Asked on Dec 19, 2011

I am fast learning that there is never a dull moment being a homeowner.

Teresa DDan's of Central Florida, Inc.Woodbridge Environmental


Seems there is ALWAYS something to fix. Anyway, a week or so ago, my son pointed out what he initially thought was a snake hole in the ground next to my driveway about 2.5 ft from the house. Upon further investigation, it seemed to go down pretty deep and run under the driveway. I know it is unscientific, but he stomped on the driveway to show me that it sounded hollow for about a 2 - 3 foot radius from the edge of the driveway where the hole starts, seemingly indicating the ground is gone underneath. The mother in me instantly got visions of my son driving up his side of the driveway and his car disappearing into a sinkhole before he makes it into the garage! My question is ... how serious is this (this is all I know right now) and how quickly should I have someone look at it? Is it ok to wait until the Spring? Who should look at it? A concrete specialist?
A couple of things to point ou; it is near the run off from my gutter, although the water runs along the concrete, not the ground. And I have sinkholes all over my backyard - so do my neighbors - haven't heard of anyone having a sinkhole problem in the front yards though.
20 answers
  • Teresa, If there are already sink holes in the general area, then it is a good possibility that this is as well. However, it may just be an animal hole as well. Is there any signs of animal activity at the entrance to the hole such as loose dirt that was dug out? As a simple test, you might wait until the night time and then fill the hole with dirt. You don't need to pack it in there or anything. The next day, look to see if anything has dug the hole back out. That should at least tell you if it is an animal or not. Providing it is not an animal, I would next call in a concrete specialist to take a look at it. You might need to fill in that sink hole under there, and hopefully find the cause in the first place.

  • Teresa D
    on Dec 20, 2011

    I'll try that Dan. Thanks!

  • KMS Woodworks
    on Dec 20, 2011

    I had a client who had a raccoon dig a "nest" under their front concrete patio...this was a regular he man cave in there....Our first step was to get the critter out...for this we used some moth balls and a commercial animal deterrent. I then had to carefully back fill all of the excavation. This took some time to layer it and pack it in. In your case a "mud jacking" outfit may make quick work of fill the nest of sink hole.

  • No problem at all, let me know how things go. Good luck!

  • Bob and RodMan S
    on Dec 22, 2011

    How old is the home? When lots are cleared, roots and small stumps are frequently left in place and lightly covered by the topsoil. In ten or twelve years the rotted stumps collapse to produce a smattering of round holes and the rotted roots to simulate critter tunnels. In Dan's part of the world a sinkhole is serious business, less frequently here.

  • Teresa D
    on Dec 26, 2011

    Still trying to determine if it is an animal hole. Stuffed dirt and pinestraw in the hole but not sure if an animal dug it out or it washed away with all the rain we had. Will try again this week. Bob, it's about 25 yrs old I think. I tried taking a photo of the hole but it didn't appear well in the picture.

  • Anna K
    on Dec 27, 2011

    i would recommend having it mud jacked sometime before the concrete begins to crack. if it is an animal you may have to deter it from re-digging-I would re-direct you water spout to a lawn area or garden bed because it sounds like erosion to me, and it is better to be safe than sorry :*)

  • Fix this immediately.Pour very wet"soupy" concrete down the hole.Let settle,repeat.Animal or no animal,this will kill it and fix the damage.If not ,those visions will come true. This job is very easy and should not be a huge check for a contractor.I would do it for minimum hourly pay plus concrete costs . As far as anymore problems ,that may be another check.Call a professional Good luck

  • J B PRO. The Lock Guy
    on Dec 28, 2011

    Two months ago my friend past, but before he did I was showing him that he had some big voids under his drive. Last month i got some quotes to repair his drive for his wife. The best I found was KEITH MIMBS with Mudjack Atlanta his # is 770-713-1704. they pump concrete under the drive to fill the voids

    q i am fast learning that there is never a dull moment being a homeowner seems there, concrete masonry, home maintenance repairs, that void went 5 ft up under two different directionsq i am fast learning that there is never a dull moment being a homeowner seems there, concrete masonry, home maintenance repairs
  • J B PRO. The Lock Guy
    on Dec 28, 2011

    We raised the one section almost two inches to match the other concrete.

  • Faidra at CA Global Inc
    on Dec 28, 2011

    Should real have this checked out. Could be animals, moles or could be a big problem, many people in the metro atlanta and surrounding areas have been having issues such as these.

  • Teresa D
    on Jan 2, 2012

    Update: It is evidently a burrowing animal. Not sure what. I called Keith with Mudjack per JB and he thinks it's an animal too. Glad it's not a sink hole but several more holes have appeared around my yard. I am assuming these are squirrels. I have so many acorns all over my yard. I don't think I should fill every hole with concrete though ... I'll have to do some more research. Again, glad it's not a sink hole. Thanks everyone!

  • Theresa, glad for you it is not a sink hole! How large are these holes around your yard on average?

  • Teresa D
    on Jan 3, 2012

    They are about 2" across. I'd say I've seen about 4 that appear to be more than just digging for acorns. I've got 2 by my driveway now and I've got 2 on the side of the house/garage.

  • Do you have Chipmunks? These little critters burrow also. Put a hose in one end and see what pops out the other! Are the holes deep? Or just a few inches down? Place a few live traps around that you can rent locally and see what surprise you get when they trip.

  • Teresa D
    on Jan 4, 2012

    I've seen 1 chipmunk in the 3 years I've been here. That doesn't mean they aren't out there though. I see more squirrels than anything. I've already put my hoses away and covered all my spigots for the winter. We're having a pretty good cold spell now but I hear it's going to warm up this weekend. I might be stuck with waiting until the spring. Do those things hibernate??

  • Yea you will not see to many CM running around once it gets cold out. The gray furry ones however, Unless its really cold out for long periods of time with snow on ground. They will keep coming back for food. If the holes continue well into the winter, my bet its buried nuts from the squirrels..

  • Teresa D
    on Jan 6, 2012

    Update. My son's friend spotted a chipmunk headed for one of the the holes near the driveway. My son filled all the holes with sand. We'll see what happens. I started reading some of the other posts about chipmunks and got a really good laugh. From 1st morning "male pee" to citrus peels and mothballs and red pepper ... we will try everything to get rid of critters! I've got a wealth of things to try if the sand doesn't work.

  • LOL, I liked the pee solution too. Please let us know what ends up working for you. Good luck!

  • Teresa D
    on Jan 6, 2012

    Thanks Dan! Will do!

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