Before hiring someone to perform a swimming leak detection on your pool, ask these important questions:
1. Are they Licensed & Insured? Is their license posted on their website as required by California state law? Here is a link to check on any licensed contractor. If they are not licensed, they're not bonded and insured
2. Do they answer their phones or do you get a voicemail? Partner with a company that is going to be responsive, should problems arise. If you have a problem, do you think they're going to return a message that you left on their voicemail?
3. Do they have a physical address? Fly-by-night companies use P.O. boxes and anonymous mailbox store addresses. And be very careful of fake reviews.
My name is Darren Merlob and I am the owner of Caltech Leak Detection. I am a licensed swimming pool contract in the state of California. I hold a specialty leak detection and associated repair license #969953.
Aside from performing leak detections, I own LeakTronics, a company that manufactures the electronic leak detection equipment that we use daily and sell to thousands of other contractors worldwide. I also own Torque Lock Structural Systems, Inc., a company that manufactures steel staples used in the repair of gunite, shotcrete, and concrete.
I have a training facility here in Southern California, where I teach leak detection for up and coming professionals, worldwide.
I live, eat, and breathe swimming pool leak detection.
NOTICE TO OWNER
Contractors are required by law to be licensed and regulated by the Contractors’ State License Board which has jurisdiction to investigate complaints against contractors if a complaint regarding a patent act or omission is filed within four years of the date of the alleged violation. A complaint regarding a latent act or omission pertaining to structural defects must be filed within 10 years of the date of the alleged violation. Any questions concerning a contractor may be referred to the Registrar, Contractors’ State License Board, P.O. Box 26000, Sacramento, California 95826.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: Owner acknowledges that he/she has read and received a legible copy of this agreement including all terms, standard provisions and notices to the owner on the back hereof before any work has been done and that he/she has read and received a legible copy of every other document that buyer has signed during this negotiation. I/We hereby acknowledge under the penalty of perjury that I/we am/are the legal owners and am/are authorized to sign this contract as an agent of the legal owner _________ Homeowner ________Contractor _________Other (Tenant, Agent) Initial one
DISCLAIMER: Caltech Pools, Inc. will warranty its leak detection findings for 90 days, minor repair work for 90 days and major repair work for 1 year from the date of the invoice unless otherwise noted in writing. All warranties are for the specific work performed in writing by us. The procedure for filing any warranty claims is to notify Caltech Pools, Inc. by phone or in writing and mail certified to:
Caltech Pools, Inc.
23129 Park Terra
Calabasas, CA 91302
There are no other warranties by Caltech Pools, Inc. of any nature whatsoever express or implied including any warranty of accountability or fitness for a particular purpose in connection with our services or products.
Caltech Pools, Inc. shall not be liable under any legal theory for special or consequential damages. Caltech Pools, Inc. will not be responsible for any other repairs except the repairs that we originally performed. Cost as to water replacement, chemicals, land and loss of use are not covered. Caltech Pools, Inc. will not be responsible for any damage due to hydrostatic pressure. Caltech Pools, Inc. will not be responsible for any damage due to any acts of nature (earthquake, hurricane, tornado, hail, etc.). Caltech Pools, Inc. will not be responsible for damages arising from any leaks, previous repairs performed, or draining of pool. Caltech Pools, Inc. will not be responsible for any pool plaster or pool surfaces. Caltech Pools, Inc. will not be responsible for underground utility lines (fiber optic, gas, electrical, etc.).
Mechanics Lien Warning: “Under the California Mechanics’ Lien Law, any contractor, subcontractor, laborer, supplier or other person or entity who helps to improve your property, but is not paid for his or her work or supplies, has a right to place a lien on your home, land, or property where the work was performed and to sue you in court to obtain payment.
This means that after a court hearing, your home, land and property could be sold by a court officer and the proceeds of the sale used to satisfy what you owe. This can happen even if you have paid your contractor in full if the contractor’s subcontractors, laborers or suppliers remain unpaid. To preserve their rights to file a claim or lien against your property certain claimants such as subcontractors or material suppliers are each required to provide you with a document called a “Preliminary Notice”. Contractors and laborers who contract with owners directly do not have to provide such notice since you are aware of their existence as an owner. A preliminary notice is not a lien against your property. Its purpose is to notify you of persons or entities that may have a right to file a lien against your property if they are not paid. In order to protect their lien rights, a contractor, subcontractor, supplier, or laborer must file a mechanics’ lien with the county recorder which then becomes a recorded lien against your property. Generally, the maximum time allowed for filing a mechanics’ lien against your property is 90 days after substantial completion of your project.
TO INSURE EXTRA PROTECTION FOR YOURSELF AND YOUR PROPERTY, YOU MAY WISH TO TAKE ONE OR MORE OF THE FOLLOWING STEPS:
1. Require that your contractor supply you with a payment and performance bond (not a license bond), which provides that the bonding company will either complete the project or pay damages up to the amount of the bond. This payment and performance bond as well as a copy of the construction contract should be filed with the county recorder for your further protection. The payment and performance bond will usually cost from 1 to 5 percent of the contract and all costs will be incurred by the customer. If a contractor cannot obtain such bonding, it may indicate his or her financial incapacity.
2. Require that payments be made directly to subcontractors and material suppliers through a joint control. Funding services may be available, for a fee, in your area which will establish voucher or other means of payment to your contractor. These services may also provide you with lien waivers and other forms of protection. Any joint control agreement should include the addendum approved by the registrar.
3. Issue joint checks for payment, made out to both your contractor and subcontractors or material suppliers involved in the project. The joint checks should be made payable to the persons or entities which send preliminary notices to you. Those persons or entities have indicated that they may have lien rights on your property, therefore you need to protect yourself. This will help to insure that all persons due payment are actually paid.
4. Upon making payment on any completed phase of the project, and before making any further payments, require your contractor to provide you with unconditional “Waiver and Release” forms signed by each material supplier, subcontractor, and laborer involved in that portion of the work for which payment was made. The statutory lien releases are set forth in exact language in Section 3262 of the Civil Code. Most stationery stores will sell the “Waiver and Release” forms if your contractor does not have them. The material suppliers, subcontractors, and laborers that you obtain releases from are those persons or entities who have filed preliminary notices with you. If you are not certain of the material suppliers, subcontractors, and laborers working on your project, you may obtain a list from your contractor. On projects involving improvements to a single-family residence or a duplex owned by individuals, the persons signing these releases lose the right to file a mechanics’ lien claim against your property. In other types of construction, this protection may still be important, but may not be as complete.
To protect yourself under this option, you must be certain that all material suppliers, subcontractors, and laborers have signed the “Waiver and Release” Form. If a mechanics’ lien has been filed against your property, it can only be voluntarily release by a recorded “Release of Mechanics’ Lien” signed by the person or entity that filed the mechanics’ lien against your property unless the lawsuit to enforce the lien was not timely filed. You should not make any final payments until any and all such liens are removed. You should consult an attorney if a lien is filed against your property.”
An inspection addresses only those components and conditions that are present, visible, and accessible at the time of the inspection. While there may be other parts, components or systems present, only those items specifically noted as being inspected were inspected. The inspector is not required to move furnishings or stored items. The inspection report may address issues that are code-based or may refer to a particular code; however, this is NOT a code compliance inspection and does NOT verify compliance with manufacturer’s installation instructions. The inspection does NOT imply insurability or warrantability of the structure or its components. Although some safety issues may be addressed in this report, this inspection is NOT a safety/code inspection, and the inspector is NOT required to identify all potential hazards.
In this report, the inspector will note which systems and components were inspected, not inspected, not present, and/or deficient. General deficiencies include inoperability, material distress, water penetration, damage, deterioration, missing parts, and unsuitable installation. Comments may be provided by the inspector whether or not an item is deemed deficient. The inspector is not required to prioritize or emphasize the importance of one deficiency over another. Some items reported as deficient may be considered life-safety upgrades to the property This inspection is not an exhaustive inspection of the structure, systems, or components. The inspection may not reveal all deficiencies due to hidden or unknown factors. The inspection does not cover leak detections unless otherwise noted.
This report is the exclusive property of Caltech Pools Inc. and the client whose name appears herewith, and its use by any unauthorized persons is strictly prohibited. The observations and opinions expressed within this report are those of Caltech Pools Inc. and supersede any alleged verbal comments. We inspect all of the systems, components, and conditions as described above and cannot be responsible for any work performed in order to cover or hide said repair(s). In accordance with the findings above, the service recommendations that we make in this report should be addressed.