Handyman and flooring problems

Reply

  #1  
Old 11-26-16, 09:32 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 6
Handyman and flooring problems

Hello All,

I have a really old house and the flooring slopes in a few places and hired a handyman to help me put in pergo outlast flooring. First he told me that we just needed a few bags of leveler and then that would level out the uneven spots and then we could put in the flooring. The previous owner had tiles down but they cracked and looked horrible.

Like a dummy i paid him and didnt ask how long it would take. It seemed like a quick thing. Well he comes over once every few days to put down more leveler. About 13 bags later which is about $550 worth of this leveler junk hes probably ... maybe? half done?

He went to home depot with me and i gave him a hard time because he changes his mind on big items which require delivery. And neither him or i have a truck.

So he mentioned hardy backerboard. I just said whatever you think is best. Well because I asked him if it was possible to put it in his van instead of delivering it (another $60 fee if homedepot delivers it), he figured he would screw me i think. He had me buy about $500 worth of this floor leveler and he basically is coating my whole upper floor (200 sq ft) with leveler! And to make matters worse he only does one small patch at a time which has now taken months.

He told me the other night that because I gave him a hard time he decided to go this route instead of using qwikset and hardy backer board to even the floors. You want fast or good he asks me. I said i just want a floor.

Apparently the good version would require about 10-20 more bags of this expensive floor leveler his way. Now he says maybe we should switch streams and use hardyboard. It will be hollow when you walk on it but its quick.

So now $500 in materials and his labor later im going broke and could use a friend to help me sort this mess out. Should I keep pouring expensive leveler over these OSB floorboards and wait for months while he takes his time getting the floors leveled off?

Or should I bend and buy this qwikset and hardyboard and lay that on top of the half leveled mess he has created and just fill in the low spots with quickset?

Please help? im going broke on this. Thank you in advance!!
 
Sponsored Links
  #2  
Old 11-26-16, 06:38 PM
sam floor's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: May 2010
Location: floor installer
Posts: 848
You don't use hardi board under anything but ceramic tile. He is cheating you. Don't give him any more money.
 
  #3  
Old 11-26-16, 09:48 PM
Member
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: USA
Posts: 4,145
Not one mention or picture of why the floor is sagging in the first place.
This whole thing should have been addressed under the floor.
Over spanned or under sized joist, insect or fungus issues are common issues with older houses.
I agree this guy needs to go he has no clue.
 
  #4  
Old 11-26-16, 11:02 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 6
Joecaption,

Yeah Im sorry i dont know why the floor would be sagging at all. We mounted a new sink base for my kitchen sink and of course it has a straight edge. When we put it in, it sat fine on the side near the window. But in the middle of the room on the other side it was near 1/2 inch off!

He put some shims under that side and then is pouring more leveler in the spots to make the floor come up to the edge of that sink base and be level.

I wish i could just fire him but I thought he knew what he was doing and paid him most of what I owe him already.

He mentioned that it will take a while and more $ in leveler to fill in the low areas that I need done. My whole room, hallway, kitchen and bathroom is only 175 sq ft. Super small place.

So at this point I could fire him but then id have to repay someone else. I doubt id ever see any $ back from this guy. Hes willing to do the work whatever I want him to do still, i just dont have the experience to tell him what to do.

So my options are:

1. To keep putting maybe 10-15 more bags of this floor leveler down and to fill in the low points on the floor. Hes about 50% done doing it this way.

2. Bend to his new suggestion of scrapping the floor leveler idea and put down hardi board and then the laminate on top. Why exactly is this a bad idea? Sorry not trying to be argumentative i just want to learn so I can tell him why also.

Which would you do being as ive already paid this guy to help? He knows how to install stuff i just need to give him better direction.


Samfloor, I agree but i already gave him the $. What would you do in this case?

thanks in advance!!!
 
  #5  
Old 11-27-16, 03:45 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
Welcome to the forums! You have learned a great lesson in home ownership. You never pay up front for any contracted job. You can pay in increments as the job progresses, but never as you have. OK, lesson over.

Yes, you have two options. Cut your losses and have someone come in who actually knows what they are doing and pay more for it, or pay this guy for more materials and labor and still not have what you desire.

As Joe said, floor leveling is not necessarily done with self leveling compound, but rather, from below where the fault lies. Who is to say it isn't a progressive sinking, and all the work this guy is putting in on the surface won't crack and sink more?? It's a bandaid on heart surgery.

Cementous backer board is only used for ceramic tile. It is not a good substrate for laminate. The SLC alone would be good enough for a click lock laminate if it were to have been poured properly. It sounds as if he wants to cover up what he has done in an effort to gain a level floor. Keep in mind, your floor only has to be FLAT, not necessarily LEVEL to install laminate.
 
  #6  
Old 11-27-16, 05:37 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 486
If you are not sure of how the work should be done and he doesn't either then you need to find somebody who does. Cut your losses. You could possibly recover $ from him via the Small Claims Court process but from what you have said it seems that he has not been hired for his expertise and you have been involved in the 'how' as well as the 'what'.....so it will become a he said/he said argument. Unless you get some professional input and just let this guy keep at it you'll never know if it will work. If he is reasonable then have a talk with him.....but stop giving him $.
 
  #7  
Old 11-27-16, 01:18 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 6
Ok i learned my lesson not to pay a handyman until services have been completed. A pro wouldnt ask for money upfront.

instead of putting enough leveler down to coat the entire floor, he comes back every few days and wants to put more down in patches like the attached photos.

I cant afford to have this all ripped up and redone. So with that in mind would you keep putting down more floor leveler to raise up the floor in the low areas? And then once one room is level he wants to do the hall way and then the other room.

He says they all have a slope. Or should I bend and buy that hardibacker stuff and then put laminate floor on top of it? I know everyone here is saying not to but why? And what would it hurt? At least id have a raised level floor to install the pergo on to. Right?

for me giving up isnt an option i just dont know where to turn to. Thank you all very much again!

Name:  IMG_3388.jpg
Views: 235
Size:  17.0 KB
Name:  IMG_3386.jpg
Views: 186
Size:  26.7 KB
Name:  IMG_3385.jpg
Views: 207
Size:  17.3 KB
 
  #8  
Old 11-27-16, 03:38 PM
Trying2Help's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 715
CUT YOUR LOSSES!!!!!! I am not a professional, I do do handyman stuff and this guy doesn't have a clue what he is doing.
1. He should have checked why the floor settled, and fixed that problem.
2. As stated, the floor needs to be flat, not level, to install the flooring. It is apparent by the pictures, the floor isn't FLAT. He may have done more damage than good.
3. Watch a YouTube video on how to install leveler. I think, and that is me, you would want to to at least one complete room at a time, if not the whole floor.
4. If the floor sagged because of failing floor joists, adding more weight to them isn't going to help anything.

It sounds like this guy is just milking you for more money. Get a professional out to look at the jog, ask them the questions. Some are willing to just help you and give you advice.

I have put leveler down, in my own house and it worked well. My house is on a cement slab, so it wasn't a matter of faulty joists, but the slab had settled. The leveler was the best answer at the time, so we went with it. I works well, is easy to do. Leveled a 20 X 20 room in about three hours. Basically, it just mixing it, pouring it, "raking" it and letting it dry.

Name:  20150531_100437.jpg
Views: 196
Size:  19.4 KB This is the finished product.....FLAT and level...
 
  #9  
Old 11-27-16, 04:42 PM
czizzi's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: USA
Posts: 7,124
Over a wood substrate you are supposed to use wire mesh to give the leveling compound somrtime to grab onto. If he just put SLC over OSB then it was wrong. Read the bags that he is using, but the ones at the box store require mesh to the best of my knowledge. He also needs to prime the substrate first. Which leveler was he using?
 

Last edited by czizzi; 11-29-16 at 05:50 AM. Reason: typo
  #10  
Old 11-28-16, 04:47 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 6
ok thanks guys. im getting ready to fire him. the problem is i signed a contract and paid about 75% of it already to him in hopes he would complete the job.

https://www.menards.com/main/floorin...4432100672.htm

thats the stuff he poured in splotches in each room. one or two bags a night instead of doing the whole thing at once like Trying2Help did. I like how that turned out! Hes trying to raise the whole floors not only so its flat but so its raised instead of fixing the reason it sagged in the first place.

I had a pro over last night and he gave me a quote to rip up the boards this guy ruined and he recommended I report him to the labor boards to try and recoup my money.

Arghhhhhhhhhh. ok complaining mode off. lol Thanks again guys. youre the best!!!
 
  #11  
Old 11-29-16, 12:36 AM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 6
Im going to fire this guy today. I may have to contact the labor board if he doesnt have insurance. I found out one more stupid thing he did that may cost me thousands to repair now.

When he was mixing that leveler crap, he put the bucket into my nice and clean shower. I have another place to shower so i dont always use this one. Well he decided to use it. And use it he did... to MIX FREAKING CEMENT!

The cement turned hard as stone now in my pipes and ruined my tub surround and porcelain tub. So now i have to figure out what this will cost to get repaired and go after him somehow. Turns out he only had a license to be able to do up to $15k of repairs a year. Anyone know the best way to recoup my losses?

Ive already found a replacement contractor who first off the bat didnt want any $ down other than materials and sent me his insurance numbers.


Name:  Damaged Tub.jpg
Views: 160
Size:  40.6 KB
 
  #12  
Old 11-29-16, 02:59 AM
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,561
That is horrible!!! so he didn't even make an attempt to clean up after himself
It's doubtful he has insurance or even any assets to go after Taking him to small claims court will at least get you a judgement against him [I think a judgement is good for 20 yrs] no guarantee you'd collect. You might see if your homeowner's insurance will step in - probably a long shot.

Wish you the best going forward!
 
  #13  
Old 11-29-16, 03:49 AM
chandler's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 39,968
You not only have surface damage to your tub/shower unit, the mix has hardened in the drain trap and it probably won't drain at all, now. This is inexcusable.
 
  #14  
Old 11-29-16, 05:06 AM
pugsl's Avatar
Forum Topic Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 7,781
This makes me angry just looking at it, am very sorry you are having these problems.
 
  #15  
Old 11-29-16, 07:43 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 486
Keep all the pictures and document everything. Doubtful that he would try and hold you to the contract as he apparently hasn't performed the work correctly. You may want to notify him in writing of your intent to not have him do any more work and termination of the contract. Based on your pics it's more likely that you will be trying to recover $ from him than the other way around. Consider contacting the Consumer Protection Division of your State Attorney General's Office. They don't act in a legal capacity but can arbitrate on your behalf should it come to that.
 
  #16  
Old 11-30-16, 11:21 AM
Trying2Help's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 715
Never have I seen such shoddy, incompetent, unexcusable work! I'm angry looking at this!!!!
Get all your money back, labor and materials. Sue him for an additional 5K, and report him to every board you can. This person should not be doing this type of work!
 
  #17  
Old 12-10-16, 02:59 PM
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: USA
Posts: 6
$8500 damage in the tub alone



So I called out home depot and asked them how much it would cost to repair the tub and drain. They quoted $8500! all damaged from this guy.

The floors are about $1750 to repair. I think im going to go with gyp-crete. you can have it poured and level the floors easily. then put pergo on top of that.

so yes i think im going to give the guy a chance and tell him that if he repairs the tub, surround and drain he can finish the contract. i.e. JUST finishing drywall and replacing boards in my steps. nothing else. The tub part is $500 at home depot. if he wants to buy it and repairs it then im good. the floor shoddy work i want my $ back on. I imagine he will buck on one of these items then its off to court we go.

I dont want to. i have to. he brought me there not the other way around. So yeah my life sucks right now.

hoping i can get this all sorted before spring.

thanks
 
  #18  
Old 12-11-16, 04:13 AM
Member
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: USA
Posts: 486
Good Luck. Also, be careful hiring HD or its subs to do any work for you...I've heard more negative than positive reviews.
 
  #19  
Old 12-11-16, 11:49 AM
Trying2Help's Avatar
Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 715
Personally, I wouldn't allow him back in the house. Screw me once, shame on you; screw me twice, shame on me.....
 
Reply

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Display Modes
'