Originally Posted by TruSomethingOrOther
IMO aerating / overseed is to thicken up an existing lawn. An actual slit seeder is to renovate a lawn (droughts, major fert burns, dogs, etc). To get rid of that row by row look of the slicer, double pass at a north - south then east - west.
I agree with that and that's what I have told customers who have total bare spots with no grass at all! They always tell me; "make sure you really aerate that area good, maybe 2 or 3 times because I can't get grass to grow." A while ago before I knew any better I'd say; "sure, not a problem." While wasting time and money and not getting any better results.
Now that I'm older, a little wiser, and more knowledgeable, I tell these certain people, let me till up the hard bare area or very, very, very thin area and consider it a renovation rather than a rejuvenation.
I can get more money and better results by doing this. Kind of like an "up sell." Now obviously, water!!!!!!!! I don't tell them what I'm doing is magic, I email some very detailed guidelines as to what to expect, germination times, do's and doníts, as well as watering guidelines. I have had very good results, happy customers and several referrals as well as "drive by" customers who have seen the before and after and asked me to do theirs.
Now, I'm not saying this is the cure all for the OP, also depends on the size of the lot etc. I agree that slit seeding might work better in certain circumstances too.
Just thought I'd share this information.