There are many circumstances in a construction project where retaining walls may be required. One of the most common is to retain an earth bank, either to prevent the earth from sliding or to protect an object or building. There are many ways and materials that can be used to construct a wall including; wood, metal and concrete. Wooden crib walls and sleepers are commonly used for domestic purposes as they are affordable and easier to handle. The domestic uses also tend to be small and have less loads placed on them, there is also an aesthetical requirement especially for garden wall purposes.
Metal sheet piling is a fast and efficient method of creating a retaining wall. Large sheets of corrugated steel are forced deep into the ground and the material is backfilled against this. One of the main drawbacks of using Wood and Metal for the construction of a wall is their corrosive nature. Wood will rot and metal will rust, this gives them a short life span. Concrete is an excellent product for building a retaining wall as it has excellent structural properties and it also repels the elements. The concrete products are made with steel reinforcement is encased in the concrete which prevents rust occurring and once cured the concrete provides excellent protection for the steel and a very strong structure. The reinforced concrete retaining wall can be either constructed onsite using steel cages for the reinforcement and wooden shuttering to form the structure. The other alternative is to use precast concrete sections manufacturer off-site and then install them on-site which will help reduce the construction time.
There are other types of precast blocks that can be used. These generally interlock to create gravity retaining walls which will sometimes require a gradient sloping back. These are useful where the end product needs to fit into the environment. It may be that plants can be used in order to help the wall blend it into the surroundings. These types of walls may be used near bridges, on the side of roads, or on residential developments. An example of this would be crib walling. These are relatively large precast blocks that interlock and build up to create the wall. They need a granular infill and then plants and other vegetation can be put on the wall so that over time will blend the wall into its surroundings.
There are many options out there so have a look around and work out which products is most suitable for your job.