If you own a property on the water, you know just how important your seawall is to the safety and value of that property. It is important have a structure in place that will prevent erosion, damage and even enhance the look of the property from the water. With the variety of options for the materials used to build your seawall, how do you know which option is right for you? Perhaps these explanations will help you make a decision!
Option #1: Rip Rap Seawalls
A rip rap (or stone) wall adds stability while giving your property a natural look. The rip rap consists of rocks, stone or other material arranged to prevent erosion from water. While this option is most commonly used on shorelines of creeks and rivers, it can be used anywhere where erosion from water is a possibility.
Rip rap not only looks natural, but it also provides a great habitat for wildlife! Especially when the tide is high, rip rap offers an ideal shelter for small marine animals.
It is important that rip rap is installed properly. Gibson Marine Construction installs an underlayment before installing. Once the underlayment is installed, Florida fieldstone or lime rock is installed at a 2:1 ratio with rock between 8” and 24”.
Option #2: Wood Seawalls
While this option provides a more natural look, and offers a lower initial installation cost, keep in mind that wood seawalls are prone to factors that could require more-frequent repairs or replacement. Depending on the environment, though, this option could provide many years of service.
It is important that properly-treated wood is used at installation to avoid rot. Gibson Marine Construction uses all marine-grade material for our wood seawalls. Our wall construction consists of vertical 2” x 6” PT marine-grade lumber, a combination of 2” x 8” front and back wale system and a 2” x 12” PT marine grade cap along.
Option #3: Vinyl Seawalls
Vinyl seawalls, also known as PVC seawalls, have many benefits that exceed the other two options. Although they don’t offer the natural look that rip rap or wood seawalls provide, vinyl seawalls do, however, provide much greater protection from the elements. Our vinyl seawalls are backed by a 50-year warranty against rust, rot, corrosion, falling prey to marine bores, or UV damage from the sun.
Vinyl seawalls are typically easier to install, and are extremely durable which could add up to cost savings both up front, and in the long run. Vinyl seawalls are resistant to the natural elements such as sun, wind and water, as well as marine-boring critters that target wood seawalls.
It may be clear why vinyl seawalls are a popular choice, but Gibson Marine Construction can install any option you choose. Whether it’s rip rap, wood, or vinyl, we can make your waterfront property safer and more beautiful with a new seawall!
Does your seawall need a repair? We can help there too! Contact us today if you have any questions about our seawall materials or services.