Sinkhole repair methods
Like anything else, there is a right way and a wrong way to repair a sinkhole and the damage that it causes the property on it. Not only are you repairing the soil below you, but you’re also dealing with any damage to your home or business – if it’s even in the same place!
Sinkholes can cause severe damage, so it makes sense that one would want the repairs to be done well. That being said, what are some examples of sinkhole repair methods, and which sinkhole repair method should be used to repair your sinkhole?
This sinkhole repair method is used to help solidify soil that has become loosened over time by the water that causes sinkholes to open up. Grout is a mixture of sand, cement, and water that harden over time after insertion to create a more stable base.
The grout is injected into the soil until it reaches a maximum level of pressure, a certain volume of grout, or the home is lifted to the desired level. This is achieved by filling holes created by loose particles of soil to create a more stable base. When the soil is stabilized, the home above the soil is also stabilized, therefore fixing the effects of the sinkhole.
It is important to be aware that grouting is not a reliable method of sinkhole repair. There is no way to know where the grout needs to be involved or where it is going. If you get multiple quotes and this method is the cheapest option, it’s for a reason.
If you do choose this route of sinkhole repair, it is important to realize that grouting does not fix the home. Therefore, if your insurance company informs you it will be using this method, be sure to ask how they will be repairing your home. This is important because your insurance company is responsible for bringing your home back to its pre-loss condition, which means repairing the home itself, not just the soil underneath. At most, this sinkhole repair method is useful as a way to potentially fix loosened soil.
While underpinning is a more expensive option than grouting, it’s for a reason. This sinkhole repair method is safer and more dependable. This is because, while grouting cannot be an exact science, underpinning creates a more stable base to attach to your home.
Metal piers are driven into the solid limestone of the earth and secured to the bottom of your home. This way, your home is not depending on the soil for stability but solid rock. In order to accomplish this task, you will likely need to move out of your home for the process of repairing your sinkhole.
In some cases, grout will be inserted to provide your home with more lateral support, but it should not be used as the primary sinkhole repair method on your home.