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When performing basement waterproofing in my house, AquaGuard Waterproofing Corporation’s work crew was so incompetent that they drilled holes in the bottom of the sump basin! In some cases it makes sense to put holes along the sides, a couple of feet up from the top of the basis, but to put the holes in the bottom makes no sense whatsoever. No one who has seen this example of gross incompetence can believe it. AquaGuard didn’t care to look. Instead, this outfit grabbed my money, handed the job over entirely to a disreputable, unlicensed subcontractor, and then turned a blind eye to everything that happened next. When I complained, they ignored me. Buyer Beware!
Now the details:
As the Arbitrator noted: “The two sump pits had holes drilled into the bottoms of the pits, thus allowing the water to drain out of the pits rather than being captured in the pits for pumping to the outside of the house.” You can see the holes the Arbitrator is referring to by looking at the photos at the top of this posting. They are most clearly seen in the photo on the left, mainly because the bottom of the basin doesn’t have a lot of crushed rock in it. The source of the crush rock in the one basin will be the topic of a future posting where we will discuss how AquaGuard’s work crew messed up yet another part of the sump enclosure.
While an argument can be made for drilling holes on the side of the basin, at least several inches up from the bottom, drilling holes in the bottom makes no sense whatsoever. As AquaGuard’s own independent consultant said at his deposition prior to the arbitration hearing , where questions (Q) from my side and answers (Q) are given by the consultant:
Of note in this rather long exchange are two points by AquaGuard’s independent consultant. The first is that the sump basins may need holes in the side to allow ground water to enter the pit at those points where the rising water is below the trench path piping. The second is that such holes are always drilled several inches above the bottom of the basin. The holes in the bottom of the basin, as readily seen in the photos, serve no useful purpose whatsoever.
At the Arbitration hearing, the same consultant was asked about the installation of the pit, a topic we covered in some length in a previous posting. Again, questions (Q) are from my side and answers (A) are from the consultant.
The presence of the void is clearly indicated in the photos above where one can see the how a 5-inch “rat tail” file blade drops all the way to the handle when placed in one of the holes. Placing the same file in other holes for both sump basins show voids of varying depth. The point is simply this: No care was taken by AquaGuard’s work crew to ensure the sump enclosure rested on a bed of gravel as is standard practice in the industry. See sump basin installation in my previous posting for details of a proper enclosure installation.
Everyone makes mistakes. Drilling holes in the bottom of a basin that is meant to hold water is simply stupid, but not as dumb as hiring idiots to work for you and never inspecting the quality of the workmanship. Dumber yet is hiring people without performing any check on their background BEFORE sending them out on jobs where they can wreak havoc. But the dumbest thing of all is to place the blame for all these failings on the hired subcontractors AND lay the responsibility on your customer for uncovering errors and demanding corrections . Clearly such practices save time and money for a company that engages in them. To what extent AquaGuard engaged in such practices I leave to the reader to decide. The way we were treated does make one wonder just what they mean when they claim: “Aquaguard provides you peace of mind in knowing your basement is waterproofed with uncompromising pride, integrity, and value for life!”
Of course all of this could have been avoided had AquaGuard sent out someone to inspect the work. They did not, nor did they want to hear about the problems. When I complained, they tried to blow me off. When I sent emails with photographs, they ignored those. The only thing that got their attention was when I filed a lawsuit against them, and then rather than try to resolve the problems, they dragged the process out to the very end and offered to pay a fraction of the total costs I was forced to accumulate, with the lame excuse that “…everyone loses out in situations like these”.