Nothing slips through the cracks with Expert Concrete Restoration & Repair
Concrete is one of the most widely used substances on the planet. Despite the fact that it’s in our buildings, bridges and roads, most of us don’t think often about the critical role it plays in our lives—but Doug Laubshire does.
That’s because concrete is a big part of who he is. As Doug was growing up, his parents owned a chemical grouting company that earned his father the nickname: Grout King of New York City. “When people talk about grouting in New York, they mention Laubshire,” he says.
At the age of 15, Doug followed in his father’s footsteps by learning the ins and outs of the chemical grouting business. It wasn’t long before he mastered the bidding process, learned to read blueprints and became an expert installer.
Today, Doug has continued his family’s reputation as one of the partners of Expert Concrete Restoration & Repair (ECRR), a leading waterproofing contractor based in Fairfield, New Jersey, that offers waterproofing services across New York, New Jersey and the East Coast.
ECRR aims to take the stress off building owners, contractors and property maintenance companies by offering on-call, 24/7 services through a range of water issue solutions like chemical grout, acrylate and epoxy injections, curtain wall grouting and polyurethane void filling.
“If you’re having issues with concrete—such as cracks or leaks in your building—we’ll not only come and fix them, we’ll stand behind it and make sure that the work is good going forward,” Doug says. “You’re not hiring an individual, you’re hiring an expert team.”
The Service Side of Repair
When Doug was initially hired by Jason Tuerack and Philip Rhodes, the Owners of Hycrete, Inc., in 2019 for a grouting job at their concrete chemical solutions company, he didn’t expect he’d become a Co-Founder of ECRR.
“They brought me in for a particularly challenging project, and within three weeks I’d completed the job,” Doug says. “Jason asked, ‘Wow, how long have you been doing this? Can you take this and run with it?’ and I said, ‘Absolutely.’ ”
That he did. In the first month, Doug brought in 12 contracts for Hycrete and garnered rave customer reviews. That caught Jason and Philip’s attention. Unbeknownst to Doug, they’d been considering the creation of a new company—one that would build upon Hycrete’s innovative chemical product offering by honing in on the services side of concrete repair.
“We’d talked about it and realized a service-focused company was needed in the market, but we didn’t have the wherewithal to push it forward,” Jason says. “It wasn’t until we encountered Doug’s knowledge and expertise that we decided to make it a standalone business.”
They shared their plan with Doug, asked him to lead the new company and made him a partner on the spot. And in the year since ECRR was officially established in June 2019, it’s experienced exponential growth.
“We knew we’d be satisfying a need, but we didn’t anticipate the degree to which the marketplace was unaware of how to do this,” Jason says. “Doug’s really jumped in on the front lines to fill that need.”
While the company is still young, the expertise of the company’s team is not. Many of ECRR’s concrete repair technicians have committed their careers to the trade and are qualified to help with the direst of water issues—whether it’s in foundation walls, floors, elevator pits, parking garages, underground utilities and more.
“We’re the company to call when a water infiltration is beyond the basic fix,” Doug says. “No two leaks are the same, but our team has seen every kind of repair that’s out there. We always have a solution, and we’re always looking for ways to improve the way we operate.”
They can also be counted on to respond quickly to an urgent need or crisis.
“We have contractors who’ll call in the middle of the night with issues, like they were digging a foundation and hit a massive stream, for example,” Doug says. “They can’t continue building until we stop that water, so they really rely on us to be there for them.”
In addition to their around-the-clock reliability, the ECRR team has developed a reputation for helping customers avoid costly—and more disruptive—alternatives.
One such project was on a two-story residential building near the Long Island Sound coastline. The building owner found ECRR via The Blue Book Building & Construction Network. He reached out to Doug to figure out how water was infiltrating the building through the walls and floors and up into his elevator pits.
“He was on the verge of excavating around the perimeter of the entire building in order to waterproof the foundation, which would have cost him hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Doug says. “Within 10 days, we had that place bone dry. He still calls me to this day to tell me how great the place is doing.”
Another customer who can attest to that quality of work is Miguel Oliveras, Director of Facility Maintenance and Client Services at SP+ Corporation, a company that provides parking management services. Miguel manages the company’s many parking lot properties, and he relies on ECRR to be on the ready when there’s an issue.
When Miguel found himself dealing with a double-wide car elevator pit in Manhattan, which required two sump pumps to constantly pump unwanted water from the facility, ECRR’s specialists had the problem fixed in two nights, removing the need for the pumps altogether.
“Doug and ECRR really understand the myriad complexities and unique challenges presented by the parking industry, and have proven to be a voice of reason during really uncertain times,” Miguel says. “They provide a supreme attention to detail and are always available to consult whenever needed. They’ve been great business partners.”
“My goal for 2021 is to be the general contractors’ household name. I want everybody to know us and understand that we really can offer a remedy to any kind of water infiltration issue they have.” Dylan Laubshire, Superintendent, Expert Concrete Restoration & Repair
A Foundation of Expertise
While Doug runs ECRR’s day-to-day operations and takes care of everything from proposals to interfacing with contractors, he says the growth of the company is thanks to his team of experts. He makes a point to take his employees and their families out to dinner once a month to express his appreciation for them.
“They’re becoming the leaders of chemical grouting in New York and New Jersey, and they constantly outperform my expectations,” he says proudly.
One of those employees is Dylan Laubshire, Doug’s 23-year-old nephew.
“He brings a lot to the table, and he’s my right-hand man,” Doug says. “I watched him grow up, and he’s one of the best grouting techs in the field—and that’s for anyone, anywhere. Not just us.”
Dylan says he started doing injection grouting as soon as he was legally able to do it, and joined ECRR in October 2019.
“My goal for 2021 is to be the general contractors’ household name,” Dylan says. “I want everybody to know us and understand that we really can offer a remedy to any kind of water infiltration issue they have.”
As ECRR’s Superintendent, he says the company is really hitting its stride in terms of building its labor force and getting crews out to perform jobs.
“Anyone can technically do this job, but when the typical application doesn’t work, you need to know what comes next—and that comes from having the experience and asking the right questions,” Dylan says. “One-half of this is, ‘OK, it’s day one, let’s get this started.’ The other half is, ‘OK, that didn’t work, now what?’ ”
From that perspective, Dylan admires his team members’ ability to come together, share ideas and make a solution more complete. “Our team has this attitude of, ‘We’re here to do a job, and we’ll do it once and we’ll do it well, regardless of what that takes.’ Nothing slips through the cracks.”
Furthermore, it’s a team effort.
“At most companies, typically you have a front runner who is the decision-maker who knows all the answers to the questions,” he says. “Here, we’re comprised of a team of decision-makers who all have a say and have all done this before. That’s what makes us special.”
Jason agrees: “We all have a lot of respect for each other, and we do everything as a collective; there is no one person just making decisions,” he says. “Whether it’s implementing new software to make ourselves more efficient or deciding whether or not to take on a new complex job, we make those decisions together and move forward together.”
Restoring Hope in Times of Crisis
That team wouldn’t exist, however, without Doug’s lifelong commitment to concrete and the path his father paved to follow in his footsteps. He also has another thing in common with his family: many of them are firefighters.
So, just as Doug jumps in on the front lines to help fill the needs of the grouting industry, he’s the one jumping in on the front line in his personal pursuits as well. Doug became a firefighter in 1997 and has been a 17-year volunteer of the Prospect Park Fire Department in Prospect Park, New Jersey, where he received a lifesaving award for pulling two victims out of a burning building.
“I’ve just always been that guy—the fix-it guy,” he says. “I like people to know they can call me when they’re in a crisis.”
That seems to apply to the homeowners, contractors and building maintenance companies that reach out to him for their water infiltration issues.
“I get so much satisfaction out of fixing water-related issues and seeing the look of relief when a seemingly endless issue with infiltration is resolved—it just gets me every time,” he says.