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Thread: Sinking lawn

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Chelmsford, Mass
    Posts
    10

    Default Sinking lawn

    My lawn beside my house is slowly sinking and developing sink holes. Some of these holes are 12-18 inches deep. I am constantly trying to keep them filled in but new ones develop. Coincidentally, when we have heavy rains, a large pool develops in this same spot and it takes several hours for the water to drain. Any ideas how to correct?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Sinking lawn

    If the holes are recurrent in the same exact spot, then it's safe to assume that you've got a leaking drain line or some other piping that is washing the dirt away. I'd dig down and see what you can find.

    I have found irrigation line leaks, downspout, and landscape drainage to be the most likely causes of sink holes, though there could be other things as well.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Fayette County, Ohio
    Posts
    5,557

    Default Re: Sinking lawn

    What Spruce said. Old leech field and drainage clay tiles are commonly the cause.

    Jack
    Be sure you live your life, because you are a long time dead.-Scottish Proverb

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Chelmsford, Mass
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Sinking lawn

    Thanks to those who replied to my sinkinglawn concern. I should have been more clear - the lawn is sinking about 30-40 feet away from my house. It is not near any drain line or downspout. I am guessing it may have been a burial spot for all the trees taken down when the land was cleared to build. Any thoughts? I am also concerned with the water that pools in the same spot. Dig up and backfill with gravel or stone?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,480

    Default Re: Sinking lawn

    Once filled, how long does it take for the sink holes to reform, and have you noticed any seasonal issues, meaning that they form during the rainy season rather than the dry season.

    It's possible that it's buried organic material, but from your descriptions, the sink holes are relatively small in diameter and in several locations. If it were a buried slash pile, there would be a large area of depression rather than pinpoint sink holes.

    I would still be inclined to dig in the areas and see what's down there. If it's a damaged pipe, it can be repaired once and for all. If it's organic matter decay, you can either excavate it out or just know that you'll be adding more soil for a while until the area quits settling. I would not bother with gravel, stone or anything but native soil, because you'd only be creating another headache down the line and it's not going to alleviate the problem anyway.
    I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!

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