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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71051
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I purchased some laminate flooring from B& Q and on the label

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I purchased some laminate flooring from B& Q and on the label it said it was suitable for bathrooms, kitchens etc six months after being put down the surface of the flooring in some areas is lifting when we went back to B & Q the same product was on sale with different labelling saying that it was only suitable for dry areas, we complained to B & Q customer services who sent out an independent assessor he concluded that the floor had not been laid properly (It Has) and that the ingress of water is the cause of the surface lifting and that B & Q were not prepared to take our complaint any further, we have since had a letter from B & Q stating that the cause of the lifting is Due to 'moisture penetrating the core board which in turn swells and the surface veneer swells and blisters'. This my point the flooring was sold to us as being compatible with slight exposure to surface moisture where the most we have done is to mop the floor with only
a damp mop B & Q are saying as far as they are concerned the matter is concluded.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
How can I help with this please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I simply want B & Q to acknowledge that the product is not fit for purpose

and was sold to us as being suitable for possible splash areas ie kitchens

and is not performing as it should we are looking for replacement of flooring through the entire area with fitting.

When did you purchase please?
Actually don't worry. I can see what you are asking.
I think everyone knows that the problem you have is caused by the ingress of water and the surface lifting and it would not need an independent assessor or some other kind of highly paid expert ascertain what has happened. As far as I am aware it is impossible to lay this incorrectly because either it goes down properly or it does not. The pieces interlink.
It is obvious that you have reached the end of the line with B & Q and there seems no point in exchanging further correspondence other than to now tell them that unless they refund in full by a particular date you will have no alternative but to issue Small Claims Court proceedings against them as they are in breach of the provisions of the Sale of Goods Act because the goods supplied are not fit for purpose or of satisfactory quality and that your claim will include further costs of relaying the floor by an independent contractor. You may get the additional costs if you go to court or it may be disallowed but add it in anyway. I would point out that you have photographs of the same product still on sale but now noted as not being suitable for bathrooms or kitchens. I would suggest to give them until Friday, 26 September in your letter. It is always better to give them an actual date instead of giving them a number of days because of you give them a number of days, it is not absolutely certain when that number of days expires.
If you haven't received a satisfactory response by that date, you can issue Small Claims Court proceedings quite easily by following this link
If you paid by credit card you can also file a section 75 claim with the credit card company. Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act puts liability for the transaction onto the card company along with the merchant. All you may need to do is file the 75 claim and the credit card company may refund you without going to court so, wait for that anyway.
Meanwhile, you need photographs of the same product on sale along with the notes as to what it is recommended for and something that does identify it as exactly the same product such as the same barcode.
You need a quote (not an estimate) for relaying the floor.
You need photographs of the damage.
Depending on the outcome of the section 75 claim and if you end up in court, you are going to need all the above as evidence.
If the section 75 claim is not successful, this could easily take between 6 months and 12 months to go to court and therefore if you don't want to stick with the unsatisfactory floor meanwhile, get it replaced and simply sue B&Q for the cost..
The court will decide the issue.
It is highly likely that once you issue Small Claims Court proceedings, because of the amount of money involved, they will settle out of court although I have no guarantee that they will do that as they may decide to take a stand. For Small Claims Court matters like this it is actually uneconomical for them to pursue a defence regardless of whether they win or lose as they will only recover a maximum of about £100 in solicitors costs regardless of how long the solicitors take dealing with the matter.
Can I clarify anything for you?
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