Woodworking Business Forum

You are not logged in. [ Login ] Why log in
(NOTE: Login is not required to post)

Finish Warranty

10/30/17       
Jim Herron

I have a job that I completed nearly 1 year ago that my finisher finished on pigmented lacquer.
Approx 1 month after install, homeowner calls about chipping problem, and it was discovered that the finish (Mohawk)would in fact shatter when struck with an object.
I looked it over and volunteered to replace all the doors, drawer fronts and panels (poplar frames with mdf panels per contract and samples approved) and finish at no charge.
No sooner had I finished rebuilding the doors, drawer fronts and panels, the homeowner insisted that they be constructed from maple with mdf panels, as that's what, according to the Internet, "the big boys use".
I explained to him the doors and fronts had already been built and that I did not recommend maple frames, as it burnished and that I was not confident in the adhesion on maple. I also stated that I would not warranty the finish on maple for that reason.
He was adamant, and against my protest, yet another complete set of doors were made (second set is still in my shop) , finish sample (using Gemini Coatings, as Mohawk offered to replace 15 gallons of primer at no charge on a 7000.00 door and finish replacement) submitted complete with adhesion test, and delivered and installed to their satisfaction.
Now claiming problems with finish, similar to first, all confined to the maple frames, with the exception of the kitchen sink doors that have obvious water damage to the panel fronts with water streaks and swells down the front.
What should I do at this point?

10/30/17       #2: Finish Warranty ...
Matt Peterson  Member

Jim,
If you have already built the face and it is sitting in your shop, then do it again. Good customer service goes a long way. Your problem is a simple one. You need to train or replace your finisher. Your problems are from too much finish. Not sure of the thickness of Gemini. As a Mohawk fan, I can tell you that 2 mil is the max coating thickness. Any thing over 2mil will give you the problems you are talking about, adhesion issues and cracking when fully cured. If you are using a catalyzed lacquer or better (sure you are with kitchens) you need a vinyl sealer/primer or the excess acid will migrate to the substrate and cause problems.

10/30/17       #3: Finish Warranty ...
Jim Herron

I have an excellent and qualified finisher. He us well aware of mil thickness requirements and we use vinyl sealer as well.
1. We finished and installed the original doors and fronts. Six weeks later he called with chipping problem and I offered and replaced and finished all the doors and fronts.
2. I built the second set of doors and fronts in poplar frames with mdf panels, same as the originals.
Prior to finishing, the owner insisted that I build them with maple frames and mdf panels (that is the set sitting in my shop)
3. I built a third set with maple frames, submitted finished sample with adhesion test, and finished and installed them approx 8 months ago.
I told him prior to building the doors in maple that I was not confident in the finish and that I would not warranty the finish if done in maple frames.
He called last week with finish issues.
We have done several pigmented precast lacquer jobs prior and since with zero issues.

10/30/17       #4: Finish Warranty ...
Robert Member

Hi Jim, what type of top coat are you applying ? Do you substitute the Vinyl Sealer in place of a tinted Primer ?
Seems as if you are going the extra mile to please this customer. Best of luck.

10/30/17       #5: Finish Warranty ...
Gary

You told them you would not warrant maple doors, he insisted you use maple. I personally think your job is done. I would not have rebuilt the doors the third time in the first place since the second set was already done. Sometimes you just have to pull the plug with some people on customer service. He may very well just be nit-picking now or possibly be abusing the finish and expecting it to be impervious to damage which, of course, it is not.

10/30/17       #6: Finish Warranty ...
Jim Herron

I have an excellent and qualified finisher. He us well aware of mil thickness requirements and we use vinyl sealer as well.
1. We finished and installed the original doors and fronts. Six weeks later he called with chipping problem and I offered and replaced and finished all the doors and fronts.
2. I built the second set of doors and fronts in poplar frames with mdf panels, same as the originals.
Prior to finishing, the owner insisted that I build them with maple frames and mdf panels (that is the set sitting in my shop)
3. I built a third set with maple frames, submitted finished sample with adhesion test, and finished and installed them approx 8 months ago.
I told him prior to building the doors in maple that I was not confident in the finish and that I would not warranty the finish if done in maple frames.
He called last week with finish issues.
We have done several pigmented precast lacquer jobs prior and since with zero issues.

10/30/17       #7: Finish Warranty ...
Matt Peterson  Member

Website: http://www.eagleplane.com

Jim,
I was not trying to offend you. In my area 700 sq.ft. is a big kitchen. And if you are using 15 of tinted sealer, I thought you were shooting for a 4 mil coating like Mohawk's site says is the limit. Or you finisher was shooting for 5 mils because he usually shot Sherwin Williams. Then if you reduce the binder to pigment ratio there would be no way of shooting the limit without issue.
I thought if you had the doors and drawers of poplar you could just spray them and call it done. However, if you need to use 30+ gallons to get a 2 mil coating then it is a huge kitchen and you will eat up a whole day in labor just spraying. So Gary may not be wrong. Just remember that there are not a lot of people with kitchens that big. I am sure everyone in that area with such a kitchen knows each other. If you write it off and move on you will never get another job that size in that area.

10/30/17       #8: Finish Warranty ...
rich c.

I found out years ago that precat lacquer has never held up to the sales hype. I had a trainee spray my kitchen chairs and it cold checked. That was my mistake for not checking his film thickness. But I sprayed my kitchen cabinets as a test in the shop for the product. It did not hold up around the sink/dishwasher, and stove. You could hold on to using this type of finish since you have so much history, but I switched to conversion varnish and never looked back. One call back like this one, would sure make me switch. I say it's still up to you to make the job right. One year is not sufficient life for any project. Not take care of this and it might cost you a lot of work in the future.

10/30/17       #9: Finish Warranty ...
Matt Peterson  Member

Website: http://www.eagleplane.com

Rich,
Conversion varnish is great but it is not repairable. Not that it matters much if you are a cabinet shop and do not do repairs or refacing. But if you offer repairs or build furniture, conversion varnish will cost more in the long run. Like polyester, it is a great product for disposable items.

10/30/17       #10: Finish Warranty ...
Jim Herron

I've been in business for over 25 years and have an excellent reputation and work on the books 6-8 months out.
I normally work for custom builders, but a local architect recommended me to this homeowner.
They have made themselves known as "grief incorporated" to every trade that work on the house, from framing to floor covering.
I think I'm done, but I usually try to make the effort to satisfy if at all possible.
I may offer to do so touch up just to not be an ass.

10/30/17       #11: Finish Warranty ...
Gary

I also switched from precat to cv for the same reasons rich mentioned but i am not convinced that "chipping" is a precat problem. We had adhesion failure in wet areas only, no chipping. Did you try to access why the finish was chipping? As I mentioned earlier it could be abuse. I once had a homeowner complain that the paint failing where they dragged big, heavy pots and pans on the bottom of the cabinet. I short talk later the homeowner agreed it was not poor paint.

I no longer worry about unreasonable customers ruining my reputation. Their unreasonable expectations will probably cost more than profit from any job they may cost me.

10/31/17       #12: Finish Warranty ...
Scott

Jim,
Like you I have sprayed ML Campbell Pre-Cat for over 15 years with no complaints or call backs except one near a sink. When i went to customer there was still water running down the face so I needed to do a little education. In the last two years I have switched to CV and yes its bullet proof, but i switched for the ability to move faster thru the finish process. I do like that it is a superior product and hope for no failures. Did you have the Finish Rep come and do adhesion test and dry film thickness test at the job site. This would give you and homeowner more confidence and answer to problem, product, sprayer error, surface prep, owner abuse. If all is well, than i think you did replaced your first product per warranty and homeowner accepted second set of his choice with no warranty. At least you would be showing action on your part to find a solution rather than just giving up. Good luck I feel your pain.

10/31/17       #13: Finish Warranty ...
Bruce H

I can't figurer out why you replaced the doors in the first place. If they were chipping I'd have sent them back to the painter and had them repaired. Now that you have made the original set plus two more sets of doors I'd consider your part done. It's one of those no win situations.

10/31/17       #14: Finish Warranty ...
steelie mark

I agree you have exercised due diligence and stood behind your product and should at least be partially compensated for additional time and materials from this point out.
Have you asked the owner to replicate what the damage arises from in your (and someone else who's neutral) presence?
There are compensation experts of all types out there......

11/1/17       #15: Finish Warranty ...
Kekaha man

While I understand the hesitation to cut the customer off at some point, due to them telling all their rich friends that you're no good, don't forget that all their friends already know they complain about everything. And when they tell their friends everything you did (and it still wasn't enough), their friends will flock to you.

I do agree that a 1 year service life is not acceptable from a customer point of view. I don't have any technical advice, as we don't do kitchens, but I suspect at least part of the issue is poor treatment by the customer (based on evidence given), and that the idea of having the customer demonstrate to you the types of incidents that create the problems is well advised.

11/1/17       #16: Finish Warranty ...
rich c.

"While I understand the hesitation to cut the customer off at some point, due to them telling all their rich friends that you're no good, don't forget that all their friends already know they complain about everything. And when they tell their friends everything you did (and it still wasn't enough), their friends will flock to you."

I disagree. After the first couple of people share the story, all the details will be forgotten. All that will spread is so and so had some kind of trouble with business X. I consider my reputation the most valuable asset I have. Any blemish is a reflection on me and the work I do.
Remember, the first finish issue showed up on 1 month after install. That's where the story will start when told to others.

11/1/17       #17: Finish Warranty ...
JM

You cant win with them all. I just had a customer complain that his finish was failing and thought it should be more durable. Turns out the finish failure was from dragging a screwdriver or something across the front of his cabinet door. I told him that it is not reasonable to expect the finish to survive this and I got a blank stare. I suggested we head out to his garage to drag a screwdriver across his car to see if it was more durable. I continued to get the blank stare.

11/1/17       #18: Finish Warranty ...
Jim Herron

My reputation is solid.
When the first problem surfaced, after seeing him striking the finish with a hard object, I volunteered to rebuild the doors and finish them, without so much as a discussion.
People that know me know that I build a good product, but not abuse proof.

11/1/17       #19: Finish Warranty ...
Adam

In my estimation you have taken it on the chin at least once for this customer.

You could offer to sell him the 1st replacement set at a discount and he can find someone else to finish them.

I'm curious why you dislike maple. The standard in the Northeast is soft maple on painted cabinetry. We have had problems in the past with poplar on doors. Twisting, bowing. We do mostly beaded inset face frame. The poplar does not like the tight margins.

  • Post a Response to this thread
  • notify me of responses to this topic
  • To receive email notification of additions to this forum thread,
    enter your name and email address, and then click the
    "Keep Me Posted" button below.

    Please Note: If you have posted a message or response,
    do not submit this request ... you are already signed up
    to receive notification!

    Your Name:
    E-Mail Address:
    Enter the correct numbers into the field below:
     

    Date of your Birth:



    Return to top of page

    Buy & Sell Exchanges | Forums | Galleries | Site Map

    FORUM GUIDELINES: Please review the guidelines below before posting at WOODWEB's Interactive Message Boards (return to top)

  • WOODWEB is a professional industrial woodworking site. Hobbyist and homeowner woodworking questions are inappropriate.
  • Messages should be kept reasonably short and on topic, relating to the focus of the forum. Responses should relate to the original question.
  • A valid email return address must be included with each message.
  • Advertising is inappropriate. The only exceptions are the Classified Ads Exchange, Machinery Exchange, Lumber Exchange, and Job Opportunities and Services Exchange. When posting listings in these areas, review the posting instructions carefully.
  • Subject lines may be edited for length and clarity.
  • "Cross posting" is not permitted. Choose the best forum for your question, and post your question at one forum only.
  • Messages requesting private responses will be removed - Forums are designed to provide information and assistance for all of our visitors. Private response requests are appropriate at WOODWEB's Exchanges and Job Opportunities and Services.
  • Messages that accuse businesses or individuals of alleged negative actions or behavior are inappropriate since WOODWEB is unable to verify or substantiate the claims.
  • Posts with the intent of soliciting answers to surveys are not appropriate. Contact WOODWEB for more information on initiating a survey.
  • Excessive forum participation by an individual upsets the balance of a healthy forum atmosphere. Individuals who excessively post responses containing marginal content will be considered repeat forum abusers.
  • Responses that initiate or support inappropriate and off-topic discussion of general politics detract from the professional woodworking focus of WOODWEB, and will be removed.
  • Participants are encouraged to use their real name when posting. Intentionally using another persons name is prohibited, and posts of this nature will be removed at WOODWEB's discretion.
  • Comments, questions, or criticisms regarding Forum policies should be directed to WOODWEB's Systems Administrator
    (return to top).

    Carefully review your message before clicking on the "Send Message" button - you will not be able to revise the message once it has been sent.

    You will be notified of responses to the message(s) you posted via email. Be sure to enter your email address correctly.

    WOODWEB's forums are a highly regarded resource for professional woodworkers. Messages and responses that are crafted in a professional and civil manner strengthen this resource. Messages that do not reflect a professional tone reduce the value of our forums.

    Messages are inappropriate when their content: is deemed libelous in nature or is based on rumor, fails to meet basic standards of decorum, contains blatant advertising or inappropriate emphasis on self promotion (return to top).

    Libel:   Posts which defame an individual or organization, or employ a tone which can be viewed as malicious in nature. Words, pictures, or cartoons which expose a person or organization to public hatred, shame, disgrace, or ridicule, or induce an ill opinion of a person or organization, are libelous.

    Improper Decorum:   Posts which are profane, inciting, disrespectful or uncivil in tone, or maliciously worded. This also includes the venting of unsubstantiated opinions. Such messages do little to illuminate a given topic, and often have the opposite effect. Constructive criticism is acceptable (return to top).

    Advertising:   The purpose of WOODWEB Forums is to provide answers, not an advertising venue. Companies participating in a Forum discussion should provide specific answers to posted questions. WOODWEB suggests that businesses include an appropriately crafted signature in order to identify their company. A well meaning post that seems to be on-topic but contains a product reference may do your business more harm than good in the Forum environment. Forum users may perceive your references to specific products as unsolicited advertising (spam) and consciously avoid your web site or services. A well-crafted signature is an appropriate way to advertise your services that will not offend potential customers. Signatures should be limited to 4-6 lines, and may contain information that identifies the type of business you're in, your URL and email address (return to top).

    Repeated Forum Abuse: Forum participants who repeatedly fail to follow WOODWEB's Forum Guidelines may encounter difficulty when attempting to post messages.

    There are often situations when the original message asks for opinions: "What is the best widget for my type of shop?". To a certain extent, the person posting the message is responsible for including specific questions within the message. An open ended question (like the one above) invites responses that may read as sales pitches. WOODWEB suggests that companies responding to such a question provide detailed and substantive replies rather than responses that read as a one-sided product promotion. It has been WOODWEB's experience that substantive responses are held in higher regard by our readers (return to top).

    The staff of WOODWEB assume no responsibility for the accuracy, content, or outcome of any posting transmitted at WOODWEB's Message Boards. Participants should undertake the use of machinery, materials and methods discussed at WOODWEB's Message Boards after considerate evaluation, and at their own risk. WOODWEB reserves the right to delete any messages it deems inappropriate. (return to top)


  • Forum Posting Help
    Your Name The name you enter in this field will be the name that appears with your post or response (return to form).
    Your Website Personal or business website links must point to the author's website. Inappropriate links will be removed without notice, and at WOODWEB's sole discretion. WOODWEB reserves the right to delete any messages with links it deems inappropriate. (return to form)
    E-Mail Address Your e-mail address will not be publicly viewable. Forum participants will be able to contact you using a contact link (included with your post) that is substituted for your actual address. You must include a valid email address in this field. (return to form)
    Subject Subject may be edited for length and clarity. Subject lines should provide an indication of the content of your post. (return to form)
    Thread Related Link and Image Guidelines Thread Related Links posted at WOODWEB's Forums and Exchanges should point to locations that provide supporting information for the topic being discussed in the current message thread. The purpose of WOODWEB Forums is to provide answers, not to serve as an advertising venue. A Thread Related Link that directs visitors to an area with inappropriate content will be removed. WOODWEB reserves the right to delete any messages with links or images it deems inappropriate. (return to form)
    Thread Related File Uploads Thread Related Files posted at WOODWEB's Forums and Exchanges should provide supporting information for the topic being discussed in the current message thread. Video Files: acceptable video formats are: .MOV .AVI .WMV .MPEG .MPG .MP4 (Image Upload Tips)   If you encounter any difficulty when uploading video files, E-mail WOODWEB for assistance. The purpose of WOODWEB Forums is to provide answers, not to serve as an advertising venue. A Thread Related File that contains inappropriate content will be removed, and uploaded files that are not directly related to the message thread will be removed. WOODWEB reserves the right to delete any messages with links, files, or images it deems inappropriate. (return to form)