USA vs Imported:
Why Does it Matter?
|Only sources the most reputable yarn extruders in the industry||Extrudes their own yarn the least expensive way possible|
|To help reduce shine and give a more dimensional and realistic look to the finished product||Shiny, flat fibers/blades that look nothing like real grass|
|Pure resin material used to extrude yarn fibers: Polyethylene, Polypropylene & Nylon||Sub-standard, low grade resins with excessive fillers used to lower costs of their material.|
|Highest quality UV stabilizers mixed with the resin to prevent color fade||No evidence of UV stabilizers used in plastic yarn resins|
|ASTM test performed to confirm lead free yarn||No tests performed to confirm lead content in Chinese turf products|
|Compromised resins in the yarn result in poor performing grass materials that wont stand up to the elements|
|Smart Turf Backs their turf with Polyurethane||Rough, black shiny coating|
|Polyurethane lasts much longer than latex resulting in longer turf warranty||Uses latex material that won't stand up to the elements. Turf will start to deteriorate within 1-2 years|
|Smart Turf uses 20 oz. per sq. yd. of urethane to hold the tufts of turf yarn in place for years to come||Not enough material coated to the backing, resulting in poor turf bind; the blades become loose and pull out.|
|Urethane is superior for households with pets because it is easier to clean and it does not absorb||Latex absorbs urine and odors. Your landscape will start to stink within days|
USA Turf (SmartTurf)
- Yarn Fibers
- Coating & Backing
Chinese & Imported Turf
- Yarn Fibers
- Coating & Backing
How Artificial Grass is Made
Step 1: Yarn Production
Yarn is produced through an extrusion process. Most turf yarn is made with polyethylene (1). Polyethylene (PE) is the most common plastic made and is used to make plastic bags, bottles, and many other packaging materials. Other plastics used to make turf yarn are polypropylene (PP) and nylon.
These 2 plastics are typically used as textured yarns for thatch, putting greens and batting cages. The process starts by melting down the plastic from a chip/pellet form. During this melting process additional materials are added which include pigment/color (2) and ultra violet (UV) stabilizers & inhibitors (3) and Polymers (4).
This melted material is then pushed through a metal die called a spinneret. The spinneret has a particular shape that will form the profile of the yarn. Once the yarn leaves the spinneret it enters a cooling process that locks in the profile and solidifies the yarn. Once the yarn is cooled down, it is wound onto a cone and packaged.
Step 2: Tufting
Tufting is a process used to sew yarn into backing. This is done with a large machine called a tufting machine.
The tufting machine is similar to a sewing machine, however it has a 15’ wide row of needles. As backing feeds into the machine, the machine pulls yarn from a large number of yarn cones and simultaneously sews them into the backing.
As these needles sew the yarn into the backing there are knives under the machine that cut each yarn before the needle pulls back out of the backing.
Step 3: Coating
Coating is the final process where the yarn tufting is locked into the backing. The tufted rolls are fed into the coater with the pile facing down. As the material goes through the machine Polyurethane (PU) (9) is spread over the backing. Once the material is completely covered it travels into a large oven where controlled heat is used to cure the polyurethane from a liquid state to a semi-hardened state.
The cured material remains flexible so the turf can bend and form to the landscape. At the final stage the cured back passes through a tunnel where heated spikes melt water drain holes in the back. From here the turf is inspected, rolled up and packaged. There are a number of new style backing systems in the market. These are all cheaper options than traditional PU coating. PU coating is the most tested, tried and true system in the industry. This is the same system that every NFL football team plays on as well as all other high profile turf projects.