Laminate Worktop Problem

Discussion in 'Kitchen Fitters' Talk' started by Bloxhar, Jan 7, 2009.

  1. Bloxhar

    Bloxhar New Member

    Fitted 'u' shaped kitchen just before xmas for a very fussy customer. They've contacted me today because they've noticed laminate worktop has an air bubble/pocket on the surface just near the front profile about the size of a 10p piece. Looking along the length of worktop its barely visible but tap your finger on top and it sounds hollow, laminate obviously hasn't stuck to board underneath. Worktop is from a manchester based company and quite unique black,matt,multi speckled and gives a different colour dependent on light and angle viewed slighly bling! but about £200 for a 3m length(3 full lengths used on this job). Customer wants perfection, supplier says fitter should have spotted fault and properly inspected worktop prior to fitting, but as a goodwill gesture will fund 1 worktop. Do i bite the bullet and rip out sink,hob,3 worktops and completely refit(costing me 2 worktops & a days labour) or is there a repair possible. I'm thinking about using a syringe to get adhesive underneath the laminate or is this a long shot.
     
  2. blueassedfly!

    blueassedfly! New Member

    tough one that
    unfortunatly and sorry to say this but supplier is RIGHT visual and rubbing hands all over laminate BEFORE cutting is the fitters responsability! (SORRY)

    not sure how youd get on with the repair your talking of cos the laminate area will be bigger that the area its delaminated from because it is a raised area (does that make sense) so once you have you adhesive under it and you press down it might crack the laminate cover itself!

    it might be worth talking to client about the repair as a first shot, and if it doesnt work then you need to look at replacment!
     
  3. mick761

    mick761 New Member

    Whose to say the laminate didn't raise after you fitted it?

    Agree with CK about the risk of it cracking, might be worth using a hot air gun over the area first, then clamping a strip of worktop (or similar ) over the offending patch.

    Good luck let us know how this one finishes.
     
  4. blueassedfly!

    blueassedfly! New Member

    also BE CAREFUL that after warming it it up you dont move the airpocket to another part whilst trying to flattern it out!
     
  5. big all

    big all Screwfix Select

    my suggestions

    assuming you supplyed rather than the customer

    have you got an off cut from that or identical wotktop!!!

    practice on that with damp cloth/tee towel/brown paper
    try and introduce air into a warmed up area with a seringe

    try and cause several pockets

    superglue springs to mind because a little will spread a long way easily
    if you use superglue remember it may take ages after clamping because it relies on air to set

    big all
     
  6. tony3030

    tony3030 New Member

    could you drill a hole from underneath with a stop on the bit to stop shy of the laminate, apply heat to the surface, and clamp till dry

    just an idea..

    oh yes the drilled hole is to allow the air out
     
  7. Bloxhar

    Bloxhar New Member

    Thanks for all your suggestions, had a chat with the customer again today, and mentioned the idea of a repair, glue,drilling air holes, applying hot air etc total no no customer wants worktop perfection and thinks repairs won't acheive this. I've resigned myself to spending a weekend putting things right with the added cost of 2 worktops. I'm really pi**ed about the worktop suppliers attitude, the bubble is hardly visible to the naked eye can you really be expected to examine 9 metres of worktop to laboratory conditions whilst also fitting a kitchen. The supplier won't even site visit to see for himself everything seems to be the fitters liability. Whats the chance of splitting 1 joint in situ, and just getting away with 1 butt/scribe?
     
  8. blueassedfly!

    blueassedfly! New Member

    so you want to remove 1 leg of a U sahpe and just replac that! IF youve stuckem together properly you will have a big chance of ruining the female side! and how are you gonna trim the half of the joint thats left in place so its clean enuf to take the newly cut section?
     
  9. mick761

    mick761 New Member

    I agree that the chances are slim, but i think i would certainly give it a go...nowt to lose.

    You say the supplier is no help but what about the manufacturer? Again, i think it's a slim chance but worth a go.
     
  10. Wayne K

    Wayne K New Member

    I would try using an iron on it(using a cloth), to melt the glue then clamp a piece of timber on it until it cooled.
    Depending on how long after I was contacted about the bubble, I would have denied it their at the time of installation as you would have noticed it at the time & must have happened after, the customer maybe laid something hot on it to cause it, I have seen de-laminating caused by a hot casserole dish. When a customer gets a new kitchen, the first thing she does is clean it, surely she would have noticed any defect then.
    At worst, I would to keep things sweet, tell her if she pays for new tops, you will fit them FOC. as a goodwill gesture.
     
  11. steve the fitter

    steve the fitter New Member

    I agree with wayne kerr. You checked them at the time and they were find. Now after xmas(probably a lot of cooking going on) a fussy customer has suddenly found something wrong with the worktop. If the joint was blown it would be a different story but I think the most you should do is supply the labour. Did you supply the tops or did the customer? Did she sign anything to say she was happy with everything once the fit was finnished?
     
  12. Joelp1

    Joelp1 New Member

    everyone is assuming its the laminate coming up, it could equally well be a void in the chipboard.

    I would insist it was fine on installation, and that its a product fault. Whether or not thats the case!

    I assume the client owes you a balance still! :(
     
  13. Joelp1

    Joelp1 New Member

    ps i think i know the tops you mean, is it like bits of foil in it?
     
  14. Bloxhar

    Bloxhar New Member

    Balance has been paid in full i'm owed no money on the fit, the customer was over the moon with the job before this problem appeared. Its definately the laminate lifting and it is the worktop with the 'foil' bits in it. Would a hot pan lift the laminate like this without leaving any scorch or burn marks?. The outcome seems to be the customer pays for 2 worktops, the supplier 1 worktop and my labour FOC, at least the customers left happy and the only major cost to me will be a weekends work. I shall certainly be switching worktop supplier after this is over.
     
  15. frenchie

    frenchie New Member

    I always silicone my joints not PVA or Varnish them together. As long as walls havent been tiled it is normally reasonably easy to break the joint without wrecking female so long as the scrap piece has a male. If not just take bolts out and lift exactly on the joint. There may be crushing/damage to underside of joint but basically you are lifting at angle to break the joint. Respectfully with all suggestions as an ex worktop fabricator " point heat" does not work on a worktop. All you will do is make the bubble bigger and it will burst on you eventually. Learn from error and take it on chin as speaking to manufacturer after you claimed "it was there" to change story to "appeared after fitting" I dont think will wash. Happened to me few years ago with worktop that delaminated at join while i was bolting it up. Claimed I should have noticed before I fitted it. Hope this helps
     
  16. tonykitchen

    tonykitchen New Member

    I have had problems like this before when customers who are really fussy claim that worktop is damaged after you have fitted it. I take the view that like your supplier does to you they only have a limited amount of time to report a fault, and I would suggest as others have that it may have well been caused by themselves with a hot pan. Bottom line is how important the good will of a customer is to your business, remember if the kitchen has been tiled after the worktops have been fitted, removal and refitting will be a lot more tricky and if you were really unlucky could result in broken/loose tiles. Good Luck
     
  17. molewill

    molewill New Member

    sounds like the worktops not bonded and the heats set it of but it is possable to just replace the damaged worktop try cutting the damaged one out about 2 inch from the mitre and carefully chisel away the rest its worth a go its going to cost u 2 worktops if u dont try
     

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