Discuss Two different tiles laid down-who’s at fault and whats a fair outcome? in the UK Tiling Forum | Tile Advice Forum area at TilersForums.com

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Had a tiler in to tile a living room (12m2). Bought the tiles ourselves.

Came home to the job done and noticed slight colour variants in the tiles laid down. Pointed it out to the tiler who said he had noticed the differences in the tiles but the codes on the tiles were the same so he kept going and didn’t flag it. Rechecked the codes and there were two slightly different tile variations provided by the tile supplier.

The tiles have the same pattern but one tile is whitish and the other is brownish.

Who’s at fault here? Is it the tiling company who provided two different tiles or the tiler for not checking the codes on the tiles whilst laying them?

What would generally be a fair solution to this? The tiling caused a lot of dust to go through the house which has taken us a good few evenings to clean so I’m really not keen on them being pulled up… Planning to move in two years so tempted to leave them but am I in my rights not to pay the full amount for the job?
 

Dave

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The tiles should 100% have been checked by the supplier. Yes the tiler should should check and mention if there’s a change in codes but initially it’s the supplier.
If you are going to leave them as you are moving as you say , then pay your tiler imho. If your replacing then a solution needs to be arranged with supplier and tiler.
 
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The tiles should 100% have been checked by the supplier. Yes the tiler should should check and mention if there’s a change in codes but initially it’s the supplier.
If you are going to leave them as you are moving as you say , then pay your tiler imho. If your replacing then a solution needs to be arranged with supplier and tiler.

Cheers, that sounds fair. Bit frustrating that the tiler noticed it and said nothing to me - I was working from home on the day so all he had to do was say it to me.

I'm inclined towards leaving them down, particularly as there's a query about the underlying floor containing asbestos, so any chipping away at the ground to lift tiles could make that airborne and create a bigger issue.

If I leave them down, would I have any recourse to approach the supplier for a partial refund on the tiles do you reckon?
 
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Dave

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Cheers, that sounds fair. Bit frustrating that the tiler noticed it and said nothing to me - I was working from home on the day so all he had to do was say it to me.

I'm inclined towards leaving them down, particularly as there's a query about the underlying floor containing asbestos, so any chipping away at the ground to lift tiles could make that airborne and create a bigger issue.

If I leave them down, would I have any recourse to approach the supplier for a partial refund on the tiles do you reckon?
You could try for a partial refund if you agree to just live with them. Annoying isn’t it.
 
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To be fair to the tiler, he is only installing what you supplied. You also could have checked the batch numbers and resolved the problem prior to him arriving on site.

It seems to be one of those unfortunate situations where no one was on the ball and all blaming each other.
I take your point fully. At the same time, I'm just a random bloke who ordered tiles from a tile shop and booked a tiler to do the job - I had no idea tiles had codes to even check until the tiler himself told me that's how they know the tiles are the same/different.

It's also not like the tiles were laid down in a pattern or anything that would suggest there was a deliberate purchase of different coloured tiles. The tiler did spot the different colours, didn't fully check the codes (but I take your point that arguably it's not his job), and didn't just give me a shout to check with me even though I was working 10 meters from the room he was working in.

I'm gonna pay the tiler what he quoted and take the issue up with the supplier, but in all fairness would you not have expected the tiler to flag with the customer that two different coloured tiles were going down? Especially since they weren't put down in any pattern on the floor to make it look like the different colours were put down on purpose? The room now looks like the image below.
 

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Ajax123

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Unless your contract is explicit in terms if colour differences i dongvthink the tiler bears any fault. I'm afraid its more likely that under the terms of your contract the tiler is under no obligation to point out the colour difference in the tiles. You asked him to lay some tiles. He laid some tiles. You supplied the tiles so it would be incumbent on you to determine if they are correct or not.

Your tile supplier may have some responsibility but again I doubt it. You asked them to supply some tiles and they did that. If the codes on the boxes are the same then I think you would have a hard time demonstrating that they have failed to act with due diligence.

The tile manufacturer may be at fault but good luck suing them...

For me I'm afraid, in purely legal terms, theres not much you can do. You are best to rely on goodwill to sort it out. So talk to the tiler and the tile suplier nicely....
 
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:)
Unless your contract is explicit in terms if colour differences i dongvthink the tiler bears any fault. I'm afraid its more likely that under the terms of your contract the tiler is under no obligation to point out the colour difference in the tiles. You asked him to lay some tiles. He laid some tiles. You supplied the tiles so it would be incumbent on you to determine if they are correct or not.

Your tile supplier may have some responsibility but again I doubt it. You asked them to supply some tiles and they did that. If the codes on the boxes are the same then I think you would have a hard time demonstrating that they have failed to act with due diligence.

The tile manufacturer may be at fault but good luck suing them...

For me I'm afraid, in purely legal terms, theres not much you can do. You are best to rely on goodwill to sort it out. So talk to the tiler and the tile suplier nicely....
Cheers for the reply and fair points made.

Just to clarify that the codes on the tiles were different. So the supplier loaded the wrong tiles when delivering. I picked out the tiles in person and asked for a specific tile. The two different ones they delivered are very similar in appearance and when looking at them in individual boxes you wouldnt see a difference. Only when they are side by side do you see the difference clearly.
 

Ajax123

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Sadly i suspect the tile supplier will still say that you should have checked. Normally tile outlets limit their liability in respect of aesthetics to the point at which the tiles are laid. I still think it’s one to be nice about and they may give you a few tiles as a gesture of goodwill. I wish you luck in sorting it out. 👍
 
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Trigger

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Just for the record, if I had noticed the colour difference while laying them I would 100% of raised the issue with customer before proceeding. Sometimes you don't notice it until its grouted, cleaned up and you stand back and look at it.

I once laid a floor all done grouted, stood back and thought WTF. There was one tile slap bang in the middle of the floor that stood out like a sore thumb, it was a different shade.

However, if a customer is supplying materials I expect them to check that everything is present and correct prior to my arrival. If I turn up and something is missing or incorrect and I can't carry out the work the customer requested on the day they requested it is going to start costing me money. It means I have to allocate another day to that job (which a customer never wants to pay for) and also has a knock on effect for my schedule.
 
OP
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Just for the record, if I had noticed the colour difference while laying them I would 100% of raised the issue with customer before proceeding. Sometimes you don't notice it until its grouted, cleaned up and you stand back and look at it.

I once laid a floor all done grouted, stood back and thought WTF. There was one tile slap bang in the middle of the floor that stood out like a sore thumb, it was a different shade.

However, if a customer is supplying materials I expect them to check that everything is present and correct prior to my arrival. If I turn up and something is missing or incorrect and I can't carry out the work the customer requested on the day they requested it is going to start costing me money. It means I have to allocate another day to that job (which a customer never wants to pay for) and also has a knock on effect for my schedule.

Absolutely take your points on this also. It is completely unfair on a tiler to arrive to a job expecting the materials to be ready to do the job and to find that what's needed isn't there. No one should have a day's wages lost or have the hassle of having to negotiate this with the customer. I agree completely.

FWIW, as a random bloke who ordered tiles just expecting them to be as ordered, you're all probably well on top of this already but please warn your customers who say they are sourcing the tiles about this kind of thing and tell them to check the codes. I could have easily done this if I knew that there were numbers on the boxes I could have checked.

I completely take your point that it might only be when you've done the job that you notice. The one additional annoying part is that I live just down the road from the tile shop so could have easily nipped out to get the needed tiles when he spotted the differences before laying them down. Anyway, what's done is done.

I absolutely take a calm and pleasant approach to this kind of stuff - no-one messes up on purpose generally - and as an update, the supplier is offering a 50% refund on the cost of the tiles. It pays to pleasant about it.

Cheers for all the input - helped me to see the issue primarily lay with my own need to check the materials supplied in future.
 

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