How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
site-built, mobile/manufactured and modular homes
How long do timber railroad tie retaining walls last?
Tuesday, April 19, 2022
The life expectancy of a railroad tie retaining wall is about 20 to 30 years, with an average of 25 years. Take off a few years for a location in a warm, wet environment like Florida, where wood rot and termites are active year-round. And, conversely, expect a somewhat longer life in a dryer and cooler location.
Also, a wood retaining wall needs deadman anchors or geogrid mesh backing to stabilize the soil behind it, along with a footing, gravel backfill and water drainage system. These components help to stabilize the wall and extend its life.
See our articles How do I recognize structural problems in a retaining wall? and Do home inspectors check retaining walls? to learn more.
And for the average life expectancies of other parts of a residence, go to What is the average life expectancy of the components of a house? and How accurate are the average life expectancy ratings of home components? Are they actually useful?
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Field Guide for Home Inspectors, a quick reference for finding the age of 154 brands of HVAC systems, water heaters, and electrical panels, plus 210 code standards for site-built and manufactured homes, and the life expectancy rating of 195 home components. Available at amazon.com for $19.95.
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Here’s links to a few of our other blog posts about a home’s SITE:
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