All About Retaining Walls
The kind of retaining wall you choose depends on function
By Josienita Borlongan
Whether you have a contemporary or traditional home, you can complement it with the right retaining wall. Choosing from a wide variety of styles, colors and textures will help you design cohesively. Some retaining walls are more labor-intensive to build than others, requiring additional tools and materials to complete the installation. Knowing what retaining walls to use before starting your project will eliminate costly mistakes.
Retaining walls can add beauty and stability to any landscaping project. There are two kinds of retaining walls: structural and decorative. Structural retaining walls provide reinforcement to prevent slope erosion. Decorative retaining walls, on the other hand, enhance the visual appeal of the area. Retaining walls also give distinctive partitions and elevations in irregularly shaped gardens. Walls of different heights and shapes make the yard more interesting by allowing plantings on elevated beds.
Types of Materials
Retaining walls can be made of stone, wood, cinder blocks, poured concrete, concrete blocks and bricks. Stones and concrete retaining walls are more durable than those made of wood, cinder blocks and bricks.
Installation can consist of stacking rocks without mortar for short, decorative walls to load-bearing installations that require concrete footings and re-bar reinforcement. What kind of installation you'll need depends of the material, height and function of the wall.
Check into the regulations in your area, especially when building load-bearing or structural retaining walls. Building codes in most counties require a licensed engineer design or approve retaining walls that are greater than 4 feet tall.
Retaining walls will increase the value of your property because of the structural strength and visual appeal they provide.
About the Author
Josie Borlongan is a regular contributor to DexKnows.
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