Ag barn flooring material

Asked September 1, 2016, 9:13 AM EDT

What is generally required or desire as a flooring material for Ag barn arenas (select fill, sand, grass, or combination of these)? And what thickness does the material general have to be (4", 6", 8")?

Harris County Texas

1 Response

Unfortunately, there are no universal recommendations for the perfect arena surface or footing material. Most often it comes down to local material availability and transportation expense. Sand & soil mixes and wood shavings are what are commonly used (often times you can find places that will donate these) for the surface footing materials.

The Thickness of the surface footing material can be 2-4 inches thick,well drained, and kept loose on top of the hard-packed base of the arena floor; the hard-packed base is usually similar to the aggregate used to support a road surface in construction and is 4-6 inches thick, level, and well drained (if your arena is an existing structure, this base is probably already there). The footing materials do not last forever and have to be changed out every couple of years--many places that get donations bring in new materials before major shows.

If you are planning on having horse shows and regular riding classes in your arena that involve jumps, you can make the surface footing material 3-6 inches thick to provide additional footing and cushioning for anyone who sets their jumps higher.

While livestock shows are taking place, it helps to have a few people who fill any holes and level out the surface materials between rounds to avoid any accidents and help keep the material from getting too compacted throughout the course of the day. This will also help prolong the life of your surface footing if you are unable to get regular donations.