How to Make Your Own Lawn Aerator


Lawns need oxygen to grow. Aerating the lawn helps get oxygen to the roots and breaks up sod so roots can grow easily though the soil. Aeration also allows moisture to penetrate deeper into the ground. Mechanical lawn aerators can be costly to purchase and more costly to rent for short periods. A homemade method of lawn aeration can be as efficient and greatly reduces the cost of lawn maintenance.

Step 1

Locate a pair of old sneakers or sandals. Use a pair with good soles on them that are not worn down.

Step 2

Remove any lacing. Stretch open the sneakers so you have access to the inside base of the shoes. Drill two rows of four holes through the soles; keep the holes 1 inch from the sides of the sole. Use a drill bit with a smaller diameter than the nails.

Step 3

Heat the tips of the nails for 30 seconds each to make them easier to work with. Push the roofing nails through the holes so the tips are protruding through the bottom of the sole. Push the nails completely into the sole so the heads are flush with the inner sole. Apply a coat of epoxy over the inner sole to keep the nails from popping up. Hold the shoes upright as the epoxy hardens. Allow the sole to dry. Apply a second coat if needed to keep the nails stationary. Press the nails from the bottom to test for movement.

Step 4

Put the inserts into the sneakers for protection against the nail heads should they come loose. Refasten the laces or straps loosely so that the shoes stay on your feet.

Step 5

Don the shoes and walk around on your lawn to aerate it.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not use these on hard surfaces; test the fit on grass.

Things You'll Need

  • Sneakers or sandals
  • Roofing nails
  • Drill and drill bit
  • Quick drying epoxy glue
  • Lighter
Keywords: lawn aeration methods, aerating the soil, homemade aeration tools, cheap lawn aerators

About this Author

Jack S. Waverly is a Pennsylvania-based freelance writer who has written hundreds of articles relating to business, finance, travel, history and health. His current focus is on pets, gardens, personal finance and business management. Waverly has been writing online content professionally since 2007 for various providers and websites.