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6 December 2016
pitch resurface, artificial turf, synthetic pitch, SIS Pitches, SISTurf

How often should a sports pitch be resurfaced?

There is no exact length of time for when a pitch should be resurfaced,as each pitch is unique. There are several factors that will affect the quality of a sport pitch that will determine when it needs to be resurfaced, for example,  the levels of usage, the type of sport being played, the type of pitch, maintenance and upkeep of the pitch and local environmental conditions. 

How long should a pitch last before needing to be resurfaced?

Generally, good quality synthetic turf should last for 8 years. Assuming around 40 hours of play a week, with correct usage and maintenance, an artificial pitch should continue to meet the appropriate standards for the next 8 years. 

After this, the pitch may still continue to perform for some years but you should expect a drop off in its quality. Some surfaces have lasted over 15 years, but by that stage there are plenty of tell-tale signs that the pitch has passed its shelf life.

What to look for to know it’s time to resurface an artificial pitch?

Warning signs that it’s time for artificial pitch resurfacing include seams opening up, drainage not working and fibre coming out. In some cases, the fibre can be worn away completely, especially in heavily used areas. But why wait until your pitch has reached this stage of distress?

If a pitch is regularly maintained, and is inspected or tested annually, it should be possible to predict when a field’s performance starts to dip. At this stage, plans should be put into place to replace the surface. And if the pitch was installed over a good shock pad and base, the replacement cost is restricted to just the surface itself.

How is an  artificial pitch resurfaced

1. Remove the existing artificial pitch surface 

The first step to resurfacing a sports pitch is to remove the existing artificial pitch surface. This can be done in a couple different ways. Before removing the surface, examine the condition as some parts of the current pitch may be reused.

2. Pitch Infill Extraction and Reuse

If parts of the old surface can be reused, then the infill material is extracted out. 

For old hockey fields, it is unlikely the sand can be reused in another synthetic turf pitch, but it can be used on natural grass fields. If it is an old 3G pitch being resurfaced, then the rubber infill can be taken out, cleansed and reused. Again, the sand from an old 3G pitch is harder to reuse on a new surface.


3. Old Synthetic Pitch Removal

The old artificial pitch surface is now much lighter and can be cut into strips ready for reuse or disposal. The strips are rolled up and stacked ready for disposal. Often old synthetic turf is used for walkways, and occasionally re-laid in smaller sports areas. 

It can be recycled but currently the transport costs make this an expensive exercise. Synthetic turf can be converted back into a low grade plastic, converted into energy through burning in kilns or can be disposed of in landfill.


4. Old Synthetic Pitch Disposal

If there is no value in the synthetic turf, and extraction is not a viable consideration the turf will be lifted, complete with infill and disposed of. There are companies who will take the turf in this way and find alternative uses for it, such as in equestrian areas. Often very old turf will be taken to landfill.


The synthetic turf industry has working groups monitoring recycling and disposal options, whilst specialist companies are currently looking for commercial solutions to re-use turf. With tighter environmental regulations coming in there now has to be a record of where and how waste is disposed, ensuring companies are compliant with regulations and pitch owners can ensure their pitch is disposed of correctly.


5. New Synthetic Grass Installed

Once the pitch base is prepared, the new synthetic grass can be installed, completing the artificial pitch resurfacing project!

 If you are looking to resurface an old 3G synthetic pitch, SIS Pitches can manage the whole process for you. Our sports pitch resurfacing will transform your old pitch, ready for safe, high quality play again. Just get in touch to find out more.

Pitch Resurfacing FAQs

How long does pitch resurfacing take?

The time it takes to resurface a pitch will depend on different factors, including the company you choose to do the resurfacing, the size of the pitch, the quality of the current pitch and its location.

At SIS Pitches, we can re-turf a natural grass pitch in just 48 hours and a synthetic turf field in only three weeks.

How much does pitch resurfacing cost?

The cost to resurface a pitch will depend on:

  • who you choose to complete the project
  • the quality of pitch you choose
  • the size of the pitch
  • the type of pitch
  • the location of the pitch

At SIS Pitches, every project will have different needs and requirements, if you’re interested in having your pitch resurfaced then please get in touch.

How to reduce the risk of needing to resurface your artificial grass pitch?

Every pitch will need resurfacing eventually, but there are several things you can do over the lifespan of an artificial grass pitch to keep it looking and performing its best. 

  • Avoid using harsh chemicals on the artificial grass pitch.
  • Avoid using extreme heat on the artificial grass pitch.
  • Ensure to complete regular maintenance, cleaning and upkeep of the pitch.
  • Do not use sharp objects on the pitch.
  • Avoid excessive weight on the artificial grass, for example, vehicles or heavy machinery.

Get in touch!

If you’re looking for an expert in sport pitch installation,maintenance and resurfacing, SISPitches can help. We have years of experience, installing and maintaining some of the world’s most famous pitches. Arrange your free consultation today.