How to Install Big Blocks for a Stronger and More Efficient Retaining Wall

February 24, 2023

Are you renovating your yard? You're probably looking to build a retaining wall that won't need routine maintenance. And, of course, you want something tough and reliable. But what's the best way to get started?

We're here with the perfect solution! Build a retaining wall with big blocks. They can ensure your wall retains its strength and efficiency over time. For top-quality retaining walls and sleepers, be sure to explore Concrete Sleepers Melbourne.

Building a larger block wall takes some work and planning. But it's well worth the effort! Keep reading to find out some big block benefits for your retaining wall. We'll also walk you through the step-by-step process of building a durable wall in your backyard.

Advantages of a Big Block Wall

Big wall blocks are made of concrete or other materials that are easy to install. They provide a solid structure for holding back soil. They often feature an interlocking system which allows for quick and easy installation. You'll only need one or two pieces for each section.

When it comes to aesthetics, these blocks come in different sizes and shapes. This allows them to fit almost any retaining wall project you have in mind. Big blocks also offer the opportunity for unique designs. These can create attractive focal points throughout your landscape design.

But more than the visual aspect, a big block retaining wall system also offers practical advantages.

Increased Stability

Building a concrete wall with big blocks provides extra strength and security. They're perfect for areas of the property that may be subject to soil erosion or other environmental elements.

The large block size gives the wall a stronger base. It also makes it more durable against both weather and pests. Additionally, each block is manufactured with reinforced steel fibers. When stacked together, they create an even stronger barrier between structures, terrain, or landscaping.

Efficiency

Because you don't need mortar or grout to build the concrete wall, installation is both easy and fast. All you have to do is lay the concrete blocks directly in place. Then, fill any gaps with sand, gravel, or soil. And that's it!

This type of installation requires very little equipment. You also won't need heavy equipment to build it.

And depending on the size of your job, it can be done with just two people. Imagine the amount you can save on labor costs!

Low Maintenance

With this wall block system, you can have a strong and sturdy structure with minimal effort. No need for frequent repairs or replacements. Once the wall is installed, it's good to go for the foreseeable future.

There's also much less risk of water infiltration or structural damage. You can trust your big block retaining wall to remain in perfect condition without any additional repairs or maintenance.

Furthermore, these concrete blocks come pre-assembled and just need to be stacked in place. As such, they are easy to clean. You won't even have to worry about replacing parts or pieces due to dirt buildup over time.

How to Install the Big Blocks

Building a retaining wall using big blocks is easy when you know what to do. Here are the steps involved in the proper installation of the wall in your backyard.

Create a Foundation

Creating the foundation for the blocks is vital to the success of your retaining wall.

Before you get started, be sure to examine your site. Consider factors like underground utilities, drainage lines, and sprinkler systems. Once you have determined where it is safe to install blocks, you can begin creating the foundation.

Begin by excavating an area at least 12-18 inches deep. Also, make it wide enough to accommodate your concrete blocks. Then, add an extra ½ inch in between each block.

Pack soil tightly down at the bottom of the excavation. Make sure it's flat and level before adding a layer of sand over the top.

Next, lay landscape fabric over this sand layer. Fix it into place with garden pins or staples.

Finally, add layers of ¾ inch gravel on top of the fabric. Ensure that this layer is also packed tightly down.

Layer the Blocks

After creating your foundation, continue stacking your big blocks. But make sure to do them in a staggering manner.

By staggering the blocks, you create a pattern that enables the blocks to hold each other in place. All the while giving flexibility and strength to the entire wall.

If each block was placed beside its neighbor without staggering, there would be no overlapping. As a result, each row of blocks could produce lateral displacement. This could also cause wall sections to move out of alignment, leading to collapse and failure.

Another benefit of proper block placement is improved drainage around your wall. This can help inhibit soil erosion from excess rain or melting snow. By staggering the row of blocks, you can create spaces for water seepage along the length of the wall. These spaces allow water infiltration, which can help keep your foundation stable for years to come.

Secure Each Layer

One crucial step to ensure the strength and stability of your retaining wall is to install each layer securely. For large blocks, a short interlock is often used. This type of installation ensures that each block fits firmly against the other. This is especially helpful in preventing gaps as you stack up the blocks.

In addition to interlocking the blocks, it's also important to use pins or grout to secure each layer. Pins made from cold-rolled steel or rebar can be inserted horizontally into slots cast into the blocks before laying them. Then, each subsequent block will fit over the top and be held securely in place by gravity and friction.

Consider using a grout mixture between layers. This is to fill air pockets and add adhesion between each block. You'll need a mortar mix made from cement, dust, or silica sand with a latex component.

Add the Finishing Touches

Once you've built the main body of the wall, it's time to add a few finishing touches that will make your retaining wall more secure and efficient.

The first step is to backfill any holes or voids with well-compacted soil. As you backfill, make sure that the soil is regularly tamped down. Doing so ensures that it's level and there are no gaps for water to flow through.

Next, use an appropriate type of gravel or mulch along the bottom of the wall's base. This will ensure proper drainage and help protect the foundation from erosion. You may also want to use small stones or pebbles along the top of the wall to fill in any gaps between big blocks for a smooth, consistent look.

Building a Retaining Wall for Your Yard

A retaining wall system is a great way to protect your property from floods and landslides. Use big blocks for a sturdier and more efficient retaining wall.

With the correct installation method, you can enjoy years of protection. An effective retaining wall will be able to withstand even the strongest storms. They would also keep water damage away from your home.

So, don't wait any longer! Install those big blocks for a stronger wall today.

 

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