FAQ

GENERAL QUESTIONS:

1.  How long has The Whalen Company been in business? This will be our 57th year.  We started this business in 1957.

2.  How many tennis courts has The Whalen Company built? There is no real accurate way to answer this question but years ago we figured we had built enough tennis courts, that if laid end-to-end they would stretch from Jacksonville, FL to north of Savannah, GA.  Short answer – a lot.

3.  How many types of courts do you build? We build asphalt, cushioned asphalt, Har-Tru Courts, HydroCourts, basketball courts,  roller hockey rinks and Pickleball courts.

4.  Where have you built tennis courts? We have built tennis courts in Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Mississippi,  Alabama, New York, Ohio, West Virginia, The Dominican Republic, Jamaica and The Bahamas.

5.  What are common dimensions of tennis courts? A single court is typically 60′ x 120′ with a range of 54′ to 66′ wide and 114′ to 126′ long.  95% of the single courts built are 60′ x 120′.  A two court dimension will be from 108′ -120′ wide by 120′ long.  A three court batter can be from 156′-180′ wide to 120′ long.  A four court battery from 204′-240′ wide by 120′ long.

HAR-TRU COURT QUESTIONS:

1.  I have heard Har-Tru Courts are hard to maintain.  Is that true? Har-Tru courts are not hard to maintain if they are built properly.  All they require is some water, dragging if used and rolling if necessary.  A busy club will need to maintain their courts every day.  A private owner may only need to work their court 2-3 times a week.  It all depends on play.

2.  How much water will my court use a day? That is a tough question that depends on a lot of factors.  In the mountains of North Carolina where there is a lot of rain you won’t use near as much water as you will in South Georgia or the mid-west states.  Typically you will use about 30-40 gallons per minute per court and need to water 30-45 minutes per day in the summer if you don’t have rain.  Of course in the winter when days are cooler and shorter the needed water is much less.  Geographic area plays a huge part in water consumption.

3.  How much Har-Tru material does it take to build a single Har-Tru court? 40 tons.

4.  How often do I need to replace my lines? That depends on the amount of play and the geographic region you play in.  In the north the courts freeze and the lines come up.  You can re-use the lines but you need to pull all 2,000 nails out of the lines to be able to re-set them.  In southern climates you can get 2-3 years out of your lines.  It is not uncommon however for facilities to replace their lines every year to keep their courts looking new and fresh.

5.  Can I use my Har-Tru court for other activities such as basketball? You can but it isn’t really advisable.  Har-Tru courts are gritty by nature and dusty when they start to dry out.  Roller blades won’t work on Har-Tru courts and basketballs and baseballs get slippery when they get dusty.

6.  How much Har-Tru should I add per court per year to keep my courts in good shape? The rule of thumb is two tons per court per year.

7.   How many nails does it take to nail one court’s worth of lines? It takes 8lbs or 2.5″ nails and 10lbs of 3″ nails.  There are approximately 2,000 nails per court.

8.   What does it mean when people suggest removing the “dead material” from the court? Har-Tru is comprised of crushed stone with a mixture of very fine dust up to granular size grit.   When the larger grit starts accumulating in the corners, under the net and other areas those areas can act very much like beach sand.  In fact the material is not dead, it has just lost its “mix” with fines and doesn’t compact real well.  We suggest, stockpiling this material and using it after heavy windstorms or as filler for areas that might have eroded.

9.   How often should I roll my courts? A typical rolling program would be every morning when you sweep your courts.  However, depending on location you may be able to get by with only rolling once a week.  Some people like their courts to play hard and fast while others like their courts to play loose and slow.  There is no right or wrong.  Roll to suit your needs.

10.  Can I spray my court with herbicides and weed killers? Yes and frankly it is a good maintenance program to spray your courts once or twice a year.  Early fall and late winter are good times to do the spraying.

11.   Water doesn’t seem to flow off my courts anymore.  The water tends to dam up along the side.  What is the issue with this? Over the years the Har-Tru will slowly migrate and accumulate on the low side (the side the water flows to) causing a build-up of excess material both inside and outside the fence line.  It is a good practice to remove this excess once a year to maintain a proper flow for the excess water.  A flat shovel and a lute work very well for this.

12.  I get puddling along my baselines after I water the court.  What is the cause and what can I do about this? Major play areas such as your situation around the baselines are common and easily fixed.  90% of the wear on a clay court is around the baseline area.  This causes for an excess loss of Har-Tru surface material.  An easy fix is to scarify (scratch the surface) of the low/puddling areas and add a bag or two of new material to that area.  After applying the new HarTru water the area to saturation and roll the area well.   This should take care of your issue.  You may need to add more bags or less but we suggest starting with one or two.

HydroCourt Questions:

1.  Why would I want a HydroCourt over a standard Har-Tru Court? You might want to go here and check out some of the differences but the most important benefits are: no mid-day watering or surface watering of any kind;  less rolling and HydroCourts are almost always in the same playing conditions.

2.  Are HydroCourts more expensive than regular Har-Tru courts? Yes, they are.  Roughly speaking HydroCourts add about 20% to the cost of a standard Har-Tru court.

3.  Do HydroCourts play the same as Har-Tru courts? Yes, they do IF both courts are wet.  When HarTru courts start to dry out they change the way they play.  HydroCourts will play essentially the same all day long.

4.  What about after a rain, do the HydroCourts dry out faster or slower than Har-Tru courts? This is a tough question because you are not dealing with the same set of circumstances.  Depending on how dry the Har-Tru court is it may be able to absorb more water or less water than a HydroCourt.   Moisture content being the same they will effectively dry out at the same speed.

5.  Will I use less water or more water with a HydroCourt vs a Har-Tru court? Less.

6.  What would be the primary reason that I wouldn’t want a HydroCourt? There really is no reason except initial construction cost that you would choose a Har-Tru court over a HydroCourt.  Keep in mind that the surface will play essentially the same.  The difference is that the HydroCourt will retain and maintain it’s water content while a Har-Tru court won’t.  They both play beautifully if the water content is as it should be.

7.  What about freezing?  Does that impact a HydroCourt? Yes, but no more than a Har-Tru court.  Water freezes and both surfaces are water dependent.  Both surfaces you would want to turn off the water supply if you live in an environment where you get hard freezing.  But even if the courts freeze it does no permanent damage to the courts.

8.  Are the lines the same as Har-Tru courts? Yes, the lines are exactly the same.

9.  Do I need to buy a roller if I build HydroCourts? Yes, you do.  You won’t use it as much but you will still need it.


ASPHALT COURT QUESTIONS:

1.  How often do I need to resurface my asphalt courts? The rule-of-thumb is to resurface every 3-5 years but that depends a lot on the amount of play and the environmental conditions surrounding the court.  Some courts located in sandy or beach areas wear out pretty quickly while other courts is pristine grassy areas can last much longer.  Typically we suggest private courts get resurfaced every 5 years and public/club/schools get resurfaced every 3-4 years.

2.  I have water puddles on my courts after a rain.  What can I do about that? There is a section in our website that helps to answer this question but quickly I will explain that puddles can be caused by two issues: low spots on the courts or high spots damming the water flow off of the court.  Low spots can be reduced but it is difficult to fix puddles caused by water being dammed by an improperly pitched court surface.

3.  What is the surface of an asphalt court? Asphalt courts are normally covered and colored with acrylic materials with the additional option of adding pulverized rubber to the acrylic to give the courts a softer feel.

4.  I have two asphalt courts that the surface is delaminating in places.  What can cause that? There can be many causes for this but usually the court was either surfaced without being properly cleaned or  you may have water under the court.  Both cases are bad and you really need to get a professional contractor to look at your courts.

5.  We have roots growing under our courts causing cracks.  What can we do about that? The first thing to do is to remove the problem.  If you can’t remove the tree dig down and cut the roots.  Some people put copper in the cut trench to help keep the roots from growing back in that direction.  Once the court is cracked or raised because of the roots that section of the court must be cut out, patched and re-surfaced.

6.  What colors can I use to resurface my courts? The general range of colors available for tennis court surfacing are: light green, dark green, blue, tan, red, brown and burgundy.  But some companies can make special order colors for you.

7.  How much stone and asphalt do you recommend using when building an asphalt tennis court? We recommend, depending on the location of the court, anywhere from 5″-8″ of stone and from 1.25″-3″ of asphalt.  Check with your local builder to see what works best in your area.

8.  How long does it take to build a single tennis court at my home? It will take anywhere from 4-6 weeks to build a tennis court and that depends a lot on having good weather.