Zeolite for Artificial Grass: All Your Questions Answered
Zeolite for artificial grass has been used as a specialist infill material for several years now.
But what exactly is zeolite? Is it safe to use? How much should you use? And how do you install it? These are some of the many questions we receive relating to zeolite.
And that’s why we have put together this Q&A article, which includes the most commonly asked questions we get here at NeoGrass regarding zeolite.
If you have a question which we haven’t included on our list, then let us know in the comments section at the bottom of this page and we’ll add your question, along with the answer.
Let’s start by finding out exactly what zeolite is.
What is zeolite?
Natural zeolite is a volcanic mineral. Most natural zeolites have a chemical formula of M2/n:Al2O3:xSiO2:yH2O.
The word ‘zeolite’ originates from the Greek words ‘zeo’ (to boil) and ‘litos’ (a stone). This is because when heated, zeolite produces large amounts of steam from the water around it.
What does zeolite for artificial grass actually do?
The porous structure of zeolite provides excellent cation exchange capacity. This means it has the ability to absorb heavy metals, and other molecules such as ammonia and nitrate ions.
This makes it ideal for use as an infill material for artificial grass that is used by pets, as it will absorb the ammonia, which is the main culprit responsible for lingering odours on artificial grass. The ammonia is then flushed away during rainfall.
It can also help to lower the temperature of an artificial lawn.
Where does it come from?
Natural zeolite is mined mainly in China, South Korea, Japan and the United States.
How does zeolite work?
Zeolite works by absorbing the ammonia found within urine to help prevent nasty, lingering odours in artificial turf.
It has a negatively charged honeycomb structure that absorbs the ammonia contained within urine, like a sponge.
During rainfall, the sodium ion found within rain droplets releases the bacteria and flushes the ammonia through the turf, recharging the zeolite when dry.
How do I know if my lawn needs zeolite?
Zeolite infill is only recommended for artificial lawns that will be used by pets. It will help to prevent lingering odours from urine. If your lawn holds lingering smells caused by urine, then zeolite would be recommended.
Is it safe for children and pets?
Zeolite in its natural form is 100% safe for children and pets. Zeolite, in a smaller particle size, is in fact used as a detoxifier and is sold for human consumption in supplement form. However, we do not recommend that you encourage your dog to ingest zeolite.
How long does it last?
The lifespan of zeolite is generally just as long as the artificial turf that it is applied to.
Will it damage my artificial grass?
No; zeolite is softer than sand and pressure will crush it before tearing the fibres of artificial turf, due to the honeycomb structure of the mineral.
Do I install zeolite on top of my lawn or below it?
Installing zeolite within the pile of your turf is most effective as it catches the ammonia in the urine before it reaches the backing material of your artificial grass. You can, however, scatter a thin layer on top of the laying course of your artificial grass, too.
Is zeolite suitable for all types of pile height?
We recommend using a grass with a minimum pile height of 35mm, otherwise the turf will be unable to hold enough zeolite to absorb the ammonia.
How do I install zeolite?
Please follow the DeoFill® installation method, which is:
- Brush the fibres of your artificial turf using a stiff broom or, ideally, a power brush to ensure the fibres are vertical.
- Apply a quarter of the required quantity of DeoFill® evenly onto your artificial lawn. For best results, use a drop spreader.
- Use the stiff broom or power brush to work the granules of DeoFill® to the bottom of the pile.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 to continue applying DeoFill® in small amounts until the required quantities have been evenly applied to the entire area.
- Using a garden hose, water down the dust on the surface of your lawn. You may need to use a combination of water and brushing to remove the dust completely.
Do you recommend using zeolite AND silica sand infill?
We recommend using just one type of infill. If you have pets, then using zeolite is good choice, but otherwise we would recommend using a rounded, kiln-dried silica sand.
Does zeolite produce dust during installation?
There is always an element of dust released when installing zeolite onto your artificial lawn. We highly recommend that you hose down your grass on completion of the installation to rinse off the dust. We also recommend that you avoid installing it on a windy day, to prevent the dust blowing into your neighbours’ gardens!
Can zeolite be installed in the rain?
No, we recommend installing it on a dry day. If your lawn is wet, it will be far more difficult to work the granules to the bottom of the pile.
Does zeolite swell when it rains?
No, zeolite does not increase or decrease in size when it absorbs or releases moisture.
How much zeolite will I need for my artificial lawn?
We recommend that you follow the DeoFill® guidelines:
This depends upon the size and/or number of dogs that will be using your lawn.
For small/medium-sized dogs – use 7–8kg per square metre.
For large dogs – use 10–12kg per square metre.
For multiple dogs – use as much as your artificial grass will hold.
Note: If the pile on your turf is too short to hold the required quantities then it is possible to place DeoFill® underneath your artificial turf; however, DeoFill® performs best on the surface.
Does zeolite require any maintenance?
Natural rainfall will flush away the ammonia absorbed by zeolite without the need for hosing. Too much water will restrict the ability of zeolite to retain ammonia.
During long periods without rainfall, use a PE-51 enzyme cleaner to kill any bacteria.
Continue to follow your manufacturer’s recommendations for maintaining your artificial lawn and bear in mind you may need to periodically top-up the zeolite, as necessary.
How is zeolite supplied?
It is typically available in 25kg bags.
Where can I buy zeolite?
We stock DeoFill®, a specialist artificial infill that is made up of high-quality zeolite. You can buy DeoFill® here.
We hope that this article has answered some of the burning questions you may have about using zeolite on your artificial grass.
For pet owners who are struggling to control lingering odours, zeolite can be a godsend. It even has the added advantage of helping to cool your artificial lawn.
If you have any questions that we haven’t answered in this article, then be sure to leave us a comment below and we’ll do our best to answer any queries you may have.
Alternatively, you can call us on 01245 931 200 and speak with our friendly advisors, who are more than happy to discuss anything zeolite related – or anything relating to artificial grass in general, for that matter.