While retaining walls add beauty and help protect your property from flooding, landslides, and other destruction, they also serve a structural function. Retaining walls would eventually collapse because of multiple reasons. A common factor is that these failures are related to current reinforcement placement. In addition, wall design issues, foundation problems, and weep holes that cannot weep may be possible causes.
An incorrectly constructed retaining wall will sag, bow, or lean. A stressor for your yard, landscaping, and your home's foundation may arise. There's no guarantee that you won't face costly problems if you neglect to correct the retaining wall. The good news is you can employ professionals to maintain your retaining wall. They can assess the appropriate repair method for the wall. In this guide, you will find the right method about how to fix a leaning retaining wall.
Table of Contents
What Is a Retaining Wall?
Understanding the function of interior design elements such as walls can be valuable in landscaping, too. The height of a landscaping wall may be used to define an area, provide a garden setting, or provide privacy. Earth retention in the form of a landscaping wall is ideal for retaining earth after excavation, as for a driveway or patio. This wall is generally called a retaining wall.
Causes of Retaining Wall Problems
Are you searching for what causes a retaining wall to lean? Then here are the details about the causes of it for you.
Walls that are attached to the foundation would do far more work than freestanding walls. They must also bear their weight and forces applied laterally due to the soil retaining its shape. Some soils can hold huge amounts of water, and the force with which this water accumulates is substantial, particularly in clays with slow drainage.
Soil saturation is one of the most common causes of retaining wall problems. When water fills the soil or the backfill, pressure is greatly increased. Wet soil is thicker than dry soil, making it more difficult to bear the added weight on the retaining wall.
To keep the soil from becoming saturated, drainage should be installed to prevent water from pooling around the building. As well as directing water flow away from the wall, upgrading the area will help alleviate some of the water pressure.
Drilling additional weep holes on the surface for improved drainage is another choice that landscapers should pursue. If the subsoil contains high levels of saturated soil, materials like crushed and pea gravel should be used to provide adequate drainage.
A working relationship with a landscaper is crucial when dealing with customers. Poor communication can lead to an incorrectly built retaining wall that is heavier than it is supposed to support. In this scenario, a homeowner had intended to use the space as a parking spot or shed, but they failed to disclose it to the landscape designer. As a result, the retaining wall leans over and subsequently falls because it was not designed to withstand the additional weight.
Wall shear force can be redistributed to the foundation where the wall meets the ground, making the wall stronger. Concrete may be added to thicken the base, or the base can be extended. Tiebacks or anchors can be used to increase the overall structural strength.
The same applies to retaining walls: A strong base is essential for them to remain stable. It is important to compact the soil underneath the foundation before constructing the wall. Site investigation does not guarantee perfection, as numerous environmental variables remain unknown, including the landscape, atmosphere, and soil characteristics.
To withstand the weight of saturated soils, retaining wall footing should be deep enough to go below the frost line. To minimize the stress exerted on the footing, it is possible to lengthen the toe of the footing. Concrete placed underneath the footing would strengthen it. Reducing the retaining wall's height by regrading will also be an option if pressure is needed to be minimized.
You could end up with a retaining wall failure if your mortar isn't sufficient, your reinforcement placements aren't where they should be, or you use cheap materials.
Extensive drilling can be performed to install tiebacks that will increase the wall's strength, but if the wall is seriously lacking, you can repair and fix the problems rather than attempting to boost the strength with tiebacks. In this case, the client can receive a functional and aesthetically pleasing retaining wall that will hold up to heavy use.
Can a Leaning Retaining Wall be Repaired?
A leaning retaining wall can be fixed quickly. You will have to decide to dismantle and reassemble the wall if the wall is between one and two feet tall. Once you've done so, you can look at the system's drainage and any other problems that caused the system to fail.
Structural engineers should look at the wall to get a better understanding of what would affect the wall.
It is important to use a structural engineer to examine the wall if it is higher than one or two feet. The wall would need to be fully demolished if the reason for the leaning or bowing is not found, but it would not be necessary in most cases.
Tools and Materials Required to Fix a Retaining Wall
- Helical Ties
- Drilling Machine
- Wall Anchor
Retaining Wall Repair Solutions [2 Solutions]
Solution-1: Helical Tiebacks
Do you know how to repair a retaining wall by using a helical tieback?
When a retaining wall is excessively stressed, the use of helical tiebacks may be an option. Helical tiebacks are beneficial since they can stretch back to the location of the failure. In certain cases, it is often referred to as soil nailing. A qualified team will examine your retaining wall to decide whether helical ties are a suitable solution for the problem you are experiencing.
Solution-2: Wall Anchors
Wall anchors may be used to support concrete retaining walls. Long-term wall anchor solutions, such as post-mounted bolts, will improve retaining walls and bring them back to their original location. Shoring up leaning or bent basement walls requires wall anchors, but the same fix is effective in retaining walls. You can inspect experts to check whether wall anchors are a good option for retaining wall issues.
It may also be necessary to examine a waterproofing solution so that the area is not filled with water. You can call the waterproofing expert to ensure that you have appropriate drainage and water protection when we inspect your house. Let the experts in the basement help you in fixing a failing retaining wall.
Check out the below video to learn more about fixing a leaning retaining wall:
Retaining Wall Repair Cost
Do you have any idea about how much does it cost to fix a leaning retaining wall?
You may need to know that retaining wall repairs cost an average of $800 to $1,000. Large projects up to $20,000 will run. It is just slightly higher than typical wall repair costs of $650.
Does Insurance Cover Retaining Walls?
In the case of the homeowner's insurance policy, a retaining wall is regarded as a separate structure. It thus is protected for a range of damages, such as fire damage, lightning, wind, and automobiles.
Therefore, if your house is insured for 100,000 dollars, your retention wall is covered for 10,000 dollars.
Retaining walls will begin to destroy whether the retaining wall is made of stone, block, concrete, or wood. When this happens, the homeowner has two options: either demolish the wall, restore it, re-install drain and reconstruction, or call a foundation repair specialist.
A professional will easily stabilize the wall and pull it into its original location in many instances.
If you are looking to fix a leaning retaining wall, consider the above factors listed in this content.