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Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Posted by milhojas (My Page) on
Mon, Nov 4, 13 at 12:11

As a long time lurker, and having received so much help from all of the posts, it is time for me to ask a question.
My countertop was installed three weeks ago. It is the only piece of this particular granite in the area, other than three slabs which are much darker and much more linear, if that is possible. When the installers arrived and installed the small slabs, and did the seam on the larger slab, I noticed the repairs on the front edge. I saw the repairs, the installer saw the repairs, and he called the shop, but did not get an answer. I finally spoke to the salesman, who I had been in contact with for two months, and had talked to the morning of the delivery, along with two calls after the template was done.
I even went to the shop to discuss the layout once again a week before the delivery. This was a relatively small amount of granite, 35 sq.ft., and there was only one slab. The layout, because of the stripes and movement, was critical.
When I spoke to the salesman after I saw the repair, I told him that I would not be giving him a check for the balance (50%) because of the damage. He said I was absolutely right, and that I could pay the person that would do the repairs. I told him at that time that I did not think that the price would be the same since this piece is now damaged.

Three weeks have gone by, no call until today. He told me he would send a repair guy out tomorrow. I told him that if it was the same person who did the original repairs, I did not want that person. When I asked him how they would do the repair,he said they would have to chip the repair out and re- repair it. My response was that he had several options when the piece was damaged in the shop.
Call me and tell me about it and ask what I wanted to do, i.e.did I want them to look for another slab, did I want it repaired, did I want to come and see the damage, did I want to choose something else?
Instead, he delivered it in the hope that I would not notice it.
As far as warranty, they will warranty the chip for a year.
As I told the salesman, before we hung up, this is no longer a perfect piece, but rather damaged goods, and that I would not be paying him the same as we originally agreed to. He said we would discuss that after the repair is done.
BTW, the installer, who did a great job on what I thought would be a difficult seam, said he would do the repair for me for $200.
The balance on the job is $1300. What is it worth now? And what issues do you foresee with the repair? Thanks so much for any input!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

The larger yellow repair and the smaller gray with the magic marker stripe are both underfilled and the edges are lifting on both of them. That is why I specified that I did not want the same repair person. Thanks for any help!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

There's nothing wrong with a good quality repair on granite. Stress the good quality. Yours isn't an A+, but it's not a C either. It's a B. The color is decent, but not perfect, and probably all that it needs is a little hand polishing and standing back to look at the big picture. You only see it screaming at you because you know it's there. I couldn't see what you were even talking about at first until I looked really close.

A good quality repair will last the life of the stone. The epoxy bonds to the stone tighter than the stone bonds to itself. Don't go slamming cans of tomatoes down on top of a repair, because it's obviously a weak spot at that vein, but other than abuse, it can stand up just fine to normal wear.

You owe them the $1300. If they are willing to knock off a little bit for the time it took them to get around to repairing the stone, then a couple of hundred dollars. I wouldn't expect that any credit would approach more than $300 for something like that. You're not buying used clothes at a thrift store. You're buying a natural material that sometimes shows it's nature.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Looks like a really cool stone, I'd love to see more. I can't tell where the problem is/was.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Hollysprings, while I appreciate your response, I have to disagree.
I did not buy a remnant at a close out sale so the thrift store analogy does not apply. I paid full price (around $80 per sq.ft ) for a smallish slab, and all that was left was enough to make a trivet, which I knew going in. So did the fabricator.
The nature of stone may be that it chips. That I was not informed of the chip, and would not have been informed, had I not seen it, is also different.
I don't find the repair to be anywhere near acceptable, and since it is already underfilled and lifting, further polishing would do little to remedy that. It will have to be chipped out and refilled. And this time, whoever does it has to overfill the chips since epoxy shrinks, and do a better job at coloring matching.
kksmama, here is another photo. The repairs are along the curve.
Thanks for any further thoughts!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I saw the repair right away, and it would not be acceptable to me either. But, I don't think that a 50% discount is warranted. I would say, enough to cover the repair cost, and (assuming that the 2nd repair is acceptable) maybe another $200-300 because of the time, trouble, and annoyance?

A three week delay before getting back to you is unacceptable, too, although they don't seem to be giving you any grief on the need to fix this.

I also think that asking for a different repair person is perfectly right. If they can't make a good repair, then ask for another slab.

I am in a similar situation -- waiting for the install of the only slab that was left in the warehouse -- fingers crossed that nothing goes wrong!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Thanks raee!
I have called them and asked for the installer, who did a great job on the seam, to do the repair. They will call me back. They are being agreeable because they know that they did try to slip in a repaired slab. I am not expecting to keep the balance, but I want it done right. And the fact of the matter is that I now have a repaired piece, which is not what I purchased.
Normally, the granite would have been in the $125+ range, but they had one slab left over from a large job, and it had a 5" backsplash taken off of the top. So they priced it the way they did because they had to wait for someone with a small job to come in.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I am a fabricator.

Reality is a lot of countertop pieces leave the fab shop with repair in one place or another. Typically this doesn't cause a problem because a well done repair (which is much easier to do in a shop environment with unlimited water) is practically invisible.

The repair in these pics is mediocre at best. Good news is that chipping out the repair and doing it over is no less likely to be a 1st rate repair then the original one. A talented fabricator can make a repair that is nearly invisible.

Regarding a discount; some concession is warranted. The $300 suggested previously seems reasonable to me. A 50% discount for a tiny defect seems punitive to me. I agree your fabricator would have been smarter to respond promptly; in our shop we try to get back within a couple of days on an issue like this. Leaving a customer with an issue to stew is just bad business.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Invicon StoneLux makes a light cure stone repair kit that costs about $1,700.00 as does Akiemi. That's what should probably be used here.

There are two reasons this repair looks so bad: 1. The edges of the chip get very shallow over a relatively long area, creating the highly visible "feather" edges. With a diamond bit in a Dremel, I would deepen the perimeter of the chip to eliminate the shallow edges and create clean ones. Sometimes you've got to make it worse to make it better.

2. The repairperson tried to mimic the greenish/tan field around the chip with little color matching success. You'll notice that with all the different colors going on in that stone, the repair color matched nothing. How about a nice patch of pinkish or some of that green speckle instead? Are your shoes the exact shade of your dress? No, and you look great.

If the repairperson mixes some polyester and tints it as was probably done here, it could be subject to ultra violet light degradation. So the repair looks great when he leaves, but starts changing color in a few years. The light cure adhesives are not subject to UV degradation.

Remember, even with the best repair on earth, the homeowner is always going to see it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Invicon


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Thanks! I think that the wording of the original post was confusing. The fabricator told me not to pay the installer as originally stated and that I would not have to pay until the repair was done. Then I did not hear from him until today, three weeks later.
Our intent was not to keep the 50%, but rather to know what would be fair once the repair is done to our satisfaction by the right person. Your replies have been very helpful. Thank you!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Thanks! I think that the wording of the original post was confusing. The fabricator told me not to pay the installer as agreed to in our contract and that I would not have to pay until the repair was done. Then I did not hear from him until today, three weeks later.
Our intent was not to keep the 50%, but rather to know what would be fair once the repair is done to our satisfaction by the right person. Your replies have been very helpful. Thank you!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Sorry for the double post. I had discussed with the repair person who will be doing the repair that going in with a gray area with veining might work. Thanks for the tip on the product.
I have worked for years repairing statuary which, other than the obvious poor job, was the reason I noticed the repair.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

milhojas:

Fortunately, you are in the position of strength for negotiation here.

I agree with oldryder in the sense that if that repair had left my shop, you wouldn't have found it. Your fabricator tried the quick and dirty repair and it's blown up in his face, as it should have. He's like a kid that needs a good spanking. He'll hate you for it now, but I'll gaurn-dang-tee he'll never try to pass off a repair like this again.

Tell them you're going to give them one chance to do an acceptable repair. If they fail ("acceptable" is completely up to you) they can bring back your down payment in cash when they remove the top or they can walk away. They're not going to court over a lousy $1,300.00.

Think about the $300.00, the suggested fair offer. $300.00 comes and goes, but you're going to be staring at that top for a really long time. You do not want $300.00 in your pocket and a permanent ache in your heart. I can only fix the stone.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Is it just me, or does it sound completely unethical to pass of a repaired stone as one that had not been repaired? I would think that a stone that had been damaged by the fabricator and then repaired would be discounted REGARDLESS of whether or not the customer "noticed" it. A customer might not notice a repair at the moment the stone is installed, especially when there is a lot going on during construction, but they might notice it down the line. Why in the world is it considered okay to do this sort of thing? What is wrong with just being honest????


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

They don't want to tell people because the customer might say they didn't want it and wanted a whole new one because this one is damaged. Who would want to pay all that money for a damaged counter? Most people view repairs as a weak point. (Good point about the vein itself still being weak even if the repair is not)

Count me in the group who thought stone was a highly durable product, worth the extra money to last a lifetime without the damages and problems of other products. It is certainly marketed that way; naturally an easy selling point. I did not know there were so many problems. Other than with soft soapstone and marbles.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Mon, Nov 4, 13 at 19:25


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

It's hard to see clearly in the picture but I can imagine in real life you are seeing a big chip that looks a different color with rough raised edges. Clearly looking like breakage that was just stuck back on. That would be troubling for most people and not acceptable. It doesn't sound very stable that way either.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

The correct response is to remove the damaged product and replace it with a undamaged piece.
You think only 3 unacceptable slabs are out there.
More may be available from the wholesale source for the original. He or another fabricator should hunt it down for you.
You may find something you like better. Undamaged.
Both these will give you what you should be getting.
The cost on that stone may be 11-19 a square foot wholesale. You are paying a lot for something you want to enjoy for years.
I would have him pick up the stone and refund your money if he can't find you what you want--undamaged.

If you decide to try a repair consider the warranty. One year is a lot less than you expect to have the counter. I would retain enough to redo the repair as needed over the useful life of the counter.

This post was edited by dan1888 on Mon, Nov 4, 13 at 19:38


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

jellytoast:

Let's have some fun, shall we? Let's replace "stone" with "car" and "fabricator" with "dealer" and see if the logic of your post holds:

"Is it just me, or does it sound completely unethical to pass off a repaired car as one that had not been repaired? I would think that a car that had been damaged by the dealer and then repaired would be discounted REGARDLESS of whether or not the customer "noticed" it. A customer might not notice a repair at the moment the car is accepted, especially when there is a lot going on during the sale, but they might notice it down the line. Why in the world is it considered okay to do this sort of thing? What is wrong with just being honest????"

As you reason, a dealer that had a new car damaged in transit, replaced a fender with OEM, painted it with a factory paint by a trained technician, should place a big fat sign on the vehicle saying "Repaired fender, $1,000.00 off."

Cars are manmade, stone (without getting too religious) was made by God 6 million years ago. So the standards for repairing natural material is higher than that for a manmade product? How is this fair?

This post was edited by Trebruchet on Tue, Nov 5, 13 at 7:17


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Do you really want to compare yourself to car dealers? They are at the bottom of the credibility poll of professionals that people trust.

A broken fender is different than a chip in that it's a separate entity that is simply attached (although the car taking a hit could still have the big unknown of other possible damage to be concerned about). The chip is integral to the stone itself.

So let's say the chipped area on this $4000 counter fails or gets knocked and falls off down the road. The piece is lost or becomes too damaged to use again. Can this area still be repaired like new again?


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

God did not break the stone--a person did. I would not want a discount I would want a new counter. I would not have chosen a damaged counter in the first place so why should my standards be lower after the install?


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

This will come to a head at some point today. I left the sales guy a message in his mail box yesterday. Is it just me, or does everyone screen their calls?I told him that I wanted the installer to do the repair since I liked his work on the seam, and once I saw the repair done, we needed to talk.
No response, so I imagine that he is sending the same repair guy who did the repair at the fabricator shop before the delivery even though I specifically told him not to send the person who did the repair.
The bottom line is that we would not accept a glass coffee table that arrived damaged, a flat screen TV with the corner glued back on. As far as the nature of the stone being what it is.....the fabricators deal with stone all day and know that. They should be more careful with it, and have it arrive at the customer's house intact. Failing that, they need to have some "rules of engagement" in dealing with this other than passing the invisible or not repair off to the customer. The repair was not in the back, but in the front, and was badly done, and we were not told.
The intent of what happened was to deceive since the repair was done at the shop and not mentioned. I even spoke to the sales guy the morning of the delivery, and he said nothing.
Back to the chips........there is another issue. We requested a simple edge. And we have one until we get to the curve, where the edge was beveled slightly to smooth out the underfilled edge.
All in all, it is a problem. I can bluff them, hope for a better repair, refuse to pay the full balance, but my whole kitchen is built around the granite. The paint color goes in today or tomorrow. The same with the color coordinated tiles.
The granite is called Waterfall Green or sometimes, Gaugain. The three slabs that match each other that we saw at another fabricator in August spoke to us, but were too bold, and too stripey. Nothing else came close at other fabricators, until we saw this toned down, quieter slab in Waterfall that we put a deposit on in August for a kitchen that started in October. I am boring you with these details because the odds of finding another toned down quiet slab in Waterfall are very slim.
Will keep you updated. Your responses are greatly appreciated.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I am a fabricator.

" They should be more careful with it, and have it arrive at the customer's house intact. "

This attitude is fine in theory but unrealistic in practice. Stone is a natural material and even the most skilled fabricators in the best shop on the planet will occasionally have chips to repair. Fabricators regularly repair chips and customers never notice. This includes chips and surface imperfections that were in the original slab which went unnoticed by the homeowner.

Occasionally a chip will occur during transport from damage or even from the miniscule flexing of the material during transport and install. An inclusion like a chunk of quartz can easily pop out from the stresses induced by handling. This isn't a reason to reject the stone nor is it a reason to chastize the fabricator and demand a discount.

If you want perfect and flawless material don't pick stone. I'd suggest quartz but even quartz has issues with imperfections. Maybe laminate or solid surface like corian.

Customers that expect a perfect surface from a natural material are no fun. Cabinet makers can have the same kinds of issues with unrealistic expectations.

If your fabricator does a good repair that is nearly invisible accept good enough, negotiate a fair discount, and enjoy your tops.

Note: repairs almost never pop out or change color.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Hear hear, Oldryder! Stone chips. It's a fact of life, and is normal. Fixing those chips is a perfectly acceptable choice, and a good repair does not diminish the "quality" of the stone at all.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

oldryer, just want to say when ever I read the words..."I am a fabricator".. I know words of wisdom are following.

OP, you have a beautiful granite. I understand your frustration but if they can do a good repair I personally would be happy with it.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I read about halfway through the responses, and all I can think is "Geez, I got a $150 credit on a 3K fridge for q very small knick....I would expect much more than $300 for my granite countertop." If it were me, I would march into that shop and demand a paid in full letter. Then I would pay the installer that I liked the $200 to repair it. I would be so fuming if I was given a piece of granite that had a repair that I could find, much less one that stuck out. If you accept a lousy $300 credit, you will just teach them that they can try to pass off huge repairs. What happens in 3 years when a kid is on the counter and that repair opens up? No thank you!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Maybe there should be something both discussed up front and written in the contract that these things naturally happen, whether the particular stone is prone to damage or other problems, that damage can occur during the process of getting it from its raw state through installation and that the fabricator will not be held responsible for the customer's stone choice. State how it will be handled and that all satisfactory repairs to any stone they purchase is an acceptable practice in the industry per __?__. If the repairs are fail-safe, then there should be no problem including a disclosure and warranty on all repairs.

I think it's only fair that the purchaser know this up front. If the yard is stocking beautiful but fragile stones for resale, then they have some responsibility to the customer to let them know pre-purchase. Stone is sold as a highly durable countertop product, which most people naturally wouldn't question. Most people are reasonable enough to accept things if told up front what they are getting into, taking on the risks for themselves if they choose.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

nostalgicfarm: your attitude is why I sometimes hate dealing with the public. As I said before; "If you want perfect and flawless material don't pick stone."

Can you understand there is a difference between a piece of stone and a manufactured item? Do you expect every stick of wood in your cabinets to have the exact same grain and color? Does every apple you buy have perfect color and finish? Is every potato the same shape? Is every tomato the same size? (are you getting this?)

I suggest you restrict yourself to products that have no natural component and save yourself and some poor supplier a lot of grief.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I don't think anyone expects perfect and flawless--they just want to get the slab they paid for in the same condition in which they bought it. I would never buy a granite slab that I knew had a repair like that. I would choose a different slab. This is not something intrinsic to the slab--this is flat out human error. ..


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

"This is not something intrinsic to the slab"

I'm sorry, but that's simply not true. Slabs with large quartz inclusions can simply pop a crystal out with no one doing anything but caressing it! Even with slabs with smaller quartz inclusions, crystals "shed" all the time, creating small pits. There are some slabs of stone that will scratch with a fingernail's pressure! Some slabs will shale when you try to edge them by hand but can be polished with a CNC machine.

You'll notice that I didn't say "granite". Very little stone sold in stoneyards is actually granite. There are a lot of exotic stones brought to the market that are fairly fragile these days. And already have repairs in them. From the quarry. And you have folks at wholesale stone yards who know nothing about stone other than, "it's pretty". Some fabricators know more than others, but even those that do usually find it tough going to inform a customer that the beautiful artwork that they just fell in love with has issues. People love "bad boys". In real life, and in stone. It's the exciting higher risk one that they will always pick, and they get PO'd about signing a waiver about doing so. They want the fabricator to take all of the risk, and for no additional money, or else they'll go somewhere cheaper.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I hear what you are saying but wasn't the original post referring to granite?


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

"I hear what you are saying but wasn't the original post referring to granite?"

No, only a stone sold using the generic term, "granite". Only about 10% of the stones sold at a stone yard qualify geologically for the term, so it's become a generic term. Just like Kleenex is a generic term for face tissue.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

My slab is granite, but that is not the question here, although this thread seems to have morphed into customer's expectations vs. everybody does repairs vs. it is ok not to tell the customer if the repair is invisible.
I was never asked to sign a waiver, so I am not "PO'd" about that. My slab was small, and I wiped it down with lacquer thinner, acetone, etc. in the shop before I bought it. I looked at it in the sun, and shade and with a flashlight and a "black light". Not only did I ask in August, before I put a deposit down, about any repairs, I searched for them.

The sales guy called earlier this morning and said that he was sending the installer, the one that I wanted, over to redo the repair. It is now almost 7 p.m. and way past daylight. Not the time for color matching.

To be continued.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

"Do you really want to compare yourself to car dealers?"

snookums:

Without advertising here, I have a 4.69 customer satisfaction rating out of a possible 5 from the internet advertising service I use. I will compare that to anyone or anything anywhere. You don't earn that kind of rating by dishonesty.

"A broken fender is different than a chip in that it's a separate entity that is simply attached (although the car taking a hit could still have the big unknown of other possible damage to be concerned about). The chip is integral to the stone itself."

I hope the original poster is less fussy about her repair than you are as to my choices of analogies.

"So let's say the chipped area on this $4000 counter fails or gets knocked and falls off down the road. The piece is lost or becomes too damaged to use again. Can this area still be repaired like new again?"

I never guarantee repairs, but I've probably had 2 callbacks in twenty years. The repaired area is stronger than the original stone. Yes, it could be repaired again to like-new.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Trebruchet, yes, of course I think that full disclosure regarding repairs is the ethical thing to do, and I actually DO think that a brand new car should be discounted if it is damaged before the customer gets their hands on it. Why not?? I recall this comparison to cars in another recent thread, and I have to agree with snookums ... since when do car dealers set the ethical standards that we should all adhere to?

Quoting oldryder, "If your fabricator does a good repair that is nearly invisible accept good enough, negotiate a fair discount, and enjoy your tops." ... this makes sense for everyone, but it only works if the fabricator is honest and mentions to the customer at the time of install that a repair was made.

I see the problem being not so much that the stone broke and had to be repaired, but that nothing was said to the customer. And if a repair is so fantastic that a customer would never notice it, what is wrong with telling the customer that it had been done and warranting the work?

This post was edited by jellytoast on Tue, Nov 5, 13 at 19:56


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

The photo above is fuzzy, but that stone is not granite, not that it really matters for this discussion. It looks like a gneiss, but I don't know that countertop folks use that term. It's clearly metamorphic, though!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Every craftsman knows perfect and flawless don't exist.
That is no excuse for this.
They also know the standard of an acceptable job within their industry. Working with a natural product like this stone sets the standard lower than when working with a man made counter material. But there is still some standard. This work doesn't meet any ordinary standard with the industry.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Trebruchet, I was being facetious that comparing yourself to a car dealer is not the most flattering thing to do.

S: "A broken fender is different than a chip in that it's a separate entity that is simply attached (although the car taking a hit could still have the big unknown of other possible damage to be concerned about). The chip is integral to the stone itself."

T: "I hope the original poster is less fussy about her repair than you are as to my choices of analogies. "

Not being fussy at all. You were trying to make your point by making the comparison of a replaced fender to a damaged piece of stone. That it is not necessary to tell people that a fender was replaced so should be the same with a countertop. What my post meant was that, no, I don't think replacing a fender is the type of thing most people would object to. It's a separate (and fairly simple) part so makes no difference whatsoever. Now if the car had a dent in the body, on the other hand, and they repaired it, that's a different story. Like a chip, it's an integral thing. Those body repairs are often a noticeable defect and you might not even notice it at first. (And I know this from a new car experience, so it was a big disappointment when they fixed a dent after swearing it could be fixed no problem at all. Not so. Yeah the small dent was gone but I had a big splotch on the side of my brand new car).

With a lot of things, repairs do become weak points or noticeable defects, so that is what people will automatically be thinking. I don't see how you can fault them for feeling that way after they've spent thousands of dollars on something.

I understand what's being said about this being common and part of the nature of the beast. Unfortunately, that's not what people are told when buying so it is going to be a big shock to them if that strong piece of stone breaks, keeps chipping or they see a lousy repair that's been done that they are supposed to be satisfied with. Not something you want to find out after the purchase. I agree that the risk of damage to an unpredictable natural material like this should not be on the fabricator (carelessness or lack of skill aside, of course) but only if the customer is made aware up front whether they want to take that risk or not. It's their decision, no one else's. They might have chosen to go with another material.

Not sure what you did not understand but it sounds like a bit a language barrier.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Wed, Nov 6, 13 at 0:54


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I have seen worse repairs. I hope it gets repaired to the homeowners satisfaction.
I must say however that old ryder makes a good point.
Slabs coming in from overseas are filled or repaired at the origin .Containers at sea don't actually have a smooth ride over either and damages can occur.
We didn't get so good at repairing these types of issues because they never occur.
In so many cases the repairs that are done cant even be seen.
But depending on the character,location and dynamics of the repair the degree of difficulty can be way up.
Most fabricators I know pride themselves big time in their work.When these issues do arise inform the customer prior to installation.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Finally a follow up....after two no shows by the repair person, and four weeks later, I get a call yesterday that they are sending their best person over.
He was here for over an hour, and said that he was using the Akimai product. A lot of filling, polishing with 1000 grit sandpaper at the highest, and 600 as the lowest, he called me into the kitchen and said that this was the best he could do. I signed his work order and said that although he spent time on the job, it was not acceptable.
I just called the sales guy and told him the same. The repairs are not better, they are at best different, and in some ways worse.
These repairs are underfilled. The area around the repairs is not llifting up....yet. In trying to buff out the repair, he slightly etched the area around it, And was never quite able to match the sheen of the surrounding granite.
When the sales guy asked me what a resolution would be, I told him that we were at paying the half that we had paid.
There had been a previous conversation with him about two weeks ago when he called to ask me how the repair that was scheduled for four weeks ago was, I told him the guy never showed. When I asked him what their follow up process entailed, when a repair guy is scheduled to come and doesn't show for four weeks.
He said that the repair guy was good, but wasn't great with details. To which I responded that if the fabricator had paid attention to details and quality control, we wouldn't be having this conversation at all.
Anyway, here is new and I think, worse repair.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

The original repair was better than this-from the pic it looks like you could pull it off with a razor blade.
Is that actually flush to the surface.
I think the repair could be quite difficult-green marinace can be hard stone to polish naturally for sure. The location of the repair or chip makes it difficult as well. Before we do repairs like this we do a simulation on a spare piece in our shop and then show that to all parties.
Using sandpaper at those levels on granite seems strange to me. We never use sandpaper to polish granite. Matter of fact I don't know anyone who does. You need specific high quality diamonds to polish granite and a fair amount of experience. I think UV or a CA(super glue) would have worked better.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Thanks srosen!
I watched him remove the old repair with a razor blade.
The new repairs, both the large one and the small one, are underfilled. So as your eye goes along the edge, they are very obvious. Not only can you feel that they are underfilled, with the lighting, your eye is drawn to it. Now, with the help of UCL, the haze and razor blade nicks are in an area about 6 inches around the repairs. I am hoping that the haze from the sandpaper is on the sealer, as well as the lines from scraping the area with a razor blade.
At this point, we are going to insist that someone, either the sales guy or the owner, come and look at the repair in person. Having had an independent contractor to do the templating, another to do the installation, and another to do the repair, and using a smartphone to send pictures to the fabricator is not getting the point across.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Hi milhojas,

The same thing happened to me but the fabricator broke the granite at my home during the installation. My husband saw them break it. The fabricator told my husband that it wasn't a big deal and that he was going to fix it and that we wouldn't even be able to tell. He also pleaded with my husband to not tell me. My husband told him that we didn't work that way and he immediately called me and sent me a pic of the break.

I agree with you about wanting to get the slab you pay for. Granite is expensive and yes it's fragile but that's why you paid a licensed contractor to do the job right and it wasn't done right.

What ended up happening with us is that the granite place gave us a $400 discount with a 6 year warranty on the entire installation. At the time I was furious with the fabricator for wanting to cover it up.

But the granite guy did give me the option of either picking out a new slab or the discount. Of course he was hoping that I went with the discount and I did because the crack is in an area that isn't used much. Your crack looks like its in an area that will have more traffic than mine. He talked me into letting them install it and if I still wasn't happy he would give me a new slab.

Can they give you a better warranty and a discount? In the end you need to feel good about your purchase or you won't be happy. Here's a pic of the crack. It's been fixed but I can still see it. The fix pretty strong. I pushed on it as hard as I could and nothing happened. I too have a slight dip where they repaired it.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Am I the only one who finds this discussion somewhat muddled. Nothing is going to change the fact that the counter required (requires) a repair. You can choose to believe that natural stone chipping from being cut and handled is an issue of human error or a characteristic of the material. To my mind thinking that stone chipping isn't acceptable and makes the material devalued is a bit like returning water because you didn't expect it to be wet but to each is own. I think this is a bummer and the first repair looked better (devil you know). I think there are some tough lessons here:

1. as consumers we may not be in the best position to determine who is the best equipped or most reliable person to perform specific kinds of specialized work

2. when we insist on specific people to perform work who then turn out not be all that reliable or skilled at performing that work we risk a worse outcome and a weaker position from which to negotiate

3. complaining about the reliability and competence of the person we insisted perform the work as if we hadn't insisted on them in the first place may appear a little disingenuous to others

I'm impressed with the amount of care you took in looking over your slab but if you thought it would remain exactly as you selected it then you should have left it as it was and just visited it in the warehouse not had it fabricated into counters and then shipped and installed in your house.

It seems to me you want the stone (you really seem to want it as it was before the chip but that ship has sailed - let it go). You can either get something else or keep this stone and get the best repair possible and enjoy all the things you loved about the slab you picked and built your kitchen around - those are your choices. If it is the latter then you need to let go of any recriminations and disappointments and do what it takes to get a great repair. Holding on to your justifiable dissatisfaction and worrying about how much of a discount you should get hasn't gotten you a great repair so far so you might want to go in a different direction next time. I'm sorry it didn't work out as perfectly as planned but I think you can still salvage a good outcome if you focus on that. Best of luck.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Interesting points.
AdminG1, I read your post with great interest.

I believe that the part of the reason that this is as "muddled" as it is because that was the intent of the fabricator. I had originally requested that the installer, who did a good job on what I thought was a difficult seam, be the one to repair the stone. They agreed, set up and appointment, and after three weeks, he did not appear. They did not call, nor did he. Was he really scheduled? I don't know.
Just after Thanksgiving, the sales guy called and asked me how I liked xxxx's repair. I said that he never appeared. Lots of shock and disbelief. He called him on his cell, said he would be here the following week.
Again nothing. The sales guy called again, and this time, because we are still on first name basis, I asked him how this sort of thing happens. He sells us the slab, we pay a deposit, I go several times to look at it, measure it with him, do a mock template, do a real template the weekend before the fabrication. How is it that he doesn't know whether the repair was done or not? He explains that the accounting person comes periodically to find him to tell him that this account is not yet paid. I tell him that there has to be a better follow through and we discuss the repair. He says that had he known, he would not have sent it out. I asked him what he would have done. And there is dead silence.
He calls me on Monday and says that HIS repair specialist is coming, not the guy that I want.
Caryscot, here is where it get muddled. I get the fabricator's repair guy. The guy gets here, and immediately tells me that this will not be a perfect repair. He also tells me that these chips were not "bubbles" that popped in the fabrication, but rather that the fabricators chipped the stone. He tells me that the old repair was with epoxy and would have popped out in 6 or 7 months, but that his would not.
The reason that I was so careful in looking over my slab prior to purchase is that I work in restoration of statuary.
I suggested to him that he try to go in with another color, because the green with the lines and the spatters would be very difficult to match. He insists that he can do it, he also insists that the gray chip is not bad and should be left alone. I disagree. So he popped that out with a razor blade, too. In talking to him, he says that he does 25 repairs a week. I leave him alone after asking him if he always used sandpaper on repairs, and he says yes, and I ask him if he can get the sheen that he needs to match the existing granite and he says yes.
He calls me in after an hour and tell me that he is done. And says "this is the best that I can do". I tell him that the colors do not match, that the repairs are underfilled and that the area around the repairs is hazy. I thank him for the time spent and his effort.
Again, he says that is the best he can do, and asks me to sign and write a comment on his work order. I wrote exactly what I have written here. When he left, I called the sales guy, and he says that this is his best repair guy, and so I tell him, as we have before, that we have to come to some sort of resolution. It wasn't until the UCL lights were on last night that I saw all the etching from the sandpaper and razor blades extending way beyond the repair area.
Clearly, he has no other repair person. My repair is in front. I did not buy my granite in the "scratch and dent" section, nor did I buy or pay for a remnant. Is 50% too much to ask for? I don't know. I do know that I paid for a perfect piece of granite and they tried to slip a repaired piece in. Had I not caught it, the repair guy yesterday said that they would have said that I did it. Their repair guy talks too much.
I did not go with one of the many small granite fabricators, but rather a busy fabricator with a decent reputation in the Wash/Balt area.
I find that too many people dealt with my order, subcontractors who were not employees of the fabricator. But the one person who did work for the fabricator, the sales guy, dropped the ball the most.
I am sick about the granite because the repair is really bad and even worse, it now extends way beyond the chips in the front. And I did go with their repair person.
Today, we will go to the office and talk to the sales guy and ask him to come out with the owner and talk at our house in front of the slab. At some point, someone from the company has to come face to face with this.
Again, I appreciate the comments and suggestions.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Picture of edge


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Have not figured out the multiple photo feature.
This is a photo of the edge


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Have not figured out the multiple photo feature.
This is a photo of the edge


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Sorry about the double post. Here is a picture of the haze, but coud not get one of the edge extending around the repairs. I am hoping that the etching is the sealer and not the stone. This is why we have reached a point that we do not want to exchange pictures anymore. BTW, DH says that it looks like he repaired it.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Sorry about the double post. Here is a picture of the haze, but coud not get one of the edge extending around the repairs. I am hoping that the etching is the sealer and not the stone. This is why we have reached a point that we do not want to exchange pictures anymore. BTW, DH says that it looks like he repaired it.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Just so you are informed-that isn't etching.
Its caused by not removing the scratch pattern of lower grits of abrasives or improperly honing the surface.
I hope that makes sense to you.
Razor blades would not in most cases be able to scratch the surface
Etching is a mark of corrosion caused by an acidic product.
granites and or mercantile granites(stone that is geologically not granite but sold as granite)most are acid resistant to most household or mild acids.
Also just so you are informed sealers for stone are impregnating and live below the surface. In your case your stone probably wont take much sealer if any at all. So the etching or hazy profile hasn't anything to do with that.
What you should do is contact a bona fide stone refinisher who is experienced in these type of repairs. Have them do a repair on a piece of scrap marinace. Then take it from there.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I'm so sorry to see your update. One thing I have learned after building a few houses is sometimes the fix is worse than the original problem. A lesson I unfortunately had to be taught a few times, ugh!

I really hate that we have to deal with this, it should be right the first time. But I have found so many do not care about their work, do the quickest job possible, hope we don't notice and go on to the next job.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

srosen,
It makes perfect sense. When the repair guy was here, I told him about micromesh and he was so impressed that he took a photo of the google page that I brought up.
Just so that I understand you correctly, the repairs should have continued to be polished with higher grits of abrasive until getting to a grit that left the repaired area with the same sheen as the surrounding area. Of course, that still would not resolve the issue of them being underfilled.
As to the lines that look like razor blades marks, he was doing a lot of scraping around the repaired area with a razor. That is why my hope was that he had cut into the sealer in the process. Thank you for your help!
As for others who feel that you should not expect to get the granite that you looked at and purchased, I find that disingenuous. If I ordered a custom glass shower door and it got chipped in the cutting process, I would expect to be told about it, be offered a choice of another glass if that one was no longer available, and not get one with an epoxy filled chip on the edge.
It is not about the discount, and I should have worded the title of my post differently, but I still don't understand why granite fabricators should be held to different business standards than any other merchant, etc.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I agree that the things we have seen some stone salesmen try to pull over on their customers is terrible and of course they should be held to the same business standards as anyone else. One problem with the breakages themselves, though, is that it is a natural material which can chip when working with it. So when someone chooses to buy what can be a fragile stone, I don't think it is really fair to put that risk on the fabricator if they hit a crystal that pops or a fissure that cracks because that's what stone does and there's nothing anyone can do about it. Now maybe what they charge is already intended to cover the expense of those instances, I don't know.

I think the problem, however, is that they need to be diligent and clear up front with people about all this when selling the product so customers know what they are getting into. It is not their decision to risk a customers money like that. What was their decision was to sell this type of product. So as a business, of course they do have responsibility to the customer for their products. Flaunting an exotic stone, asking a lot of money for it and then telling them after it chips or cracks that it's just the nature of the material is unethical. Another coverup, to make the sale, imo.

Most people are probably unaware of stone being delicate and naturally would think it is an extremely durable and almost indestructible selection. That's one reason people get it and how it is marketed. Apparently some of these more exotic ones are more fragile. Bottom line, they should be advised by the professional prior to purchase -- not after the fact and then blown off. It is their money, their choice, if they want to take a risk on it or not -- no one else's decision but theirs.

Even so, if the fabricator is released of all responsibility if it breaks, then they might be less careful when they work. And how to prove when they did something careless or due to a lack of appropriate technical skill or whether it was simply due to the stone itself is still a problem.

I do think when they sell the more delicate stones (or all stone if it's true for any of them) and do not advise the customer, that they have taken on all the burden of that responsibility themselves as the seller of the product.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Fri, Dec 13, 13 at 15:26


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I may be in the minority in saying that the color is not perfect but it does now look a fair sight better than it did in the first pictures.

To the poster that waxes poetically about the fragility of stone and chipping being the nature of the beast, I will just say that glass chips as well, but if I pay for a premium glass installation by a glass professional, I would not consider the job done if a chipped piece was installed and filled with a clear epoxy resin.

I have had granite installed in three homes, now. I have accepted a small repair in a prominent area when I requested a large single L shape instead of two smaller slabs butted against each other, and took no discount for it, but it bothered me when I would clean and shine my counters.

Granted, this was before my gardenweb days. When I sold that house, the new owner fondled the counters and practically leaped for joy into the arms of her realtor when the closing was done, as she loved the home so much and it was the nicest kitchen she had ever been in.

She didn't notice the repair.

It is much more difficult to have perspective when the thing is your "baby."


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

"It is much more difficult to have perspective when the thing is your "baby.""

Yep.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

I think it is more difficult to have perspective when something is damaged through no fault of your own and when it is supposed to be brand new. It is like the first scratch or ding on your new car. I have never personified my material objects as anything other than what they are, since I am not that attached to material possessions. In my case, it is a question of condition.
I appreciate the opinion, Detroit burb, but as I told the fabricator, you have to see it to believe it. This current rage of settling disputes by snapping photos on cell phones is impossible since they cannot capture everything.
I am really pleased with my kitchen, the backsplash, the cabinets, etc.
I cannot think of anything that I would have done differently except to include a "repair clause" in the fabricator's contract. Something to the effect of how they handle repairs, do they disclose them and is the repair person qualified to do repairs. In retrospect, I would have liked to have gone with a repair person of my choice and have them foot the bill, and that may still happen.
But enough on the subject. Happy Holidays to all and thanks for all of your suggestions and help! Time for homemade Limoncello! Priceless


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Mihojas,

I totally feel your pain. In fact this post has brought back some of the hurt feelings and frustration I had during our kitchen reno which is now 7 years old. CANNOT believe it, but I have the receipts and FB photos to prove it!

I won't bore you with all the details, suffice to say that I could probably write a book about the troubles we had. Our Granite woes began with the night (few days before Christmas so freezing cold that it took what seemed like hours for granite to thaw) of install. By the time all these men left my kitchen, I realized that they had granite running in all different ways and seams were atrocious! We ended up having two pieces replaced, fine. There was a broken piece in back corner of another piece that I knew would get covered up by backsplash, and even though they offered to replace that piece too, I said it was fine, and it was, no need to replace it.

Anyhow, fast forward a few months to when new granite comes in, grain is going the correct way, but this granite doesn't match the pattern of the old pieces that were staying. A couple of weeks in, the peninsula starts cracking...long long story short, they decide to just replace all the granite and make sure it is cut with the grain and pattern all going the way we want/specify...

Meanwhile, six/seven months after initial order the granite for my pony wall finally arrives...fabricator spends most of the day installing the two pieces (16 feet long). As I inspect it before he leaves, I notice one piece is cracked completely in half, can't remember now if there was even any attempt to repair it. He admits he broke it at the shop before he loaded it onto his truck. I was sick...went into DH's den and said I cannot deal with this, granite is cracked in half and Allen was just going to pretend nothing was wrong...

Anyhow, that granite ended up being completely replaced. It all broke when they took it off, so there wasn't the possibility of just fixing the broken half.

I won't continue with further granite stories...but do have to say I was appalled at how relatively nice people who I thought I had a decent relationship with tried to 'pull the wool over my eyes'. I think I am very reasonable, perhaps even close to being a push-over, but dealing with this company actually taught me the valuable lesson of learning how to speak up for myself, and learn how to demand being treated with respect and with honesty. I think that is all you are demanding. Just so you know, I have now learned to live with that crack in the peninsula for 7 years...company went bankrupt the DAY my granite was scheduled to be replaced. I paid for a fairly decent repair with the money I never had to pay for my granite.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

" It is like the first scratch or ding on your new car."

Yes, it is, however my point was that it depends on who scratched or dinged your car as to how acceptable a repair is.

When your dealer tries to deliver a car with a scratch in the door, it's unacceptable and he will have to repaint. When you scratch your door and have to pay the body man to repaint, suddenly those scratch removal pens on the late-night informercial are looking pretty good.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Trebruchet, your responses have been invaluable.
In the case of a kitchen that I waited 25 years to remodel, and when everything around it is brand spanking new, I want a top of the line repair, regardless of who pays for it.
Great analogy, as always, though.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

When I had recessed lights in my kitchen installed, I paid top dollar and chose one of the higher installers as he told me he would be doing the job personally himself. He left his helper here to do the job and the job was terrible. I can't believe I wrote him a check. I wish I took off for the repair. Skeeter (my little Maltese who died a few days later) was doing bad and the installer left a mess so I was busy cleaning it up and did not realize how bad it was until I had to get estimates to fix the damage he caused. I WISH I had only paid him half and told him I would pay him the balance after I repaired the ceiling and deducted the repair. I am so unhappy still.

Hence, I feel hold back the money until the repair is acceptable and then demand a discount. I will never pay full price again for unacceptable work.

By the way, your granite is gorgeous!


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

The saga continues. The sales guy called last week and said they had reached a solution that would be mutually beneficial.
Rather than return the phone call, we went to their shop.
Here is the solution: They will pull out the granite, cut off the damaged edge, and fill in the area behind the granite.
He said that he knew that we had a backsplash in and that they could pull the granite out to the edge of the tile.
After I told him that the idea was a deal breaker, since the chip was by now over 3/4" wide, he offered to send another repair guy to our house. We refused. His boss is coming back from vacation on Monday. We said we would wait until his boss got back and we would negotiate from there.
I will spare you the rest of the details because I have a flan that has to come out of the oven, and because this has gone on for close to three months.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

milhojas:

That's not a bad idea if they can make it work with the splash.

Agree to let them take their shot with the understanding that if it's unacceptable, they'll refund all your money.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

Problem solved. No countertop removed, no more repair people sent out to try again at repairing the chip. The fabricator agreed to deduct $1000 for the $1300 owed, so we paid $300 for the balance.
The moral of the story, IMO, is:
Find out what the fabricator's repair policy is, if they have one, i.e. if they chip the stone, do they inform you beforehand? If they chip the stone, do they have an expert repair person to fix it? The person who the fabricator sent out, who did the second repair, was an installer who got tired of lifting and became a repair person, not in a good way.
Examine the stone as it comes in the door, when it is installed, and as soon as possible. There have been several posts lately with a lag time of a month or more, asking "does "XYZ" look OK?
And most importantly, do not pay the full amount up front.
That was, by far, the deciding factor in the fabricator's willingness to settle.
Thanks for the many opinions and help received! And to those of you who thought that this was not a fight worth having, it was. I can assure you that this fabricator will have a much tighter policy in the future.


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RE: Granite counter is repaired..........what is it worth?

One more moral to the story, if I may. We remained cordial and civil throughout this saga, and I think that this went a long way in resolving the issue to our satisfaction.


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