sweepfast


Moss Killer

Blooming Stuff

From short pile tennis courts through to water based and sand dressed or filled pitches, the result is the same; everything was going fine then, one morning, the surface starts showing signs of sludge across the surface.

Water Based Hockey Pitch Pre Spray

Electronic Microscope Close Up Of Algae Infestation In a Synthetic Grass Surface Pre-Spray

Simplified, the typical drainage scenario on a sand based pitch is as follows; for several years everything appears fine, and drainage is good. Suddenly, the drainage rates slow down and then, after a further year or so, the drainage fails. Water can’t percolate through the surface as it should; the organic contamination in the pitch floats to the surface, water then drains slowly through the lowest spots on the surface, leaving the sludge behind as dark coloured puddles.

Usually, with either a visual assessment or sedimentation testing, it is possible to determine what stage these surfaces are at in their lifespan, in respect of drainage and sedimentation. However, algae nullifies everything. Really rapid blooms can lead to temporary drainage failures, and this has the same result as a conventional drainage failure. Water cannot drain through the surface, even relatively small percentages of contamination can be flushed to the surface and leave the dreaded sludge puddles.

You can remove the sludge from the surface, but as with conventional drainage failures, as soon as it rains again it’s back! You can spray it with any one of the dozen or so chemicals available, keep your fingers and everything else crossed and hope that you have good results!

Moss and algae infestation can be a serious problem on all types of outdoor sports and amenity surfaces.

Failure to treat the algae and moss quickly can eventually mean that only a full refurbishment of the surface will restore the pitch.

Early treatment is essential with a safe and effective moss or algae killer

Water Based Hockey Pitch Post Clean

Same Location Post Spray With RBT 247

Moss usually has two growth periods during a year, the first in the autumn, after which the plant produces spores during the winter ready to germinate in the following spring. The second in the spring, when the plant produces spores again ready to germinate in the autumn, thus continuing the life cycle.

Algae is also a serious and potentially hazardous problem on artificial surfaces, particularly water based hockey pitches, as it can severely impede drainage, especially under the present UK weather conditions. If you can see moss on the surface of your court or pitch, you probably already have a significant algal infestation, as the two thrive in the same conditions.

Three easy to spot indicators of the presence of algae on your surface are:

1) a slippery surface
2) dark patches that vary in size
3) a players clean white kit becoming extremely dirty during a game, especially if they fall over

Algae should be treated promptly because of the potentially hazardous conditions it can create for users of the surface.

Try to prevent the moist conditions that favour the establishment of moss and algae by maintaining good surface water infiltration and drainage. Unfortunately, the moist conditions cannot be avoided on a water-based pitch.

Inspect the surface for moss or algae on a regular basis, and treat any outbreaks of moss or algae as and when required.

Treatment:

To treat an infected area effectively, it must be sprayed with a proprietary brand of Moss & Algae control. This can be applied using tractor mounted sprayers, walkovers and knapsacks at most times of the year, providing conditions are moist.

Spot treatments should be carried out as and when required during the rest of the year.

Water based pitches may require several treatments per year, with the addition of regular deep cleaning, owing to the ideal conditions for moss and algal growth that water based surfaces provide.

Sweepfast can offer autumn winter servicing to your surfaces, this may include; sludge removal from the surface, spaying the whole area with an algaecide, working the algaecide into the surface and re-spraying the surface 7-10 days later.

http://www.sweepfast.com

 



tennis court cleaning

In Half a Day?

“Can you clean my tarmac tennis court?” The voice at the other end of the phone says. “It’s got a bit of moss on it” they add, it’s then that you know it’s really bad.

But it’s not all bad news, and a tarmac court is easily cleaned off using high pressure water through a flat surface cleaner to spread the pressure out so it doesn’t rip up the tarmac. You see tennis court tarmac has to be by nature free draining and therefore it’s not compacted down as much as say a playground or roadway, and as such is much more fragile.

The order of play is to treat first to kill off the live moss, then clean it out using the appropriate system, then treat again to mop up the remaining moss and algae, and finally to colour coat in some new non slip paint to protect it for another few years.

Cardiff_2

All this work is done in house by our own trained technicians, and re lined using the latest laser technology.

For a free site visit and quote call 0121 747 9255, visit www.sweepfast.com or email sales@sweepfast.com

 



Algae and Moss Remover
Moss Killer

RBT247 Moss and Algae Remover

RBT 247 is recognised as the safe and efficient and effective way to remove moss and algae from a variety of outdoor surfaces around the home and and in the commercial sector. It is now available in 1,  5, 10 and 20 Litre containers, to treat the following areas:

After being treated once RBT 247 can be re-applied within one week at half rate to get a more intense clean and a longer lasting result. Further treatments will enhance the life of the treatment as the residual barrier is built up to inhibit further re growths. This layer is created as a microbial protective layer which does not contain alcohol, chlorine or bleach, and as such is completely safe to animals and humans and is fully HSE approved (No 9173).

Moss and Algae

Moss and Algae

It is completely safe to use on a variety of materials such as wood, glass, plastic, metal stone etc etc.

Buy this now from Sweepfast via this link and have it shipped next day!

Moss and Algae Remover

Moss and Algae Remover



Cleansweep

Maintaining an artificial grass tennis court is no easy feat, and it’s so easy to ignore the leaves etc etc until they decay and can’t be seen any more. But do this at your peril because this WILL BE the kiss of death for your artificial grass pitch or tennis court. If left to decay on the surface the leaf and tree litter will cause the infill material to become clogged, causing more problems as the water refuses to drain through. Black sludge patches rapidly begin to appear as the water which by now is lying on the surface brings this decaying matter to the top, and suddenly you will notice the results of your neglect. When this begins to happen there is only one way forward and that is a full refurbishment, where the sand infill is completely removed and replaced with new. This produces great results and you’re left with a virtually new surface that drains and plays as good as the day it was first installed.

But take this back a step, if the surface was maintained in the first instance this procedure would probably not be needed for many years, instead of after just a few. Brushing with a stiff broom was the traditional way to keep an artificial grass surface looking good, but brushing dead leaves across a synthetic grass tennis court is not good practice and will simply grind in the debris and push it into the sand infill. So what is needed is something light, easy to use but still collects the leaves as it goes.
Enter the Cleansweep synthetic grass cleaning mat.

The Cleansweep

The Cleansweep Artificial Grass Maintenance Machine

This device with a little forward motion provided by a reasonable walking pace will sift through the sand infill and separate it from the debris, working it back in as it goes. The debris can be shaken off every few passes and the court will be swept clean in about 10 mins. If done every time before play then the risk of walking the leaf litter into the surface will be almost completely removed, and with no noise created or additional cost input from fuel it rapidly becomes an economical piece of equipment despite its initially high purchase cost. There’s simply nothing else on the market that does what this device can and they are always in stock in the Sweepfast Midlands Depot.



Moss & Algae Killer

Buy RBT 247 moss and algae killer now and get spraying!!

As long as it’s not raining or frozen solid with RBT 247 there’s no bad time to kill off moss and algae infestations on any outdoor surface. You can treat one full sized tennis court once, for example for as little as £30.00 + delivery and VAT. In the more serious cases a second or third application is going to be necessary to complete the treatment, then regular follow ups every few months is all that’s needed.

Simply mix 1 Litre of RBT 247 into 10 Litres of clean water and apply to 110 sq m of outdoor surface. Leave for a couple of days and marvel at the results, then several months later the surface will still be free from infestations, and no scrubbing, scraping, brushing or power washing has been involved!!

For just £30.00 a 5 Litre can will treat 550 sq m or,

£84.00 for a 20 litre can that will treat 2,200 sq m, the choice is yours just don’t put it off any longer, buy it now!!

Moss Killer

RBT247 Moss Killer



Bowdry

Water Removal With The Amazing Bowdry

“Breaking news, the weather forecasters are predicting rain, rain and even more rain!!!!”

This summers weather predictions are full of doom and gloom, and headlines like this must send a chill down the spine of anybody actively involved in the outdoor sports turf industry. Maintaining a usable sports field or track can be fraught with problems ranging from disease to wear and tear, and excessive rainfall is just another hindrance which can exacerbate already existing problems.

Removal of surface water can be of paramount importance in managing disease caused by standing water, and it puts the surface back into play straight away, reducing the financial burden due to losses caused by cancelled matches etc etc, not to mention the reduced costs of disease controlling chemicals.

One of the most tried and tested pieces of equipment on the market today is the Bowdry from Sweepfast, which in one pass quickly picks up the water and stores it on board until it needs to be emptied. The tank holds 60 Litres of water and emptying is a simple matter of removing the plug and draining off into a suitable gulley.

Bowdry will clear and dry any ground surface thick foam roller picks up water, dew, liquid mud, or any other floods or spills. Bowdry has an easily-emptied 60-litre holding tank save time – and revenue – where water-logged ground prevents play save lawsuits where slippery surfaces might cause accidents. Selected by the UK Design Council as a Millennium Product.

Price includes carriage to mainland UK and one free replacement sponge kit.

Bowdry

Bowdry

Bowdry
Bowdry

Bowdry

Bowdry



Artificial Turf vs Natural Turf

From reading various posts on turf management message boards and hearing some groundsmen’s opinions, although not necessarily the opinions of the industry as a whole, it seems artificial sports surfaces have accrued an unpopular reputation.

These views, however, are usually from diehard “old school” groundsmen who see them as the arch nemesis of natural turf. A view borne from either the notion that such a surface will not require their services and, therefore, render them redundant; or the simple fact that they do not want to admit that they don’t know how to maintain them.

My own experience in sports turf stems from a golf course background, and I freely admit I didn’t know what was required to maintain an artificial surface. Like many others I thought they required minimal maintenance inputs.

Several years ago I found myself sharing a portakabin for three years at Cranfield University with Dr Andy McLeod, who was conducting research into the maintenance of artificial sports surfaces. It was from here, through various discussions, that I developed a greater appreciation for artificials and their nuances; either that or I was the innocent victim of an indoctrination process!!

Nevertheless, however it came about; I left the ranks of the non-believers and became completely open minded about artificial surfaces. I say “surfaces” plural, as there are a range of surfaces to meet the different needs of sport, with surfaces such as acrylic, tufted (both sand filled and rubber crumb filled), woven, asphalt, and water based. The one thing that they have in common with natural turf surfaces is that they require good and regular maintenance to maintain good playing characteristics.

Joining Sweepfast has given me the opportunity to learn the skill set required to produce a top quality playing surface, and has further opened my eyes to the different methods, machinery and techniques available for every situation.

Typical problems encountered are very similar to those experienced on natural turf areas, namely poor drainage, moss infestations, compaction (of the infill), surface debris – primarily leaf litter which leads to contamination of the infill – and sunken or raised areas due to tree roots crossing beneath the surface. Other problems include seam failure, worn areas, and capping of the surface where carpet fibres have bent over and, after a prolonged period, literally become welded together.

In general the company is called in for annual maintenance or where a surface has been poorly maintained and has got to the point where it requires specialist treatment.

Some surfaces encountered are so bad, due to neglect or ignorance, that you can’t actually see the playing surface. It never ceases to amaze me that what looks like a basket case, can be transformed into a first class playing surface, with playing characteristics as good as natural turf. As the nature of this kind of work is very specialist the company travels far and wide, up, down, and across the country, literally to all points of the compass, both in the UK and overseas.

I have also been surprised at the broad spectrum of the company’s client base, ranging from a privately owned tennis court in someone’s back garden, through to Premier League training facilities.

Artificial surfaces are usually constructed for year round play, and can be located in areas where they receive lots of wear, which a natural turf surface could not sustain, such as a local authority pitch in a built up area. And, when I say a built up area, they can be exactly that, built up, to the point where we have to employ a crane to be able to access the pitch with the machinery.

In cases like this, it is not viewed as a problem, but as a challenge. As with any playing surface, natural or artificial, the timing and speed at which the maintenance operations are carried out are very important, as the surfaces are usually fully booked up, whether they are a local authority pitch, private tennis club or school.

There are lots of pros and cons in the natural verses artificial debate, and that is a discussion that could go on and on. Which one provides the best playing surface, I could not say, as it depends on more than the skill of the groundsman. The finished surfaces are dependant on the initial performance characteristics specified for them, the design and build quality, the budget allocated for their maintenance, the environment in which they will be located, and how much wear they will be subjected to.

What is apparent is that no two surfaces are the same, and the nature of the problems encountered is dependant on the type of surface and the maintenance it has or hasn’t received. Research into the optimum construction method and the ideal maintenance regime is ongoing for both natural turf and artificial surfaces.

The development of new technologies for the maintenance of artificials is where I step in at Sweepfast but, due to commercial sensitivity, I can’t explain the new technology we are developing, but watch this space!

Written By Dr Colin Mumford



Surface Cleaning Moss and Algae Control

Sweepfast have been involved in outdoor sports surface cleaning for many years, and finding a safe reliable product that can be applied time and time again has been a persistent problem. With health and safety a major concern most of the active products have been removed from the market place leaving various products available some with wild claims regarding their performance. Here at Sweepfast we take an active interest in evaluating every product that comes our way, with some surprising results.  Click Here

Our particular problem is preparing a surface ready for our machinery to perform a deep clean service, this means treating the surface for biological contaminants such as moss and algae. A difficult problem especially given the climate we in the UK suffer at the moment. persistent and recurring showers mean that timing the treatment is essential, and a product that works effectively and quickly is necessary.

In the latest batch of trials we discovered that RBT 247 produces a very fast effective control of algae in water based hockey pitches, whilst Algon produces a rapid clean up of moss infested surfaces. Both are safe products to use when applied in the prescribed manner, also both products can be used on the sports field and around the home. Where RBT 247 has been used, we have found that moss and algae is reluctant to grow back so a long term control is obviously a very important benefit worth considering.

Both products are available from our web shop and will be delivered on a next day basis. Full backup, technical advice and safety data sheets are readily available, just log on to sweepfast and register to be able to download documents.



Hockey Pitch Cleaning

Water based or water filled synthetic grass pitches are another variation on the old Astroturf  idea for artificial sports surfaces that can be played on safely all year round irrespective of the weather conditions, with no detrimental effect on the surface. These water based surfaces are much used in the sport of Hockey, and the principle is that they are filled with water from overhead cannons prior to play, this acts as a wearing factor and it also affects play and it is essential that they are kept wet. However this amount of water will, if left untreated, lead to algae growth as debris and water gather in the base of the surface inhibiting free drainage and causing even further build up of contaminants and algae. All this will need treatment immediately if your valuable asset is to be kept in operation. Treatment of the water from the cannons is the front line of attack and careful choice of chemicals is essential. The surface is permanently wet so a chemical that requires high volumes of water to be effective is the main criteria here, however many of these water based pitches are near a water source, such as a river, or stream, or drains  that lead to a water source and this in itself will rule out many.

So this leads to another question, how on earth do we control this ever persistent problem. The simple solution is to remove the contaminants along with the algae by employing a contractor such as Sweepfast who have years of experience in this field, and who use purpose built systems and not just converted street sweepers.

Water Based Hockey Pitch Cleaning

Water Based Hockey Pitch Cleaning

The system Sweepfast use is built by the specialist machinery constructors Hoerger in Germany and is called the SKR system. This uses the same pump and tank recovery unit as the KBR for cleaning running tracks, however the front head unit is completely different and is built just to clean water based surfaces. It utilises an extremely powerful pump which drives high volume  water under high pressure into the surface displacing the algae, debris, moss and remaining water to the surface

Water Based Hockey Pitch Cleaning

Water Based Hockey Pitch Cleaning

where it is immediately picked up by the head unit, this  pumps it straight into the holding tank which is emptied as soon as it’s full into a suitable drainage area.

Hockey Pitch Cleaning

Tank Emptying

Microscope close ups of a contaminated pitch before and after the deep clean process are below, this particular pitch was in a dreadful condition with untreated algae almost filling the pile to the top. In this instance it is always best to dry the pitch down, treat with a suitable chemical about 10 days prior to the deep clean. The results below explain why.

Water Based Hockey Pitch Pre Spray

Water Based Hockey Pitch Pre Spray

Water Based Hockey Pitch Post Clean
Water Based Hockey Pitch Post Clean



Tennis Court Cleaning

With the summer promising to arrive sometime soon, and thoughts of playing tennis again firmly set in your mind, you walk out into the garden with raquet in hand only to find your beautiful artificial grass tennis court covered in leaves, blossom etc etc. With the only tools at hand being a large brush you start the arduous task of brushing the court, some 550 sq m of it, to enable play to take place. The after effects of brushing artificial grass surfaces look ok, but close inspection will reveal a lot of broken up leaf litter and other debris pressed into the infill, which is less than desirable and will cause long term problems encouraging moss growth and eventually leading to drainage failure leading to a tennis court looking a little like this:

Artificial Grass Tennis Court Covered In Moss

Artificial Grass Tennis Court Covered In Moss

This court was particularly bad with moss up to 25mm deep over most of the surface, it certainly looked as though it needed mowing!!

A few days later it looked like this:

Artificial Grass Tennis Court With Moss Removed

Artificial Grass Tennis Court With Moss Removed

After play had resumed on it all it needed was a sand top up and it was back to as new condition, but the most important question from the customer was how do I prevent this from happening again? The answer to this in essence is quite simple but it does need pressing home, MAINTENANCE!! If the facility, which had cost a lot of money to install in the first place, had been maintained from the outset this situation would never have arisen, and the golden rule for maintaining all outdoor sports surfaces is Cleanliness. The first weapon for the groundsperson or owner is the Cleansweep cleaning mat, with this simple yet effective tool you will be able to clean and remove litter from an artificial grass tennis court in just a few minutes. The Cleansweep will sweep, remove leaf litter, twigs, blossom, seeds and other biological debris from the surface, then at  the same time it is working back in the sand that has been brought to the top of the surface leaving behind a clean even tennis court. All this in one simple machine makes regular maintenance of sand filled artificial grass tennis courts so easy it becomes a pleasurable regular task with satisfying end results.

The next procedure to put in place is to treat the surface regularly for moss control, with the restrictions now on most chemicals that were effective on moss and algae some of the surface cleaner chemicals are suitable to apply regularly without causing environmental issues. One such product is Algon, this product works on contact with the plant and the process starts rapidly with noticeable effects visible within a couple of days. Once the kill has been completed and the moss is brown it can be brushed from the surface, this can be done by hand but again it is an arduous task, and a solution is to use a powerbrush. The simplest and cheapest of these is the Texas Handysweep 600TG, this will rapidly powersweep dead moss from the surface leaving it clear for another application of moss killer.

With all this in place the last course of action is to book in a deep clean service once a year during the driest period to remove debris, dead moss and broken fibre from deep down in the carpet where brushing with the Cleansweep and the Handysweep can’t reach. This process is carried out with a Hoerger SKU machine either driven by a tractor or mounted on an Avant machine and driven hydraulically.

As long as these procedures are followed strictly and carried out under the right conditions the artificial grass tennis court should stay in pristine condition for many to come.




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