Another Great Wall Design

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by LB1234, Apr 12, 2007.

  1. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    I received a phone call the other day from a guy who said his retaining wall in his back yard fell over and it needs to be fixed. I explained over the phone that more than likely a fix would require a complete rebuild since it fell over in the first place. Fine, set up to go see it yesterday. This is what I discovered.

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  2. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    So, I met the husband and out walks the wife. Right after saying hello she says and I quote (and please interpret this as an asian/oriental, broken english accent)

    "If give us the best poo-wice, you get job."

    My response after smiling and chuckling was "I'm not your guy." Husband wants me to look at it anyway. What the heck I'm there. So my jaw drops when I see it. He asked what I think I said I think the whole job needs to be started over and done right.

    The first thing I noticed was lack of stone and type of block. The next thing was lack of any type of drainage. Not to mention on top of the wall is this couples garden. I ask him "You know you are looking at the 25k to 30k range for a job like this, maybe more, right?" He flips out and keeps repeating the word no. I ask if he had gotten other quotes. He said yes...I asked how much he said 8,000. I said goodbye and walked away. He asked me to come back and I explained what the job would take and that for 8k he was going to have the same problem in another few years.

    He mentioned the company who gave the estimate and said it was his lawn guy. I said well your lawn guy has no clue what he's talking about. Does that price include new block? No he was going to reuse it. I laughed and said I'm sorry I can't help you. He chased after me and kept asked for me to explain myself. I did and when I mentioned permits and compaction testing and everything else he stated he didn't need to have that done. Like an idiot I argued with him:hammerhead: :hammerhead: :hammerhead:

    I told him to contact his insurance agency due to the liability with the neighbors property and the possibility of it getting worse...especially all the rain we had last night and today. Could only imagine the soil erosion that is taking place...right onto the neighbors property. LOL
  3. PatriotLandscape

    PatriotLandscape LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MA
    Messages: 1,209

    8000 damn the lawn guess are cutting your throught. at 8k thats less than a week for a crew of 3 never mind drainage stone and fabric new base. Using the same stone he should be getting quotes of at least twice that.
  4. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,366

    Looks like an overkill on drainage and grid. Must have been done by a PROFESSIONAL lawn guy. :laugh:

    Is that wood behind the wall????
  5. PaperCutter

    PaperCutter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,996

    Sure looks like wood- come on, what else would you use to brace the fenceposts?

    Why is it some people get screwed by the lowest bidder, and when it needs fixed they try to get it done even cheaper?
  6. jreiff

    jreiff LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Messages: 402

    If you are close to the house, you will have to keep an eye on it and see waht they have done.

    The two neighbors with the white vinyl fence and black metal fence cannot be too pleased.
  7. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    You bet your arse I'm gonna be passing by laughing at that one. I have weekly maintenance accounts (yes I'm a lawn guy as well;) ) in that area.

    You guys really want to laugh???

    I start explaining to him about hydrostatic pressure building up and causing the wall to fall over. He says no, when it rains the water runs on top of the lawn and runs over the wall. I nearly pissed myself at this point:laugh:

    I said no, I'm talking the water that settles into the ground and finds the lowest point...that being your wall. He then tries to convince me that there is not water underneath. I said really, what are we standing in looking at the fallen wall...he says his garden...i asked if he watered it..he said yes...i asked were he thought the water went...the lightbulb actually started to flicker.:waving:
  8. mrusk

    mrusk LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,260

    Whats surpising, is that it looks like a real nice neighborhood.
  9. N.H.BOY

    N.H.BOY LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,603

    Tell him HIS lawn guy needs to trim between the white fence and his blocks. Is that really the way lawns are but-up-against each other like that in Jersey? Wow we have old stone walls and about 100 feet of buffer zone.
  10. ChampionLS

    ChampionLS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,066

    Hey Dennis,

    Where is that Job? I had a phonecall about a week ago with some foreigner that left a odd ball message. Wonder if that was him?? I remember something about a estimate for a wall that needed repair. The guy kept pausing and saying "uhh...uhhh..uhh.." and I just deleted it.

    From your pictures, it looks like Monroe or South River/Old Bridge.

    You could re-use the block. But it's obvious theres no drainage aggregrate, or geogrid. The wall may have held up without it, but the moron making a garden in the infill soil created a saturated condition and Boom! out it went. If I were to fix that job, you'd need an excavator and lots of tedious work. 8K won't cover it.


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