Skip to main content
Joel Hawkins
Quarry engineer
Asked a question 2 years ago

What is diffrence between retaining wall and breast wall?

What is diffrence between retaining wall and breast wall?

Where am I?

In TheConstructor you can ask and answer questions and share your experience with others!

Timmothy Ferguson
Assistant Project Manager

BREAST WALL: Breast Wall is defined as the wall built to prevent the soil on a natural slope embankment from sliding down the slope from the harsh weather effects, i.e. land sliding, erosion e.t.c.It15 is on the downstream side of the road or a building.

RETAINING WALL; Retaining wall is constructed on the upstream side of a road formation to retain the soil mass from falling down on the road. There many times of retaining types based on the height of the retaining wall.




Retaining wall, as the name suggests is meant to retain earth pressure against an artificially cut edge or excavation edge in soil. A breast wall on the other hand is used to sustain earth against a natural slope such as the hillside of a mountain road.

Retaining walls are generally made upstream of a road or track whereas breast walls are made downstream.

Generally, retaining walls are used at excavation edges only and breast walls are used at an already existing sloped.

What is diffrence between retaining wall and breast wall?

[1] Breast wall and Retaining wall structure remain off to ensure a new cut or old surface of a characteristic slope face.

[2] Breast wall and Retaining wall structure forestall of slope slides under the activity of climate and downpour water streaming over slopes slope. Retaining divider is given to the drawback of the street while bosom divider tough roadside in the uneven region.

[3] Impact of snow, avalanches, landslides, and overcharge are not considered in the structure of the Breast wall, while in the Retaining wall, each one of those components is thought of.

[4] Height of Breast wall will not surpass 3 meters,s, and for retaining wall, we didn’t have such sort of standards.

[5] Breast wall is not required to be built where back mass involves shakes or stable layers store of soil mass, and for securing the precarious soil mass, we need retaining wall.

[6] Retaining wall utilized for help counterfeit cutting or incline while breast wall used to help normal slope.

[7] Design of retaining wall fit to oppose elevate pressure power and hydro static weight for created while breast wall is utilized to move the load.

Basic difference is retaining wall is designed to resist backfill earth pressure and breast wall is resist for natural earthen slope of hilly area

In hill. When road is construct, at that time we need to cut-off some portion of hill and basically we construct two wall one is breast wall which is on hill side of the road to give stability of hill slop and another one is retaining wall which is construct on valley side of road which wall have backfill pressure plus road pressure on backfill so we need to design retaining wall for that backfill & surcharge .

What is diffrence between retaining wall and breast wall?

See figure for different between retaining wall and breast wall.

Wilma Caldwell
Architectural technologist

Retaining Wall :

A retaining wall is a rigid wall designed and constructed to resist lateral pressure of soil, where there is a desired change in ground elevation that exceeds the angle of repose of the soil. The purpose of retaining walls is to hold the soil behind them.

Breast Wall :

Breast wall is the wall which is built to sustain the face of a natural bank of the earth. Thus we can say, it is the wall built to prevent the soil on a natural slope embankment from sliding down the slope from the harsh weather effects.

The main difference is Retaining wall is constructed at upstream of a road formation whereas breast wall is constructed at its downstream.

Retaining wall is a wall Constructed in Rubble /brickmasonry or RCC in order to retain or suppor t and resist the earth pressure ,backfilling or Landsliding where ever necessary. Usually, it is constructed with uniform slope at one face and other side Vertical and also with bottom Thickness of suitable designed width. While designing this, the Self weight of structure, the earth Pressure at back, Superimposed Load if any, and angle of repose of the soil, soil condition etcare to be taken into consideration.

A Breast Wall is a smaller structure to retaining wall built to protect the freshly at surface of a natural ground whether with vertical or inclined face, to prevent it from fall due to the action of weather.