The warranty game is the most over-used sales tool in the industry. The most advertised, yet the most misunderstood, part of having structural repair work done on your property is the warranty. You will see things like “Lifetime Warranty” or “Lifetime Transferable Warranty” or even “Longest Warranty in the Business” all over the market. What do these mean? What is the warranty worth? Are there any costs associated with the warranty? Most importantly, what warranty do you need?
The number one piece of advice we can give you about warranties is to read it yourself! If the salesman does not have a copy for you to read, tell him to go get one. There is generally only one reason that he is not carrying one, and that is because he does not want you to read it. If the warranty is too long or too hard to read, forget it. Warranties should be simple, and should essentially explain, “this is what we cover and this is how long we cover it for”.
Here is a list of different types of warranties and what you should know about them:
Lifetime Warranties. A "lifetime warranty" can mean a variety of things. Depending on the state you live in, a "lifetime warranty" can mean anything from 7 years to the life of the structure. So why would a lifetime warranty be only 7 years? This can be the case because, according to a general law enacted by some states, the standard life of a service is 7 years.
Limited Warranties. A "limited warranty" is the standard in foundation repair. “Limited” means that the only things that are covered are the things that can be affected by the work that has been done. You will still want to read this type of warranty all the way through and understand what is covered and for how long. Don't forget to ask if there are any fees required for them to honor their warranty.
A "manufacturer's warranty" of their products is the number one item that you should be looking for. If the individual installer goes out of business, there will be someone standing behind the products. The best of these manufacturers have very simple and comprehensive warranties for their products. One specific manufacturer has a three-part warranty form that states exactly what is covered and for how long. One copy goes to the installing contractor for his records and the other two go to the property owner. The property owner then submits one of their copies directly to the manufacturer so there is no doubt that it has been filed. Simple and effective.
Warranties should not be difficult, they should be readily available and straight forward. They need to state what is covered and for how long.
Don't play the warranty game. Hire quality foundation repair companies to work on your most valuable assets and rest assured that you have taken the correct steps to get what you pay for.