Window pains: CBS4 Problem Solvers helps man after ‘botched installation’ by Lowe’s

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – He paid $10,000 for eight new windows but when Bruce DeWitt was unhappy with the installation, he called the CBS4 Problem Solvers.

DeWitt lives near Broad Ripple. For the last 16 years, he has been renovating his single-level home and using Lowe's to do the work.

“I’ve probably got $70,000 dollars in materials with all the projects I’ve done,” DeWitt said. “I should have frequent flyer miles. Everything you see here, the trim work, the paint, the cabinetry.”

When it came time for one of his last projects–to replace the windows–DeWitt said he returned to Lowe's.

“I decided in July or August I just didn’t want to paint the windows anymore,” he said. “I’m tired of doing that every couple of years. You have to reglaze and repaint. They were old.”

According to DeWitt, Lowe's visited his house and measured the openings. They returned in September to replace them. DeWitt expected it to be an easy job.

“That has not been the case,” he said, disappointed.

DeWitt said he could tell something was wrong the minute the window installer started.

“When they set it up, it was so small from side to side that you could see out through the opening where the trim was removed,” he explained. “I looked outside and realized the window did not meet the brick. There were gaps.”

The windows were reportedly too small. Yet, the technician promised he was experienced, and that he was doing the job correctly. DeWitt let him continue.

When the job was done, DeWitt was appalled.

“First of all, the caulk is awful,” he said. “It’s bubbling up.”

CBS4 measured and found that the caulk was about an inch to an inch and a half wide. It was, in fact, bubbling in some areas and sinking in others. There was also paint missing from DeWitt’s freshly painted brick.

DeWitt said he contacted Lowe’s customer service, but didn't get the response he wanted. He also contacted Pella, the company that made the windows. He confirmed while Pella would cover their product, it would not cover Lowe’s installation.

“I’ve asked them to replace these windows. Take the proper measurements, put the proper windows in and let’s move on,” DeWitt said. “But I don’t know that I’m going to get anywhere with this.”

That’s when DeWitt called the CBS4 Problem Solvers.

Knowing there is a difference between local customer service and executive customer service, reporter Angela Brauer connected DeWitt to Lowe’s executive customer service via email. She also messaged Lowe’s media relations team several times asking why they weren’t sending someone out to inspect DeWitt’s home.

About two weeks later, DeWitt found out Lowe's would in fact be replacing his windows.

Executive customer service emailed the following:

  • Lowe's has agreed to re-measure and replace the windows properly using proper measuring practices, using proper caulking tool with Pella color match caulk, and answer any questions asked by the customer on the job site.
  • Lowe's will cover any damaged window trim that happens during the install
  • Lowe's will cover the cost of replacing the brick that was knocked off during the install and painting the brick around the window as long as a quote is sent in on installer letter head

DeWitt is now waiting to confirm when Lowe's will do the work.

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