Like life, deck build projects often don’t go as planned. In fact, I can honestly say that I’ve never had a project go completely as planned. To go completely as planned would mean that no changes were needed in the project schedule, resource delivery, or budget. And like life, there are many factors that could contribute to theses change; like weather, delivery delays, uncovered damage, and more.
What I've learned when it comes to deck repair , is that you need to plan for the unexpected and when all else fails - roll with the punches! At NLO, we make room for the unexpected so when things do go as planned, well, thats even more of a win for us and the client.
One project in particular highlights this "expect the unexpected" philosophy. During this recent deck build, we planned ample room for project changes including material upgrades and delayed delivery delays. Yet, we encountered a never before seen challenge and our team was put to the test!
Aside from having to "pause" this deck building project due to the unexpected, it was during demo that we uncovered the largest delay of them all.
As we removed the old deck boards from around the pool, a large leak was exposed. We learned the client had known there was a slow leak, but never knew where it was located nor how severe it was.
What we uncovered was the pool steps had a leak that could not be repaired with a simple fix. To resolve, the client had a Nashville pool specialist come and drain the pool completely. They then fixed the leak in multiple areas and were able to refill the pool.
We then added rocks and support under the steps to make sure it wouldn’t crack under weight of the continued deck repair.
This repair in total postponed deck building for two additional weeks in order to allow for the fiberglass steps to be fixed.
What We Learned
Something to always do during the building process, is to always make room for the unexpected!
Make sure there are discussions with your clients (on big projects) informing them that there might be unknown problems that will get exposed. We believe this is the best approach any time you do a building project.
This means we have to get creative to still get tasks done, and find ways to keep the project moving forward in-order to keep the client from spending more money during the process.
In this particular instance, we did this by working on other parts of the project, that were not directly affected by the pool leak.
What we did instead: we demoed the overgrown bushes and shrubs from around the pool area. Then we graded and cleared the area for the patio and pergola build. This way we could keep the progress moving forward.
Building the new patio, pergola, and retaining wall around the pool gave the client plenty of time for the pool repair to happen. At the same time, we were able to keep progress moving forward and not incur much additional cost.
This was great news for our client, and Team NLO.