5 Types of Retaining Walls You Need to Know

05.07.22 11:54 AM By Anand

Retaining walls are an effective and cost-effective way to keep soil in place while still giving you plenty of room to grow. If you’re looking to build or install concrete retaining walls around your home, there are five different types you should know about first. Each type has its own unique characteristics, including how it’s constructed, the materials needed, and the amount of space it takes up in your yard or garden.

Retaining walls help protect against erosion, runoff, and soil collapse, and they allow you to safely expand the usable area of your property without having to move house or office.

Gravity Retaining Walls

These are thick, tall concrete walls that do exactly what they sound like: they hold back large amounts of soil. Gravity retaining walls can get up to 30 feet in height and have a lot of mass, which makes them ideal for holding back steep grades. This is one of the most popular types because it’s easy to design and construct and has no major moving parts or forces acting on it. It’s also very economical. The downside is that gravity walls aren’t as sturdy as other types—if you load them too heavily, they could collapse under their own weight. For example, if you build a wall 20 feet high with 1 foot of concrete depth and you load it with 2 tons per square foot (typical for residential applications), then there will be about 4 tons pushing down on every square foot of the wall at grade level. Meet Concrete Contractor in Rockford IL to know in-depth!

Concrete Cantilever Retaining Walls 

The first type of concrete retaining wall, also known as a cantilever wall, is made from interlocking concrete blocks. This type of wall was actually one of the earliest designs used for retaining walls, and although it’s still a common choice today, it does have some drawbacks that might make you think twice about using it. For example, these retaining walls are extremely heavy and aren’t as aesthetically pleasing as some other designs because they have visible seams. They’re also more expensive than other types of concrete retaining walls. However, if you need a sturdy design that can hold up against extreme weather conditions or soil pressure, then concrete cantilever walls may be just what you need. They are built using L shaped or inverted T shaped foundation concrete.

Reinforced Soil Retaining Wall

A reinforced soil wall is a low-cost, low-maintenance option that will last for decades. It’s a combination of a concrete base and soil fill. The Rockford Construction crew digs trenches and lays in layers of crusher run (smaller pieces of rock), compacted sand, pea gravel, and cement. After each layer dries for at least five days, another layer is added until it reaches about 4 feet high. It is an environment friendly, durable & strong retaining wall comprises of alternating layers of compacted backfill and soil reinforcement.

Counter-fort / Buttressed Retaining Walls

Rockford Construction builds counter-fort retaining walls that provide support for the backfill around them. The wall itself holds up and redistributes any pressure from behind it, which allows us to do away with a thick concrete pad or mat at its base. This reduces expense while improving drainage over other types of retaining walls; these floating walls stand independently on their own foundations, allowing water to flow freely underneath them.

Anchored Retaining Walls

An anchored retaining wall is a series of concrete blocks that are stacked on top of one another, with cables or rods anchoring them together and into bedrock. Anchored walls are typically used to create terraces or for small-scale projects around your home. They’re sometimes called tiered retaining walls.

Concrete retaining walls are an ideal solution to soft or unstable soil when building new structures or landscaping your property. From utility to ornamental purposes, there is a variety of concrete retaining wall designs to choose from and each serves its own purpose. Call us today for unmatched Concrete Retaining Walls in Rockford IL.

We're proud to offer you something of value; every one of our projects is customized to suit your needs and budget so you can rest assured knowing you're getting expertly installed materials at an affordable price. Plus, customer service matters to us so much that we take great care to make sure you always feel taken care of before, during, and after each project.

We offer only the best concrete solutions for landscaping and hardscaping at Rockford Concrete. If you're looking to improve your landscape or install a new foundation in need of a strong structure, Give us a call or contact us online to learn more about how you can turn your yard into an outdoor paradise with our amazing services, including retaining wall installation.