by Duradek Northwest President, Matt Whale
Why does Duradek train contractors and provide education to architects and designers, and is that important?
It is my understanding that the greater percentage of all building related lawsuits are due to water intrusion. So, when entering into the field of roofing or waterproofing, one enters into a field wrought with legal liabilities. Because when decks and roof-decks leak they can cause simple water damage or catastrophic failure.
Whether one has flooring, roofing, carpentry or waterproofing experience it is important to augment each trade’s techniques with historical application performance procedures. Having said this, areas that need to be taught for proper PVC waterproof deck installations are proper seam welding and the “capping’ of the seams, outside and inside “deck to wall” interface flashing installation, door pan, drain, scupper and overflow application, Deck preparation basics, where you are taught what are acceptable deck construction techniques, slopes and materials, based on successful deck history should also be taught. Now for you professionals, saying that you did not build the deck may not get you off the hook. It is understood that a professional knows what he is placing his product on and its suitability to perform (if you can see it or discover it, you accept it and are most likely liable for it).
One way to get around the problem is sell the product “over the counter” to anyone with the cash. This puts all the product performance liability onto the installer, or “Do It Yourselfer” and removes all of the installation and most of the product liability for the manufacturer or reseller. Add to the product a “Limited Material Warranty” that further limits the manufacturer’s liability and specifies the remedy to supplying materials to only the affected area. Also exclude all aesthetics issues and put the claim criteria into a fee based inspection service call and if deemed out of the realm of material problem you can bill the consumer. Now you have a market program provided by many deck product manufacturers.
Please understand I am not a lawyer, so for a complete legal warranty evaluation, please contact such a person (my personal disclaimer). I write this to help, not discourage; to enlighten not mask; to help you make an informed and educated decision. So does Duradek educate and train? Yes they do. Is it important? Absolutely, because when you are committed to an industry and to your customers, it just seems like the right thing to do.
Mathew Whale CSI, CDT
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