Subcontractor gets it glass-backwards


Recently, Guardian Group, Inc.’s Construction Defect Group was called to a 30,000 sf office complex in Arizona. Complaints were of widespread water intrusion at the building’s windows… all of them.


Our carrier-client initially called us in to defend the subcontractor’s work, but once Guardian’s experts completed their investigation, it was obvious that mitigating damages and expediting settlement were in the carrier’s best interest and were the overarching priorities on this case. What made it so obvious? The windows’ weep holes, small openings that allow water to drain from within an assembly, faced into the building, not out. In other words, the windows had been installed backwards!

While this magnitude of oversight is unusual, it’s also not unheard of; Guardian has witnessed this reversed window situation on multiple occasions over the years. In this case, incorrectly specified hollow metal frame windows, typically used for concrete, had been installed in a metal frame wall. What most likely occurred on the job site, Guardian’s experts reasoned, is that the subcontractor simply found it easier to flash the windows this way, without understanding all of the moisture problems that would result. Of course, the general and sub should have called out the window spec and issued an RFI to the architect, but they did not. (Guardian alerted our carrier-client to the possibility of a claim against the architect’s Errors & Omissions policy.)


While plaintiff’s engineers had estimated the window replacement work at 1.5MM, Guardian’s Construction Defect Group located a qualified contractor who provided a hard bid for 40% less.


When your claims, cases and defect issues require construction defect expertise, expedient investigations and reliable litigation support have rendered us an invaluable ally to carriers and their counsel for nearly 30 years. Visit the Guardian Group, Inc. website should you need to learn more about us or call us for immediate assistance and dispatch today.

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