Types Of Retaining Walls


Retaining walls are used to hold up piles of earth in order to create flat surfaces that can be built upon. They are used for construction and landscape purposes and help make irregularly shaped ground ideal for working on. There are several different types of retaining walls, each of which operate in distinctive ways to provide the same function. Understanding what each type of retaining wall has to offer can help you choose the one that best fits your project's needs.

Gravity Walls

Gravity walls are simply designed walls that have a thick base that tapers off slightly at the top. They simply use the weight of the wall to hold back the earth, and as such are usually limited in how high they can reach. Gravity walls can be built to lean into the earth they are holding up, sometimes referred to as battering, in order to increase the amount of weight they can hold back. However, because of their height constraints, gravity walls are not ideal for projects that require a great deal of earth to be held back.

Cantilever Walls

Cantilever walls are used to hold back higher amounts of earth for when gravity walls are not enough. They have an extension sticking out of their base, on which the earth they are holding back sits on. This allows cantilever walls to use the weight of the earth itself to support itself, allowing these walls to reach a much higher height than their gravity counterparts.

Sheet Pile Walls

Sheet pile walls are ideal for holding back small amounts of loose soil and are simply made out of planks of a certain building material, like wood or metal. The planks are simply buried in the ground, with a certain amount of the plank sticking up, creating a wall that can support light amounts of earth. This type of retaining wall is ideal for garden applications, as the use of various materials can provide aesthetic benefits to the area they are installed in – the use of wooden planks closely resembles the appearance of a fence.

Soil Nailed Walls

Soil nailed walls are used for major construction projects and can be easily installed on an already exposed earth face. Steel bars are "nailed" into the exposed soil, which helps improve the structural stability of the earth pile itself, and then have panels of concrete or a similar substance installed over them to hold back the earth.

For more information and options, talk with a professional landscaper in your area, such as those at Quality Lawn & Landscape.


27 June 2016

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