Storm shelter company repairs man's leaky shelter

Storm shelter company repairs man's leaky shelter

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Several weeks ago after rainy weather, the shelter had more than two inches of water in it. Several weeks ago after rainy weather, the shelter had more than two inches of water in it.
"The cracks that were in the floor, they chipped them out and they put the concrete down," Tony Smith said. "The cracks that were in the floor, they chipped them out and they put the concrete down," Tony Smith said.
The manufacturer sealed around the shelter's door. The manufacturer sealed around the shelter's door.
The company also patched the cracks in the floor. The company also patched the cracks in the floor.
"The manufacturer is going to look into it and see what we can do to help this," Willis said. "The manufacturer is going to look into it and see what we can do to help this," Willis said.

By DON DARE
6 On Your Side Consumer Investigator

SEVIERVILLE (WATE) - When deciding on something to buy, many people make their choice on the product's warranty.

However, you have to understand and read that warranty completely.

As Tony and Mary Smith took us to their storm shelter the other day, the couple said they're pleased with repairs made to the shelter's floor.

Things look very different.

"Oh yes, there was plenty of water when you were here before," Tony Smith recalled.

Except for the still-wet cement, the six-foot high, five foot by ten foot, $5,000 shelter is now dry.

"We bought it so we could be out of the weather, especially some of the bad storms that keep coming through here," Tony said.

"I'm glad they finally decided to do something," Mary said.

About three weeks ago when it had been raining for days, Smith took us into his flooded shelter.

"It's about two and a half inches deep," he showed us.

He said shortly after the shelter was installed last April, it would flood when it rained. The water comes up from the floor.  

For months last year, Smith says he had asked the people who sold him the shelter to fix it.

"Their warranty says it's not supposed to leak," he said.

The warranty does claim the shelter should not leak.

But Jenny Willis, co-owner of Tennessee Storm Shelters, said that warranty only refers to structures placed in garages.

The guarantee excludes the Smith's above-ground shelter, but she did promise to get it repaired.

"The manufacturer is going to look into it and see what we can do to help this," Willis said.
 
The other day, down in the now-dry structure, Tennessee Storm Shelters got the manufacturer out to patch the leaks.

"The cracks that were in the floor, they chipped them out and they put the concrete down," Smith said.

The shelter company also had the structure's door replaced and sealed.

Referring to the contract again, it states there should be no modifications to the system.

"I know Mr. Smith altered the shelter after we installed it," Willis said.
 
Comparing the shelter from when it was first built last spring to today, the company says dirt was removed from the front and sides of the shelter.

Those modifications, the company says, contributed to the flooding.

Mary Smith says she'll have to wait to know if the repairs worked.

"We'll see if it holds after another rain."

Tennessee Storm Shelters tells 6 On Your Side their guarantee is clear when it states, "any alterations or modifications to a structure voids the warranty."

But the company also says it is committed to making its customers happy.


If you have a consumer issue, call the 6 On Your Side Hotline at 865-633-5974 or email ddare@wate.com.

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