From preventing soil erosion and flooding to minimizing landscape eyesores, retaining walls serve many important functional and aesthetic purposes. When well-maintained, these structures can be a welcome addition to landscapes with sloped areas for many years. But sometimes there are problems with these outdoor walls that will need to be corrected with repairs or complete replacement. Here are three signs to look for that suggest your retaining wall may need this kind of attention.

  1. Materials Are Failing

An older retaining wall made of wood will eventually rot from years of exposure to rain and snow. If you live in an area with heavy precipitation, stone retaining walls can also become worn and damaged from regular exposure to moisture and pressure from soil. When there’s only minor issues with stones in a certain areas, you may be fine with a few strategic repairs. If you have widespread failure with materials, however, replacement is usually more cost-effective.

  1. There’s Root Damage

Aggressive roots can eventually cause problems for retaining walls when they expand and reach the ground around and underneath where a wall is located. Strong roots in search of moisture sometimes maneuver into cracks and crevices or cause a retaining wall to lose stability. If the problem is serious, the entire structure may buckle from the extra pressure from roots. Whether to opt for repair or replacement in situations like this will depend on how much of the retaining wall is affected.

  1. You Have Insufficient Drainage

When a retaining wall is installed, attention has to be paid to drainage if the structure is going to remain sturdy. Drainage has to be set up in a way that allows water to be diverted away from the barrier so it doesn’t work its way into the masonry. If your retaining walls has a poorly designed drainage setup, there may come a time when parts of it need to replaced. Just remember to have drainage issues corrected before you have your structure repaired or replaced.

Any retaining walls Manassas VA property owners may need repaired or replaced should include the use of high-quality stones to ensure that the right amount of protection is provided. Opting for premium-quality stones can also boost curb appeal, enhance property value, and protect adjacent landscape elements that can be easily damaged from too much water exposure.