New Clay Tennis Court Owners' Guide To Maintenance

Posted on: 20 May 2016

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If you're a keen tennis player and you have the space on your property, you might decide to invest in having your very own clay tennis court constructed. But what's involved in maintaining a clay court in order to keep it in the same great condition it was in when it was first built?  Read on for a new owners' guide to clay court maintenance and upkeep.

Weekly maintenance tasks

There are a number of tasks that should be carried out each week.  All the maintenance tools that you need for these jobs can be obtained from the tennis court supplier.

Brushing

Clay tennis courts are constructed with a loose top dressing material that allows players to slide in a controlled way when playing.  It's important to brush clay courts regularly to redistribute the top dressing evenly across the whole playing surface. However, brushing can also cause the court surface to dry out and become dusty and too slippery and is therefore best carried out immediately prior to watering or if the court is already wet.

Watering

Watering your clay court is necessary in order to keep the surface stable and to provide players with good traction.  During spells of very dry weather, you may need to water your court more than once a week in order to prevent the wind from blowing away the surface dressing.

The best way of watering your clay court is to use a garden hosepipe with the nozzle set to a medium misting setting.  This enables you to soak the court evenly without washing away the top dressing or causing pooling.

Rolling

Rolling your clay court is important as it helps to keep the main substrate of the construction firm and stable and prevents the build-up of too much loose top dressing.  If you want your court to play faster, you should roll it frequently.

For rolling to be most effective, it should be carried out after the court has been brushed and watered.

Monthly maintenance tasks

In addition to these weekly jobs, you'll need to carry out some routine monthly checks as follows:

  • check the line tapes to make sure that they are not starting to curl or lift
  • inspect the court for divots or troughs that will need to be raked and levelled
  • weed the perimeter of the court
  • clear drainage channels of debris

Annual reconditioning work

Once a year, it's a good idea to have your court reconditioned by a professional tennis court construction company.

The line tapes will be removed, and then the court will be cleaned of all surface debris and scraped to get rid of any oversized dressing particles.  The court will then be levelled to even out any low or high patches, and new top dressing will be added. Finally, new line tapes will be fitted.

In conclusion

If you want to keep your newly constructed clay tennis court in good condition, you will need to be prepared to spend time and effort in maintaining it as outlined above.  This will ensure that your court remains playable and enjoyable for many years to come.