How to Properly Clean and Care for Artificial Grass to Ensure it Lasts for Many Years

If you have artificial grass, it’s important that you take care of it to guarantee that it will stand the test of time. Knowing how to clean artificial grass isn’t complicated and it’s generally considered easier to care for than natural grass.  Especially since you no longer have to mow, fertilize, or water your grass to keep it growing.

That said, there are still some best practices you can implement to prevent damaging your fake grass and make sure your methods are increasing the longevity of your turf. 

Best Ways to Clean Artificial Turf

Knowing the best way to clean artificial grass will ensure it’s well maintained and that it looks great. Using a mild solution of water and vinegar and spraying it onto the grass will prevent it from getting damaged while cleaning. 

Use a soft-bristled brush to scrub the grass without being too rough. Then, rinse the area with a hose. This will remove the cleaning solution from the turf without letting it soak into the affected area.  Do not use a metal or wire brush, as this will damage the turf.

If your artificial turf is particularly dirty, you can also use a pressure washer to clean it. However, be careful not to use too much pressure, as this can damage the grass. Use a low-pressure setting and hold the nozzle at least a foot away from the grass.  Or simply use your garden hose sprayer.

How Often Should You Clean Artificial Grass?

We recommend that our clients clean their artificial grass based on how often they actually use it. If you are never outside and you don’t have any pets, you might only have to leaf blow, rake, or spray it down a couple of times per year. 

If you have pets, you’ll likely have to do some type of weekly maintenance to clean up the waste and spray down the area. 

It’s a good idea to do a nice deep clean every few months. This involves gentle pressure washing and raking to remove any loose debris. Make sure the cleaning solution you use in your pressure washer is safe to use on artificial turf. 

Can I Vacuum Artificial Grass?

Yes, you can vacuum artificial grass. However, you need to be careful to use a vacuum cleaner with a soft-bristled attachment, so you don’t damage the grass. 

Make sure to avoid vacuuming up the infill, because it can damage your vacuum. 

How to Clean Urine and Feces from Fake Grass?

One of the reasons why many homeowners elect to get fake grass is because it’s easier to care for when you have dogs that do their business in the yard.  Dog urine can easily flush through the drainage system with rain.  However, if you do not receive much rain, a simple spray down with the garden hose will help to flush the dog’s urine.

While rain will help to flush dog urine through the turf, to help combat odors we recommend cleaning the turf with an enzyme neutralizer like Simple Green or PE-51.  Or you can use a simple mixture of equal parts of white distilled vinegar and water.  Spray your turf down and then rinse the mixture all the way through with water.

The key to cleaning up dog feces is to let the waste dry first.  This allows the waste to be picked up more easily.  Otherwise, trying to pick up fresh waste could smear and create a bigger mess.  You can pick up dog poop off artificial grass just like normal with a scooper, plastic bag, or paper bag.  If the waste has hardened into the turf, just spray the turf with a little water to loosen the waste up.  

Installing artificial turf

4 Important Tips for How to Clean Turf

Here are some quick tips we highly recommend to ensure your turf stays perfect all year long. 

1. Rake Weekly

Even if you don’t have a lot of foot traffic, this is one of the tasks you should perform most frequently. Debris, leaves, and dirt will accumulate in the turf. Raking also helps to prevent matting and ensures proper drainage.  

Occasionally raking will help to fluff up the turf to restore the appearance of the artificial grass.  We recommend the use of a synthetic bristle rake like the Grandi Groomer.  “Cross brush” with the synthetic bristle rake against the grain of the fibers to revive your turf.  If your turf receives heavier traffic, you will need more frequent brushing. 

2. Use a Turf Friendly Cleaner

You can use simple household ingredients to clean your artificial turf.  For example, vinegar mixed with equal parts water.  As well as a 1% solution of hydrogen peroxide in water.  Or a solution of a pint of hot water and one teaspoon of low-sudsing household detergent to clean your turf.  Spray your turf down with the cleaning mixture or you can apply the mixture with a soft brush or cloth.  Then, rinse the turf thoroughly with water.

There are also numerous artificial turf-friendly cleaners you can use to clean your turf like Simple Green.  Make sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.  

Make sure not to use cleaners that contain chlorine bleach.  Or cleaners with a pH above 9 or a highly acidic cleaner with a pH below 5.  These harsh chemicals can damage your turf and cause fading. 

3. Avoid Using Metal Rakes

Metal rakes can be too rough for artificial turf. They’ll rip apart and pull out the blades. You want to use a soft-bristled rake or brush to clean the turf. If you need to remove stubborn debris, such as leaves or twigs, use a leaf blower or a plastic rake.

4. Keep Up a Maintenance Schedule

Once you know how to clean artificial grass, it’s all about keeping up with it. Develop a regular schedule based on how much use the turf gets and regularly check for signs of damage. You’ll want to address loose seams or tears as soon as possible to prevent them from getting any worse. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about cleaning and maintaining artificial grass. 

How long does fake grass last?

The lifespan of your grass will depend on how well it was installed and how you maintain it. Most will last between 8-15 years, but it can last beyond 20 years if it’s well taken care of. 

Will cleaning artificial grass affect the infill?

If you use the right cleaning techniques and products, cleaning artificial grass should not affect the infill. However, if you use harsh chemicals or high-pressure cleaning methods, it can cause the infill to become dislodged or damaged.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how to clean artificial grass is simple. Being consistent and maintaining it in the long term is a different story. By following the tips outlined in this guide, you can make sure your artificial grass will last long and look great for many years. 

Whether you’re cleaning up after pets or simply raking away debris, a little bit of regular care can go a long way in keeping your lawn looking beautiful and green all year round.

Let NexGen Lawns install your new lawn, now that you know how to clean artificial grass!