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DESAMAX

Direct wood flooring ltd not fit for purpose

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Hi

we had to replace our oak flooring in 2014 because of ingress from a burst pipe.

This was done via an insurance claim.

We went back to our original supplier and asked the insurance contractor to order a similar floor to the one we had.

The contractor fitted it professionally. 

After a few days we gently wiped the flooring and noticed the oil had dissolved, we reported this to DWF who sent a contractor to re oil the whole floor. 

 

Over the years we noticed the planks were getting lighter mainly on the edges.

Then this year wood worm appeared mainly on planks over a concrete subfloor.

 

We reported this again to DWF who said the flooring was treated and heated before coming to the uk and all parasites would have been killed.

They sent an “Independent” floor specialist to inspect.

 

The chap said to us as we had had wood flooring for almost 20 yrs with no sign of woodworm anywhere it could have got contaminated in storage but DWF would never admit to this. On inspection of the drying out planks it was noticed the wood had dried and is about to break up.

We have maintained the flooring. But it has not lasted and now needs replacing. 

 

DWF say their “Independent inspector” say it’s not a manufactures defect either the woodworm or the drying of the wood.

I have ask for replacement under consumer law, they have point blanked refused. 

 

Can anyone tell me my options 

thanks. 

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Who paid, and how?

Did the insurers pay direct (where you can ask the insurer to become involved), or; if you paid, how did you pay?

 

Can you ask the inspector to commit to confirming if this is “wear & tear” / your fault, or the flooring hasn’t been of durability that would be expected?

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Well it's a fairly complicated story and it's not helped by the amount of time which appears to have elapsed. Because of this I think the first thing you're going to need to do is you are going to have to get some independent diagnostic reports prepared and at the same time you may as well get quotations for the remedial or replacement work which needs to be done.

I suggest that you get two fully independent reports – and as highly authoritative as you can manage in the circumstances and then come back here.

I have no doubt but that reports such as these will cost you money and if the reports come out in your favour then we will try and help you get your money but back for those as well. I think that the first step in that particular process is to write to the supplier of the flooring and to explain to them what steps you are proposing to take an even identify the experts from whom you intend to obtain the reports and if the supplier is an opportunity to comment, to objects, to recommend other experts or to give some other response to the morning.

At least in this way, you would have laid a paper trail and the suppliers will be unable to say that they weren't warned or given opportunity to respond or to make their own suggestions. I think this is an important step that you must take before you sink the diagnosis.


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@BazzaS

HI
 The insurance contractor under our instructions ordered and paid for the flooring, i will contact insurance co and independent inspections  (who we know work for the DWF) for advice 

thanks.

 

@BankFodder Thanks ill look into finding an expert 

 

 I attach the DWF independent report 

Manufacturing Report.pdf

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Okay. The DWF report is very helpful to the extent that it clearly confirms that there is a problem. Of course it is a very poor quality report because it concludes that there is no manufacturing defect but in fact this conclusion is merely a statement and there is nothing in the body of the report to support that finding. In fact the only thing the report says is that they are unable to say how the material was stored prior to delivery which of course is not evidence to support a finding that there is no manufacturing defect. In any event, whether there is a manufacturing defect or not is irrelevant because this is all about the liability of the supplier. In other words, did the defect exist at the time the goods were supplied and the answer according to this DWF report is that they have no idea.

The report is helpful in that it refers to the existing woodwork in your home and it makes it clear that there doesn't appear to be any other woodworm problem and that means that the possibility of contamination from an existing problem is minimal – and probably non-existent.

I said above that you should get two independent reports but in fact on the basis of this report I suggest that you get one. Warn the supplier this is what you're going to do. Get the report and let's see it here. After that I would suggest that you send a copy to the supplier and invite them to comment. Assuming that the new report says broadly the same thing – that they don't know the condition of the material when it arrived at your home but there is no other evidence of prior infestation, then it seems to me that you have a very strong case and we will then help you begin your claim.

You haven't told us what the value of this is. I think we need to know this and I'm afraid we are looking at quite a lot of money because I suppose that we are looking at stripping out the existing woodwork, going through the process of de-nfestation and then replacing the wood. I suspect that this will take you over £10,000 which means that you will be moving onto the County Court FastTrack and that means that you will have to  factor in the risk of costs in the event that you lose.

Please talk to us about the value.

Assuming that the next report will conclude broadly what we expect it to conclude, then you had better also find out about getting some expert opinion about woodworm infestation.

This would be a report which would presumably examine your property, confirm that there is no infestation, evaluate the risks of a future infestation as a result of the installation of the contaminated would and also make recommendations as to the process and costs of the infestation – together with guarantees.  No need to commission this report yet but be ready

I think that in view of the possible value, you could be looking at a substantial battle here – but let's get started with the reports.

 


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Thanks Bank Fodder, The cost of the flooring in 2014 was £1707.00 thats without fitting ect  i believe fitting/ripping out  took 3-4 days we had new skirting fitted as well as paint work. 

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Well get a quote for the entire job - as well as the diagnostic report


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An update to where we are at....

 

Hello Desamax

Please find attached a copy of the Independent Inspection report.

As you will see from the report, the inspection has confirmed that this issue is not a manufacturing fault with the flooring.

Please let me explain that during the manufacturing process, this wood is essentially cooked in a large oven for 28 days to cure the wood.

During this process, any traces of woodworm would be removed.

It would not be possible for any of our products to enter your property containing any traces of live woodworm.

Due to this, the only way for the woodworm to enter the wood would be from an external source.

Although all of our wood does come with a warranty, this warranty is to cover manufacturing defects only.

As the report has confirmed this is not a manufacturing defect, this issue would not be covered.

I appreciate this may not be the outcome you had hoped for.

Kind Regards, DWF

 

Dear DWF
 
In response to your recent comments and your inspection report. 
 
I must stress that we have had oak flooring for many years prior to having to replace because of ingress from a burst pipe in 2014. 
 
 There has never been any evidence of woodworm anywhere in my home until this recent episode.
 
The main infested part is on a concrete subfloor. We can only assume that the parasites were present in the wood prior to delivery giving the time frame that it has taken for the infestation to break out. 
 
You have also overlooked the main problem of the planks drying out on many of edges causing the wood to die. You may recall we reported the flooring had not been properly sealed this we noticed when fitting was complete. 
 
This is a clear issue with the finish of the product as it is drying out in many areas.
On further close examination its starting to break up. 
The flooring is not fit for the purpose or indeed has not lasted an reasonable amount of time
 
 
The Antique Oak flooring is not of satisfactory quality. the flooring is drying out on edges of fitted planks. This is leading the planks to break up. 

The Sale of Goods Act 1979 makes it an implied term of the contract I have with Direct wood flooring that goods be as described, fit for purpose and of satisfactory quality.

As you are in breach of contract and I've owned the product for less than 6 years and a previous attempt at repair or replacement has also failed, I am within my statutory rights to ask for it to be replaced at no further cost to me.
 
Kind Regards
Desamax
 
 
 

Hello Desamax

Thank you for your email.

Please be assured that we have taken your complaint seriously.

We have raised an inspection that has come back as no manufacturing fault.

As I have advised, the planks are treated with chemicals to rid any wood worm and then baked at 200 degrees for 28 days. It would be impossible for any Lavea to be alive or dormant after this process.

As a company we stand by the inspection report which has come back as no manufacturing fault. If you do have wood worm, this must have come from another source in the house.

With reference to the edges of the boards drying out, with this being an oiled floor, the floor will need to reoiled periodically, depending on usage and foot fall. The lighter edges of the boards are sap which are part of the product.

Although the inspection has come back as no manufacturing fault, simply as a goodwill gesture, we have a number of options available to resolve the complaint, see below:

  • A partial refund of £100.00

  • 10% discount off a future order

  • Oil to reseal the floor.

Please let me know if any of the above options are suitable for you and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Thank you for your time and I hope to hear from you soon.

Kind Regards, DWF

 

 

 

Dear dwf

We are taking advice, and for your information we are in the process of instructing our own independent flooring expert. Who we will be using as an expert witness for our claim.

Kind regards

Desamax

 

Thank you for your email.

If you wish to forward us a copy of your report once you have received this, we can then discuss the outcome further.

Kind Regards, DWF

Direct Wood Flooring 

 
 
 
  •  
 

 

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I'm afraid this is unhelpful because you don't include the dates that these messages were sent.

Please repost this information but this time include the dates and make sure that they are in the correct order.

Also, you haven't told us whether you have put in hand another independent report.


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22 hours ago, DESAMAX said:

   Sorry for the confusion, I have added time and date trail, Im waiting on contractors who fitted the floor to put us in touch with flooring inspector.

An update to where we are at....

 

    Thu 25/07/2019 15:47

Hello Desamax

Please find attached a copy of the Independent Inspection report.

As you will see from the report, the inspection has confirmed that this issue is not a manufacturing fault with the flooring.

Please let me explain that during the manufacturing process, this wood is essentially cooked in a large oven for 28 days to cure the wood.

During this process, any traces of woodworm would be removed.

It would not be possible for any of our products to enter your property containing any traces of live woodworm.

Due to this, the only way for the woodworm to enter the wood would be from an external source.

Although all of our wood does come with a warranty, this warranty is to cover manufacturing defects only.

As the report has confirmed this is not a manufacturing defect, this issue would not be covered.

I appreciate this may not be the outcome you had hoped for.

Kind Regards, DWF

 

Although this appears to address the manufacturing issue, it doesn't seem to make any comment at all on how the material was stored before it was supplied to you and installed.  Their report specifically mentions storage and makes it clear that it is not possible to ascertain the storage conditions.
In my view this is an important point because the process of sterilising the wood might well kill off any woodworm infestation which was already present that would not be able to prevent any subsequent infestation.

 

Quote

 

Tue 06/08/2019 11:32
Dear DWF
 
In response to your recent comments and your inspection report. 
 
I must stress that we have had oak flooring for many years prior to having to replace because of ingress from a burst pipe in 2014. 
 
 There has never been any evidence of woodworm anywhere in my home until this recent episode.
 
The main infested part is on a concrete subfloor. We can only assume that the parasites were present in the wood prior to delivery giving the time frame that it has taken for the infestation to break out. 
 
You have also overlooked the main problem of the planks drying out on many of edges causing the wood to die. You may recall we reported the flooring had not been properly sealed this we noticed when fitting was complete. 
 
This is a clear issue with the finish of the product as it is drying out in many areas.
On further close examination its starting to break up. 
The flooring is not fit for the purpose or indeed has not lasted an reasonable amount of time
 
 
The Antique Oak flooring is not of satisfactory quality. the flooring is drying out on edges of fitted planks. This is leading the planks to break up. 

The Sale of Goods Act 1979 makes it an implied term of the contract I have with Direct wood flooring that goods be as described, fit for purpose and of satisfactory quality.

As you are in breach of contract and I've owned the product for less than 6 years and a previous attempt at repair or replacement has also failed, I am within my statutory rights to ask for it to be replaced at no further cost to me.
 
Kind Regards
Desamax
 
Quote


Tue 06/08/2019 16:39

Hello Desamax

Thank you for your email.

Please be assured that we have taken your complaint seriously.

We have raised an inspection that has come back as no manufacturing fault.

As I have advised, the planks are treated with chemicals to rid any wood worm and then baked at 200 degrees for 28 days. It would be impossible for any Lavea to be alive or dormant after this process.

As a company we stand by the inspection report which has come back as no manufacturing fault. If you do have wood worm, this must have come from another source in the house.

With reference to the edges of the boards drying out, with this being an oiled floor, the floor will need to reoiled periodically, depending on usage and foot fall. The lighter edges of the boards are sap which are part of the product.

Although the inspection has come back as no manufacturing fault, simply as a goodwill gesture, we have a number of options available to resolve the complaint, see below:

  • A partial refund of £100.00

  • 10% discount off a future order

  • Oil to reseal the floor.

Please let me know if any of the above options are suitable for you and I will make the necessary arrangements.

Thank you for your time and I hope to hear from you soon.

Kind Regards, DWF

 

 

 

This message appears to repeat the earlier message that the material has been properly treated but once again it doesn't address how it has been stored since then.

 

 

Fri 09/08/2019 14:55

Dear dwf

We are taking advice, and for your information we are in the process of instructing our own independent flooring expert. Who we will be using as an expert witness for our claim.

Kind regards

Desamax

 

 

Fri 08/20109/9 15:58

Thank you for your email.

If you wish to forward us a copy of your report once you have received this, we can then discuss the outcome further.

Kind Regards, DWF

Direct Wood Flooring 

 
 
 
  •  
 

 

 

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Clearly we need to see your own independent report. However what is interesting is that both the report which was carried out by DWF and also by the insurance contractor both refer to the possibility of contamination during storage.

I had not realised that the lightening and the drying of the edges was an issue separate to the woodworm.

Secondly, do I understand that the supply of the material and the installation were carried out by separate people?

If this is the case then the independent report you commission must be independent of both parties


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