There are some mornings when you wake up and you just feel like something is off. That morning was in early July, when Glen Williams of Montgomery County, Maryland noticed something a little off in his Potomac home.
“I woke up and was getting ready to leave for work, I opened the garage door, and noticed a 5 foot hole in the driveway. Had I not seen it prior to backing out, my car would have ended up falling in. It was absolutely crazy.”
A few days leading up to the discovery of the hole, there was a water main break a few blocks away from the home. The water had seeped under the soil, and ended up wearing away the ground underneath the driveway. The water simply was moving the earth from underneath the asphalt, and when gravity took over, the paving above just collapsed. Although this sounds to be crazy and not something we see very often in the Maryland area, it apparently happens a bit more than you would think.
Dominic Stanley, owner of Dominic’s Paving – Potomac driveway repairs have been on the rise over the last few years because of water main breaks that have occurred in the last few years. “When water mixes with the ground underneath your property it has to go somewhere. It can sink down further into the ground and make the ground soft and more likely to collapse. With a few of the water main breaks off of River Road, we have seen not only large potholes in the road, but we have also seen issues related to driveways and patios. It has definitely become more common than in years passed.”
As a homeowner, one of the things you should do routinely is have your driveway sealed and inspected. There are many times that a small patch with filler added to the hole can prevent large problems from happening. It is like anything else, the more time that passes when work should be performed, whether it is your car, air conditioning unit, your health, or in this case, your driveway, the more likely little problems are going to turn into major ones. We spend most of our time noticing little things that could be prevented, but we fail to take action to perform the proper maintenance. In this case, the weather caused the problems, which turned out to be a pretty expensive fix for the homeowner.