Quick Answer: How To Build Small Retaining Wall?

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.)

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 can I use for a small retaining wall?

Retaining walls can be made from wood, bricks, natural stones or concrete blocks. For DIYers, it’s best to use concrete retaining wall blocks, which can be interlocking and are heavy enough to stay in place without cement or other adhesive.

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Can I build a retaining wall myself?

While retaining walls taller than four feet should be engineered by professionals, you may be able to DIY a solution for a tall slope by creating two or more shorter “tiered” retaining walls as opposed to a single tall wall.

What is the best retaining wall?

Concrete and Masonry Retaining Walls



Poured concrete is the strongest and most durable choice for retaining walls. It may also be carved and formed to look like mortared stone depending on your taste.

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.

Do I need a concrete footing for a retaining wall?

No, you do not need a concrete footing, it will actually adhere the wall from being able to naturally shift. It is best to use a coarse stone aggregate for the Retaining Wall footing.

How long do retaining walls last?

How long will my retaining wall last? For a permanent wall structure, the general lifespan is generally between 50 and 100 years. This does, however, depend on the conditions of the soil and groundwater at your site.

Are retaining walls expensive?

The average cost of building a retaining wall is $5,636. Most homeowners find themselves spending between $3,229 and $8,670. The cost of retaining wall materials ranges from $3 to $40 per square foot. Wall block prices fall between $10 and $15 per square foot, while precase, poured concrete runs $20 to $25.

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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).

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.

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.

Should you use fabric behind retaining wall?

A barrier behind the wall, lined in fabric and filled with gravel, creates an area for water collection and movement. The fabric helps keep the voids in the gravel from packing with silt.

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.

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