Winters can be brutal on football fields. When you watch a National Football League game in the winter, you may notice that snow and ice don’t build upon the ground as they should. Hydronic radiant heating systems are a reliable way to keep your football field clear of snow and ice during winter weather. Many stadiums in the northern United States employ these devices to maintain the field clean, and the hash marks visible and keep the players safe while playing.
Disadvantages of traditional methods:
Some people are still using traditional methods for ice melting of fields. They use ice melter to cover the entire field and then spray water.
Troubles with this method:
- The amount of ice melter is not enough to cover the entire field, and the result is: uneven melting
- Melting the ice should be done when the temperature is at least 5 degrees below zero, so it takes time to melt the ice
- The water used for spraying freezes again and creates more problems, such as frozen grass, uneven surface weave less grass, etc.
- After rain or snow, there will be a lot of debris left on the field
- It takes a lot of time to prepare for the game because you have to remove all the debris left by the old system, put down a new layer of ice melter, spray water on it, etc.
- If it is windy day or night, you can’t do anything about it because there is no way to heat the whole field before the game begins
- There is no guarantee that your body will not get wet before playing
- When you have a big game coming up, all your players are practicing hard on a slippery and hard playfield which affects their performance.
Choosing the right system:
It is necessary to say that the ice melter you choose should meet several conditions. The main thing is a powerful heat source. It should not be too expensive, and it should pay off quickly.
Tried, tested, and approved by many different enterprises, the heating systems for football fields are no longer a secret. They are considered the most effective way to remove snow and ice from the surface of your football field. The process takes place very quickly and allows you to get back on the field as soon as possible.
Many people prefer this method because of the safety and environmental friendliness of the solution. Moreover, such methods allow you to save money purchasing heating fuel and much more.
Implementation in the football field:
According to the magazine Popular Mechanics, the Green Bay Packers’ Lambeau Field was the earliest to implement in-turf heating to battle harsh Wisconsin winters. The players benefit from getting better traction with an ice-free playing field, which groundskeeper Allen Johnson says he enjoys his system vibrating sideways at 38 degrees overhead freezing. But still cold enough to let the grass begin to “harden off and get tougher.”
While many football stadiums in cold climates use radiant heating systems, each stadium has its strategy for turning on radiant heating based on what they expect from their region’s winters. Using in-turf heating allows players to benefit from the increased grip on an ice-free playing surface.
Almost every stadium’s staff uses radiant heating systems to keep their players warm during the cold weather. PEX (cross-linked polyethylene) pipes are often used in these systems, buried six inches below the surface. This system works by warming up a liquid and pumping it underneath the field, melting the snow and ice that form there. The boiler held a mixture of glycol and water, the liquid or fluid that flows in the pipes to prevent the field from accumulating ice.
Pumps bring the liquid back up to a hot boiler in a stadium that is used to heat the stadium while keeping this liquid at an even temperature.
Radiant Vs. Hydronic heating systems:
Hydronic systems are better for large areas, while electric radiant heating is ideal for smaller areas, such as a football stadium. Hydronic radiant heating, which allows you to target specific spots in your space, can be more easily installed and is more responsive than electric radiant heating systems.
Interior and exterior spaces can experience the radiant heat of an electric hydronic heating system. Cable mats and other cable systems allow you to install at different spacing and unusually shaped areas, while mats provide easy installation. Electric radiant heat helps to eliminate ice and snow from outdoor walkways, patios, and driveways with a snow-melting system that can be installed indoors or outdoors.
Football fields are susceptible to cold weather because they are open and exposed. Unlike most other sports surfaces with stands or walls surrounding them, football fields are subject to the elements. Traditional methods are not enough to heat the fields most conveniently, so we must move towards advanced systems.