Construction projects are very complex. There are many different construction workers, subcontractors, plumbers, and electricians working in different areas at the same time. This, combined with dust, debris, and heavy building materials, often results in expensive home finishes such as cabinets, countertops, doors, etc. Here is a list of the top ten accessories that tend to get damaged during the construction process:
1) Wardrove – In residential construction, cabinets are often one of the most expensive accessories and the easiest to damage. According to the NAHB New Construction Cost Breakdown *, cabinets cost on average about $ 10,395 to install in a new home. They tend to get installed quite early in the construction process, so they can be easily damaged by stucco spray, the impact of lost tool belts, and the general carelessness of subcontractors. A great way to avoid damage to cabinets is to use thick adhesive foam like Protecta-Foam to cover them. It’s easy to install and protects cabinets from spray, dust, dirt, and sudden impacts.
2) Doors – Like cabinets, both interior and exterior doors can be quite expensive. On average, interior doors cost homeowners around $ 2,883 while exterior doors cost $ 2,150. Luxury homes often have large front doors that can cost more than $ 10,000. Doors are also installed early in the construction process, and with subcontractors and construction workers coming and going, sometimes with heavy equipment on hand, dents and dings are a persistent problem. To avoid damage, use reinforced corrugated cardboard or special door protection such as Door Guard ™. This will prevent dents and scratches and help builders deliver a truly new, quality product to homeowners.
3) Bathtubs / Showers – Bathtubs and shower trays are some of the most difficult accessories to protect from damage in a home. Together with the windows, they are the first accessory to be installed; very early in the bathroom construction process. Bathtubs cost on average around $ 4,346 but can be a lot more. Once the bathtub has been installed, subcontractors such as electricians, tile installers, and plumbers will work in and around the expensive bathtub. Many subs do their job while standing inside the bathtub, and some construction workers even use it as a toilet! With so many people working in the area, damage can happen very easily. Along with a company policy that absolutely prohibits the use of the bathtub as a toilet, builders can use a spray bathtub protector that dries to a rubbery consistency and comes off easily when the project is finished.
4) Rugs – Most homes have extensive carpets, which often show dirt and debris easily and are more difficult to clean than other types of flooring. The median price of carpet for a home is around $ 8,363. Foot traffic can track dirt and dust from subcontractors and may end up requiring the builder to replace some carpets or pay the bill for an expensive cleaning after the job has already been completed. A great way to prevent carpet damage is to use carpet cling film. These clear films adhere to carpets, but must be replaced every thirty days to avoid adhesive transfer. Be sure to check the quality of the carpet film before purchasing; Anything less than 3 mils thick is poor quality and may not adequately protect carpets.
5) Laminate flooring – Homeowners love hardwood floors and they are extremely common in new residential construction. On average, hardwood floors cost $ 1,939 to install in a new home. Floors are subject to many things that can result in damage, including foot traffic, heavy materials or machinery, dust, dirt, and general debris. Taking steps to protect your hardwood floors during construction is absolutely critical. The first thing to consider is how long the floors have been down. If they are newly installed, still healing or breathing, breathable protection is available. There are many different types of protection ranging from a light duty protective film to recycled fabrics and heavy duty construction boards.
6) Door jambs – Jambs are often bumped and scratched during construction. Since they are installed very early in the process, every subcontractor that delivers installation materials or tools could potentially inflict damage resulting in the need for replacement or at least repair. Jambs typically cost around $ 148 per home. Many different types of jamb protection are reusable, so a single box of ten will last for multiple projects. There are many options ranging from plastic to cardboard to fabric.
7) Ladders – Like the problem with carpets and hardwood floors, stairs get a lot of traffic before the house is completed. Stairs in a typical home generally cost around $ 1,052 to build and install. The stairs are usually carpeted or made of wood. With construction workers and subcontractors going up and down to complete their work, the stairs really need to be covered to ensure they look perfect when the owner moves in. There are several types of stair protection depending on whether the stairs are carpeted or wooden. While many general floor protection products can be used to protect stairs, only a few specialized types of surface protection will protect stairs without the need for tape that could damage the paint.
8) Thresholds – Door sills get very dirty and scratched on a construction site. On average, thresholds cost about $ 213 per household. While that doesn’t seem like a lot, the threshold is the entrance to your home, and as such, homeowners want to make sure it looks perfect. There are several high-quality 9-mil thick protective tapes on the market that do a great job of protecting thresholds at a cost-effective price. If the home is being built in a sunny or hot area, it is important to take the time to invest in protection that has UV protective qualities.
9) Countertops – The countertops in a house are extremely important to the owner. Countertops, along with cabinets, are a significant cost of a kitchen remodel and must look perfect for the homeowner to be satisfied. At an average price of $ 5,141, it’s important to prevent damage or scratches that can occur from careless subcontractors or construction workers that leave a large, dirty mess of glasses, cans, food, liquids, or other trash. Paint drips, mud and stucco splatters, etc. can ruin an expensive countertop. There are two main types of protection for countertops; film and adhesive bubble. If you decide to use film, be sure to invest in a high-quality 3,000 film. If heavy duty protection is needed, the Tack Guard ™ bubble is the way to go. It is a thick sticky bubble that sticks to countertops without leaving residue. It looks professional and is a huge deterrent for workers looking to put trash on the countertop.
10) Handrails and railings – Handrails and railings are often overlooked during construction. Once installed, they can be subject to paint and stucco splatter, dust, motion scratches, and more. Handrails and railings in the average home cost about $ 646. Investing in protection is a sound investment when you look at the potential costs that damage could incur. An effective way to protect the handrails is to use an adhesive bubble wrap. Swiftwrap ™ is a great handrail product because the adhesive sticks to itself rather than to the handrail. This makes removal very easy and eliminates the possibility of adhesive transfer.
With proper protection, builders can protect these expensive accessories and save time and money on replacement / repair costs. For more information on protective materials, visit www.buildsitepro.com.
* Estimates of the average cost of materials come from:
New Construction Cost Breakdown NAHB 2011