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David Axt, AIA, CCS, CSI
Senior Member
Username: david_axt

Post Number: 848
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Thursday, April 05, 2007 - 08:26 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

What should you do if you incorrectly accept a substitution only to find out later that it does not meet the spec?
Nathan Woods, CCCA, LEED AP
Senior Member
Username: nwoods

Post Number: 197
Registered: 08-2005
Posted on Thursday, April 05, 2007 - 08:33 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

The burden to demonstrate it complies with the spec is the contractors per A201. What does your contract say?

If you've approved it as a substitution, you may have bought it. Generally, an approved substitution is considered to be as if you origionally specified it.

Mark Gilligan SE, CSI
Senior Member
Username: markgilligan

Post Number: 152
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Friday, April 06, 2007 - 02:57 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Think carefully the consequences of the accepted substitution. It may be that it does not meet the letter of the standard and may not be what you intended, but it may comply with the code and provide reasonable service life. If this is the case you may do nothing.

If the substitution is unacceptable talk to the General as soon as possible to understand the the cost and schedule implications involved with getting the proper product. Communicate, Communicate, communicate. This is the time for creative approaches.
John Bunzick, CCS, CCCA
Senior Member
Username: bunzick

Post Number: 696
Registered: 03-2002
Posted on Friday, April 06, 2007 - 09:20 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

The advice above is excellent. There's another aspect to consider, too. If it did not meet the spec, did the contractor bring that fact to your attention at the time of the submittal? They are supposed to make notes on the submittal of items that vary from the spec. If the contractor has "slipped one by," you do not necessarily have to go along with it. Of course, a lot depends on the what aspect doesn't comply, as Mark points out, as well as how far along you are in construction. If nothing else, you may be due a credit.
Wayne Yancey
Senior Member
Username: wyancey

Post Number: 343
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Friday, April 06, 2007 - 11:17 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

If you have been following my heads-up regarding the articles by Maynard Blumer (Prior Approval), he recommends adding model provisions into the Instructions to Bidders to mitigate such occurences.

Maynard's system utilizes a Prior Approval Addendum during bidding. One model provision that you may want to consider in the future is: "Approvals are based upon the opinion, knowledge, information, and belief of Architect at time is issuance of this Addendum and reliance upon data submitted. Approvals are therefore interim in nature and subject to reconsideration as additional data, materials, workmanship, ana coordination with other work are observed and reviewed. In proposing items allowed by this Addendum, bidder assumes all risk, costs, and responsibility for item's final acceptance, integration in Work, and performance."

I assume your substitution request occured during construction since it is posted in the CA thread, but the rules of substitution requests (iterim in nature) during bidding could also be made to apply to requests during construction.

I have used the Prior Approval Addendum process sucessfully and without incident for 14 years in both Canada and US public and private projects. E-mail me off line if you wish to receive further information.
Mark Gilligan SE, CSI
Senior Member
Username: markgilligan

Post Number: 154
Registered: 05-2005
Posted on Friday, April 06, 2007 - 12:19 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Also look at your substitution request form. What did the Contractor claim/promise?

Never assume that you are liable. As you look at the problem from diferent perspectives you may find that things are not what you initially thought.

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