Given recent technological advancements, there are a number of ways you can go about aerating your lawn today. But before getting into that, it's important to pin down exactly what lawn aeration is and what kind of benefits it will provide you with. In basic terms, aeration is a process which creates deeper root growth and less soil compaction in your lawn by creating small holes along the surface of your lawn. Aeration can be carried out chemically, manually or even completed with a liquid solution. Aside from improving the overall look of your lawn, aeration can also thicken your grass to make it appear fuller. For most homeowners, aerating one's lawn roughly every two years seems to produce the most positive results. Also, aeration can be highly effective for new lawns or lawns located above relatively compact soil.
Now, before getting down to the nitty-gritty, you need to choose the right time to aerate your lawn. While aerating your lawn almost always has some type of positive impact, you want to choose a time period in which your lawn is still relatively soft. For this, spring is often the most appropriate time to aerate your lawn. During this time, grass growth is very active and the root system is expanding as well, which can provide great benefits and increase the effectiveness of lawn aeration.
Now it is time to determine whether you would like to use a power aerator, also known as a coring machine, or a manual foot-pressed aerator. If your lawn is fairly small, using a manual aerator will probably save you more money in the long run and while you may spend more time aerating your lawn, it shouldn't take too long. To use the foot-pressed aerator, simply press each cylinder into the ground with your foot in the same way you would use a shovel. If you have a large area to aerate, using a power aerator is almost certainly worth the extra cost since it will surely save an incredible amount of time in comparison to manually aerating your lawn. If you choose to rent a power aerator, be sure to have a friend or assistant present to help you transport it and operate it as these machines are typically very heavy.
Before aerating, be sure to mark off any sprinkler heads or shallow pipes with yard flags. Use the same pattern as you normally would when mowing your lawn to aerate it. As you move along, you will see the long plugs removed from the ground and you shouldn't worry since this means aeration processes running smoothly. Although the plugs may look temporarily unsightly, you can simply rake them back into your lawn after the process has been completed. Consider fertilizing and seating your lawn shortly after aerating to produce even more positive results. Again, spring is one of the best times complete this process.