Readers ask: How To Build Retaining Wall Steps?

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.

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.)

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.

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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 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.

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.

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.

What can I use instead of a retaining wall?

Reinforced soil slopes are the most cost-effective retaining wall alternatives. Often times you are using the soil that you already have on hand and do not need to bring in any additional.



  • Reinforced Soil Slopes.
  • Natural Stone Walls.
  • Wooden Timbers.
  • Gabion Walls.
  • Soil Bioengineered Walls.

How long do block retaining walls last?

A concrete retaining wall can be expected to last anywhere from 50 to 100 years. Meanwhile, a brick masonry wall can be expected to last at least 100 years, though the quality of the work will play a role here.

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At what height does a retaining wall need to be engineered?

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). Will your retaining wall be terraced?

How much does it cost to build retaining wall?

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.

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.

How much weight can a retaining wall hold?

Even small retaining walls have to contain enormous loads. A 4-foot-high, 15-foot-long wall could be holding back as much as 20 tons of saturated soil. Double the wall height to 8 feet, and you would need a wall that’s eight times stronger to do the same job.

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