Major retaining wall issues

When you are a professional licensed builder, you’d think that your priority would be to use quality materials and proper procedures in installing a major retaining wall. If not, your shoddy installs will bite you in the @$$ sooner or later.

This entire retaining wall is falling apart and needs immediate attention.





Often even experienced builders just fail to account for the forces they are trying to hold back. Looks like this was a pretty wall when it was new.With no indication of any ties running into the hill. And not much in the way of setback against the force.

Was it grass above the wall or is their a parking lot?


There’s a commercial parking lot above this wall. I can tell you that this wall looks like it was laid with no drainage or any sort of tie backs.

And these block have instruction on how to install.

How’s that chimney doing?:smiley:

They are temporarily holding it in place with a nylon strap…

Now I’m waiting for the strap to let go.

That is just WRONG David.

Everyone knows that that particular repair call for Duct Tape. :mrgreen:

Let me guess…when the client booked the inspection they said something like, “My husband has some concerns about the retaining wall. Be sure not to miss that during the inspection.”

Those were good pics of a poorly constructed retaining wall David.
Very obvious it was done by an amatuer or a Contractor in disquise.

Retaining walls of this caliber are usually engineered. Even when using a pre-engineered retaining block system.
Tie-backs, filter fabric, stone, drainage, backfill, just a few of the elements envolved.
Nice photos.

Marcel :):smiley:

Not quite, but you’d be surprised how many clients ask me if obvious failing retaining walls need to be upgraded.

Like this for instance…

or this…

or this…

or even this one…



Tell me about it Marcel.

It’s amazing to see people go with the lowest bidder, not knowing that you get what you pay for.

When it comes to installing a very expensive retaining wall, people should be doing their homework before hiring fly-by-night idiots to install a two-three year retaining wall.

Don’t blame the contractor. blame the owner, looking for the cheapest bid.
Ya get what you pay for, and in this case, he got what he paid for!!

It’s "pay now for a quality job’ or “pay later to fix it”!! Many people are penny wise, pound foolish. I have no sympathy for the person who had this abortion installed, he got his just deserves!

UPDATE: This defective (unsafe) wall (see post #1) is now torn down and ready for a brand new retaining wall. I’m hoping they do it right this time.





any updates on that chimney, since things are coming down.:smiley:

How about an update on the chimney? :wink:

Some nice retaining wall graphics:

Often even experienced builders fail to get a little design work done before thinking they know it all and just do it like their last job, not realizing that the wall is higher and that there is a surcharge above it, for example. A little experience is a dangerous thing.


The damn nylon strap is still in place today.

If someone gets hurt or killed by that thing falling, isnt that negligence at this point? They know its unstable, and the weight rating for that strap is probably 200 pounds, or about 3 foot of chimney. They either need a new chimney, or 20 more straps.

I did my job of contacting the local building dept. If they accepted the temporary over-night strap, its out of my hands.

SM: Let’s not be hasty. We don’t know the motivations of the buyer. Maybe he paid top dollar for a quality job.

We see a lot of this type of work about 40 miles south of where I live - VIVA MEXICO!