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Discuss Advice needed - poor workmanship? in the Tiling Forum area at TilersForums.co.uk.

  1. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Hello, I am new to this site and seeking some advice on the tiling in our new bathroom.

    We are really unhappy with the quality of the tiling and have voiced our concerns to the plumber (he also did the tiling). He says he did the best job he could and blamed wonky walls and a difference between the thickness of the wall tile and mosaic border for the defects (the walls were re-plastered prior to him tiling by a plasterer he chose, he sub-contracted the work out).

    He believes he has done a good job and cannot understand why we are not satisfied. Surprisingly he said he would be willing for us to deduct the cost of having the issues rectified by a tiler of our choice and he will also agree to us deducting the cost of replacing tiles from his invoice. It was agreed that we would pay on completion so we haven't paid anything yet as the job isn't finished.

    We have since had 2 different tilers come and take a look and both have suggested that all the tiling needs to come off and the bathroom suite will need to come out beforehand to prevent damage. Depending on the condition of the walls underneath the walls may need plastering again and then the bathroom suite would need reinstalling. So basically it would be like starting over again.

    I have told the original plumber what the 2 tilers have said and he says that they are probably just saying that to get extra work. He is now asking for part payment to cover the cost of materials and the labour for the work he sub-contracted out and we don't know what to do as the quotes we've had to rectify everything are around the same as the total amount he is requesting!

    I have tried to attach some photos of some of the issues (there are so many!) but I can't figure out how to do it! I've added 2 pics under Poor workmanship? I don't know whether you will be able to see them? I would be so grateful for any advice you can offer me. Believe me, I don't like complaining and I am truly devastated it has come to this but I stand to lose a lot of money if I pay him and do require the whole lot doing again. He is not willing to put right his own defects either so we're stuck!

    IMG_1458.JPG IMG_1459.JPG
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 17, 2017
  2. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Apologies, I don't know how to attach pics to my original post, I have so many pictures of defects on my phone and was hoping to attach several on one post but can't work out how to do it? If anyone can advise me how to do it I'd also be very grateful!
     
  3. 3_fall

    3_fall Administrator. Staff Member Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler JOTM Winner Top Contributor

    Location:
    SW London
    Hi Karen,
    welcome to the forum, shame it's not under better circumstances.

    Beneath the reply box you will see 'upload file'
    Depending on your phone, selecting this icon will bring up different pop ups.
    This is mine.
    IMG_1460.jpg

    Select which source to select your images from.
    I believe in some phones it says 'files' or similar.
    Once in your photo album, select your required images, all at once, in the same way you would with FB, if you use it. :)
    Once selected, click done.
    The images will then load beneath the reply box like so.

    IMG_1461.jpg

    Once they have all uploaded, at the top of the list you will see an icon that says
    'Upload every image as'
    Select 'thumbnail'
    They will then all upload in to your reply box.

    IMG_1463.PNG

    Then just select 'post reply'
    They should then all be contained within your post.
    Any problems tag me with an @3_fall@3_fall using the @ sign, prefixed to my username.
    Or select 'contact' below my avatar and it will generate a 'private message' and we'll see what we can do to help.
    Good luck. :)
     
    • Like Like x 2
  4. pdc

    pdc Professional Tiler Top Contributor

    The sneak preview doesn't bode well...
     
    • Agree Agree x 3
  5. Matt Bott

    Matt Bott Professional Tiler

    Location:
    Northampton
    I think I would prefer to start again as the joints don't seem to line up and the tiny slithers are not great I think it would be more work to try and make it look good did you see what adhesive your plumber used ?
     
  6. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
  7. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK

    Thank you! I have used my chromebook to load them all up as was having issues doing it through my phone, I've put the pics on now. Many thanks
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    I have managed to upload more pics now which will give you a better idea. The pics show defects spanning all 3 walls that were tiled. Please can you let me know what you think? I just don't understand how he can think the work is good quality?
     
  9. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Unfortunately not I didn't. Both the other tilers who came to look said there is no way they'd be willing to patch it up and they believe I will struggle to find anyone who will. The original plumber is not willing to come back and re-do it (probably a good thing).

    He said that he did the tiling to the best of his ability and blamed the walls (said they were wonky) and the fact the mosaic tiles were a different thickness to the tiles for the finish. The mosaic border is a fair bit thinner than the tile but surely this is common? We spent a lot of time looking at borders and tiles and the mosaic borders were always thinner.

    Thing is as well, he sub-contracted for a plasterer to come out and plaster the entire room so if that's the case why weren't the walls straightened? Surely the plasterer would have picked up on that as he knew they were going to be tiled? Our contract is solely with the plumber, he sub-contracted work out to a joiner, plasterer and electrician. I can't fault the electric work although we have received nothing to say the work has been signed off.

    The plumber is asking for part payment to pay the sub-contracters. However, if it all needs ripping out the plastering may need to be re-done so why should I pay twice? Also, on one of the pics it shows how the tiling is flush with the architrave then further down the tiles protrude out past it so the architrave will need to come off as well. Also, the skirting the joiner did is not even attached to the wall yet so the work is unfinished. Yet the plumber is refusing to come back!
     
  10. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    One other thing I haven't mentioned is that on 2 walls and then at the bottom of the third wall he has used a brick effect pattern as we requested. However on the wall around the window he has just stacked them one on top of the other so he's used a different tiling pattern for that area! He hasn't even finished tiling into the window alcove either, that is still bare plaster.

    Now that I have posted more pics, I would be really grateful for people's opinion on whether this is satisfactory and whether the problems could potentially be rectified without ripping it all out? The plumber has said anyone we get out to look will say it needs ripping out because it's more work and money for them, in other words he is suggesting they won't be honest. But as he is unwilling to rectify the issues himself I don't see what choice we have?
     
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  11. bl tiling

    bl tiling Professional Tiler

    Don't pay anything out until you know how much the rectification is going to cost,
    or you will end up paying twice.The cleanliness of the "finished job" is an indication of
    the quality of work unfortunately, good luck.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    The issue I have is no tiler is willing to rectify it by putting right the defects, all so far have said it needs to come off altogether and start again. I've had another come this morning and say the same thing so 3 different tilers now. The plumber argues they're just saying that to get more work and money but I genuinely don't think they are. All 3 are inundated with work, the earliest any of them could do the work is in 5 weeks time, one said it would be November!
     
  13. Paul Russell

    Paul Russell Paul

    Location:
    Liverpool
    As you havent paid yet you have the upper hand. He wont come back and if he did would you really want him there? He's blaming the walls but they were plastered on his recommendation. Get one of the other tilers in (probably qualified) and get them to do a total refit as the recommend,they sound like they know what they're doing. Hopefully you get the job done at no extra cost to yourself.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Bond

    Bond Top Contributor

    Location:
    Highland

    As above. Finishing and remedial works are required, whether a total rip out is necessary - additional photos may be usefull (showing whole walls etc,) to get a overall picture, the attached pics definitely shows the devils in the detail). As your plumber had carried out the tiling works, what expectation/standard of workmanship can you reasonable expect, that of the average plumber doing tiling work?.
     
  15. Paul Russell

    Paul Russell Paul

    Location:
    Liverpool
    Ps.. if he's a plumber he's not a good one,that flexi-hose seems to have a too tight "kink" in it,this could affect your water supply to the tap,get someone to look at it,hope you get everything sorted.
     
  16. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Thank you for your response. I will attach some pics of the whole walls to give you a better idea. To be fair when you stand from afar it doesn't actually look as bad, its when you get up close you see the issues (which isn't hard, it's a small bathroom!). I understand what you're saying about the plumber doing the tiling, however he assured me he would do a good job of it and said he was an experienced and competent tiler. I did suggest getting someone in for it but he said he was happy and able to do it himself. He probably wanted to make more money for himself out of the job I expect. I have learned lessons from this for sure, won't make the same mistake again!
     
    • Like Like x 1
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
  17. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    I am so so glad we agreed upon payment on completion. If not no doubt I would have had a legal battle on my hands. I may still do if he decides to take me to small claims for payment. I'm concerned that if we get it redone and then he decides to make a claim against me the evidence will be gone. I am hoping the photos will help in that respect. It's such an awful situation we are devastated and not sure what to do next? I've just written a formal letter to him which I will send via recorded delivery today, have printed off some photos of the issues we have as well and will send them with it. Hopefully he will accept that the work is shoddy and leave us be to get it sorted, fingers crossed!

    Will definitely get the flexi hose looked at, to be fair it looks like the only option is a refit so in that case as long as I use decent trademen this time they will be able to put it all right.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Paul Russell

    Paul Russell Paul

    Location:
    Liverpool
    If he gets funny with you,you have always got trading standards as back up,which i'd think he wont want to have to deal with. I know he's not a tiler but if he's happy to charge for a job it has to be done to a certain standard. I hope you get it sorted and not be out of pocket, good luc.k
     
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Here are some pics of walls from further back, it's hard as the bathroom is small so can't stand back enough to get whole walls in. As I say it doesn't look all that bad when you stand back, apart from the fact he has used a different tiling pattern halfway up the wall around the window so it doesn't match the rest of the tiling! Also the unfinished parts around the window, at the back of the bath and down the side of the bath near the shower screen. Not sure how he would have completed down the side of the bath without boxing in the bath panel, and the tiles come out past the architrave too at the bottom, if he'd continued tiling down to finish it they would've come out really far.

    Would be really grateful on opinions when you see the walls from afar please. Do you think we should be happy with it or that it could be patched up or is a refit necessary? Without a doubt the mosaic border needs to come out, its a total mess close up! Around the window needs changing to match the rest of the tile pattern too and not sure how you'd get around finishing down the side of the bath without taking all those tiles off either? Bear in mind he has said he is unwilling to try and put right the defects, he blamed the walls and the fact the mosaic border was a different thickness to the tiles and has said he does not think he could have done a better job. He has told us to source our own tiler to rectify it, but no one will attempt it they all say rip it out!!

    IMG_20170817_130510299.jpg IMG_20170817_130336016.jpg IMG_20170817_130318475.jpg IMG_20170817_130306800.jpg IMG_20170817_130252525.jpg IMG_20170817_130205355.jpg IMG_20170817_130152113.jpg IMG_20170817_130146056.jpg IMG_20170817_130139143.jpg IMG_20170817_130127659.jpg
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2017
  20. Bond

    Bond Top Contributor

    Location:
    Highland
    As l suspected from afar it doesn't look to bad,(for a plumber) where he fails is in the finer points. ( which can be sorted) - if you can find a tiler to do the work. Whether it requires a total rip-out, l guess depends on how well the tiles themselves have been fixed. do you know what type of adhesive was used, was it ready made, in a tub or from a bag and mixed on-site.?
     
  21. timeless john

    timeless john Trusted Advisor Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler JOTM Winner Top Contributor

    Location:
    North East England
    Your contract is with the plumber - so he is responsible to pay the sub contractors, the joiner and electrician, so don't pay him a penny.
    You need to get an estimate to remove what has been done and start again.
    Unfortunately I wouldn't do anything to your bathroom until it has been resolved and you need to get it in writing that he will NOT return to put right your issues.
    It looks to me as though this will go to court but from your pictures I doubt if there will be any problems getting the costs of upheaval and damage paid for.
     
  22. callatiler

    callatiler Professional Tiler JOTM Winner Top Contributor

    Location:
    Aberdeen
    IMO you should write or email original plumber and give him a chance to rectify all areas you are not happy with, wether it be himself or him hiring a tiler to sort. Tell him once this is done and you are happy with standard, payment will be made. Give him an agreed amount of time to rectify and if he has not then you will take in other tradesmen to rectify all works which will be taken off his bill till all works completed to a satisfactory finish. Any monies left over will be forwarded to him and copies of bills to get rectified. If he wants to go to court let him as no chance of him winning and all costs will be him liable. Sub contractors are on him also not you!
     
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    • Winner Winner x 1
  23. wrighty

    wrighty Professional Tiler

    Location:
    Northumberland
    Exactly what I was thinking.......not a very good plumber
     
    • Like Like x 2
  24. wrighty

    wrighty Professional Tiler

    Location:
    Northumberland
    Pic No 3......above the toilet:thumbsdown:
     
    • Like Like x 1
  25. kevsalt

    kevsalt Professional Tiler

    Location:
    whiston staffs
    wheres the brick bond gone round the window ....beggars belief that he thinks thats acceptable
     
    • Like Like x 2
  26. Bond

    Bond Top Contributor

    Location:
    Highland
    Out the window, I presume.
     
  27. jobdone

    jobdone Active Member

    Location:
    Chobham
    To many errors more diy than pro.
    Is the extractor low voltage and the circuit on an rcd, as that fan is in zone one. Should have been moved from the shower.
     
    • Agree Agree x 2
  28. impish

    impish Trusted Advisor Professional Tiler Top Contributor

    Location:
    Lancashire
    A word of warning - he could chase you for payment and technically you are or would be in breach of contract. You are 100% right to dispute the work though - it is shockingly bad.
    Do you have legal advice as part of your home insurance? Or access to a solicitor?
    At the very least, talk to citizen's advice who will give you proper advice so you don't end up HAVING to pay him now, and then go to the massive ache of having to try and reclaim costs from him.
    At this point, try to get everything in writing and save all communications in case you need them later on!
     
    • Like Like x 1
  29. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Thank you for your advice, this is exactly what I am worried about! I have already contacted Citizen's advice and they explained that as the work has not been finished and to an acceptable standard, reasonable care and skill has not been used, therefore the plumber is in breach of contract. However, if I withhold payment technically I am also in breach of contract as well. They said ultimately only a judge can decide if it comes to that and we cannot agree amicably on a suitable resolution.

    I have written a detailed letter today explaining all the issues we have with the work, also included photos showing some of the defects. I have put in the letter that we have offered him the opportunity to come and finish the work and put right the defects but he has declined and suggested we source another tiler. I have also stated in the letter that I offered him the chance to appoint an impartial and competent tiler himself to come and look and give his opinion on whether the work can be rectified without a total refit to which he also declined. This way it shows that we are trying to mitigate our losses. I have explained that we are not intentionally withholding payment and that the agreement we had was that payment would be on completion of the work and the work is still incomplete. I also reminded him that our contract is solely with him and not the subcontractors as he has asked for part payment so that he can pay them. I have asked him to respond within 14 days to the letter and will send it off tomorrow via recorded delivery. From now on I am only willing to communicate via letter so that it can be evidence in court (apparently emails are not acceptable).
     
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    • Agree Agree x 1
  30. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    I really don't know!! I know that we have an RCD fuse box so I assume so but I know nothing about electrics at all! Thing is, he says the work has been signed off on Part P Building regs but we have seen nothing to confirm this yet. I will have to get this looked into. Thanks for pointing it out.
     
  31. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Would you mind explaining to me what this is? This is what concerns me about the work, I can only comment on the tiling as I can clearly see that the work is shoddy. I know nothing about electrics, plumbing or building work etc so for all I know it could be hazardous! Very worrying really, especially as I have nothing to show the electrical work has been signed off. I also have no idea what adhesive he used and the quality of the work behind the tiles either. I know though that he has put the floor tiles down onto plywood as that is on the invoice. However having looked into this it seems that was another mistake he has made. Am I right in thinking floor tiles need to go onto aquaboard or something similar?
     
  32. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Agreed, that part is a real eyesore, it's the first thing we noticed actually it is really obvious. Regardless what happens that part of the tiling has to come off anyway as the tiling pattern he has used is not brick effect which is what we asked for. He's done brick effect on 2.5 of the walls and then for some reason changed to a different pattern in that area?
     
  33. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    This is pretty much what I have written in the letter I've put together today which I will send via recorded delivery tomorrow. We have offered both the opportunity to rectify the work himself as well as to source a different tiler of his choice but he has declined both and suggested we source a tiler ourselves. I've confirmed that in the letter. He is still asking for payment to pay off the subcontractors so I've stated that our contract is with him and not them. What a nightmare situation :-(
     
    • Like Like x 1
  34. Bond

    Bond Top Contributor

    Location:
    Highland
    Tiling onto a plywood overboarded floor is okay provided it has been fixed correctly minimum thickness of 15mm and of exterior quality, WBP.
     
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    • Agree Agree x 1
  35. Karen79

    Karen79 Active Member

    Location:
    Wetherby LS22, UK
    Just looked at invoice, he has used 2 sheets of 6mm ply, not sure whether it is outdoor quality, it doesn't say?
     
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