What Are Retaining Walls?

If you’ve just started tending a garden or take pride in your yard and want to add more aesthetic features, it may be a good idea to get a retaining wall. Learning more about these walls and how they can benefit your outdoor space can make a huge difference in your landscape. Here is some information about retaining walls that will help you decide which one is right for you.

What Retaining Walls Do

A retaining wall serves as a structure that holds or retains soil. Several types of materials are used to create these walls, including poured concrete, concrete blocks, rocks, boulders or treated timbers. Some of these materials are easy to use, others will last for long periods and some have a shorter lifespan. However, all of these materials are ideal for keeping soil from spilling over.

Should You Get a Reinforced Wall or a Gravity Wall?

You’ll need to consider several questions to get the right type of retaining wall for your property. You can determine this by examining the condition of your soil. Soil is normally a mixture of sand and clay, but some soils are sandier and some are more clay-based. Think about what is about the wall as well. If you have a pool or a driveway, you should build the wall with these structures in mind. Consider whether the land under or over the retaining wall will be sloped or level, and how tall you want the wall to be. These factors will help you decide whether you need to get a gravity retaining wall or a Geogrid reinforced retaining wall.

Gravity Walls vs Reinforced Walls

Gravity retaining walls rely on their own weight to keep soil in place. These walls are also shorter and stones are stacked together to form a barrier. The wall works to support pressure from the soil behind the wall.

Reinforced retaining walls use a form of reinforcement to provide more strength to the wall structure. When the structure is strong, soil will stay behind the wall instead of spilling over, no matter how tall the wall is. You can also opt for segmental retaining walls, which has a grid shape and provides a barrier for certain areas of your lawn. The grid stones are placed between blocks on the wall and rolled into the hillside or slope during installation. This method creatures a stronger barrier. Grid walls are sometimes the best choice, but this form of retaining wall may not work well for smaller yards or fragile soil. In these cases, you’ll have to use alternative reinforcement materials like soil nails, earth anchors or no-fines concrete.

Get in touch with a professional contractor for installation services so you can find the retaining walls that will work best for your property. Don’t forget to ask about the materials that are necessary for your retaining wall so you’ll know what to expect during installation. Wood is often the most affordable option and is simpler to work with, but concrete creates a stronger wall that will likely last longer.