We have a wooden retaining wall running all the way down one side of our block. The neighbour's property is about 80cm higher than ours. The retaining wall is looking worn and weathered. It is 20+ years old. I'd like to make sure it is properly maintained, and do it up a bit if I can.
What maintenance should I be doing to look after it? Do I need to worry about the part of the wall that is underground?
Should I apply any kind of protective treatment? I'm sure it's treated timber but does the treatment have a shelf life?
If I paint it, what kind of paint should I use? I have no idea what kind of wood it is.
Do you have any suggestions about the colour to paint it? I guess it needs something fairly neutral that blends in.
Talking of painting wood, the dog says her kennel is looking 'ruff'. It's a good kennel (from Bunnings) but again I don't know what type of wood it is. Do I need to sand-prime-paint it? What kind of paint etc would be right for this kind of job? And would a brush be best?
Are there any particular concerns you had about the retaining wall? The timber is sufficiently treated for external use so there are no real issues there. You could improve its look by giving it a scrub down with some Intergrain 1L UltraPrep Timber Cleaner. Cleaning the timber would likely be a good idea before using Dulux Weathershield to paint it. It's treated Pine and just requires a good quality exterior paint. Alternatively, you could look at oiling/staining the timber, which will add a certain level of protection.
Colours like Ironstone and Monument are quite popular for fences and I'd imagine would look quite nice on your retaining wall. You might like to visit a store and pick up some colour cards and perhaps a sample pot or two. That would really give you an idea of what colour to go with.
The dog kennel could do with a light sand down with 120-grit and then painting. Once again you could use Dulux Weathershield and it's self-priming.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Mitchell: Are there any particular concerns you had about the retaining wall?
No, not really. We had the retaining wall on the other side replaced several years ago with blocks. The bloke said we'd probably need to replace the other retaining wall (the one I photographed) "in a couple of years". He was probably just trying to drum up some more business.
The wall looks a bit rough but can certainly be spruced up. In regards to replacing it, that would normally come down to its structural integrity. I've highlighted a couple of areas of minor concern. You just want to make sure the wall is stable with no significant rot and not going to fall over anytime soon.