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Help me fix the damage from my HVAC Installer
Old 17th April 2015
  #1
Gear Maniac
 
Dizzi45Z's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Help me fix the damage from my HVAC Installer

I could shoot my HVAC guy.

The ceiling for my studio build has 2 layers of 5/8th sheetrock, 12 inch gap (with insulation) and then 2 more layers of 5/8th sheetrock. It has been done meticulously where every layer is taped and mudded, edges and corners are tight with backer rod and acoustic sealant and drywall is staggered etc. etc.

I explained very clearly to my HVAC installer that any penetrations would need to be cut very tight so that they could be tightly sealed and he does this:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ixo8q7g7dg...p%201.jpg?dl=0

and this is the view looking down from above the ceiling:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/h1oheqnjcu...Gap_2.jpg?dl=0



I have been using acoustic sealant and backer rod up until now to seal smaller gaps. How can I best fix these larger gaps (as much as 6 inches).

When I approached the HVAC installer about damaging my ceiling, he says, "just get your drywallers to fix it." I'm about to tell him, "when I happen to smash into your new truck, just go get your auto body shop to fix that for you."
Old 17th April 2015
  #2
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Personally I would take the installer to small claims court or get my lawyer after them and get him to fix the problems he created. It should not be up to you to fix his mistakes. I have a really good HVAC company I work with and I thankful every day that I found them. The HVAC company I had before was TERRIBLE and would do things such as you are describing. Luckily I was able to get them to fix their mistakes before I paid them. Best of luck!

After reading Rod's post below I agree that I would NOT have your current HVAC contractor do the fix. They should have done it correctly in the first place. If you have problems with your HVAC contractor making things right there are many legal ways to proceed. If he is a member of the BBB then you could report him. There are usually trade associations that can put some pressure on the contractor if you approach them. Best to seek legal advice on how to proceed from a good lawyer. If you have not paid him then I would put the funds in escrow until you get the matter resolved.

Best of luck and let us know what is happening.

Last edited by Thomas W. Bethe; 17th April 2015 at 12:40 PM.. Reason: Added a paragraph after reading Rod's advice
Old 17th April 2015
  #3
Lives for gear
 
Rod Gervais's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
FWIW I would tell him that his advice was spot on..........

Certainly he is not capable of fixing it, and I would not even think of letting him try. It needs to be fixed - and the fix needs to be properly executed.

However the reason the fix is required has to do with the faulty execution of his work.......... so I would be deducting the cost of the repairs from his bill...

I've been doing construction for about 40 years now - and we always back charge contractors for any (and all) cost associated with fixing the work of other trades they ruin.

You have no right to turn a profit off of his screw up - but (by the same token) you are not required to eat it (or even sue him) to get it fixed unless you already paid him for his entire bill.

If you paid him in full then Thomas is right - you have no recourse but to sue him (unless he's an honorable man and agrees to pay to fix his error)........ however if he is NOT paid in full - the easy way is to simply notify him in writing of the exact cost to have it properly repaired and that you are deducting the cost of those repairs from the balance due him for his work.

These sorts of things are one of the reasons we have retainage on invoices in the world of construction.

Rod
Old 17th April 2015
  #4
Gear Maniac
 
Dizzi45Z's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
You guys are exactly right. After I thought about it, I sent him another message not to fix it until I figure out how it needs to be fixed. I could imagine him just spraying those areas with spray foam and calling it good.

I may have to actually sue him because we have paid him almost all.

What would be the approach to fixing this properly? Re-sheetrocking it will be tough because each layer is staggered. Could the top (above the ceiling) be fixed with 2x6's being sealed tight around the ducting? I can't even think how to fix the ceiling looking up.
Old 17th April 2015 | Show parent
  #5
Gear Guru
 
Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
 
1 Review written
🎧 15 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dizzi45Z ➑️
You guys are exactly right. After I thought about it, I sent him another message not to fix it until I figure out how it needs to be fixed. I could imagine him just spraying those areas with spray foam and calling it good.

I may have to actually sue him because we have paid him almost all.

What would be the approach to fixing this properly? Re-sheetrocking it will be tough because each layer is staggered. Could the top (above the ceiling) be fixed with 2x6's being sealed tight around the ducting? I can't even think how to fix the ceiling looking up.
You need to hire someone who is familiar with acoustical sealing of ceilings. This could be a local carpenter or an acoustical contractor. You do not want to second guess the solution. When we did a penetration of a wall we put acoustical foam around the pipe and then put custom gaskets on both sides of the double studded acoustical wall. There is no air leak and the seals keep the space from getting noise from other parts of the facility.

Again don't pay him anymore money and put the money in an escrow account and let him know you have done this so there is no question later about non payment. He could slap you with a mechanics lien on your house for non payment.

Best of Luck!
Old 17th April 2015
  #6
Lives for gear
 
Rod Gervais's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Dizzi,

The only way to fix something like this properly would be to remove enough material to get back to a solid base below..... you want at least a frame bay lap between subsequent layers..... so that would mean (with a 2 layer application) the base layer should repaired back to be the nearest joist bay either side of the penetration - and the bottom layer should be cut back to solid bearing either side of that....

Assuming framing on 16" centers that would be 4' wide for the bottom layer... 6' wide if it was 2' centers.

You also (of course) need to deal with the sides of the penetration that are not running parallel with the framing - I would want to be at least 1' each side of the duct work minimum to have some solid material....... and then I would lap that seam by at least 1' either side....

Those numbers (of course) assume that a single sheet works for the repairs....... dimensions would need to be adjusted to assure no small strips are used as a part of the repair....

Best of luck,

Rod
Old 17th April 2015
  #7
Gear Maniac
 
Dizzi45Z's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Thank you.

Another possible solution has been thought up. Could the duct be replaced with a larger custom piece that fits snug?
Old 17th April 2015
  #8
Lives for gear
 
Rod Gervais's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
I don't know the answer to that......... the duct looks like rigid fiberglass to me...... as such I have no idea how you could do a proper repair without getting to the outside of the duct to tape the new seam to seal it.....

If the duct was metal that would probably be a pretty easy solution........ but perhaps I'm mistaken and this is lined metal duct.....

Rod
Old 17th April 2015
  #9
Gear Maniac
 
Dizzi45Z's Avatar
 
🎧 10 years
Would lots of Quiet Putty Pads around the duct going from the attic down to the room be a possible solution for sealing these 3-6 inch gaps?
Old 17th April 2015 | Show parent
  #10
Here for the gear
 
JeffLancaster's Avatar
 
🎧 5 years
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dizzi45Z ➑️
Would lots of Quiet Putty Pads around the duct going from the attic down to the room be a possible solution for sealing these 3-6 inch gaps?
Hi Dizzi,

Aren't Quiet Putty Pads really just for sealing the little cracks and holes around electrical outlet boxes? I could be wrong, but it's hard for me to imagine them working too well for 4 to 6 inch gaps.

My impression is that you are (very understandably) upset about this poor installation job and want to get it done and over with so you can move forward as quickly as possible. I totally get how this might make you be looking for any kind of "quick" solution - i might be doing the same thing in your shoes. Just hoping to provide a little voice of reason that says that I think that following Rod's advice above on how to properly fix the drywall job is going to make you much more happy in the long run. Sounds like you've gone to a lot of trouble to do things well and you don't want to compromise now.

Best of luck!
Old 17th April 2015
  #11
Lives for gear
 
Rod Gervais's Avatar
 
🎧 15 years
Dizzi........ I have a question for you..........

The duct work itself is pretty much no isolation........ so how are you handling maintaining the shell isolation once the duct passes through the ceiling?

Rod
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