Your Break My Dryer. I Break Your Face.
July 5, 2012 2:42 PM Subscribe
Contractor damaged my dryer while working on my house and now refuses to pay to repair it. What kind of leg, if any, do I have to stand on?
posted by hollisimo to Home & Garden (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I recently had an "energy retrofit" on my teeny post-war house done by a local (Portland, OR) contractor as part of a program to increase energy efficiency in older homes. The whole house is now insulated (walls, floors, attic) and the gravity wall furnace was torn out and replaced by an attic furnace. Overall, I'm super jazzed.
While working on my house, the contractors had to pull my washer and dryer away from the wall in the mudroom to replace some drywall. The day before they did this, the dryer worked normally. The day after this, the dryer would not heat nor advance the timer. I asked the company about it, so they sent a project manager out to see if anything obvious was wrong. According to them t wasn't, so they shrugged and washed their hands of it.
A (dryerless!) month later, after replacing the timer but seeing no change in the problem, I tore the dryer apart and found that the coils of the heating element were severed. I replaced the part and the dryer now works. The dryer, it's worth mentioning, is only about five years old and is used once a week at most. I'm fastidious about keeping it clear of lint. It seemed pretty clear that it having been moved multiple times by the contractors was what broke it.
I wrote to the contracting company asking that they reimburse me for what, to me, seems like a clear case of them breaking my stuff. They wrote back saying that they will not be doing that since there is no clear proof that it wasn't just the dryer's heating element coincidentally breaking on its own. There's nothing in the contract I signed with them absolving them of liability for damage to my property, so this seems like them just being stingy.
Do I have a case to push back here? If so, is there an airtight case I can make?