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Tile job would you pay

1031fraser

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Feb 22, 2014
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I cleaned tile in master bathroom and grout came out. It was really soft grout like it was mixed wrong. House is three years old.
 

1031fraser

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Feb 22, 2014
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No picture 800 psi. It was random spots. The grout came out it was eroding. It wasn't like an air pocket. It was like it was soft and softer in some spots.
 

Todd the Cleaner

Todd Cottino
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No picture 800 psi. It was random spots. The grout came out it was eroding. It wasn't like an air pocket. It was like it was soft and softer in some spots.
The installer must have mixed the grout improperly. I saw a floor one time where you could rub your finger on the grout and it turned to sand. I passed on that job as they would have had no grout after I cleaned it.

If there are just a few small areas where the grout came out you can easily do a grout repair job. Grout repair is a service you should offer anyway. It's not hard to do at all.

If you do get into offering grout repair (or even if you don't) you need to do a thourough pre inspection of the grout on every job. Look for cracked, loose, or missing grout and point it out to the customer. Tell them there's a good possibility that any damaged or weak grout may come out when you clean it and offer to do a repair job for them. A lot of times the customer will have some grout out in their garage that was left over from the install. I always ask them if they have the matching grout. If not you can get a grout matching color chart and match it up as close as possible.
 

zigdog

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Hey Fraser, sorry to hear about your situation. First things first. No, it is probably not your fault that the grout came out. That being said, as far as paying for it, here's the thing.

You need to check for faulty installation on every tile job that you do before you start. It can be as simple as taking a key or a tool like a screwdriver and poke it into the grout in several spots on the floor. If it's soft, walk away. If you see cracks in the grout whether along the side of the tiles or in the grout itself it is an indicator that something else may be wrong. Check it out further. Knock on the tiles and listen for a hollow sound. If you hear one, that means loose tiles and probably loose grout that may come out under the pressure of cleaning even if you can't tell by looking.

Inspect the grout and tile carefully, bad installations are all over the place out there, and can be caused by many different things. If you see anything that looks out of the ordinary, make sure that it will not affect the outcome of the job. If you have any doubts, walk away. Losing a job is surely a better scenario than what you are facing now.

It is up to us as professionals to be able to recognize and inform the customer of a bad situation.
I've said this before, the last thing a customer wants to hear from you is that the damage to the grout was due to faulty a installation. All he or she knows is that it looked okay before you got there and now it doesn't.
I am not trying to lecture you here, I am just trying to make sure that this doesn't happen to you again.

If it was me I would definitely try to explain why the damage occurred and try to not pay for the repair and probably not charge for the cleaning itself. I can tell you one thing for sure. A properly installed tile and grout job will not be damaged by cleaning even at 800 psi.

I hope you have an understanding customer and they accept the fact that it was a bad installation. Keep us posted.
 
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1031fraser

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Feb 22, 2014
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Definitely a learning curve on my adventure as a owner operator! I appreciate the response back. I went ahead and paid for the repair. After research I believe they used old grout. Grout goes bad after year after opened. There's so much more to tile cleaning then I realized.
 

Todd the Cleaner

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I am very thorough in inspecting every hard surface job now
LOL, yup. Any of us that have been in business long enough have been through a learning experience such as this. These are the experiencese that help you to learn and grow and become more professional in your business.

Hopefully the "learning experiences" are few and far between. That's one thing I've come to love about TMF. We can all learn from the experiences of others.

Thank you for sharing this experience with us.
 
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PistolPete

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We have all paid stupid tax! I had to replace a fridge door after splashing acid on the stainless steel...dope!
Good news is it gets etched in your memory so you're way more careful in the future
 

Ken Raddon

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Um no I would not pay for it. I would have however stopped at the first bit of grout that came out and went and got the owner and showed them the situation. Then asked if they want me to continue.
 

Mama Fen

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We have a saying 'round here - if you tell the customer beforehand, you're giving them good service. If you tell them after the fact, you're giving them poor excuses.

Might not be true, but it's how the customer perceives it. And in our industry, perception almost always equates to truth in the customer's mind.
 

jtsunbrite

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I cleaned tile in master bathroom and grout came out. It was really soft grout like it was mixed wrong. House is three years old.
If you didn't mention it to the customer before you started the customer thinks you ruined her grout,,, Go get some grout and regrout for her,,, its a quick process !!!!
 
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