Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

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criticalmass
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by criticalmass » Tue Sep 11, 2018 9:05 am

researcher wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:57 am
criticalmass wrote:
Mon Sep 10, 2018 4:15 pm
If the installer makes thing worse because they didn’t install properly in first place, that’s on them, not the folks paying them good money...
I'd ask them to redo it and let them know given the money spent for this project it had better be perfect this time. How they do it or how much it costs them to repair is not your concern and you should not involve yourself in that issue.
This advice is only applicable for those living in a fantasy land.
It absolutely IS on the homeowner to figure out this mess and to decide "how they do it".
The reality is, the homeowner will be severely negatively impacted in this fairly tale quest for the "100% perfect" kitchen.

In order to add 1 internal bead of caulk to make it "perfect", here's how things could play out...
- Water must be turned off to the kitchen sink...plumber must come to unattach/reinstall...sink can't be used.
- Drywall is damaged during backsplash removal...must bring in another crew to fix the damage (lots of dust) and repaint.
- Counter is lifted (by a third set of strangers in your house), but cracks...OP says counters are on a 2 month backorder.
- Unable to use kitchen for 3+ months until new counters are installed & sink hooked back up.
To recap the quote above, I did not suggest ‘100% perfect.’ The fantasy land is creating false attribution. The homeowner has every right to receive a non botched job. That’s all.

By the way, one doesn’t need a plumber to turn off water unless someone forgot to install two valves. Reach under the sink and turn off the tap, and unscrew the supply lines from same. Any contractor (or even semi handy homeowner) can do that, plus remove the drain connection from the sink.

If it is only cosmetic, then there is less to do. But if/when a botched job causes water damage later, the whole process needs to be done anyway, plus water damage remediation. The original installer may not be willing then to fix, if they are still around, so more contractors may be necessary.
Last edited by criticalmass on Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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sunny_socal
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by sunny_socal » Tue Sep 11, 2018 10:42 am

Looked at the imgur.com pics for the first time, didn't see them before. I'm 100% certain the current caulking will hold up. I think OP is just annoyed that it was applied after the sink install.

I'm OCD as well so I get it, and a lot of money was spent. But - this is all purely cosmetic!

Simple solution:
1. Remove the existing silicone caulk (razor blade, alcohol, whatever - expect it to be a royal PITA and be careful not to scratch anything...)
2. Add a nice thin extension to your caulk gun and squeeze a bead into the crack and less on the outside

Yes it's easier said than done if you want it to look good, but there's no way I would demolish my kitchen over this.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Princess_and_the_Pea

ponyboy
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by ponyboy » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:07 am

I agree with others...I wouldnt have someone rip everything out to put caulk in a place that cant be seen.

Think of it like this...if they put the caulk down like it said in step 1...then didnt put caulk around the edges...would water get to the cabinets. The answer is yes. I really dont see what the point of caulking underneath the sink is for? If you have caulk around the edge...thats all that matters. That will stop water from getting to cabinets.

Not to mention...its not like you're going to fill your sink to the very top and let it overflow every day. The amount of water that will ever hit those seams is so minimal. Also...a monkey can caulk...and a tube is like $5 for the good stuff.

Im not trying to downplay this. We've been dumping a lot of money in renovations. Just had a $10k hardwood floor installed. They didnt order enough nosing so had to order it at a later time...now one single piece of nosing doesnt match 100% with the others. Nosing is the part that overhangs...like if you're walking up steps to a 2nd floor...its the lip that you see. We thought about having them order another piece, then remove the nosing and replace...but the potential for making more problems was too high. The juice wasnt worth the squeeze. I dont even notice it anymore but it definitely pissed us off since we were spending a lot of money (for us.)

Again...I dont see any reason to have this "fixed." Maybe have them come back and do a better caulk job. In a couple weeks...you wont be stewing so much and it wont bother you.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by ponyboy » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:09 am

sunny_socal wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 10:42 am
Looked at the imgur.com pics for the first time, didn't see them before. I'm 100% certain the current caulking will hold up. I think OP is just annoyed that it was applied after the sink install.
Caulk was supposed to be applied even after putting caulk under the sink. Either way...you were going to see the caulk around the edges. There is no way water is going to penetrate that.
barnaclebob wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 8:47 am
Put me in the camp of making a new good looking caulk bead without the blob and monitor it.

Like another poster said, those who expect contractors to make things perfect no matter what the cost are living in fantasy land. The less contractors are in your house the better.
This. You're never going to find a contractor who is 100% perfect. No one is ever going to take care of your stuff/house like you would. Just another reason why I try to do as much as I can myself. I always hate when contractors have to come in.

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lthenderson
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by lthenderson » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:26 am

ponyboy wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:07 am
I really dont see what the point of caulking underneath the sink is for?
For sinks that can float around side to side, the caulking underneath will help hold the sink firmly in place. But the same thing can be accomplished by shimming between the sink basin and the cabinets underneath. With formica or wood cabinets clips are used. From the pictures that the OP posted, it appeared as if the sink had a tight fit and thus I don't think it really necessary if a good caulking job is done on the edge.

Not mentioned above that I've seen but the reason for the caulking on the edge, the one the OP had problems with, is to prevent water from seeping underneath the lip of the counter and the sink and causing mold issues. If the OP fills the sink full enough for splashing water to be an issue, the front lip is the same height so it will go onto their floor before it will have time to penetrate the caulking around the edges.

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FlyAF
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by FlyAF » Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:43 am

I actually think that the problem is the sink that you picked out. No matter if the inner seal was there or not, not having the slab wrap around the entire sink is always going to leave those front two corners of the slab exposed where it drops off to meet the sink. These areas will always require some sort of seal/silicon/caulk, etc......which IMO is ugly.

The install was not done correctly for sure, but I doubt you will have any luck getting them to do a full re-do. I'm betting the most you get out of them is a re-caulk/silicon job. Too much risk to rip it all out to try and get the remaining 10% out of you. Especially because this is a bit of an odd sink choice which is exactly why they messed it up in the first place. Lot less room for error with a full under mount.

Also worth asking. Was this a 10k kitchen remodel or a 50k job? I've done a few kitchens (granite, backsplash, undermount sink, etc...) where the total cost was 10k or less and it's much easier to get past the small imperfections then. If a very high end kitchen remodel, it would understandably be harder to get past.

MangoMama
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by MangoMama » Tue Sep 11, 2018 1:46 pm

Appreciate everyone's comments -- there are definitely numerous issues to consider, especially with two kids in the house.

It would be very easy to simply say "fix the sink as it was intended and I don't care what it takes". But as others have mentioned, that's really not realistic -- what the contractors say and what they will do are two different things. Given that there are two crews involved (kitchen & fabricator) and both have messed up to this point, there is a high probably there could be further issues.......cracked or fractured countertop, damaged cabinets, broken tile (from dropped countertop), compressed or damaged sink, damaged paint/wall, the dust and mess of it all, and possibly being without a working sink for several days. Not to mention the stress and inconvenience of it all.

The front apron & side areas don't really bother us, we wipe up any standing water. And in this case, there is pretty much no area for standing water except the front apron. It's not like we will be pressure washing (for lack of a better term) the caulked seam. The back side of the sink by the faucet is exposed under the countertop, so any leaks here will be visible. The sides are hidden, so there is some risk there if there are any issues with the caulk we won't detect the leak right away.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by WaffleCone » Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:15 pm

Get a high quality siliconized caulk and squeeze a bead around the sink. Should be a straight, smooth line. Done. Take comfort in knowing that it's the same sealant that keeps your walls dry every time you take a shower.

Enjoy a glass of wine in your new kitchen and move on. Life is short.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by Pizza_and_Beer » Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:54 pm

I personally would leave the countertop/sink alone. If the caulk job at the seams looks compromised or ugly, I'd re-do it myself. If you aren't handy, watch them like a hawk as they remove the old bead and lay down a fresh bead. Have the contractor document on the signed contract the variance and insist on it being warrantied in some manner.

I've been through a full house remodel myself and a lesson I learned was that things will be done incorrectly and/or not to your wishes unless you are constantly there.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by CurlyDave » Wed Sep 12, 2018 2:05 am

researcher wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:35 am

You've just proved my point and completely contradicted yourself.

As you acknowledge, the backsplash removal is likely to damage stuff (the wall, backsplash, ect).
- The counter material is on a TWO MONTH BACKORDER! So your kitchen will be in disarray for 3+ months before a new backsplash is installed.
- A taller backsplash would interfere with the existing window (see pics) and look ridiculous, so that is not an acceptable fix.

Regarding jacking up the counter...
- It is a large L-shaped countertop that must all be jacked up evenly. What is the likelihood of something cracking/splitting? Is it worth being without countertops, and living in a construction zone for 3+ months, just to add 1 bead of caulk?

It is easy to say "the contractor needs to do whatever it takes to make it perfect." But the reality is, the homeowner is the one who will suffer the headache/mess/inconvenience of a misguided attempt to "make it perfect."
1. There is plenty of space for a slightly larger backsplash under that window. Or, any damage to the wallboard caused by removal of the backsplash can be repaired and the same size one installed. I very much doubt the backsplash will survive the removal.

2. Just what is a big deal about the stuff being on backorder for months? If the existing counter top cracks it is not going to disappear into some weird time warp. It will be right there and they can re-install it until the new one comes in. Living with a cracked counter top for a few months is not disarray and is not a construction zone.

The contractor is not going to like fixing this, but it is his lack of supervision of employees which caused the problem in the first place.

To me it is worth the minor inconvenience to get the job done right. Especially when the OP paid good money for the correct job, not for an incorrect job.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by CurlyDave » Wed Sep 12, 2018 2:12 am

FlyAF wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:43 am
...The install was not done correctly for sure, but I doubt you will have any luck getting them to do a full re-do. I'm betting the most you get out of them is a re-caulk/silicon job. Too much risk to rip it all out to try and get the remaining 10% out of you. Especially because this is a bit of an odd sink choice which is exactly why they messed it up in the first place. Lot less room for error with a full under mount.
If it was my kitchen and they didn't fix it, the contractor would be down explaining to a small claims judge why he wasn't going to re-do it. This is a pretty clear breach of contract.

A different contractor would be perfectly willing to bid on a proper fix, which would probably include complete new counter and sink.

He might also be explaining to the contractor license board just why he wasn't going to re-do it properly.

criticalmass
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by criticalmass » Wed Sep 12, 2018 3:21 am

researcher wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 7:35 am
CurlyDave wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 2:08 am
This is a whole lot easier than you think.

1. Backsplash removal may damage stuff, but that can easily be corrected with a slightly larger backsplash. Say 8" instead of 6". This is on the contractor, he is the one who screwed up.

2. If I had to lift the countertop, I would do it with a number of bottle jacks. Take the drawers out of the cabinets where applicable and bridge from one side to the other with a piece of something like a 2x8 to put the force on the outside edge of the cabinets. Use another 2x8 piece as a load spreader under the counter and a section of 2x4 or 4x4 as a post to get the height of the jacks right. Then slowly jack up the countertop evenly. Once it is up, put shims in to keep it from falling. The weight is not an issue.

This is not a great big deal. But, let the contractor do it his way so he is responsible for the result.
You've just proved my point and completely contradicted yourself.

As you acknowledge, the backsplash removal is likely to damage stuff (the wall, backsplash, ect).
- The counter material is on a TWO MONTH BACKORDER! So your kitchen will be in disarray for 3+ months before a new backsplash is installed.
I’m having trouble following. When you say “you/your” are you referring to a boglehead follow up poster, or the sink owner?

And in the very worst case oh noes scenario the counter is cracked, it’s not as if one can’t use a cracked counter for two months (or how long it takes) until the contractor makes proper repairs. Just put temporary sealant on the crack and continue life until the repair arrives. We lived in far worse conditions for much longer while repairing storm damage.

Regarding jacking up the counter...
- It is a large L-shaped countertop that must all be jacked up evenly. What is the likelihood of something cracking/splitting? Is it worth being without countertops, and living in a construction zone for 3+ months, just to add 1 bead of caulk?

It is easy to say "the contractor needs to do whatever it takes to make it perfect." But the reality is, the homeowner is the one who will suffer the headache/mess/inconvenience of a misguided attempt to "make it perfect."

MangoMama
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by MangoMama » Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:46 am

If a caulking job is a challenge to these crews, I don't think I will trust them with bottle jacks in a brand new kitchen. Unfortunately, it was not an IKEA $10K kitchen. I kind of wish it was so that I didn't care so much.

What is surprising is that there were other difficult aspects to this project --- wall removal, new (hidden) header on a load bearing wall, brick work, etc. I had someone come in early in the work after the demo and they were impressed with the attention to detail with the tough stuff. But when it came to the easy stuff I couldn't wrap my head around how careless they were (same workers). The only thing I can think of is that none of their other customers paid close attention? I honestly have no idea.

We've had a lot of back and forth since posting. As of now we are leanings towards having them re-caulk the area and extend the warranty from 1-yr to X-yr and a $ discount. We will let them make the first offer. If they are not open to this, then we will insist on a pull countertop removal with the requirement that once the work is done the quality will be on par with new or as it is now.....no knicks, no damage, no compression, no scratches, etc on the quartz, walls, floors, etc. We will be present for all work and inspect everything.

The current warranty is 1-yr. What is reasonable for an extended warranty and discount if we go this route?

renue74
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by renue74 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:04 am

Recaulk the sink. The purpose of the caulk is to stop water from touching your cabinets and space below.

It's not a big deal and shouldn't be made into one. It literally takes 2 minutes to recaulk.

Random Poster
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by Random Poster » Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:15 am

MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:46 am
The current warranty is 1-yr. What is reasonable for an extended warranty and discount if we go this route?
Any warranty extension would be from the contractor itself, and not from the manufacturer of the sink or countertop, correct?

In that case, any warranty, or extension thereof, is only valid to the extent that the contractor remains in business.

Which would lead me to seek more of a monetary discount and consider any warranty extension to be of very limited utility.

In regards to the amount of the discount, perhaps the cost of the labor for the botched installation would be appropriate?

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by MangoMama » Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:30 am

Random Poster wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:15 am
MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:46 am
The current warranty is 1-yr. What is reasonable for an extended warranty and discount if we go this route?
Any warranty extension would be from the contractor itself, and not from the manufacturer of the sink or countertop, correct?

In that case, any warranty, or extension thereof, is only valid to the extent that the contractor remains in business.

Which would lead me to seek more of a monetary discount and consider any warranty extension to be of very limited utility.

In regards to the amount of the discount, perhaps the cost of the labor for the botched installation would be appropriate?
Correct. The fabricator was a sub to the kitchen contractor. I know the owner can change LLC's, but my gut is that they will still be around at least several more yrs. This place is well reviewed and popular for kitchen remodels and typically has a 1-3 month waiting list.

It's hard to itemize their labor vs. materials. We only have a total price for the countertop and it's not insignificant.

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Sandtrap
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:11 am

FlyAF wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 11:43 am
I actually think that the problem is the sink that you picked out. No matter if the inner seal was there or not, not having the slab wrap around the entire sink is always going to leave those front two corners of the slab exposed where it drops off to meet the sink. These areas will always require some sort of seal/silicon/caulk, etc......which IMO is ugly.

The install was not done correctly for sure, but I doubt you will have any luck getting them to do a full re-do. I'm betting the most you get out of them is a re-caulk/silicon job. Too much risk to rip it all out to try and get the remaining 10% out of you. Especially because this is a bit of an odd sink choice which is exactly why they messed it up in the first place. Lot less room for error with a full under mount.

Also worth asking. Was this a 10k kitchen remodel or a 50k job? I've done a few kitchens (granite, backsplash, undermount sink, etc...) where the total cost was 10k or less and it's much easier to get past the small imperfections then. If a very high end kitchen remodel, it would understandably be harder to get past.
Excellent point.
A high end custom interiors contractor would do whatever it takes to maintain a no compromise quality reputation, and pride in his work. VS various less expensive contractors with varying degrees of prices, acceptable quality, and expectation.
Thus, the myriad of possible solutions.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by barnaclebob » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:46 am

WaffleCone wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:15 pm
Get a high quality siliconized caulk and squeeze a bead around the sink. Should be a straight, smooth line. Done. Take comfort in knowing that it's the same sealant that keeps your walls dry every time you take a shower.
Actually the part of the shower that keeps your walls dry isn't visible in a proper shower installation except for maybe fiberglass showers and even with those it shouldn't be reliant on caulk. There should always be a waterproof barrier behind tile.

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by WaffleCone » Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:49 am

MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:46 am
The current warranty is 1-yr. What is reasonable for an extended warranty and discount if we go this route?
I don't think you're entitled to either. You contracted for a kitchen to be installed in a professional manner free of leaks and defects for 1 year for $X. Caulk is a perfectly acceptable sealant for a kitchen sink, as are other things. It may deviate from the manufacturer's instructions but the standard would be if the effective result is the same. Contractor can find a bunch of experts that say caulk is fine, you won't find any that say otherwise. At MOST I would pen in on the contract that the sink has a 3 year leak warranty.

You are being unreasonably difficult. Really. If you don''t pay them, they may take you to court and this is how it will come across. If you don't pay them, you may have NO WARRANTY. If you don't pay them, they may place a lien on your house. If you force them to accept less money, they may be much slower to return calls for unrelated warranty work. Don't let the relationship go any more south over this LITTLE THING.

The fix is a bead of caulk. Let them fix it and insist it LOOKS NICE. If it looks nice it will seal nice. This isn't the Space Shuttle. All this about tearout and bottle jacks and bigger backsplashes is ridiculous and bad advice.

Post some pics so we can admire the rest of your kitchen. I bet it looks great.
barnaclebob wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:46 am
WaffleCone wrote:
Tue Sep 11, 2018 5:15 pm
Get a high quality siliconized caulk and squeeze a bead around the sink. Should be a straight, smooth line. Done. Take comfort in knowing that it's the same sealant that keeps your walls dry every time you take a shower.
Actually the part of the shower that keeps your walls dry isn't visible in a proper shower installation except for maybe fiberglass showers and even with those it shouldn't be reliant on caulk. There should always be a waterproof barrier behind tile.
Point taken. It's a layer of protection, still used to seal between shower doors and tile walls, tub base and floor, rims of sinks, etc etc. More than up to the task and in fact intended for sealing joints like on the OP's sink.
Last edited by WaffleCone on Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:00 am, edited 1 time in total.

MangoMama
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by MangoMama » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:00 am

WaffleCone wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 9:49 am
MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:46 am
The current warranty is 1-yr. What is reasonable for an extended warranty and discount if we go this route?
I don't think you're entitled to either. You contracted for a kitchen to be installed in a professional manner free of leaks and defects for 1 year for $X. Caulk is a perfectly acceptable sealant for a kitchen sink, as are other things. It may deviate from the manufacturer's instructions but the standard would be if the effective result is the same. Contractor can find a bunch of experts that say caulk is fine, you won't find any that say otherwise. At MOST I would pen in on the contract that the sink has a 3 year leak warranty.

You are being unreasonably difficult. Really. If you don''t pay them, they may take you to court and this is how it will come across. If you don't pay them, you may have NO WARRANTY. If you don't pay them, they may place a lien on your house. If you force them to accept less money, they may be much slower to return calls for unrelated warranty work. Don't let the relationship go any more south over this LITTLE THING.

The fix is a bead of caulk. Let them fix it and insist it LOOKS NICE. If it looks nice it will seal nice. This isn't the Space Shuttle. All this about tearout and bottle jacks and bigger backsplashes is ridiculous and bad advice.

Post some pics so we can admire the rest of your kitchen. I bet it looks great.
Before we go off the deep end here, nobody said we weren't going to pay them. The money is their's once the work is done. But we are definitely not being unreasonable. We expected that the kitchen would be installed per manufacturer specs. What if in two years we develop a leak from cleaning the caulk and we complain to Kohler. First thing they will ask is did you install the sink per the instructions? Well no, but our kitchen contractor said it was fine. Then go talk to them they will say.

Additionally, both the kitchen and countertop contractors said it's not how they install sinks and it should've been caulked around the flange. How is it being unreasonable to expect that they install it per their own guidelines?

Another example of the "trust us, we know best" incidents we've had:
1. No house wrap prior to bricking in an exterior door. I questioned this and referenced the code for our climate zone. They waffled from "we never house wrap on wood sheathing" to "we've had issues with house wrap". I bought my own Tyvek and had them install it.
2. Not installing a high-side on the dishwasher. I only realized this when looking into the sink.

I'm not a contractor or even in the trades, but I do expect them to at least meet code at minimum.

We're the ones who have to live with the kitchen in 10+ yrs; they get to walk away in one year.

researcher
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by researcher » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:26 am

MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 7:46 am
It would be very easy to simply say "fix the sink as it was intended and I don't care what it takes". But as others have mentioned, that's really not realistic. There is a high probably there could be further issues... and possibly being without a working sink for several days. Not to mention the stress and inconvenience of it all.

If a caulking job is a challenge to these crews, I don't think I will trust them with bottle jacks in a brand new kitchen.

We are leanings towards having them re-caulk the area and extend the warranty from 1-yr to X-yr and a $ discount.

If they are not open to this, then we will insist on a pull countertop removal with the requirement that once the work is done the quality will be on par with new or as it is now.....no knicks, no damage, no compression, no scratches, etc on the quartz, walls, floors, etc.
You just stated that you don't trust them to rip out your brand new backsplash/counter/sink/faucet without screwing something up (and I'm in full agreement).

Yet you go on to say you'll insist they re-do it all perfectly without any type of issues/damage whatsoever?
Is an extra year of warranty and a few hundred bucks worth the very high likelihood of further screw-ups?

As others have pointed out, your concerns about this missing internal bead of caulk are wildly overblown.
Any 'benefit' you may gain for adding that caulk are far outweighed by the time/trouble/mess/screw-ups that are likely to result.

If it makes you feel better, go ahead and ask for an extra year or two of warranty (which is pointless, as it would take many many years for a potential problem to develop). Then ask for a discount equal to the cost of the sink.

SimonJester
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by SimonJester » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:29 am

My vote would be to have them just redo the current calking job as the blob in the back in unacceptable.

Redoing the entire install is likely going to be worse then what you have now. A good silicon calk should last a number of years and you will need to maintain it over the years either way.
"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin

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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by getthatmarshmallow » Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:43 am

Imagine that you hadn't just put in the kitchen, but perhaps had purchased the house, and sometime later somehow found out about the missing caulk. Would you feel the need to rip out the counters and damage the backsplash in order to fix it? I imagine not.

If the install is otherwise solid, that inner bead isn't a big deal. It's primary function is helping with flex, not to protect against water damage (that's what the visible bead is for; that line has to be caulked anyway.) To my mind the risk of damage to the counters, backsplash, and dry wall, not to mention the hassle of extending the remodel is much greater than the risk of damage from the missing bead of caulk. It doesn't mean they didn't screw up, but the fix is probably worse than the flaw at this point.

The sloppy caulking job around the sink is a separate problem, and fortunately a cheap and easy fix.

MangoMama
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by MangoMama » Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:15 am

getthatmarshmallow wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:43 am
Imagine that you hadn't just put in the kitchen, but perhaps had purchased the house, and sometime later somehow found out about the missing caulk. Would you feel the need to rip out the counters and damage the backsplash in order to fix it? I imagine not.

If the install is otherwise solid, that inner bead isn't a big deal. It's primary function is helping with flex, not to protect against water damage (that's what the visible bead is for; that line has to be caulked anyway.) To my mind the risk of damage to the counters, backsplash, and dry wall, not to mention the hassle of extending the remodel is much greater than the risk of damage from the missing bead of caulk. It doesn't mean they didn't screw up, but the fix is probably worse than the flaw at this point.

The sloppy caulking job around the sink is a separate problem, and fortunately a cheap and easy fix.
Not disagreeing with you, just playing devil's advocate - what if you bought a brand new Lexus with every bell and whistle. You drive off the lot and make it a mile or two when the low oil pressure light comes on. You pull over and check the dipstick. Whoops, it's dry and there is only 1-2 qts of oil. Drive or get towed back to the dealer, who promptly adds the right amount of oil (let's say 6 qts). Good as new right? Why would you have any issues? We added the right amount of oil. Just keep an eye on it and if there is a problem in a year let us know.

Would you be OK with this?

(ignoring the fact that Lexus will have a longer warranty)

barnaclebob
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by barnaclebob » Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:24 am

MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:15 am

Not disagreeing with you, just playing devil's advocate - what if you bought a brand new Lexus with every bell and whistle. You drive off the lot and make it a mile or two when the low oil pressure light comes on. You pull over and check the dipstick. Whoops, it's dry and there is only 1-2 qts of oil. Drive or get towed back to the dealer, who promptly adds the right amount of oil (let's say 6 qts). Good as new right? Why would you have any issues? We added the right amount of oil. Just keep an eye on it and if there is a problem in a year let us know.

Would you be OK with this?

(ignoring the fact that Lexus will have a longer warranty)
This is a terrible analogy. A better one would be the tire pressure light came on and they put some air back in them for you.

researcher
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by researcher » Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:35 am

MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:15 am
Not disagreeing with you, just playing devil's advocate - what if you bought a brand new Lexus with every bell and whistle. You drive off the lot and make it a mile or two when the low oil pressure light comes on. You pull over and check the dipstick. Whoops, it's dry and there is only 1-2 qts of oil. Drive or get towed back to the dealer, who promptly adds the right amount of oil (let's say 6 qts). Good as new right? Why would you have any issues? We added the right amount of oil. Just keep an eye on it and if there is a problem in a year let us know.

Would you be OK with this?
You're getting yourself too 'into the weeds' by stewing about this issue for so long.

This is a bad analogy. Here is one comparable to your situation...
- You buy a brand new Lexus. Get it home and realize a redundant inner door seal is missing, though the outer seals are intact.
- The outer seals function perfectly to keep out the wind/rain, but you REALLY want that inner door seal you were supposed to get.
- Dealer says..."we can install that seal, but will have to keep the car for several weeks, completely disassemble it, and can't guarantee it will go back together perfectly. Parts might not align, pieces broken, body panels scratched/dented."

Would you be OK with this?
Or would you ask for a discount and move on with your life?

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lthenderson
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by lthenderson » Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:37 am

MangoMama wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:15 am
getthatmarshmallow wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:43 am
Imagine that you hadn't just put in the kitchen, but perhaps had purchased the house, and sometime later somehow found out about the missing caulk. Would you feel the need to rip out the counters and damage the backsplash in order to fix it? I imagine not.

If the install is otherwise solid, that inner bead isn't a big deal. It's primary function is helping with flex, not to protect against water damage (that's what the visible bead is for; that line has to be caulked anyway.) To my mind the risk of damage to the counters, backsplash, and dry wall, not to mention the hassle of extending the remodel is much greater than the risk of damage from the missing bead of caulk. It doesn't mean they didn't screw up, but the fix is probably worse than the flaw at this point.

The sloppy caulking job around the sink is a separate problem, and fortunately a cheap and easy fix.
Not disagreeing with you, just playing devil's advocate - what if you bought a brand new Lexus with every bell and whistle. You drive off the lot and make it a mile or two when the low oil pressure light comes on. You pull over and check the dipstick. Whoops, it's dry and there is only 1-2 qts of oil. Drive or get towed back to the dealer, who promptly adds the right amount of oil (let's say 6 qts). Good as new right? Why would you have any issues? We added the right amount of oil. Just keep an eye on it and if there is a problem in a year let us know.

Would you be OK with this?

(ignoring the fact that Lexus will have a longer warranty)
This isn't a very good analogy. Low oil can permanently damage a car. In your case the missing bead of caulk will cause absolutely no damage to your house.

You can try for an extended warranty buy in my experience, no warranties will cover caulking because it is considered a wear item that has to periodically be redone. If I were in your shoes, I would expect them to come back and fix the caulking free of charge and would plan on paying them the original price that was agreed upon and that would be it.

getthatmarshmallow
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by getthatmarshmallow » Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:39 am

If you want to play devil's advocate by analogy, you'll have to construct a parallel case. That's hard to do -- the oil light issue without further explanation is a safety issue, and even a complete fix ("Jeeves, order me another Lexus and return this one") is minimal hassle for you. It's not like you have to tear out your garage to return a Lexus. If it were easy to pick up the countertop to lay the bead, it would be a no-brainer to do it right. But that's unfortunately not the case.

If the issue is at bottom, "I spent a lot of money and I want it perfect", I get it. (We just redid our kitchen and your thread has made me very happy that we did it ourselves and that I nixed the farmhouse sink. As I joked with our tile supply guy, we may not do it perfectly, but we'll beat anyone we can afford.) But I think you'd be putting yourself through a lot of hassle for a minor issue and you'll *still* have to maintain the caulk around the sink.

michaeljc70
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Re: Botched countertop installation - leave it as-is or risk the repair?

Post by michaeljc70 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 12:00 pm

As I said above, caulk and monitor. Too much is being made of this. Did you watch how many screws were used to attach each cabinet to each other and how many were put in each wall to ensure it followed the exact manufacturers directions? Did you take off the wall plates of the electrical outlets and see if they used the screw posts instead of the plugins on the back (which are not preferred)? I think you are concentrating on this because it is front and center. As others said, it is easily fixed with proper caulking.

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