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A Trusted Seawall Repair Resource for Engineers

Body - Seawall Repair Resource for EngineersSeawall Repair Specification Guidance and Contracting Partners for Engineers

As an engineer, you understand the importance of maintaining the structural integrity and functionality of seawalls and bulkheads. Additionally, it’s important to consistently broaden one’s knowledge when it comes to the spectrum of available repair methods. Seawall Repair Network® is here to help you do just that. Our team of experienced professionals provides comprehensive repair and preservation services for seawalls. Whether your clients’ seawalls are in need of stabilization or preservation, we have the expertise and resources to meet their needs. Seawall stabilization involves stabilizing surrounding soil, repairing cracks, and installing systems to control hydrostatic pressure. These systems can help prevent movement and cracking of the concrete, ensuring the structural integrity of the seawall.

We are committed to using environmentally friendly seawall repair materials and methods. This includes the use of products such as SW-RP1, a repair material that is stronger than crystalline bedrock, as well as using the installation of systems that prevent soil migration and void formation on the landward side of the wall. As an engineer, you can trust Seawall Repair Network® for the expertise and resources you need to provide reliable, long-lasting solutions for your clients’ seawalls.

Seawall Repair Continuing Education – Accredited Presentations

Seawall Repair Network® offers one-hour CE/PDH accredited presentations on a variety of seawall and concrete repair applications. Click here for more information on scheduling an accredited presentation.

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Components of a Seawall

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Seawalls are complex structures made up of many different components working together to provide protection and support. An understanding of seawall components informs decisions about repair and maintenance. Let’s examine the various components of a seawall and see how they work together to provide protection and support for waterfront property.

Seawall Components

There are several key components that are common to most seawalls. These include:


The foundation of a seawall is the base upon which the rest of the seawall is built. It is important that the foundation is strong and stable to support the weight of the seawall and withstand the forces of the water.

Backfill Material

Backfill material is used to fill in the area behind the seawall and provide additional support. This can be any type of material, such as sand, gravel, or soil, depending on the specific needs of the project.

Filter Fabric

Filter fabric is a generic term used to describe geotextiles whose primary function is allowing water to pass through the vertical seams (panel joints) and weep holes of the seawall panels while reducing soil migration into the waterway from behind and under the seawall.  Filter fabric is installed at the time of panel installation and is secured in place with furring strips behind the seawall.  Filter fabric is most commonly installed behind concrete panel seawalls.  Many vinyl and sheet pile seawall structures do not include filter fabric due to the wrap-around tongue-and-groove seems. Many types of filter fabrics are being installed with new seawall construction.  As is the case with much of modern construction, the quality of today’s material is inferior to older versions.

Seawall Cap

A seawall cap is a horizontal structure that is installed at the top of a seawall. It serves several important functions, including:

Protecting the Top of the Seawall

The seawall cap helps to protect the top of the seawall from damage caused by weather, waves, and other external forces. It can also help to prevent debris and sediment from accumulating on the seawall, which could otherwise cause erosion and damage to the structure.

Providing a Walking Surface

The seawall cap can provide a flat, stable surface for people to walk on, which is useful if the seawall is located in a public area or is used as a recreational space.

Improving the Appearance of the Seawall

A seawall cap can add a finishing touch to the seawall, improving its overall appearance and making it more aesthetically pleasing.

Enhancing the Functionality of the Seawall

Depending on the design of the seawall cap, it may also be used to support additional structures, such as handrails, lighting, or seating.

Seawall caps are typically made of concrete, but can also be made of other materials, such as wood or stone. They are an important component and play a critical role in protecting the structure and enhancing its functionality.

Drainage System

A seawall should have a drainage system to allow water to flow through or around the seawall, rather than accumulating behind it. A drainage system prevents damage due to hydrostatic pressure buildup and ensures that it remains stable.

Deadman Anchor System

The deadman anchor system consists of a series of anchors that are installed behind the seawall and are connected to the structure by cables or rods. These anchors are typically made of concrete, steel, or other durable materials and are designed to resist the forces of the water and the weight of the seawall. This system is used to provide additional support and stability to the structure. It is particularly useful in areas with strong wave action or high hydrostatic pressure, where the seawall may be subjected to significant forces. The function of the system is to distribute the load of the seawall across a larger area, reducing the stress on any one point and helping to prevent failure. By providing additional support and stability, the system can extend the life of the seawall and ensure that it continues to provide effective protection.

Protective Coating

Many seawalls have a protective coating on the surface to help protect against the elements and extend the life of the seawall. The coating can be a sealant, paint, or another type of material, depending on the needs of the project.

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Four Types of Seawalls

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Seawalls are constructed with a variety of materials, each featuring unique characteristics and benefits. Some of the most common types of seawalls include:

Concrete Seawalls

These seawalls are made of poured concrete and are a popular choice due to their durability and strength. Concrete seawalls are often used in areas with strong wave action or heavy boat traffic.

Sheet Pile Seawalls

These seawalls are made of interlocking sheets of metal, vinyl, or composite that are driven into the ground. Sheet pile seawalls are typically used in areas with softer soil or where the water level is expected to fluctuate.

Rock Seawalls

Rock seawalls (a.k.a. Rip Rap) are made of large, heavy stones that are placed along the shoreline to create a barrier. Rock seawalls are often used in areas with strong wave action or to provide a natural-looking barrier.

Wooden Seawalls

Wooden seawalls are typically the least expensive to construct. They are most often used in residential applications. Wooden seawalls tend to have the shortest lifespan of all the seawall types profiled in this article.

In conclusion, seawalls are critical structures that serve a variety of practical functions for waterfront property owners and other stakeholders. There are several types of seawalls to choose from. Once installed, is important to work with a skilled and experienced contractor to ensure proper maintenance and repair.

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The Importance of Shoreline Resilience

Body - Importance of Shoreline ResilienceOur international population is rapidly approaching 8 billion people. According to the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration, “almost 40 percent of the population lives in relatively high-population-density coastal areas, where sea level plays a role in flooding, shoreline erosion, and hazards from storms. Globally, eight of the world’s 10 largest cities are near a coast, according to the U.N. Atlas of the Oceans.” Read more here…

The international community must prepare and implement engineered design plans to contend with the severe forces of nature and ever-increasing water levels. Waterfront property and infrastructure must be resilient to the forces of mother nature.

New York City alone has a population of nearly 25 million citizens, in just roughly 300 square miles. This area is situated on one of the world’s largest natural harbors, with water covering 36.4% of its surface area. Providing resilient infrastructure to protect against rising water levels has become a priority for federal, city, county, and city planners over the last few years. (Pictured: Seawall Repair NetworkⓇ preferred marine contractors Mary Grubbs and Lou Marques of LJS Waterproofing and Northeast Seawall & Soil Stabilization.) Seawall Repair NetworkⓇ is committed to educating and working with all parties in meeting the difficult tasks associated with creating more resilient shoreline communities.


CE/PDH Accredited Presentation on Seawall Repair

Presentation on Seawall Repair, Bulkhead Wall, Marine BulkheadAdvanced Repair Methods for Seawalls and Marine Bulkheads

The Seawall Stabilization and Preservation Through Permeation presentation explains and demonstrates how SW-RP1 injection resin and surface applied preservation solutions can work together to stabilize and preserve seawalls (and other waterfront barrier systems). The presentation covers the following topics:

  • The Causes of Seawall Failure
  • Stabilizing a Seawall
  • Preserving a Seawall
  • Stabilization & Preservation Through Permeation

One-Hour Presentation on Seawall Repair

This one-hour CE/PDH accredited presentation is ideal for engineers who are interested in learning about next-generation seawall repair methods. SW-RP1 seawall repair material is used to repair leaks, stabilize the surrounding soil, and prevent future erosion. Seawall preservation materials are then used to stop rebar corrosion, strengthen the concrete and protect the surface.

Schedule an Accredited Presentation on Repairing Seawalls and Bulkhead Walls

Click here and submit your info for a follow-up call on scheduling an accredited presentation.

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