Take a quick walk around your neighborhood and you can tell who takes the best care of their lawn. It is downright frustrating to have bookend neighbors that ignore their lawns. Every neighborhood has them. It only takes one neglectful homeowner to create havoc on others.
A close friend of mine in fact purchased a home this spring that had one of these owners. He has just tore up the old and laid new sod on his entire property as a result of the weeds and damage caused by the neglect. Whether you reseed or lay new sod down you must water your new lawn appropriately. When we look at new sod it is very important that you not let it dry out. Dry sod will die quickly. As soon as your sod is delivered and you get to work on laying it out you need to make sure you are keeping it moist. Depending on temperature and sun exposure you should be watering it down every hour. As you go along it is a good idea to water the new laid sod frequently about every half hour or so if your climate is really hot and dry.
Water tips vary depending on the climate. Typical spring or fall days you would need to water in the morning and evening for approximately half hour. If you are laying your new sod in the hotter summer months you will want to make sure you water three times a day. Keeping your new sod moist will allow for the roots to grow stronger and become grounded much quicker and easier. There is a fine line between too much water and not enough. You can gauge this by assessing your property for low spots and areas with less sun exposure. Too much water will cause the soil to break down and become mucky, this will ruin the roots and you will have future damage if you overwater your new sod.
At about the three week mark your new lawn should have a solid root base. You can test this in areas by grabbing hold of the grass and gently pulling upwards. If there is limited movement your sod has taken well. At this point you still want to maintain good watering practice. If the weather stays hot and dry, keep the same watering principles. After about the fourth week you will be able to tell by the color of the grass how your lawn is doing. If you are noticing some fading, or brown spots these are areas that need to be addressed with some more water. Perhaps they are in an area with more sun exposure, or higher elevation.
This is pretty much all you need to know about watering your new lawn. The principles are the same with regard to new sod as well seed. If you have questions or concerns it is always a good idea to call one of your local lawn care experts and they should be happy to help you.