How to Remove Old Grass to Permit Installation of Sod


If weeds infest your lawn, it may be beyond saving and need a complete overhaul. You can either overseed it to thicken it up perhaps, or you can remove the old lawn and replace it with a seeded or sodded new lawn. To completely reseed or lay new sod, you'll need to remove the old grass first. The easiest way to do that is with a sod cutter, which allows you to strip off the old grass and weeds to create a fresh planting area for laying new sod.

Step 1

Purchase a sod cutter from your local home improvement store. Sod cutters work like shovels to dig into the sod and soil, allowing you quick, easy removal of old grass and weeds.

Step 2

Position the sod cutter where you want to start removing the sod. Use your foot and step on the sod cutter the same way you would step on a shovel.

Step 3

Push on the sod cutter with your foot until you hear the roots of the grass tearing. The back of the sod cutter will keep it from digging too deeply.

Step 4

Push the sod cotter along with your hands and foot and roll the sod as it peels up to get large rolled pieces.

Step 5

Move to the next strip and peel it up with the sod cutter. Continue removing strips of sod until the entire area is peeled up, leaving raw dirt.

Tips and Warnings

  • Wear gloves and steel-toed work boots when operating the sod cutter. Failure to do so can result in hand or foot injuries.

Things You'll Need

  • Sod cutter
  • Work gloves
  • Work boots


  • Lovetoknow: How to Use a Sod Cutter
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  • eSSORTMENT: How to Use a Sod Cutter
Keywords: sod cutter, moist soil, strips of sod, step on the sod cutter