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RutGuard® Recommendations & Product Support

There are a couple things to consider when preparing to start a project using RutGuard® Geocell. Below are some frequently asked questions and recommendations when installing RutGuard®. If you're still needing help, contact us with your questions.  

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Our "Helpful Hints" include blog posts, articles, and detailed support documents specific to applications and instructions on designing with RutGuard®. 


Frequently Asked Questions:

RutGuard® Products

What is RutGuard® Made of?

RutGuard® is made with high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plastic that is ultrasonically welded to create a flexible, yet strong system to hold your material. It is manufactured here in the USA. 

What If I Need Different Dimensions?

RutGuard® Panels can be cut down to fit your desired dimensions, simply by using a box cutter or similar tool. 

What is the Lifetime of the Product?

Lifetime expectancy of RutGuard® material is upwards of 60 years.


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Do I Need to Have a Professional Install the Product, or Can I Install RutGuard® Myself?

You can install the product yourself using our installation guide, but if you are hesitant, any contractor who does earth work or landscaping can easily install the product.

How Many People Does it Take to Install?

RutGuard® can be installed with one person, but we recommend bringing a friend along. 

Do I Need to Level the Ground Before Installing?

We recommend leveling and compacting the area that you are laying RutGuard® in, because RutGuard® will take the shape of the subgrade. If there are any potholes, swells or ruts, RutGuard® will mimic that pattern. 

Do I Have to Stake RutGuard® to the Ground?

We recommend staking the panels in order to help hold them open when filling them. Once RutGuard® is filled, the stakes can be removed. 

Is Geotextile Fabric Required?

Yes. We strongly recommend laying a geotextile fabric beneath RutGuard® so that you can keep your money (rock) from being pushed down into the ground. Purchase our pre-cut geotextile fabric that is specifically sized for RutGuard® panels here.

Can I use RutGuard® on Slopes?

With proper installation and infill material, geocell is designed to control erosion and provide stabilization to existing slope profiles, as steep as a 1:1. Depending on site specifics, it is recommended to secure the the panels into the subgrade when slopes exceed a 3:1 incline (33%). Just like base/flat applications, best practice is to ensure that the subgrade which the panels will be installed atop, is a smooth, even surface with any existing ruts repaired. View our Slope Recommendation Support Guide here or reach out to us with project specific questions. 

Infill Material

Download Support Guide for Infill

How Much Material Will I Need?

You will need enough to fill the cells and 1-2 inches of overfill. Each panel covers approximately 230 square feet, and the cell height varies from 2" to 8", depending on your product. Check out our estimated material quantity breakdown here, and contact your local aggregate supply company for local cost estimates.

Can I put any Material in RutGuard®?

The possibilities are endless when it comes to what RutGuard can do for your material, although you do not want to use clays inside RutGuard due to the water absorption properties of the clay. Below are recommendations of infill material to get the best results out of the product.

  • Aggregate/Gravel - A crushed, angular rock with a mix of fines (also referred to as "unwashed") typically compacts well.
  • Decomposed Granite - Great for flagstone patios and trails
  • Grass/Vegetation - a pre-mixed aggregate/top soil infill is recommended. 
  • Sand - strongly recommended for sub-base/foundation use only. 

...And More! 

What Size Gravel Should I Use?

The general rule of thumb is that you don't want the size of your rock to exceed 1/3 of the height of the cell. For example, if you have a 6" cell height, no rock larger than 2" should be used. You want to use a crushed, angular rock with a mixture of fines to achieve good compaction and drainage. For the smaller sizes of 4" or less, we recommend a 3/8"-1" sized rock.

Unlike a "washed" or "clean" stone, a crushed, "unwashed" aggregate will have a presence of fines, which help to fill in the void spaces between the rock pieces, resulting in a compacted, solid base. 

Can I Use What I Already Have?

Of Course! In fact, it is highly encouraged to use local, onsite material if you have the right material. A mix of medium and fines will give you greater compaction, so if you already have it on hand, simply scoop it up and place it right back inside the panels once installed.  

Can I use Sand?

Sand does in fact work with the RutGuard® system, as that is what was used by the US Army Corps of Engineers when the system was first designed. Using sand as an infill material is typically used for sub-base reinforcement such as in foundations for patios and sheds.

Can I use Pea Gravel?

We do not recommend pea gravel because the lack of compaction of the material. Smooth, rounded stones do not compact well, and have a tendency to continue to shift inside the cell, despite how much you compact the surface. 

Is RutGuard Geocell ADA Compliant?

The ADA Compliancy of geocell is dependent on the type of infill material that is being used to fill the panels. More information can be found here.