How to Install Precast Concrete Blocks

26 Mar 2020 Precast Concrete

Precast concrete products provide an incredibly efficient, affordable, and reliable way of building various barriers and structures. At Eagle West Crane and Rigging, we provide many different types of precast concrete blocks with various installation methods. Although we offer delivery and placement services for precast concrete products, it can still be useful to know how to install precast concrete blocks in case you need to extend a project or make adjustments. Always refer to the block manufacturer’s or Geotechnical Engineers installation instructions when installing precast concrete blocks

Precast Concrete Block Installation Guide

Precast concrete blocks come in many sizes. You will need a mobile crane to install bigger concrete blocks properly, so the installation of products such as OCTA-BLOCS® should always be handled by a professional. The steps to install other types of precast concrete blocks, such as Redi-Rock® systems, are as follows:

1.     Plan Out the Project

Before getting started, plan out the entire project. If you are building a retaining wall, the slope of the wall will be different than if you are building a barricade or other type of wall. If you do not know the appropriate grade for your wall, make sure that you consult a professional.

2.     Level Out the Ground

Mark off the area where you will be installing the concrete blocks. Excavate the area and level the ground out as much as possible, and pack down the excavated area.

3.     Lay the Base Material

Shovel 4-6 inches of base material onto the ground where the precast blocks will be laid and compact it using a tamper until it is level. Pour sand on the base and use a screed board and a trowel to make it perfectly flat. Please refer to the blocks manufacturer’s or Geotechnical Engineer’s recommendations for base material.

4.     Install the First Row of Precast Blocks

Use a string line to mark a straight line across the front of the blocks and begin placing them. Use a level to make sure that the tops of the blocks are all square with one another. Anchor the row in place by packing gravel or other manufacturer recommended materials around them. Some types of precast concrete blocks will have pins that you will need to hammer through the blocks to hold them in place, but other types, such as Redi-Rock®, will have concrete knobs that interlock the various levels as they are installed.

5.     Continue Installing More Levels

Begin working your way up the wall, installing rows that are offset at the vertical joints. The blocks should overlap one another so that the wall is stable. Backfill the wall with gravel or other manufacturer recommended material after every level or two has been laid.

6.     Add Capstones

Once the wall is at the appropriate height, lay concrete adhesive across the top and add the wall’s capstones, if required.

If you would like to learn more about how to install precast concrete blocks, or if you are interested in any of our products, rentals, or services, please contact Eagle West Crane and Rigging at the location nearest you or fill out a contact form on our website and we will get back to you as soon as we can.