Contractor broke our concrete retaining wall and sidewalk!

Sevilla2003August 4, 2013

I'm looking for advice.

This summer we contracted with a concrete company to raise a patio area in the back yard. While they were out giving an estimate I also asked them about what it would take to fix our concrete front steps which were not draining water when it rained. Contractor assured us that it was a simple fix to just raise the concrete in front, that it was basically an afterthought to the back job.

Our city installed new sidewalks in front of the entry steps in the interim of his proposal/estimate and him doing the work. The city raised the front sidewalk by several inches which removed the small gap between the new concrete sidewalk and our front steps. I specifically asked the contractor if this would cause a problem given that there was more no gap between our front steps and the new sidewalk to give space to work, he said it would be fine.

They came it and did the work last week. The back patio came out great. BUT THE FRONT WAS A DISASTER. In their attempt to raise the front steps they did the following:
Broke a retaining wall that flanked the steps (horizontally so it is completely unstable to stand on and the broken piece is several inches thick)
Chipped multiple edges of two sidewalk squares (brand new poured by the city last month!)
Chipped our front steps
Brooke the corner of the concrete square at the top of the steps

The holes made to raise the concrete are ugly and the patches are very visible.

In addition, the steps still don't drain water properly because he was not able to raise the angle of the steps due to the sidewalk. So all this destruction was for nothing! And ruined the look of my front walkway!

Clearly, the contractor needs to fix this damage (we have not paid him). He said he'll be back this week too work on it.

I am concerned that the damage to the retaining wall is not "fixable" and instead needs to be completely ripped out and repoured. Same goes for the broken slab and cores sidewalk. That's really $$$ and I am not sure he'll want to take that route. I'm worried he'll attempt a patch job that won't hold up even a year or two and will look like crap.

Are we right? I need to know what to ask for before any repair work is attempted. Need the repair to last for years - this retaining wall is decades old and was in fine shape before they wrecked it.

I took video and pictures of the damage, but am not sure what else I should do. This is a licensed company.

This post was edited by Sevilla2003 on Tue, Aug 6, 13 at 16:25

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"The holes made to raise the concrete are ugly and the patches are very visible."
In my opinion, this is to be expected and is unavoidable. Complete replacement was your only alternative.
If your contractor had gotten in before the city, it is likely things would have turned out better.
No suggestions about the other issues except to see what he proposes. .

    Bookmark   August 4, 2013 at 2:18PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Can you post a picture of the patch work? Could be that you could rub dirt into it to age the color. The gray one above could be tough though.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2013 at 9:21AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Hubby and I disagree on who to call for cracks
So we keep arguing for like 5 years now (husband and...
Drywall issues?
I have noticed a spot above a window that has been...
Leaning picket fence
I recently purchased my house and for whatever reason,...
Should we raise/fix concrete slab in driveway or wait?
Just moving into a new house this month. So the inspector...
Crawlspace floods with water, but it doesnt touch the wood, ok?
I have a crawlspace that is about 2 ft from the ground....
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™