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HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Posted by jenn0721 (My Page) on
Fri, Jun 21, 13 at 10:28

My granite installation started yesterday for kitchen & wet bar. As they started the low bar area, the installer realized the sink cutout was made in the wrong direction! The original sink was 16x20, but was cut for a 20x16. This made the sink useless because the drain was now to the side instead of centered. I know the fabricator would normally have to buy a new slab and redo the cut, but this is NOT an option as there are no more slabs available & no more being ordered. They did agree to pay for the replacement sink. But here's my issue-- I'm being left with unwanted changes & still paying the same amount of money. My problems with the new "layout" are: (1) the sink now looks way too big for that area/countertop (2) I did not want a rectangular sink in that direction (would've preferred a square or a circle) and (3) I'm losing counter space. Then there are the additional inconveniences: (1) install wont be done for at least another week (this project is already terribly delayed. Template was done 5/7 with install date of 5/22. And it wasn't countertop replacement, so we've been without a functioning kitchen- no sinks or cooktop the entire time). (1a) they "hope" to install next Fri- 2 days after my back surgery. So instead of resting as planned/needed, I will have to be going up & down the stairs to deal with the install. I don't want to delay the date- I want the granite in my possession where I know it's safe. (2) I need to have a plumber come to the house twice to connect sinks OR wait until the install is complete to have a working kitchen sink.
I'm just very upset & disappointed. If they could've fixed it, I would've been thrilled. But since that's not an option, I don't think I should have to pay full price for unwanted changes. But I have NO idea what would be fair to ask for. I don't want to be greedy but I do feel there should be some compensation. Am I being unreasonable? And does anyone have any suggestions what I should ask for? Or any other suggestions?? Thanks in advance!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

jenn, I'm having a hard time visualizing where this particular sink/counter is in your kitchen in relation to everything else. Is it in an area that could use a different counter surface?

I know that sometimes things go not as planned but it's not a big deal to accept them. It sounds to me that this mess-up is wrong for you. I too would be upset to be forced into settling for something I really don't want. I'm not sure that a $$ compensation would make me feel whole. The timing certainly sucks, particularly with your surgery. Can you get your other sink connected and tell the fabricators to wait until you (and they) find a suitable slab to get the counter and sink done the way YOU want, not just a sink to fit their dumb mistake. THEY made a mistake and you shouldn't have to live with it.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

There are some 20" outside length sinks out there (farm sink by Porcher; stainless by Kraus) but the problem as I see it is the 16" width-more common is exterior width of 18".

http://www.amazon.com/Porcher-35010-20-001-20-Inch-Single-White/dp/B0071QPV28

I'm truly sorry for your struggle and this mishap. I think the fabricator should pay for the sink and costs related to the fix and secure all of this prior to your surgery. Good luck with that too. Try to get some help from family or friend on this matter. It's hard doing these fixes alone.

Here is a link that might be useful: link to Kraus


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

The mistake is in the wet bar- which is off of/facing the family room. It's separate from the kitchen area.
I agree that $$ will not make me feel better or like their mistake any better, but I don't know what else to do other than to just let it go, which I don't think is fair. I'm not sure how to go about finding another slab as there is only 1 yard in Phoenix that sold this color and they don't plan on ordering anymore. And our slabs were all from the same lot and sequential numbers (slabs 7-10). So even if they could magically find another slab, there could be an issue of the color/veining being different. Since the wet bar & kitchen are seen together, my husband really wants the same granite on both (the cabinets are the same too), so getting different granite for the bar is not an option.
As for the counter space- it's a small wet bar area. There isn't much counter space to begin with. And now the sink size has increased 1/3.
I just feel stuck because of not having more slabs available.

PS- I know granite names vary, but here it is Aspen White


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

SparklingWater- I was able to find a sink that is a little bigger than the current cutout, but the fabricators can make it fit (since I couldn't find a sink with the exact dimensions). It matches my kitchen sink, so I'm happy about that. Thanks for the suggestion & well wishes.

Here's the replacement bar sink:

http://seamlesssink.com/one-half-radius-sinks/uc-ss-1-2ri-s22.html


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

I am a fabricator.

Unfortunately your problem with no more additional stone happens on occasion and theres not much the fabricator can do except work with you on an equitable solution that doesn't include a remade top.

YOu should get some compensation from the fabricator. For a start any reasonable additional costs you incur from the plumber should be deducted from your bill. (I say reasonable because I once had a customer pick a $800 faucet to replace the $200 original faucet which wouldn't work because we made a mistake on the faucet hole location and I didn't think that was reasonable.)

Additional compensation I'd consider reasonable would be 5-10% discount. In my shop we would also offer a lazy susan or small table top as a concession even if the customer was satisfied with the discount.

I am surprised they're not being faster about resolving it. In my experience the longer you let the customer stew in their dissatisfaction the worse it is.

I hope you take a positive attitude and work with the fabricator. A customer that wants to punish the fabricator for a mistake (which, inevitably, happens since the work is done by human beings) just make himself and the fabricator miserable. Of course if the fabricator dodges the issue and doesn't try for prompt resolution you have license to make them as miserable as you can.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Oldryder- thank you so much for your opinion! I greatly appreciate it!

I think my replacement sink choice was reasonable. I had very limited options to chose from because of the size. We also wanted the same look (1/2 radius) & thickness (16 gauge) as the original bar sink. And a sink grid since we had purchased one for the original sink. And as I mentioned before, it's the same brand as our kitchen sink (though different than original bar sink) so its not like I just chose a random pricy sink. The installers thought it was a great deal for the granite co since the sink was much less than the cost of purchasing a new slab & refabricating (had that been an option).
The delay now is mainly waiting for the sink to arrive (hopefully Wed). Mind you I'm the one who had to find the replacement sink (though better than them choosing one I didn't like), purchase it (will deduct cost from remaining balance) & call the company to beg them to ship it ASAP. And while I was upstairs trying to find a sink, my island granite was put on the wrong side (we told fabricators we wanted darker side towards breakfast nook where there are windows/more light). I still don't have any if the top bar installed (the installers thought I was made aware of this delay but I wasn't) and the kitchen still needs finishing touches (caulking, filling in chips, polishing rough areas, sealing...). I was told install would be done in 1 day & take approx 8 hrs. I know the wrong sink cutout was unexpected, but what about the other things? I feel deceived.
I did say to the fabricator that I understand mistakes happen. And I do. That's why I wanted to ask for opinions on what would be reasonable to ask for.
Would you have offered a discount or asked what you could do to make your customer happy? Or should I have to be the one mentioning it? I'm not the type of person to complain or ask for things, so I'm VERY uncomfortable in this situation.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

If it isn't too late can you change the bar counter for something completely different? For eg - marble or wood or soapstone? Something that will coordinate with the other counter but isn't an attempt to actually match. That way you can preserve your lay-out.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

I assume there is no suitable remnant available, either. Did they look for one?


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

I would wait for the offer first but most will get away without if they can, especially if they see you aren't one for conflict.

Are you sure you can live with this? It doesn't really sound like it. don't think you should have to compromise on your kitchen. I'd look for another piece or stone. A small monetary compensation for a huge mistake wouldn't do it for me if I didn't like the outcome.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Fri, Jun 21, 13 at 12:53


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

DH likes everything to match, so a different material for the bar isn't an option. Maybe had the cabinets been different he would've said yes, but that's not the case.

As for remnants- all I know is that there isn't enough left over from my granite. They did offer to piece some scraps together to make the original layout work, but I refused. We paid nearly full price for our 4th slab even though the left half was cracked just to have less seams/better seams (granite yard wouldn't budge much on the price since it was the only remaining slab in that color).


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Snookums2- DH said to wait til the install is completed & then mention it. He said we should give them time to make it right on their own first. My gut tells me that the granite co won't bring it up since I was told to deduct sink purchase amount from my remaining balance. The way it was stated gave me the impression my balance was still the same.
It's not the look/layout I desire, but I don't feel I have any other options. If DH wants kitchen & bar to match, then we will keep the material. And since I can't make more granite appear, it seems like my only option. As long as DH can live with it, then I will go along with it. The bar is more his, the kitchen more mine. But he doesn't think of functionality- how losing counter space does have an impact on its use.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

jenn0721, that's a very nice sink. Glad it can fit in your space. Keep your chin up, you're making lemonades from lemons.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

If another piece or an entirely different stone is out of the picture, then you really don't have any other choice than to accept it. I'd at least stage a hunt for a matching piece. They will not be putting much effort into that. It is not in their own best interest and takes time.

I hope you get a very good discount. Charging you for that entire slab that was defective does not sound ethical to me. So they've already made out pretty well. I don't know what standard practice would be. Of course, they will try to get as much as they can, especially if they know you are inexperienced or not going to stand up to them.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

SparklingWater- thanks for the compliment on the sink. I'm sure I will like it. I just wish it was smaller & more size appropriate.
Maybe had they tried to be more pleasing/better customer service, I would be feeling differently. If I didn't have to push for a new sink, telling the fabricator the drain on the side is unacceptable. The installers had to speak to the fabricator a couple of times INSISTING the current sink will not work & that a new sink needed to be purchased at their expense. Eventually the fabricator apologized (on a second phone call) and did sound sorry. But he never really tried to make me happy. He just said its the best (and only realistic) option. Good customer service should never be underestimated :)


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Snookums2- I tried to get fabricator to reduce price of 4th slab, but they said it was based on the price from the granite yard. DH went down to yard to try to negotiate price, but failed. Salesperson agreed we were being overcharged but the owner would not budge. He knew nobody else in Phoenix sold that color & we needed it. He knew we were stuck & took full advantage.
I did some rough calculations- the entire bar was 35% of the total job. The piece that was cut wrong (sink counter) is 15% of total granite/ 40% of the entire bar. So while it's not near the majority of my purchase, it's not a small portion either.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

I don't know if I could get behind the lemons/lemonade philosophy if I were paying good money for something someone else screwed up. If you'd wanted your sink turned, you would have designed it that way. But if DH (and that means you too) insist the counters all match, then the fabricator has you over a barrel.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

So how much of a discount would 10% be? It doesn't sound like much to balance the effects of the problem. Money really doesn't work when something is significant.

Doesn't that leave an awful lot of space behind the sink in the faucet area? It is running 16" deep now, as opposed to 20" in the plan? That doesn't sound like it would even look right.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Fri, Jun 21, 13 at 14:29


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

The installers were speculating that maybe the fabricators turned the sink to allow more space behind it for the faucet (or they just screwed up- who knows). If there was an actual concern about not having enough space for the faucet, then I should've been contacted & explained the situation. I would've purchased a sink according to their size recommendations. Mind you, they've had my bar sink in their possession since 5/7- it's not something the received at the last minute. But they should not have just changed the plan on their own & not said anything to me. And they should've clearly seen the sink wouldn't look right with a non-centered drain.

10% of my total granite job (for kitchen & wet bar) would be $865. So it's a good amount of money. Still less than the cost of 1 slab, but more when you add in the cost of the replacement sink.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

That sink does seem large for a bar sink, though a nice size for a prep sink. It's your home and kitchen, but in your situation I'd opt for a different stone (which can look intentional if you go for a contrasting look rather than trying to match). Also, will this larger sink fit into your sink cabinet?


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Yes, perhaps the lemons/lemonade corollary is too simplistic, but is has come in handy with the mistakes in my own remodel (counter to cabinet height and crown to ceiling issues).

Keeping the project moving along and good morale amongst us all is important to me. I planned about a 10% contingency fund, and so far I'm under but I did stand my ground once once as it was an ordering problem not of my doing. Old homes do pose challenges.

Just hoping also jenn0721 can relax, especially since the new sink is so nice and same as the kitchen sink. Stress before surgery negatively impacts our immune system where as extra sleep and a relaxed mind are worth their weight in gold during surgery and in post op recovery.GL.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Luckily the new sink does fit in the cabinet. I even mentioned that to the granite people. Our cabinets are true custom cabinets & the original design had a smaller sink cabinet. It ended up changing to a larger size to make it symmetrical with the cabinet next to it/more aesthetically pleasing. I wonder how the granite co would have tried to resolve this if it didn't fit in the cabinet. Thank goodness I don't have that problem!
I mentioned the suggestion of using a different material on the bar. DH just doesn't like the idea. Surprisingly he likes everything matchy-matchy. I tried mixing metals in the kitchen, but he wasn't fond of that idea. Like I mentioned before, the bar really is his & his vision. So if he wants to keep the matching granite, I will go along with his decision. Our cabinets are a dark chocolate brown & we both like contrasting countertops. If we had white painted cabinets, then the options would've been endless. But since he wanted granite and we wanted it to be white & bright, we were fairly limited on color selection. I don't have a good design eye, so I wouldn't be lost looking for a different countertop that looks good with the Aspen White in the kitchen. The kitchen & wet bar are in the same sightline, so they would have to be complimentary.


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

SparklingWater- if you only knew the problems we are having with this house! And it's only 10 weeks old! I'm from Buffalo, NY where new homes are custom. Here in Phoenix, most are tract homes. I had NO idea what I was getting into. We didn't like our options/the quality of the products used, so we started the kitchen renovation 1 hr after closing. We've put most other projects on hold so we could put our money into making our kitchen/bar perfect.
We keep rolling with the punches. And try to laugh. Our wood floor has been back ordered so we are currently we've been walking around on the concrete slab as our floor. Eventually it will come together, right?


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RE: HELP! Granite installation mistake!

Right! Phoenix...last their enroute to the Grand Canyon. Hope your air conditioner has been serviced so you can recover in bliss. Good luck to you in all ways.

-SW


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