Building a DIY Block Retaining Wall
By: Danny Lipford
Building a stackable block retaining wall makes a great do-it-yourself project, though it does require a good bit of physical labor and some heavy lifting. Here’s how to go about it.
Building a block retaining wall:
- Wall Excavation: Dig out and level the ground for the retaining wall.
- Wall Foundation: Add a base of crushed stone, and use a tamp to compact it.
- Laying Blocks: Stack the blocks, following the manufacturer’s instructions, applying construction or landscape adhesive between each layer of blocks.
Pavestone Yukon style Rockwall stackable blocks were used to build this wall. Watch this video to find out more.
- How to Build a Stackable Block Retaining Wall (article)
- How to Cut and Install Retaining Wall Topper Stones (article)
- How to Build Retaining Wall Corners (article)
- How to Align Blocks in a Curved Retaining Wall (article)
A retaining wall begins with a level, solid foundation. Dig out the area and level the soil before adding a crushed stone base. The base will need to be compacted with a tamp before you begin to install the blocks.
Retaining wall blocks have a lip on the back edge to keep them leaning into the hill. Follow the block manufacturer’s direction concerning the necessary overlap and pattern for the blocks. As the wall goes up, you’ll want to add construction or landscape adhesive between the courses of blocks.
Once the wall is complete and you’ve installed the cap blocks, you can backfill the dirt behind it and complete the landscaping.