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Your Guide to the Different Retaining Wall Systems You Can Utilise


Dec 13, 2021

Many factors need to be carefully thought out if you are in the midst of a retaining wall project. The soil factor, for example, and its strength, firmness, and integrity will come into play. You also have to think about the actual location of the wall, ensuring that the wall does not encroach into another property line and that you have a detailed understanding of the utilities, both underground and above-ground. But alongside all this comes the actual wall system. You can use different designs for your retaining wall, and it will also make a significant impact. If you want to make sure you choose the right system, here’s your guide to the different retaining wall systems you can utilise.

The general requirements

Once you have assessed the different factors that pertain to your walls, such as the drainage, soil, and design, you can consider the type. You have various options, but if

you have an entire wall system, your designers have to work closely with the manufacturer in terms of your requirements regarding strength, absorption, height, and more. In addition, if your wall needs reinforcement, you need to choose the correct method for support.

• Gravity retaining walls

These retaining walls will use their inherent weight to hold the earth behind them. They are often made from heavyweight materials like stone, cast-in-place concrete, or concrete blocks. They have edges that interlock, and their heavy mass helps them resist soil pressure.

• Segmental walls

Segmental walls are often utilised for residential and commercial applications, and they can come as curved or straight walls. They can be useful for high, sloping terrain. These walls can come with reinforcement or no reinforcement. Segmental walls are made from modular concrete blocks, and these are usually stacked dry without any mortar. Each unit will interlock with the other to prevent sliding and overturning. Since these walls are made in a plant, they adhere to industry standards and have a uniform weight, durability, and strength.

• Cantilevered retaining walls

Cantilevered retaining walls are ideal for deeper excavations, and they can have heights of up to 5 metres and more. These walls rely on the leverage principle and are usually made in an inverted T-shape from masonry or reinforced concrete, making them perfect for various retaining wall systems. You will not require as much building materials for cantilevered walls as gravity walls. You can also have them made by a precast concrete manufacturer or have them made on site. The stem of the wall is thin, and it comes with a slab for its base, which consists of a “heel” and “toe.”

• Counterfort retaining walls

Counterfort retaining walls are tall, and they are similar to cantilevered retaining walls in that they need support for their back. Counterfort retaining walls utilise concrete (hence the name counterfort), and these are built at an angle to make the

wall more stable. The concrete webs are at even intervals and can decrease the pressure from the earth whilst also increasing the wall’s weight.

• Panel retaining walls

Panel retaining walls are ideal for tighter, limited spaces, and they’re often used for motorway ramps and nearby locations with heavy loads. You can utilise posts that will connect each panel made from reinforced-steel precast concrete.



Image attributed to JPConcrete.co.uk


By admin