A well-constructed wall can go a long way in improving the look and functionality of your property. Whether you’re looking to increase the amount of usable space in your backyard, would like to beautify the landscape of your front yard, or are simply looking for an attractive and effective way to prevent erosion, a Belgard retaining wall is the perfect solution.
Belgard is regarded for its high-quality tandem wall blocks that are designed to look just like natural stone. Because the blocks are available in a wide range of colors and textures, it’s easy to create the perfect look for your property without skimping on practicality. If you’re ready to start building a Belgard retaining wall, this simple installation guide will get you through the process.
Step 1: Choose Your Materials
Belgard is a great fit for any homeowner because the brand offers a wide variety of wall block systems for you to choose from. Spend some time considering the overall look and theme you’d like to create for your property in order to narrow down your options.
We also recommend visiting a local showroom in order to get a firsthand look at the blocks you’re considering working with. Belgard also offers landscaping software design tools that make it easier to picture specific materials in your own yard.
Step 2: Plan Your Design
One of the great things about Belgard retaining wall systems is that they offer a great deal of design flexibility. The blocks can be arranged in straight, curved, or rounded configurations with ease. Texturing and coloring are featured on all sides of the blocks so that you’ll be able to enjoy their beauty no matter what your position.
Throughout the design phase of your project, it’s also a good idea to call your local utility providers and have them evaluate your plans. These professionals will be able to tell you if there are important cables, pipes, or other utilities located beneath your project area that could negatively impact your property now or in the future.
Another thing to remember is that if you are planning on constructing a tall Belgard retaining wall (over 3′ in height), you will need to work with a qualified engineer to ensure that the wall is secure and up to code.
Step 3: Gather Your Materials
In addition to your Belgard tandem retaining wall blocks, you’ll need to gather a few additional materials and supplies in order to get going on your project. Polypropylene connection members, for instance, make it easier for you to construct walls that are attractive and sturdy, without the use of geogrid (in walls 3′ in height or less).
You will also need tools and equipment for excavation and compaction. For smaller project areas, you may be able to work with a shovel, wheelbarrow and a hand tamping tool.
For larger undertakings, you may need to make use of a bobcat, a heavy-duty roller, or other similar pieces of equipment. 3/4″ Crushed stone will be required for the establishment of a leveling pad and for filling in your wall blocks for added internal gravel interlocking.
It’s a good idea to consult with a landscaping professional to determine how much crushed stone to purchase for this purpose. Make sure that you have a shovel on hand for this process, and we recommend using gloves for safety and comfort. You should also have a level handy in order to make sure that your wall is completed with care and precision.
If you are installing a curved or round retaining wall, you will need to have a radius on hand. Finally, make sure that you have the materials required to install a drain pile adjacent to the back of the wall.
Step 4: Create a Leveling Pad
You will need to excavate 6″ plus the height of the block being used prior to installing your Belgard retaining wall system. The soil must be carefully compacted down and cleared of any debris. Once completely level, 6″ of crushed stone must be introduced to the leveling pad and compacted.
Step 5: Start Building
Once the leveling pad is complete, you’ll need to assemble a row of interlocking tandem retaining wall blocks on top of the pad. Use a mallet to ensure that the blocks are securely in place, and be sure to use a level in order to make sure that the blocks are not only level from side to side, but also from front to back.
This is crucial not only to the overall aesthetic of the wall, but also to its overall level of strength and integrity. As you build up the wall, you will need to fill the installed blocks with 3/4″ crushed stone or gravel before proceeding to the next row of blocks.
In addition to adding gravel interlocking, this crushed stone also helps with internal drainage, thus relieving hydrostatic pressure that could negatively impact the strength of the wall over time.
Step 6: Install a Drain Pile
Because NJ and other areas throughout the northeast are so prone to experiencing heavy rainfall and precipitation, it’s very important that you take the time to install a drain pile directly behind the retaining wall. This allows for positive drainage and will keep your wall in the best shape and condition possible so that it can serve your needs for many years.
Step 7: Cap It Off
When you have built your wall the the desired height, you will use Belgard wall caps in order to add even more strength to the wall system while also adding a touch of beauty and sophistication. A strong construction adhesive will need to be used in order to secure the caps in place.
DIY vs Professional Contractors
Those with some DIY-experience and who enjoy hardscaping will find that it’s simple to install a Belgard retaining wall. If, after reading through this installation guide for Belgard retaining wall systems, you are uncertain about your ability to construct your own retaining wall, we strongly urge you to consult with a professional, Belgard Authorized Contractor.
An authorized contractor will be familiar with Belgard products and will know how to properly install your wall blocks in order to protect your investment and your warranty. Talk to your Belgard Authorized Dealer for recommendations for authorized contractors in your locale.
Constructing a Belgard Retaining Wall in NJ
When you’re ready to start work on your Belgard retaining wall system, Braen Supply is ready to help make your dreams come true. As one of the leading Belgard Authorized Dealers in NJ and the northeast, we are able to offer a full inventory of gorgeous, high-quality Belgard retaining wall blocks at the lowest and most competitive prices possible.
Our team is qualified to answer any questions you may have about the design or installation process, and can help connect you to skilled Belgard contractors and designers in the area.
Our Belgard retaining wall products can be viewed in our local showroom, and can be picked up or bulk delivered to areas throughout parts of NJ and NY and limited parts of PA and CT. Give us a call or stop by to learn more today.