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Getting soaked at the auto showroom


Recently, Guardian’s construction defect experts were called in to consult on a case regarding widespread water leaks emanating from the ceiling at an automobile dealership. Plaintiffs alleged the general contractor, as well as multiple subcontractors, contributed to this defect. Guardian was engaged on behalf of the rebar subcontractor.


Guardian’s experts were immediately dispatched to the Western U.S. dealership. There, they performed a thorough interior and exterior visual inspection. The building had been designed to include car parking atop the showroom. While walking the roof/parking lot, cracks were observed in the waterproof traffic coating. These same cracks extended completely through the concrete slab and allowed water to leak into the interior of the building. Upon performing a detailed review of the drawings and specifications, it was discovered that the roof/parking concrete slab was designed to be poured in multiple sections. In the field, however, Guardian’s experts observed that the slab was poured monolithically. As the concrete cured and shrank, there were areas of the slab that were restrained by the structure below. This, in turn, created stress in the concrete slab which resulted in the cracks.


Guardian’s forensic construction and engineering expert acknowledged water intrusion into the building, but identified that the cracks were caused by the stress induced in the slab due to the single concrete pour. Irrespective of the coating system applied over the surface of the concrete slab, these cracks would split the coating system. Confident the sub-contractor was no longer considered culpable, the carrier and counsel expressed gratitude to Guardian’s concrete, decks, and plazas specialist for the expertise provided and the expediency of the work.


When carriers and their counsel require responsive, proven construction defect expertise, they often turn to the Construction Defect Group at Guardian Group, Inc. For over 30 years Guardian has helped defend contractors in complex construction and engineering cases, claims, and issues. From Classification and Causation to Culpability and Cure, Guardian’s 4C Process® helps you construct a stronger case. For immediate assistance kindly call on Guardian Group today.

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