How to make a Retaining Wall with Blocks?
These are the steps you need to take to make a good retaining wall with blocks:
1. Choose blocks depending on amount of soil to be retained. That means for a small height of less than 2 feet, you can choose less heavier blocks, than that required for say a 5 feet wall. Also decide the color and pattern matches with the surrounding and what you had in mind.
2. Remove the soil at the base to clear the way for construction to take place. Remove the soil from surrounding area so as to get a clear area for construction.
3. Remove any loose materials at the base and stamp the base and make it compressed to remove any air pockets.
4. Provide a good layer of gravel base covering the base and extending to the back of the wall as well. If the wall thickness is 9 inches, make your gravel base upto 18 inches. Stamp the gravel layers nicely, provide atleast 3 layers stamping the layers each time.
5. Provide a perforated pipe on the back side for small walls and provide weep holes for bigger walls. This will improve the drainage ability of the wall even more, apart from the gravels, and allow smooth flow of water and prevent loading on the wall foundation. Make sure the pipe is aligned to allow water to flow downstream or in the drains.
6. Provide the first layer of the block in proper alignment including in plumb and horizontally aligned using a nylon string. First layer required more thicker to form a wider base for taller walls.
7. After the first layer is laid, make sure to recheck and the lines with string and levels, correct if any misalignments and start laying the layers above it. Check each layer in the same way, making sure to match with the first layer.
8. Finish the layers by putting the final layer in a different pattern to give a better finished look. You may like to put a thinner layer at the top.