Often asked: How To Lay A Retaining Wall?

How do you prepare the ground for a retaining wall block?

fill concrete cores with crushed gravel



Sweep away all debris from the top of the first course of block with a broom. Stack the second course of blocks on top of the first course making sure they remain level. Fill the concrete cores with crushed gravel. Backfill with gravel behind the wall to cover the drainage pipe.

What is the best base for a retaining wall?

Due to soil erosion, your retaining wall should be built on a solid foundation made from gravel.

  • Choose gravel that has stones sized between 1/2-inch and 3/4-inch.
  • Fill the trench with a 2- to 3-inch layer of gravel.
  • Use a rake to ensure the stones are evenly distributed.

How do you build a retaining wall step by step?

Step by Step: How to build a retaining wall

  1. Dig a level-bottomed trench wide enough for the base stones to fit into. Compact the bottom of the trench with a hand tamper.
  2. Lay landscape fabric in the trench.
  3. Start the wall’s second layer using a staggered pattern.
  4. Make sure the wall is level.
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How deep should the footing be for a retaining wall?

Concrete retaining wall footing size



The depth to the bottom of the base slab should be kept at a minimum of two feet. However, it should always be below the seasonal frost line, and that often is much deeper in northern climates.

What is the cheapest type of retaining wall?

What is the cheapest retaining wall material?

  • Treated pine and is the least expensive material.
  • Hardwood is more expensive than treated pine.
  • Railway sleepers are another – slightly more expensive – option and are built to withstand ground and water contact.
  • Concrete sleepers are more expensive.

What is the easiest retaining wall to build?

For the average do-it-yourselfer, building a retaining wall is easiest when using masonry blocks that will be stacked no taller than three feet, with no mortar binding the stones or concrete members. (For a curved wall, mark instead with a garden hose or spray paint.)

Do I need drainage behind retaining wall?

Third, since most retaining walls are impervious, which means water cannot pass through the wall itself, efficient drainage is crucial. When drainage goes unaddressed hydrostatic pressure will build up behind the wall and cause damage such as bulging or cracking.

Do I need rebar in a retaining wall?

A retaining wall must provide a way to release the water that builds up in the slope behind it. Retaining walls must be stronger than freestanding walls. Insert rebar in the footing when you pour it; this should be done at every three blocks or at intervals specified by your local codes.

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Does a 2 foot retaining wall need drainage?

Although there are exceptions, most retaining walls require gravel backfill, soil compaction, pipe or toe drains, and weep holes. Together, these four features will provide adequate drainage for most designs. Only a few types of walls will not require all of them.

How high can you build a retaining wall without a permit?

Most municipalities require a building permit and a design from a Licensed Engineer if your wall is taller than 4 feet high (measured from the bottom of the first block to the top of the last block).

When should you build a retaining wall?

You Might Need a Retaining Wall If…

  1. You need a way to control downhill erosion. If mountains of erosion materials are clogging important areas on your property, adding a retaining wall is a wonderful idea.
  2. Your home is downhill from soil fault lines.
  3. Your foundation is threatened by a sliding hill.

What are the types of retaining wall?

The Four Basic Types of Retaining Walls

  • Gravity Retaining Wall. The most basic of retaining walls, the gravity retaining wall uses sheer weight and mass to hold the soil at bay.
  • Cantilevered Retaining Wall.
  • Sheet Piling Retaining Wall.
  • Anchored Retaining Wall.

What slope requires a retaining wall?

What is the slope? If the slope is greater than a 3:1, consult with an engineer. If the slope is over 2:1, it will require structures or special stabilization techniques.

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