uneven part goes up to accommodate the adhesive and allow for proper bonding. Interchanging the sides causes the glue to droop and most times won’t dry well enough to bond the turfs, resulting in visible seams.
Applying too much glue makes some of it droop and dry on the fibers, leaving a messy job. On the other hand, too little glue is just a waste of time because it will not bond the turfs well enough. Not only will you have exposed joins, you’ll probably need to spend more to repeat the job.
3. Not Restraining your Turf’s Edges
Securing your lawn’s edges during application prevents the edges from slumping and also provides a secure hold for you to secure the perimeter of your lawn. Without edge restraints, you could do everything right with positioning the turfs and gluing them only for the edges to lift, making it apparent that it’s artificial grass.
4 Tips to Prevent Visible Seams in Your Artificial Turf
1. Follow All Turf Installation Steps Correctly
Most of the problems that arise with artificial grass occur because proper installation was not performed.
2. Check your work Before Proceeding to the Next Step
Measure twice, cut once, is our motto! We recommend that both professionals and laymen always pause and take a step back from the project and use a critical eye to make sure the turf pile direction matches, the gauges match, the panels have been cut and trimmed to the right size, and the cuts are clean and straight.
3. Get Some Help
It helps to have both an extra set of hands when installing turf, as well as an extra set of critical eyes.
4. Work with Experienced Installers
One of the many benefits of turf is the ability for homeowners to install it themselves. That being said, if you can’t find the time or don’t feel comfortable performing all the steps yourself, we recommend turning to professional turf installers.
To prevent exposed joins in the first place, work with an experienced synthetic grass installer. They’ll also help you with measurements, how to factor in the slant on your yard, and a million other factors you may not know as a homeowner.
How to Prevent Visible Join Seams in Artificial Grass Installation
First, always go with the same turf gauge for the entire area. This ensures the seams will have a uniform fiber count. Secondly, always cut the turf carefully to avoid mismatching the edges. Third, ensure the pile direction is the same and use an artificial turf seam cutting tool so that you can cut it from the top. Finally, securely adhere all the join seams and the perimeter.
Check the Gauge
Turf gauge is the length between the yarns of the grass. It shows how many needles there are for every inch over the width of the tufting machine. The bigger the count, the thicker the turf is and the less likely that the joints will show.
Further, ensure you match the gauge between one turf and the other so that the entire area has a uniform appearance. Also, line up parallel stitch rows in a way that provides the same pile direction. Different artificial turf needs will require different turf thickness.
Ensure You Cut along the Seams Without Bursting or Grazing Them
You’ll need a sharp turf seam tool and a steady hand to cut along the selvedges in a straight line. The selvedge is the part of the backing that extends from the fiber-covered portion. It gives you enough space to cut the turfs for the right fit without damaging the edges that will remain.
How to Cut the Sides of Your Artificial Grass
Ideally, you have to cut out about 3 stitches past the selvedge in a straight line without touching the last stitch. Experts recommend this method because the first three rows of the turf at the edge bend away from it, creating a mangled look along the edges if you cut too close.
How to Position Artificial Grass with Directional Pile
To ensure the pile direction is uniform, roll them out side by side and look closely at the fibers. It’s usually easy to spot if the pile is in the wrong direction, as the grass will look a slightly different shade of green.
A further tip is to ensure that the pile direction is facing towards the angle the lawn will be viewed from the most. This usually means the pile facing towards your house because this side is generally considered to be the best viewing angle.
How do you join seams on artificial grass?
- Measure the area and cut the rolls to the predetermined dimensions
- Lay all the turf panels out in the arrangement they will be installed
- Fold the edges of adjoining pieces back, then use artificial lawn seaming material on the base
- Ensure the rough part of the turf tape faces up
- Secure turf tape between two turfs
- Ensure about three inches of tape go beneath each turf
- Pour glue in a zigzag fashion and spread it out evenly, ensuring there are no puddles or empty spots
- Once the glue is in place, carefully bring the two seams together slowly so that they align with each other’s edges
- Press down the seams with sand infill bags for about 45 minutes
- Fasten the turf around the outer edges by placing landscaping anchor pins or galvanized stakes about 6 inches apart. Flatten them with a hammer.
How do you get artificial grass to lay flat?
The laying course should be flat and even to ensure your turf lies on it flat. To be sure, use the right aggregate then use a plate compactor to smooth out any bumps or grooves on it.
How do you cover the edges of artificial grass?
The most effective ways are using galvanized U-pins or applying artificial turf adhesive to the edges and bonding the grass to it. You can add a decorative border of rocks or a bender board for additional drainage.
How long does it take for artificial grass to settle?
24 hours is enough for artificial turf to settle. Avoid moving over it or pushing heavy stuff over it during that period.
Get the Right Turf from Turf Factory Direct
Turf Factory Direct offers a variety of high-quality synthetic grass to help you beautify lawns and indoor facilities, including pet safe turf, and more. Don’t miss out on the benefits of our top-rated turf. Get in touch with us to learn more!