The demand for artificial grass it has grown significantly in recent years. From Astroturf playing surfaces and to home instalments, fake grass is a sustainable commodity that delivers years of happy memories.
The average lifespan of most artificial grass is around eight to 10 years. With a premium quality fibre, you should expect your home installation to last for up to 20 years or more.
The longevity of a fake lawn depends on how much you use it, whether you take the correct measures to maintain and care for the fibres. The quality of the installation can also play a part in how long an artificial grass installation lasts.
But even the highest quality artificial grass won’t last forever. Although you shouldn’t have to worry about replacing your faux grass any time soon, the good news is that artificial grass is recyclable.
What Is Recycling?
Most artificial grass is made up of a combination of different materials that can include rubber, plastics, and sand. While the plastic can be recycled easily, it’s a bit more challenging to separate it from the rest of the components.
However, with advancements in technology, it’s possible to successfully remove rubber and sand – leaving clean plastic to go through the recycling process on its own. The processed turf can then also be repurposed and used in other products.
There is a growing market for recycling fake grass and more facilities are opening across Europe and throughout the world every year. This is also largely due to the rise in the demand for artificial grass.
Thanks to their highly durable nature, plastic fibres can withstand wear and tear, doesn’t dry out or require any fertilisers, and it’s weatherproof.
There are also different types of artificial grass available and various accessories to choose from. This plays a role in the recycling effort of course, as the more diverse the component materials are, the bigger the challenge to effectively recycle these materials into something new.
How Fake Grass Is Recycled
When recycling artificial grass, the process starts with removing the infill. The turf and backing are separated from each other, where the turf blades are ground into small pellets that can either be used again for new artificial grass or be used in completely new products.
The backing is also recycled into new raw materials that can be used for a range of new products. With recent developments over the last few years, it’s now possible to recycle artificial turf to create brand new turf.
This is done by extracting the various properties, then sterilising and cleaning the components. The properties are then prepared to make brand new turf.
The pellets that were made from the original turf blades are then recycled into raw materials for the same product using the same process.
When recycling artificial grass, the plastic part can be repurposed in a wide range of applications. One example is using plastic as filler for road base.
Plastic is shredded and mixed into asphalt and cement to create a cost-effective and lightweight filler for roads. Countries all over the world have adopted this strategy as a way of recycling plastic products.
Recycling is considered to be a great solution for eliminating the growing problem of plastic waste. The first asphalt and plastic road was installed by the University of California in 2018.
Turf blades can be used in a similar way as they are introduced into roads to make them stronger. This also means reduced expenses as it’s cheaper to use recycled products than installing new roads with cement or asphalt alone.
Repurpose Rather Than Recycled
Even if your fake grass has served its purpose, there are many ways in which you can repurpose the turf rather than sending it to be recycled in-to something new.
Apart from using it on roads as mentioned above, the materials extracted from recycled artificial grass have many other uses.
As an example, in a commercial setting artificial grass can be used as flooring materials in batting cages. It can also be used as ground cover in dog parks or animal shelters, or even be used in driving ranges.
Homeowners can repurpose artificial grass as a flooring cover in storage sheds or the garage. It can also be used to ‘upgrade’ your pet’s outdoor space. You can also get a little creative and use fake grass on the inside of your dog’s house to make it a bit more comfortable and unique.
How about cleaning your used turf with water and soap, cutting them into smaller pieces, and using them as washable outdoor mats? The options are endless – especially with a little creativity.
How Artificial Turf Is Recycled
With more and more people committed to a sustainable environment, there have been many advancements in technology to simplify the process of recycling artificial turf.
As a matter of fact, a growing number of companies are dedicated to recycling these artificial materials. The global waste recycling services market is valued at USD$53.71 billion and is expected to grow a compound annual growth of 5.2% from 2020 to 2027.
During the recycling process, landscaping materials are separated and processed, to be recycled in the most efficient way. Artificial turf is usually cut and melted into pellets before being converted into raw materials to create new products.
In some cases, fake grass infill can be used to produce energy; although this is a great way to aid in energy production, it can also contribute to pollution so it’s generally not the best way in which to repurpose artificial turf components.
With so many ways in which artificial grass can be repurposed and recycled, it remains a great benefit for homeowners and commercial players alike.
My Lovely Lawn supply high-quality artificial grass and comes with a 10-year guarantee. For more information about the benefits of artificial grass and the different types available, visit our online shop today or get in touch at 020 3432 3002.