How to build retaining walls in the right manner?

By Oscarjack 5 Min Read

Know all the basics of such retaining walls:

Economically speaking a wall used for retaining is very essential to control the soil on both sides of the wall. Just as its name suggests, retaining walls are walls that are built to retain soil behind them to prevent it from erosion where you can grow your garden. Most people think that it takes tones of soil for it to stay standing for years but that is not the case with it. All the professionals do is counter the weight that is needed for it to stand strong by adding materials like wood, blocks, and boulders behind it.

retaining walls waterways

Depending on what factors are wall retainers installed?

There are basically 3 major principles to build a long-lasting retaining wall. These are mentioned below for your convenience:

  1. The bottom course should be buried at least one tenth on its total height. This prevents the soil from seeping out from the bottom and making the wall weak.
  2. Let the gravity do its work by stepping back the blocks in your favour. Let it push against the fill. Walls that are built absolutely horizontal, tend to lean outwards.
  3. A strong wall has a solidly compacted base for it to stay flat on the surface. Greater the level of contact is with the base, greater is the friction which in return results in extremely solid walls.

Water weakens the walls

Water seeping into the walls may wash away the base material rapidly which may result in the wall crumbling down. The major enemy of retaining walls is water seepage into it.

  • Well-built walls always have a quick exit route for water behind it preventing the walls to soak it in. It saturates the soil and applies incredible pressure on the walls.
  • Any dip in the surface that is capable of collecting water is going to damage your walls. The soil packed behind the wall absorbs the water and increases the overall weight and pressure on the walls.
  • There are drain tiles at the bottom.
  • Tap water may also ooze inside the walls after a period of time and that is why it is recommended to construct a good drainage system near these walls.
  • The worst case arises when these walls have soaked in enough water that the soil becomes saturated and in winters when this water freezes, it expands the gap between the walls.
  • So, it will not be wrong to say that in winters matter may get worse for retaining walls.
  • Compaction is a very important step in building such walls. A calculated ratio of weight and pressure is to be exerted on these walls for them to stay strong.
  • Loosely compacted soil facilitates friction inside these walls rather than the pressure pushing against the wall.
  • A heavy vibrating plate can be used to compact the fillers in between which can be easily rented out.
  • Reinforcement grid is another trick used at regular intervals to strengthen these walls.
  • The taller the wall gets; more is the need for you to use these reinforcement grids.
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 retaining walls waterways

A very simple trick to avoid wall problem is to add a plastic covering behind the filling in order it to prevent absorbing water inside. Retaining walls prevent damage to the nearby structures and help to resist gravity load. It also prevents flooding and erosion. It aids in diverting and utilizing rainwater for later use. In elevated yard features these type of walls can be your great friend.  These are just some of the tips and tricks that will help you to understand how these walls work.

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