A retaining wall is an essential structure for protecting the land against soil erosion or landslides and for increasing the beauty of the backyard of a house. Many people build retaining walls to enhance the beauty of their lands, but unfortunately, most of these built structures don’t exist for a longer period. Here, we will reveal the ways to make a durable retaining wall to protect the land from a sloppy area or to increase the beauty.
How to Build a Durable Retaining Wall
1. Make sure that the base is strong
This is the most important issue that needs concentration. People who construct a retaining wall for home improvement hardly concentrate on building the base of this structure. The base should be 0.7 or 0.8 times higher than the height of the wall. Based on this magnitude, you need to dig the soil and make a trench. A greater base will reinforce the wall. Remember that the structure has to withstand the massive pressure of the soil. Therefore, you have to make sure that the structure and design can tolerate that.
2. Choose the right materials
Materials play a vital role in maintaining the structure. If the owner chooses a material that gets decomposed quickly, the structure will collapse. Wood is considered one of those materials. Choose the materials based on the climate and weather. If the rainfall is heavy in your area, then try to avoid woody materials because after receiving water, these will become softer and may decompose slowly. Besides, termites can be another problem in these materials. Concrete and rocks can be a good choice because their weathering or disintegration rate is slow. However, a higher difference in temperature can crack the concrete can get cracked because of expansion and contraction.
3. Compact the base properly
Many people don’t know why they should compact the ground to establish a strong retaining wall. A compacted base ensures that the water percolation will be lesser. Besides, compaction is also a reason for reducing the porosity of the soil, which in turn, reduces the microbial activity. Less porosity indicates that water can hardly get inside the soil and cannot cause stress. Compaction is done to increase the shear strength of the ground.
4. Make sure the ground is leveled
To check this, you will need the level measuring tool, which can be 2- or 4-feet long. After compacting the ground, the builder must check it because ensuring the level will help you to place the second layer of the blocks. Otherwise, you will find it troubling to establish another layer, and ultimately, the consequence can be seen at the top layer.
5. Drainage is necessary
During backfilling, it is necessary to use gravel or coarse materials to fill the area behind the wall. These materials will improve the drainage. As a result, water will not percolate downward, and there will not be any extra hydrostatic pressure. Many people use native soil for backfilling, but we don’t recommend it because the soil has shrinking and swelling characteristics, which can increase the pressure.
These are the five ways to make a durable retaining wall for home improvement or landscaping.