While everyone involved in any project wants it to go as smoothly as possible, every strategy is bound to have an unforeseen problem or two. No contractor can account for all of the possible outcomes of a project before the project begins, no matter how much preparation takes place. So, what happens when something goes wrong?
In March 2021, Harshaw Home Renovators was on a first-floor renovation project in Ottawa, Kansas. The entire first floor was getting sanded and re-stained, a kitchen island, new trim, new carpet in the living room installed, and a new backsplash put up in the kitchen. In prepping for the backsplash, we installed Schluter trim to give the new backsplash a finished edge on the kitchen wall. While attaching the trim to the wall, one of the nails fired into the wall but stopped halfway through. “Huh, that’s odd. I’ll just pull that out and re-nail it,” I thought. A ten-foot-long spray of water immediately began shooting out of the wall onto the kitchen floor and walls as the nail came out. I covered the hole with my finger like a cartoon character plugging a hole in a boat while someone else shut off the main water line. We had somehow hit a water line in a wall that (we thought) was just a regular kitchen wall but was, in fact, a chase wall for the entire upstairs bathroom, and we had no way of knowing it. We cut the wall open, cut out the section of pipe that was punctured, and replaced it. All in all, it added about 3 hours to the project.