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helpless handyman 04-27-2009 09:05 PM

Building a cinder block wall.
Hi everyone,

I need to build a cinder block wall on my backyard, to block the sites of the opposite neighbors sheds. This wall will need to be 17 cinder blocks wide, and 10 stocked in height. The backyard is concrete, but is not level. Can someone lead me to the right directions. I am pretty handy and would like to tackle this spring. I guess the hardest part would be setting the footings. Can I install on top of the concrete? Do I have to cut the concrete and lay the footings below ground level? What size of rebar is needed, and where? All the help is Greatly appreciated. Thanks

hayewe farm 04-27-2009 10:43 PM

Not sure where you live, but yes you would need to put in a footer that is below the frost line. You may need to get a permit. Your local building department should be able to give you the required specs including footer size and set back requirements. But I have to ask why you think a cinder block wall will look better than looking at a yard shed ?

James Con 04-28-2009 01:42 AM

I would think a nice decorative fence would look better than a block wall, Parged or not (stucco). And It would be safer than building a straight wall out of block that is gonna be 6'-6" high and 22 and a half feet long, Especially with no side support or framing on top to tie it all together.All you need is a wacky neighbor to smash into it and push it into your backyard. Are you gonna stone or brick face it to dress it up or something, is that why you are going with block. If so you might want to call someone in to do a form and pour.

wildcat 04-28-2009 07:29 AM

Build a privacy fence it will save you time and money.

But if you go with cmu, then you need a footing below frost line. If its a grade beam then you'll have some of the cmu wall below grade that needs water proofing. If you use a strip footing w/ concrete stem wall you'll need water proffing. You'll need rebar to connect the wall to the foundation. You'll need vertical reinforcement at a minimum of 48" on center. you may also need horizontal reinforcement. You may also need pilasters depending on your location and effects of wind or seismic forces.

Bottom line, call a contractor if you want cmu. They will know what needs to be done and will do it much faster thn you. In the long run it will save you money and time. I wouldn't even mess with an engineer because if you tell them you are going to build it, they will tell you they won't design and detail it (its not worth the liability compared to how little money they will make).

jomama45 04-28-2009 10:14 AM

I mostly agree with wildcat. As a mason, free standing CMU walls scare even me until the pilasters are grouted & cured. And at a 10:1 height/width (assuming 8" block) this wall can be very dangerous to construct for anybody without temp. bracing. These walls can very easily hinge at the footing & topple over. Also, laying block that will be seen on both sides is no where near as easy as it looks. :no:

helpless handyman 04-29-2009 10:22 AM

Thanks guys, I was going to have it covered with bricks as well. As for the fence, that was my first option but the 6' fence would not cover the sheds and garage. I rather look at a cinder block wall, then look at my neighbors rusty looking sheds that are like 10ft high! Building a layer of cinder blocks say 3 layers and then a fence on the top would look awful. Thanks anyway.

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