Understanding Retaining Walls And Retaining Wall Installation

Posted on: 16 August 2023

Retaining walls are structures that prevent erosion back holding back soil. They are a favorite design choice for landscaping, hardscaping, and construction projects to create level areas, define spaces, and add aesthetic appeal. If you are a homeowner planning a landscaping project, here's what you need to know about retaining wall installation and replacement. 

How Does Retaining Wall Installation Work?

Retaining wall installation involves several steps, from site preparation to wall construction. The area where the wall will be constructed must be cleared, leveled, and compacted. Like any construction project, preparation is key. Failing to compact the soil will result in the retaining failing at some point in the future. 

Trenches are dug for the footings, and drain pipes and gravel are installed before the first layer of blocks is laid. Each block is leveled and secured using mortar or adhesive. The following layers are stacked on top, with each layer being offset from the previous one to create a stronger, more stable structure. Finally, the capstones are installed on the top of the wall, and the backfill is added to support the wall and prevent soil erosion.

Who Needs a Retaining Wall?

Retaining walls are ideal for homeowners who have sloped or uneven yards. If you want to level off a sloping area to create a patio or seating area, a retaining wall can help. Retaining walls are also useful for homes built on hillsides, as they prevent soil erosion and landslides. In addition, retaining walls can be used for aesthetic purposes, such as creating a terraced garden or adding an interesting focal point to your landscaping.

What Are Signs You Need to Replace a Retaining Wall?

Retaining walls are built to last and are made from durable materials such as concrete, stone, and brick. However, a retaining wall may show signs of wear and tear, including:

  • Cracking
  • Bowing
  • Leaning
  • Drainage issues
  • Soil erosion
  • Tree root damage

If you notice any of these signs, it is important to have your retaining wall inspected by a professional and schedule retaining wall replacement if necessary.

What Are the Benefits of Retaining Wall Installation?

Retaining walls offer many benefits to homeowners, including:

  • Improved curb appeal. A well-designed retaining wall can add beauty and value to your home.
  • Enhanced outdoor living. Retaining walls can create flat, usable areas for outdoor entertaining, dining, and playing.
  • Increased erosion control. A retaining wall can prevent soil erosion and protect your home's foundation.
  • Reduced maintenance. Retaining walls are built to last and require minimal maintenance.

Retaining walls are a valuable addition to any homeowner's landscape design. If you are planning to install or replace a retaining wall, reach out to a professional for the best results. They can help with every stage of retaining wall installation and provide you with lasting beauty and functionality for years to come.

For more information on retaining wall installation, contact a professional near you.