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Old 09-19-2013, 02:04 PM   #1
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Default HO says I broke a light fixture

hi fellows,
I painted a customers kitchen ceiling last week. the next day, the house wife noticed a horseshoe shaped crack in the inner white globe. This white globe was protected by a clear glass globe. With no damage to the outer glass. of course, I am getting the blame for the breakage. I honestly didn't bang into the light in any way. But they said, you were the only one in the house at the time. the light fixture is a $440 value.
how would you handle this if you had no explanation for the light crack?
I personally think the bulb was too powerful for the fixture.
I am insured.
Your thoughts?
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Old 09-19-2013, 02:07 PM   #2
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Can't see how you could have done it without damaging the outer. Present it to them as such.
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Old 09-19-2013, 02:18 PM   #3
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Tell them without proof, they can stuff it.
If you really didn't do it then they're looking for a scapegoat, don't allow this.

EDIT: $400.00? Yeah, you're getting set up...nobody would flat out accuse someone without proof, there's no diplomatic way out at this point.

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Old 09-19-2013, 02:54 PM   #4
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If the outer globe is fine and you did not remove it for any reason, then they are looking to put blame on the easiest target. They figure if you don't replace it, they won't pay or stop payment. Explain in a non condescending manner that if the outer globe isn't damaged, you could not possibly be responsible for what happens to a globe inside it.
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Old 09-19-2013, 02:59 PM   #5
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Just being the devil's advocate here, but you could easily break the inside globe without damaging the outside. If you accidentally hit the outside part, and it gets to swinging, the thin, delicate inside globe could whack into the heavy outside globe and get cracked. Don't ask me how I know this. Just sayin...
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ProWallGuy View Post
Just being the devil's advocate here, but you could easily break the inside globe without damaging the outside. If you accidentally hit the outside part, and it gets to swinging, the thin, delicate inside globe could whack into the heavy outside globe and get cracked. Don't ask me how I know this. Just sayin...
Yes, I thought the same thing. But I didn't whack it. here it is from a distance...

Should I tell my insurance company that I did break it?

They want me to pay for it.
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Get It Painted View Post
Yes, I thought the same thing. But I didn't whack it. here it is from a distance...

Should I tell my insurance company that I did break it?

They want me to pay for it.
No, don't mention anything yet.

I see you've got the island papered...man, good luck.
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:36 PM   #8
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i would see if the inside glass has any movement, take your hand & VERY gentle see if it moves

looks like the rod from the top goes thu the outer glass and usually their is a rubber gasket and the rod them connects to the inside glass, does't look like it moves
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if it get ugly ask for a receipt , check date & pro rate cost
it the same thing an insurance company would do

and if you do have to pay make sure you get old light & hang it where you'll have to see it everyday

that way you'll never forget & learn to check for damage BEFORE you start and take pic
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Repaint Florida View Post
i would see if the inside glass has any movement, take your hand & VERY gentle see if it moves

looks like the rod from the top goes thu the outer glass and usually their is a rubber gasket and the rod them connects to the inside glass, does't look like it moves
Attachment 19365
There is a little movement on the globe inside.
The customer has me second guessing myself. I know I didn't whack it. but, there may have been a chance that the two glasses connected lightly while covering and uncovering with plastic. I am really not sure.
After painting the ceiling and at the end of the day, I cleaned up and didn't think twice about breaking anything. Just went home and came back in the morning. About lunch time, the HO said, oh, there is a crack in the light... I quickly said, I did not do it, I handled your stuff with care.

The husband called that night and said, you were the only one in the house, how else could it have broke? I said, I have no idea.

But as wise painters said, I have the island covered up with contractor paper. That shows that I took much care to protect there stuff.
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:53 PM   #10
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You didn't do it. Either they did it or their electrician did it when installing. You came along and now, to ease their frustration and to get a freebie, they are blaming you. This happened to me when a woman I painted for said I sheared off the $300 spout to her whirlpool tub. I had noticed it was sheared off and someone had put it back in place hoping she wouldn't notice. So I told her about it and got the accusation. I have a loud, direct voice which I used in this instance to back her down from her accusation. I was really pissed off. Anyway, it ended up that the dang plumber sheared it off on the install. Of course, she never said, "Sorry."
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:01 PM   #11
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If you wind up paying for it I wouldn't make a claim for $400.
Just pay out of pocket.

I'd also check to see if the inner/out globes can physically contact each other as RF suggested.

Finally, I bet you can just replace the inner globe for a fraction of the fixture price.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:10 PM   #12
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I just went through something similar a week ago. Myself and two other guys were working in a room and a light fixture that was covered with plastic fell to the ground. I told the home owners and two days later they twisted the story to "we removed it to paint". After explaining to them again that we would not remove the fixture. I offered to buy them a new fixture but these ppl had not painted in the last 20 yrs and loved the light. Finally it came down to me setting them up with an electrician to see if they could get the old one to work again.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:22 PM   #13
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I have a no liability for damage to light fittings, glass and roof tiles in my contact.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:35 PM   #14
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Don't pay them shít. They just want their kitchen painted for FREE.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:38 PM   #15
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I would pay them for it and then take your roller pole and smash the sh!t out of it like a Piñata.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:54 PM   #16
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Just break the other one and tell them they are custom lights that no one else in the world has.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:58 PM   #17
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Ask for a receipt, or proof that it cost $400...
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:00 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by straight_lines
I would pay them for it and then take your roller pole and smash the sh!t out of it like a Piñata.
VERY TRUE. Happens to me all the time. Were working condominiums right now , we're getting blamed for 7 year olds "drops" of paint from the previous painters. On a walk through , I'll check EVERYTHING , taking pictures of anything out of the ordinary(i.e. light fixture, but who looks at a light fixture? I DO, If I see something, I address it to the home owner...problem solved.
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:38 PM   #19
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Stuff like this happens when you work in people's homes. Someone comes in to work, and they start checking everything when they are done and find stuff. How many times have you been out on an estimate, point out some cracks in the ceiling that need fixing and they say "I had no idea they were there!" This is kinda like that.

Sometimes, you just have to suck it up and pay for something that you had no part in breaking. Your reputation is worth MORE than $400.
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Old 09-19-2013, 07:00 PM   #20
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$400 ??... Yeah new maybe but they've been using it an have gotten use out of it... Pro rate after seeing a receipt... No receipt then
Find a Comparable Light an pro rate that .... On your way out twist your ankle coming down the steps
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