Sports Surface Rejuvenation – remedial work NOT maintenance

Over the last few weeks, the Playrite team have seen some articles about ‘Artificial Sports Pitches Rejuvenation Maintenance’ – where work is carried out to help prevent the build up of moss, algae and debris in the infill of the synthetic surface. If the infill becomes contaminated this will affect the porosity of the pitch and will inevitably effect the playing performance and characteristics.

I wanted to learn more so spoke to our Area Manager Sean Colbert, who has a wealth of knowledge regarding maintenance of synthetic surfaces. He told me that most importantly “rejuvenation isn’t maintenance it’s more likely to be a remedial operation.”

I had further questions.

Lorna: So why isn’t rejuvenation classed as maintenance?

Sean: Rejuvenation is a one off operation to have a specific problem on the surface resolved. It’s not something routinely scheduled into the works carried out on a pitch. A majority of surfaces may never have this work done and may never need it. If a pitch, whether sand dressed needlepunch, sand filled, or 3G sand and rubber filled has benefitted from a proper maintenance regime rejuvenation may never be required.

It’s a bit like saying that after 70,000 miles your car will need its engine taken out and replaced for a new one, and this is just part of the maintenance of the vehicle.

Lorna: If rejuvenation is needed, at what stage in the surfaces life cycle do you recommend this should happen?

Sean: A time limit is very difficult to set as there are lots of contributing factors. Infill plays a big part – in sand filled surfaces therefore these instances are more readily resolved by rejuvenation, needlepunch surfaces that are sand dressed are less likely to face these contaminative problems.

In the majority of cases you may experience problems 10-12 years into the life of the pitch – at this point many operators may consider the life of the surface to be over and consideration is more likely to be given to the replacement rather than the expensive recovery of an already worn surface.

Lorna: I’ve seen a few articles about rejuvenation of late – why do you think it’s becoming more popular in the synthetic surfaces industry?

Sean: Rejuvenation is usually a single operation to overcome a specific problem that some pitches may develop. It’s a remedy to an issue a pitch might have, and in many instances can be a profitable operation and some operators may advice that on health and safety issues this is carried out more regularly, but other factors need to be taken into consideration. My advice is if in doubt, always get a second opinion and compare costs as techniques will differ from company to company. Also, it is worth asking could it be a more cost effective option simply to replace a worn and failing surface?

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