Lippage on Granite Absulate Black Tile

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Old 03-18-08, 10:05 PM
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Lippage on Granite Absulate Black Tile

Hi, anybody out there has an answer to my problem.
We hired a contractor comp to install Absulate Black Granite 18*18 to living room , kitchen floor, enterence hallway area, total 850sq ft. Tiles are not met eachother, %90 has lippage. Contractor told us because floor is not level. But before the installation we had travertine and was perfectly smoothe. They also didnt flood the floor to make it level. Only thing they did was put something like a plywood before installation. Even the lines are not perfectly straight. And looks like they used very cheap material. Because when we pulled one of the tile, it came off . Is there a solition to make the tiles smoothe. Does grainding works well with this kind of tile or anythingelse.
Thank you
 
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Old 03-19-08, 08:31 AM
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Hey - check out Bud Cline's thread on the Tuscan Leveling System. Sounds like your installer could use this.

http://forum.doityourself.com/showthread.php?t=338404

18" x 18" granite is a hard time consuming installation. The first thing your installer should have done was to make sure he started with a perfectly flat floor. He should have done whatever was necessary to get that floor flat before setting any tile.

Contractor told us because floor is not level.
The floor doesnt have to be level but it does have to be dead flat. The contractor should have told you this before he started, not after he finished. Did he?

Describe the actual lippage. Can you post some pictures?

I'd also be curious to know whats under that granite exactly, from the floor joists up. I doesnt have anything to do with the lippage issue but odds are if he didnt know enough to start with a flat substrate he may have missed other things. Give us the size of the joists, the on center spacing of the joists and the unsupported span of the joists. Describe the subfloor and any underlayments used. What were the setting materials he used.
 
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Old 03-19-08, 09:09 AM
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I think the big thing here is to realize Tilejob paid a contractor to do this. If it isn't right, the contractor will have to come back to replace or repair. Tilejob shouldn't need to be asking questions about grinding stones if he didn't lay the tile

Now, I have a related question...I know you can tile over tile, but can you lay granite over tile? Too much weight for a wood floor, I guess, but what about a concrete floor?
 
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Old 03-19-08, 12:53 PM
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I'd be curious to know if the installer was also the "low-bidder"?

As stated: The substrate must be absolutely "plane". And even then some experience is required to set this type of tile. To make matters worse....if this absolute black is high gloss it takes an expert (not a tile installer) to do it correctly.

There will be no way to fix that without taking it all out, sacrificing all the tile and starting over with new product, this time using a professional experienced in absolute black polished granite tiles.

So was he the low bidder?
 
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Old 03-19-08, 03:58 PM
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Can you say Hack.

Time for legal advice.
 
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Old 03-19-08, 08:20 PM
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Thank you for all the info. We didn't realize untill later that this contractor didnt know anything about the tile. He was never here to check the work anyway. Basicly he left 2 workers in my house with me all day long. Workers were keep asking me when they had a question. He came once in a while to pick up the trash. And then he completely left went to New York for another job. Even if he was here wouldnt make much difference.
Anyway he wasnt a low bid either. 830 sqft $10.000 , excluding tile.
Finally we fired them, because they are not cappable of fixing anything. We paid $7000 already. I think we will try to get our money back and tile was $5500 , and try to get tile money too. I am not sure how, any ideas on this. Should we go after his bond or sue him directly.
That's the reason we can not ask him to fix anything because he doesnt know anything. And we are looking for answers ourselves.
And about floor being not level, there is one area has a sloop , and he did tell us that he will try to do make that area flat but not garantie.He said rest of the floor will be perfectly flat and smoothe. When we put chairs it wavels, so it not smoothe at all.
I called 2 grinding companies today. One said it is imposible to grind back absulate granite. Even if they try, there might be a lot of scrathes. Since this tile is very hard , they need a heavy duty machine. And it will be very costly, and too much time. Second company will come on monday and will look at it.
THX
 
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Old 03-19-08, 08:33 PM
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As you said , contractor should fix this problem. When we complained about lippage, his answer was he will find a grinding company to fix it, but we have to pay for it. Isnt that funny, we have to pay for their mistake.
 
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Old 03-19-08, 08:55 PM
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Obviously legal council is in order here. At some point you will likely need a professional opinion that will hold up in court.

The Tile Council of North America (TCNA) (http://www.tileusa.com) is the governing body for ceramic and stone tile installations, basically they write the rules. Under their umbrella is a nationwide team of professional inspectors that could serve your needs well. They are TCA TEAM (http://www.tcateam.com/).

Grinding and polishing may not be totally out of the question. If you were to be willing to settle for a matte finish it would be better but then you wouldn't have had to had absolute black. You might also talk to some terrazzo companies. They should also be equipped to grind and polish your floor.
 
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Old 03-19-08, 08:58 PM
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Thank you very much. Sounds like you really know what you are doing. We will look in to it.
 
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Old 03-20-08, 05:10 AM
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Hi Tilejob,

Did you sign a contract with this company? Did the contractor show you his business license and is that license number on the contract? Is the contractor licensed to do business in your county? Is the contractor bonded and insured? Did he give you a list of references and did you call or visit those references? Did you check with the BBB to see if the contractor had claims or complaints against him?

Bud's advice for a professional opinion is excellent, and you will need that, but start at the county courthouse. If he's licensed to do business, the permits to his next job will be
available there. Most counties have access to a state wide database.

What I'm getting at here, is that it is important to be "hot on the trail". If he's shady, he will disappear and you'll never get your money back if you can't find him. He may close his business and reopen under another name. (Actually, he may already have done that, but let's hope you're quicker than he is.)
 
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Old 03-20-08, 10:23 AM
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Before we hired him, we didnt see any job he did. But we have mutual friends that refer him to us. But he didnt have any job done for them.
We checked his licence, he has a licience, didnt check with the county, I will look in to that. But other thing he did , and we realized towards end of the job, he used illegal workers in our house. And he doesnt have workerscomp either.
We have a proposal about the job and charges, but we didnt really sign anypaperwork. His and company name on the proposal. He has a website with all his information, his licience info.
I believe this guy works on wood floor mostly, he might be good at it, dont know. But since he didnt know anything about tile, he shouldnt accept the job. Before him we talked to many people about this job, some of them didnt want to take the job. I guess they knew this kind of tile , needs an expert. I checked the BBB , there are no complains about him. He started the job 2005. And maybe we are his first tile job.
I dont think , he will disapper, because we didnt argue with him, since he was never here. We just left a note at the door that we dont want him to do work in our house anymore. So I dont think he realize how upset we are. Before we go do anything we need to maka a search and know our rights. So we wont make any mistakes.
During middle of the job, he left to go to New York and he said his partner will be here to take care of the business. And when the other guy came , I said so you are the partner, but he said no, I am just helping him. He didnt want to take any responsibilities for anything. He couldnt make decidions about what to do.
Thank you
 
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Old 03-20-08, 11:14 AM
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Hi Tilejob,

Those questions I posed to you are minimal information you should have before hiring a contractor. He may be legitimate, but he may not be, either. Just because he showed you a lisence, doesn't mean it is legal. People forge documents all the time. Ditto for the website- anyone can put up a website- doesn't mean it's true. So, whether he is legal or not is moot. You do, however have a better chance of getting your money back if he is.

If you did not sign a contract, you are going to have a lot of problems getting any action. You need to visit an attorney, immediately, and get started on this.

By the way, most legitimate contractors would not have you pay 67% before the job is finished. I'm really sorry this has happened to you.
 
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Old 03-20-08, 12:25 PM
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Tilejob

You mentioned that

During middle of the job, he left to go to New York and he said his partner will be here to take care of the business.
Are you from NJ. If so all contractors have to be licensed. You can check at this site.

http://www.state.nj.us/oag/ca/contra...nsumercont.htm

You can file a complaint there as well.

Best bet is to hire a lawyer and let him or her (for Connie) take care of it though.
 
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