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How to Use a Rented Hydroseeder

By Charles Clay

Hydroseeding is a method of broadcasting grass seed in a slurry of water, mulch and fertilizer. By applying these ingredients as a mixture, the seed can be evenly applied, nourished and protected in a single step. The mulch protects the grass seed and helps to retain moisture, resulting in quicker germination. While hydroseeders are large, expensive machines, rentals are available in many areas.

Start filling the tank with water. When the water reaches the bottom of the agitator blades, start the agitator.

Add the grass seed to the tank. One hundred gallons of water will cover roughly 750 square feet, so check the grass seed packaging for coverage information.

Add hydro-mulching material at a rate of 40 pounds per 100 gallons of water. Allow the agitator blades to mix the material thoroughly.

Add fertilizer to the tank. Consult the packaging for coverage information and add enough to cover 750 square feet per 100 gallons of water.

Fill the tank with water to the fill line or the top of the agitator blades. Reduce agitator speed to 1/2 throttle.

Start the pump if it is a separate engine from the agitator. Open the spray nozzle slowly and apply the mixture evenly to the planting area. Repeat Steps 1-5 as needed.

Flush the tank and sprayer thoroughly with clean water. Shut down the agitator and pump and empty any remaining water from the tank using the purge valve at the bottom of the tank.


Things You Will Need

  • Grass seed
  • Hydro-mulching material
  • Fertilizer


  • Most rental companies will charge a cleaning fee if you return a hydroseeder with a dirty tank or clogged nozzle. Make sure you flush the system before you stop working, even if it's only for a few hours.
  • Hydro-mulching material is usually colored green, which helps ensure even coverage and avoid bare spots. If your hydro-mulch is not colored, consider adding green dye to the mixture to enhance visibility.
  • A range of pH balancing compounds and other soil modifiers can be added to a hydro-mulch mixture. Test your soil before planting to identify areas of need to ensure that you get the most out of your rented hydroseeder.


  • Wear eye protection and a breathing mask when using a hydroseeder. Airborne fertilizer can cause eye damage and respiratory issues.
  • Always read the warnings in the operator's manual and on the equipment before operating any piece of powered equipment. Improper use could result in injury or damaging a very expensive rented machine.