Flood in friend's new kitchen

ellendiSeptember 27, 2013

To make a long story short, a friend has been having a hard time with her kitchen installation. She went with a neighbor who builds custom kitchens.

From day one, she had trouble with everything. He couldn't create a basic cherry stain, until she finally had to settle.

He didn't plan for transition of molding from cabinet to wall, so she has to choose an awkward solution.

Her engineered wood floors came with black marks. Her sample did not show that this could be the case, So she kept ordering boxes to pick through until again finally she just picked the best of the worst.

Her granite is in and I don't think she has a problem with it.
They woke up on Tuesday to a flood in her kitchen. It seems the cabinet builder also did the plumbing and according to the insurance salesman, a joint was installed incorrectly.
Her whole basement, which housed storage is ruined and of course the floor. The sink cabinet is buckling.
They are beside themselves. I am not wanting to go into who is responsible, but want to understand the process of how you correct damage like this.

Does she have to have all the bottom cabinets redone? Do they have to be lifted when she puts in a new floor. Or is it now too heavy with the granite? Can she trim around and possible put in a different type floor.

Wondering what her options are.

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I take it there wasn't a plumbing inspection?

If the subfloor under the cabinets is wet, it probably needs to be replaced (it would be very difficult to get it dry). If the cabinets have to come out, the granite has to come out - and there is no guarantee that it will survive removal and re-install.

I feel horrible for your friend - first to have such a terrible experience during the remodel, and now this.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 12:14PM
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I believe a flood of that severity means the entire floor and all bottom cabs are toast. If the sink cab is buckling and there is damage to the basement under the kitchen, all the cabs and all the flooring/sub-flooring have damage they can't recover from. Because the kitchen is new, it will be possible to just install new lowers to match the uppers. The granite may or may not make it. If it doesn't make it, then the insurance should cover that too. If the "old" floor was a disappointment, your friend should definitely take the opportunity to choose something else. The insurance money will cover replacement, but they really don't care what product she spends that money on.

I do hope that this time an actual plumber is called in to do the plumbing. Your friend might want to call a real electrician to check out the wiring while she's at it - you never know, and it would be even more horrible to have a fire following the flood.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 12:44PM
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First, a disaster clean-up crew should come out ASAP and see where the water has traveled. They use a device to detect water in floors and walls. Heavy-duty fans and dehumidifiers should be running now, and that can take several days. It's not fun! After 48 hours, IIRC, it's considered gray water and everything will be pulled out that.

When we had a washer overflow this summer, the insurance adjuster, not the salesman, came out with a contractor and spent two hours going through every part of the water damage. They'll determine what needs to be replaced. We had ceiling, carpet, molding, and sheetrock replaced upstairs and down.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 12:46PM
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Won't the OP's insurance company go after the GC's insurance co?

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 12:59PM
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Mold has started already, you need to take things apart to let them dry out or replacement, and clean up any mold. Fans and dehumidifier are recommended. I guess if you can run the air or heat would help. I, too, would get someone in for water damage, mold remediation, if it's that bad.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 1:25PM
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You say this happened Tuesday. We didn't get anyone out till after 48 hours, so it is classified as gray water at this point, and materials are pulled out. They shouldn't try to clean up themselves, especially mold. Let the professionals handle it. They should have already measured for the presence of moisture and pulled materials. The fans and dehumidifiers are giant things that you don't have sitting around your house. They will seal off the kitchen with plastic.They can't open their windows as that allows moisture in. It will get hot and loud in there!

The insurance company will go after the GC's insurance. Our Farmers Insurance went after Sears for our 15 year old washer that had a leveling switch fail. It might have been too old to win the claim, but they try.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 1:43PM
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If they detect moisture in the undamaged cabinets, they may spray them with an anti-microbial solution. That's what they did to the plywood subfloor in the carpeted bedrooms.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 1:55PM
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This post was edited by may_flowers on Fri, Sep 27, 13 at 16:22

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 1:59PM
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Thanks everyone. I will pass on info to my friend.

    Bookmark   September 27, 2013 at 6:09PM
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