There are many situations requiring retaining walls in central New England, where many homes and businesses are built on sloping ground. In this situation many owners prefer to level the slope for more residential lawn space, flat play areas, patios, garden beds, and commercial parking. Once portions of the slope are cut away to create a flat space, retaining walls are needed to secure the slope and keep the remaining soil from sliding.
Retaining walls have to be able not only to hold the weight of earth behind and above them, but also allow storm drainage. But the home or business owner also wants retaining walls to look good and fit in naturally with the landscape design. So what basics are required for retaining walls to ensure that they are safe and attractive?
Strength for starters. Retaining walls must be built on a proper concrete foundation, or they will eventually shift and even collapse as the ground below softens from rain and freezing/thawing conditions.
Good drainage is also necessary. Wet soil is heavy and exerts pressure against retaining walls. If there is nothing to relieve that pressure, the wall could fail. Drainage pipes within the retaining walls allow water and soil slurry to escape and relieve some of that pressure.
The drainage pipe in retaining walls should be installed in a bed of small stones that filter water or the drainage pipes themselves can become blocked. A diameter of 3-4 inches around the exit pipe should comprise small pebbles.
Construction materials used for retaining walls are also very important. Here at Concrete Solutions, we offer a wide range of premium materials for retaining walls, including Verazzo stone and Victorian stone, as well as Standard II and Compac II products. All of these products are designed specifically to be used in retaining walls to provide maximum strength and durability, making them the professionals’ choice.
To learn more about retaining walls and the materials you’ll need to safely build them, contact the retain walls experts here at Concrete Solutions.