How to Reinforce a Wood Retaining Wall

What You'll Need
Carriage bolts

A wood retaining wall is an excellent way to eradicate painfully steep or difficult slopes, prevent erosion and increase the aesthetic appeal of your planting beds. Its construction makes it a unique, light weight yet durable creation made ideally out of treated lumber which can easily dwell within your yard, garage or garden. Reinforcing a light wood retaining wall is only a moderately challenging project which hardly ever requires hiring a contractor or a professional. Using the tools and materials mentioned below, as per the steps explained, you may go about your task with little difficulty. 


Step 1 - Run a Check Up 

Before starting your project, take a bit to contemplate and understand your foremost reason or motivation for building your retaining wall. This will enable you to determine where and why you require your wall which in effect, will help you in deciding various other details related to your wall. It is worthy to note that the higher your retaining wall, the deeper the soil and the bigger the amount of pressure on your wall. Also, note that before you undertake your project, do check up with the local authorities to assure that there are no laws or legislatures binding you from building a retaining wall with particular dimensions in your area. 

Step 2 - Prepare the Cut and the Posts

Now proceed with your retaining wall by using a trowel to slice up the cut (which should ideally be an appropriate mixture of ditch and ledge) at the location where you intend to start your wall. Then cut out 4 by 4 posts whose length should be equivalent to your wall’s proposed height along with the amount which would be down casted into the ground.

Step 3 - Drill Holes and Pour Concrete

Once the posts have been prepared, excavate holes on the posts using your drill towards the inner side of your wall’s base after every 3 to 4 feet. Then, lower your posts into the drilled holes and pour a sufficient amount of concrete to bring your posts to ground level. See to it that you level the concrete and allow it to dry for about a week.

Step 4 - Cut the Boards 

Move forward by cutting boards with the 2 by 6 or 2 by 12 dimensions ideally which can perfectly fit into the length of your retaining wall. However, the exact dimensions depend upon your wall’s desired height and it is also worthy to note that if you need to run more than a single board covering the entire length of your wall, assure that you bolt the pieces in the center of a post for the sake of stability. 

Step 5 - Work on the Drainage

Use carriage bolts to bolt boards to your posts by positioning the boards towards the outer side of the post. After this, build up a system of drainage by digging a few tunnels of 2 inch diameter around your wall with the help of a trowel which can later be filled with gravel. Fill out the area behind the wall (towards the bottom) with about 6 to 7 inches of gravel and the left over area with soil until ground level is reached.