How to Fix a Bowing Retaining Wall

If you have a bowing retaining wall, don’t fret! There are several ways you can correct the issue and restore your wall to its former glory. In this post, we’ll go over some of the most common methods for fixing a bowed retaining wall. So if your wall is looking a little worse for wear, read on for some tips on how to fix a bowing retaining wall.

how to fix a bowing retaining wall

Summary: Taking care of a bowing retaining wall does not have to be complicated. Start by checking for erosion or instability, then take a look at the wall for cracks. Consider adding reinforcing bars or cables and add drainage. If necessary, try resin injection or completely replace the wall if needed.

What Is a Retaining Wall?

A retaining wall is a structure that holds back soil or rock from a sloping area. It prevents land erosion and can be made from various materials, including concrete, stone, and lumber. Retaining walls are often used in landscaping and gardening to create level planting areas on sloped terrain.

They can also control runoff from paved surfaces, such as driveways and sidewalks. In some cases, retaining walls may be required by local building codes to protect homes and other structures from the risk of landslides. When properly designed and constructed, a retaining wall can add both function and beauty to any property.

Why Should You Fix a Bowing Retaining Wall?

A retaining wall is a common sight in many yards and gardens, but it’s also one of the most important features of your landscaping. A retaining wall helps to prevent soil erosion by holding back soil and rock that would otherwise collapse onto your property. In addition, a retaining wall can also be used to create level areas in your yard or to create raised beds for planting.

However, over time, even the strongest retaining wall can begin to bow under the weight of the soil it is holding back. If you notice that your retaining wall is beginning to lean, it’s important to take action right away. By fixing a bowing retaining wall, you can help to prevent further damage to your property and ensure that your landscaping looks its best.

6 Tips to Follow on How to Fix a Bowing Retaining Wall

A retaining wall can start to bow for various reasons, such as how it was built or the soil conditions around it. If you notice that your retaining wall is starting to bow, there are a few things you can do to try and fix it before it becomes a bigger problem.

1. Check for Erosion or Instability

First, check the soil around the wall for any signs of erosion or instability. If the soil is loose or washing away from the wall, this can cause the wall to bow. Next, try to fix any drainage problems and stabilize the soil with plants or other landscaping features.

2. Check the Wall for Cracks

Next, you will need to check the wall for any cracks. If there are any cracks, you will need to repair them before you can fix the bowing retaining wall. The best way to repair cracks is by using a concrete patching compound.

A Concrete Patching Compound

3. Add Reinforcing Bars or Cables

If the wall is still bowing after taking these measures, you may need to add reinforcing bars or cables to the wall. This will help to stabilize the wall and prevent it from bowing further. You can add these bars or cables yourself, or you can hire a professional to do it for you.

4. Add Drainage

One of the main reasons retaining walls bow is because of poor drainage. When water seeps into the soil behind the wall, it can cause the soil to expand and put pressure on the wall. This is why it’s important to make sure your retaining wall has proper drainage. You can do this by adding a perforated pipe behind the wall that will allow water to drain away from the wall.

5. Try Resin Injection

If your retaining wall is made of concrete, you may be able to fix it with resin injection. This is a process where a resin is injected into the cracks in the wall to stabilize it. This method is not always successful, but it’s worth a try if you’re struggling to fix your bowing retaining wall.

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6. Replace the Wall

In some cases, the only way to fix a bowing retaining wall is to replace it. This is usually only necessary if the wall is severely damaged or leaning at a dangerous angle. Replacing a retaining wall is a big job, so it’s best to hire a professional contractor to do the work for you.

That’s it! You’ve now learned how to fix a bowing retaining wall. If you follow these tips, you should be able to fix your wall and prevent it from bowing further.

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The Different Types of Retaining Walls and Which One is Right for You

A retaining wall is a structure that holds back soil or rock from a slope. It is used to protect against erosion and provide support for the soil. There are different types of retaining walls, each with its own advantages and disadvantages. The most common type of retaining wall is the gravity wall.

Typically Made of  Concrete or Stone

Gravity walls rely on their weight to hold back the soil. They are typically made of concrete or stone and can be very expensive. Another retaining wall is the cantilever wall. Cantilever walls are made of beams that are anchored into the ground. They are less expensive than gravity walls but require more maintenance.

Finally, there is the segmental block wall. Segmental block walls are interlocking blocks that fit together like puzzle pieces. They are easy to install but can be unstable in high winds. Therefore, when choosing a retaining wall, it is important to consider the wall’s purpose and the site’s conditions.

Gravity walls are best suited for steep slopes, while cantilever walls work well on gentle slopes. Segmental block walls are good for sites with poor drainage or high water tables.

How to Inspect a Retaining Wall for Damage

As a homeowner, it’s important to inspect your retaining wall for damage regularly. After all, a retaining wall is responsible for supporting a lot of weight, and even a small crack can cause problems down the road. Here’s what you need to do to inspect your retaining wall:

First, take a close look at the wall itself. Look for cracks, chips, or other signs of wear and tear. If you see any damage, make a note of it so you can repair it later.

Next, check the foundation of the wall. Make sure there is no movement or settling taking place. If the foundation is unstable, it could cause the entire wall to collapse.

Finally, Inspect the soil around the base of the wall. Erosion can weaken the foundation of the wall over time. If you see any sign of erosion, take steps to protect the soil, so it doesn’t get worse.

By regularly inspecting your retaining wall, you can catch problems early and avoid major repairs down the road. Keep reading for more information about how to fix a bowing retaining wall.

A Structure That  Holds Back Soil

How to Prevent a Bowing Retaining Wall

A retaining wall is a structure that holds back soil, rocks, or other materials. It is usually used to prevent erosion or to make a sloped area of land more level. Retaining walls can be made from various materials, including wood, stone, and concrete. However, all retaining walls are susceptible to damage from the pressure of the material they hold back.

This can cause the wall to bow or even collapse. However, there are several ways to prevent this from happening. First, it is important to ensure that the retaining wall’s base is wide enough to support the weight of the material above it. Second, it is important to use high-quality materials that will not crumble under pressure.

Finally, it is important to have the retaining wall regularly inspected by a professional. By taking these precautions, you can help ensure that your retaining wall will stand strong for years to come.

Contribute to  Retaining Wall Bowing

What Causes a Retaining Wall to Bow?

Several factors can contribute to retaining wall bowing. One is the weight of the soil behind the wall. If the soil is saturated with water, it can put additional pressure on the wall and cause it to bow. Another factor is the height of the wall. A taller wall is more likely to experience bowing than a shorter one. Additionally, the type of soil behind the wall can make a difference.

Soils high in clay content are more expansive when wet, which can also lead to bowing. Finally, poor drainage can also be a factor. If water builds up behind the wall, it can increase the pressure and cause the wall to bow. By understanding these factors, you can help to prevent your retaining wall from bowing.

Pros and Cons of Repairing vs. Replacing a Bowing Retaining Wall

When a retaining wall starts to bow, it can be difficult to decide whether to repair or replace the wall. On the one hand, repairing the wall may be less expensive and time-consuming than replacing it. On the other hand, however, there is no guarantee that the repaired wall will last any longer than the original, and it may not be able to support the same amount of weight.

Replacing the wall may be more costly upfront, but it will likely last longer and be more durable. Therefore, when deciding whether to repair or replace a bowing retaining wall, it is important to weigh the pros and cons carefully to make the best decision for your situation.

Replace a Bowing Retaining Wall


If you have a bowing retaining wall on your property, don’t despair! There are several ways to fix it, most of which are relatively easy and affordable. Follow the steps we’ve outlined in this post, or contact a professional for help. Your wall will be good as new in no time! Thanks for reading our post about how to fix a bowing retaining wall.

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