By: Javier Encinas, PE | February 21, 2018

ASDIP RETAIN is a structural engineering software for design of retaining walls. ASDIP RETAIN includes the design of top-restrained retaining walls, also called basement walls, based on the latest ACI 318 provisions.

The design of retaining walls may become time-consuming, since the calculations involve multiple load types and combinations, fixity conditions, and the application of the Code provisions to design the reinforcement. This document is a step-by-step design example of a typical concrete basement wall using ASDIP RETAIN.



As an example, let’s consider a basement wall in a building, which is a restrained retaining wall with a level backfill, subject to the traffic surcharge load shown. Apply a vertical concentrated load on top of the stem as a reaction of the upper levels of the structure.

The water table occurs below the wall footing. Design the optimum dimensions and find the required reinforcement.

The first step is to enter the required stem height. From the given information, the stem height is 10′-0″. The toe and heel lengths will depend of the stability and strength results, so this is an iterative process. The image below shows the Geometry tab to the left, and a summary view with the most relevant result information.


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The next step is to enter the loads on the wall as defined above. In this example the wall has a full height backfill, and a uniform surcharge on top. The image below shows the Loads tab, and a graphical view of the stability analysis with valuable information.

Basement Wall - 3

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The next step is to enter the material properties as defined above. In this example the concrete strength is 4000 psi. This will affect the shear strength, and will control the thickness of the stem and footing. The image below shows the Material tab, and a graphical view the Stem pressures and diagrams.


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The next step is to specify the rebars for the wall. ASDIP RETAIN has multiple options to customize the reinforcement. The image below shows the Reinforcement tab and a construction view of the retaining wall with the design rebar sizes and spacing.


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ASDIP RETAIN includes the design of basement retaining walls. The design can be completed and optimized within minutes, which otherwise would be very cumbersome and time-consuming.

Detailed information is available about this structural engineering software by visiting ASDIP RETAIN. For engineering background, please see my blog post Restrained Retaining Walls: A Design Overview

You are invited to download a Free 15-Day Software Trial or go ahead and Place Your Order.

Coming soon: ASDIP RETAIN 4, with great new features such as Retaining walls on piles, Two-story restrained walls, and Counterfort retaining walls.

Release date: first week of March. Prices are expected to go up. Users who purchase ASDIP RETAIN 3 now will receive the new version 4 for free.

Best regards,

Javier Encinas, PE
ASDIP Structural Software

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