Sinkholes are Big News in Florida
What is Your Danger Level?
Just recently there was a story about a 21-meter-wide sinkhole in a backyard of a Dunedin, Florida home. It swallowed a swimming pool, boat and two homes. As shocking as this sounds, this is a prevalent occurrence in Florida. You hear stories on the news all the time about sinkholes swallowing homes, highways, and cars. In most cases, sinkholes are so small that they go undetected for years. They can form underneath the home’s foundation or even underneath swimming pools. At any given moment, buildings and homes can collapse into a sinkhole forcing many residents in Florida to evacuate their homes. Just like the palm trees, sinkholes are a part of Florida’s landscaping. Sinkholes are on the rise causing an increase in foundation costs and damages. Over the past years, several counties in Tampa reported sinkhole activity. These counties include: Hernando, Hillsborough, and Pasco. Fortunately, none of these incidents produced injuries, but the thought of the ground caving in without warning can be scary. If you suspect your home has sinkhole activity, contact Foundation Professionals of Florida. We can examine your property and determine the source of your sinkhole activity.
So what is a sinkhole and why is it so prevalent in Florida? A sinkhole is a hole in the soil that is caused by soil erosion and improper water drainage. They can range in size from small to extremely large. They can be triggered by natural soil conditions or human activity. There are different types of sinkholes – a cover-subsidence and a cover-collapse sinkhole. Both types are created the same way.
- A cover-subsidence sinkhole: This type of sinkhole is created slowly over a period of time.
- A cover-collapse sinkhole: These sinkholes appear quickly with little to no warning.
So what causes sinkholes? Most of Florida’s soil consists of soluble bedrock such as limestone, gypsum and salt. With a cover-subsidence sinkhole, the limestone is exposed due to soil erosion. Ground holes are formed, creating ponds. A cover-collapse sinkhole involves the same process except it usually occurs underneath the foundation. Small voids and cracks form underneath a top layer of soil. Over time, the hole becomes larger and the top layer can no longer support its weight. As a result, it collapses.
- Heavy rainfall followed by droughts
- Broken or leaky plumbing
- Collapsed sewer pipelines
- Improper drainage
- Drilling water wells
- Ponds artificially created
- Over-pumping groundwater
- Heavy rains and floods
Sinkholes created by human activity can be prevented. However, natural sinkholes cannot be avoided such as dry conditions and low water tables. Gravity and water pressure can activate sinkhole activity. Rapid sinkhole activity produced by human activity, such as drilling, may not give any warning signs. Natural occurring sinkhole activity usually gives warning signs that includes:
- Foundation settlement
- Cracks in foundation
- Misaligned windows and doors
- Sinking foundations
- Sticking doors and windows
- Gaps around windows and doors
- Dying vegetation caused by low water table
- Wall cracks
- Ceiling cracks
- Bowing or leaning walls
- Floor cracks
- Driveway cracks
- Loss of pool water
Sinkhole activity can cause one part of your home to sink or drop. Drywall walls can pop out or push through. If you notice any of these warning signs, you may have sinkhole activity. Since sinkholes are undetectable, they may form underneath your foundation. Contact Foundation Pros of Florida, so we can thoroughly inspect your home for signs of sinkhole activity before the sinkhole grows. Sinkholes can range in size from small to extremely large. They can also be located underneath the foundation.
At Foundation Professionals of Florida, we offer sinkhole repair solutions to keep your family safe from sinkhole damage. We will stabilize the area by preventing loose soil from flushing down into the cavity. We prevent the recurrence of sinkhole activity by removing the triggering source. That’s why it is important to know and understand why the sinkhole failure occurred, so that sinkhole repairs can be implemented.
If your sinkhole activity causes underground leaks, we also offer underground pipe and leak repair. We use Prime Flex polyurethane resin products to fix leaks and to fill in underground cavities without excavating your property.
Solutions for Sinkholes in Florida from Foundation Professionals of Florida
If you suspect sinkhole activity on your property, don’t panic. Give Foundation Professionals of Florida a call. We provide free estimates so you will know the cost of the sinkhole repair. We’ll inspect your property and provide the best alternative for all of your sinkhole repair needs in Florida.
Our company offers effective solutions for sinkholes in Florida. Our sinkhole remediation uses quality tools and methods such as compaction grouting, and void filling.
Compaction Grouting: Compaction grouting is designed to convert loose, dense soil into firm soil. We apply compaction grouting to control settlement, stabilize structures, and to remove contaminants. The process involves injecting a stiff mortar-like grout mixture into the loose soil. As the grout mixes with the soil, it compacts the surrounding soil and increases the structure’s stability.Compaction grouting offers unlimited benefits such as:
- Increases strength and stability
- Prevents further foundation damage
- Cost effective
- Durable and guaranteed to last
Void Filling: Void filling involves filling up spaces and gaps underneath the concrete surface that are a result of soil erosion or settlement. As excess water accumulates under the concrete slab, it will sink where the void is. Void filling offers several advantages such as:
- Little to no disruption to the installation site
- Stabilize foundations
- Quick, easy installation process
- Cost effective
Our products are made by Earth Contact Products (ECP), the leading manufacturer in the underpinning industry. Between our experts and ECP products, you are getting quality service from our team of experts. Contact us today if you have sinkhole activity in or around your Florida home. If you’re able to identify the signs of sinkhole activity, you can prevent collapsing and settlement on your property. Not only do we serve Florida, our service area includes Georgia, North Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, Virgin Islands, Florida Keys, and Tennessee. Contact Foundation Professionals of Florida today for a free estimate! No job is too small or large for us to handle.