45 DIY Disasters That Turned Out Hilarious
It wasn’t funny at the time, but now these homeowners can laugh at their DIY disasters. And so can we!
Being the dutiful wife, I held on tight! It took him a few seconds to realize what was happening. He had forgotten to unplug the pump. After pulling the plug, he looked at me with a worried expression, but I began laughing hysterically. I was soaked with that disgusting water from head to toe. At least the project turned out as planned— after Sandy, they had no water in their basement. — Jill Gallery. Plus: Check out these insanely smart home improvement hacks you’ll wish you knew sooner.
This side up
I fit the handle back into the door—but the latch wouldn’t catch. I then tried to manually pull back the latch—but it wouldn’t budge. Then I used my nail punch and hammer to remove the hinges—a sure bet—but the door was so tight in the frame I couldn’t budge it. There I was, trapped in my own bathroom.
I considered escaping through the window, but given the 9 in. of snow outside, my stocking feet and no key to get back into the house, I decided against it. Mild panic fueled a couple of karate kicks that split that hollow-core door into splinters. I think I’ll paint the new door before I hang it.
The Physics of Plumbing
-Dr. Kris Storm
Then I noticed our dog happily gnawing away and saw a pile of chewed pencil pieces around her. She had been sneaking up behind me while I was bent over and stealing them right out of my pants pocket.
She’s a good dog, but not a handyman’s best friend. —Ken Loftus
Tangled up in Snow
My friend was having trouble with squirrels invading his attic. The fact that his dog loved to chase squirrels gave him an idea. The next time he heard a squirrel in the attic, he caught his small dog, climbed the ladder, opened the access hole and released the dog. Since his dog doesn’t obey very well, he had attached a long rope to his collar so that he could just reel him in once the intruder had been run off. But as the dog took off after the squirrel, the rope got wrapped around the trusses until the dog was hopelessly tangled. When my friend climbed up into the attic to rescue the dog, he stepped between the trusses, broke through the drywall and landed in the living room. So much for canine pest control. — Kevin Boekhoff
Electric Cake Batter
— Mary-Kay Reno
Cheap Paint Job
After about a half hour of chain sawing, I heard a thunderous crash and ran out to see what had happened. The rope trick obviously hadn’t worked and the trunk had fallen smack in the middle of the deck (which was not part of the remodeling plan). Thankfully, no one was injured, but we ended up hiring a contractor to remove the old deck and build a new one, which was way more expensive than hiring a tree removal service.
Use Your Head not Your Hammer
– Mari Nelson
Moles 1, Homeowner 0
The next morning I noticed something odd about my lawn irrigation system. The ground was rising and bulging and occasionally sending up an errant spray of water where no sprinkler head was located. Upon closer investigation, I found that even if I hadn’t speared any varmints, I’d done a nice job of perforating the underground water lines. — Kent Stever
A Bit of A Problem
Hot Enough for Ya?
Oh, That’s What That Wall Is For
After assuring my wife that I could finish the project over a long weekend, I started demoing the lath-and-plaster wall. By bedtime, I had the wall down and most of the debris bagged and stacked. I climbed the stairs to our bedroom, which was directly above the living room, and went to sleep.
The following morning I awoke to a bowl-shaped bedroom floor! I stepped gingerly across it, ran down the stairs and discovered that the living room ceiling had sagged 6 in. during the night! Turns out I had removed a load-bearing wall. As we sped to the rental yard to pick up jacks, I sheepishly told my wife that I might need more than three days to finish.
The next morning, I walked outside to get the paper and saw the empty toilet box sitting on my unheated porch. As I shivered in my bare feet, the explanation suddenly hit me. I ran to the bathroom and sure enough, the toilet was sitting flush against the floor and the bolts were completely loose. Turns out the wax ring had been frozen solid.
Doggone bad measuring!
I suddenly remembered that the house floor cantilevered over the foundation, and I had drilled the hole 18 in. in front of the refrigerator. After a bit of a hunt, I finally found the hole in the hardwood floor—directly under the dog’s dish! Without skipping a beat, I cut a piece of 3/8-in. dowel, plugged the hole and slid the dog’s dish over it. I figure no one will be the wiser (as long as we have a dog, anyway). — Laurence Simon
The Eye of the Beholder
I was remodeling my daughter’s second-floor bedroom and had all the demo work done. I was ready to start the next phase when I saw daylight coming up through a hole in the floorboard. But that didn’t make any sense. How could there be light between the ceiling downstairs and the floor upstairs?
So I got down on my hands and knees and peered through the little hole—and saw an eyeball looking right back at me! I almost had a heart attack right there. When I screwed up enough courage to take a second look, I realized that a piece of broken mirror had lodged itself in a knothole. I’d nearly frightened myself to death by staring at my own eyeball!
The Ever-Flowing Water Heater
Caution: Highly Foolhardy
Raindrops Keep Falling…..
After I left for college, my father decided to empty my waterbed. Unable to get a good siphon going, he gave up and dropped the hose on the floor and left the room to take care of other chores. Hours later he noticed water dripping through the ceiling below. The siphoning had started after all. When I went home that weekend, he had several garbage cans in the living room and had drilled holes all over the ceiling to let the water out. Poor Dad. I’d never seen him more frustrated and forlorn. I don’t think we’ll be shopping for another waterbed anytime soon!
Unfortunately, our dog, which I had carefully shut outside, came trailing in right behind him. A big, hairy paw stepped right into the can of black, oil-based paint. To make matters worse, the dog got scared and ran as I yelled and chased him, hoping to keep him off the carpet. His paint-soaked paw made a disaster across the house. When I was between cleaning the floors and the black-pawed dog, my wife came home. Calling it “puppy art” didn’t improve the situation. — Carl Bernardi
A Waste of Time
Can You Hear Me Now?
Standing next to the mower, I pressed my foot down on the brake, turned the key and sure enough, the engine started right up. I then took my foot off the brake and watched in horror as the mower sped away, ripping the ends of the jumper cables off as it went. I had forgotten to put the transmission in neutral! Thankfully, I was able to hop on and stop it before it got too far, but I got a hearty round of applause from my neighbors, who appreciated the clown show.
I’m building my own home, and I pride myself on being able to tackle almost any job. I thought I’d figured out a great system for installing the prehung doors. My problem came when I got to a closet door that opened out from the closet. To keep the door frame square, I nailed blocks at a 45-degree angle to the outside of the jambs. I then got my shims, level and nail gun ready and went into the lighted closet and started shimming and shooting nails into the jambs. When I finished, I tried to open the door. The blocks were nailed across the jambs on the other side. I didn’t have a hammer or a pry bar, but I remembered the cell phone in my pocket. I called my brother, and after I listened to his hysterics, he agreed to come and rescue me. He hasn’t mentioned it to anyone yet, but I know he’s just waiting for the right moment.
Smokin’ New Man Cave
On the first warm day of spring, I rolled up my old garage door (the new one hadn’t arrived yet) and started working in my new man cave. After about 15 minutes, I smelled smoke and realized my garage door was smoldering! I rolled it down and found three scorched spots where my recessed lights were burning into the door. I’m just glad my custom door hadn’t been installed yet!
Super Glue Follies
Bee careful with that hammer
I was tearing down an old shed that wasn’t much more than weathered lumber over a dirt floor. A fair number of bees were flying around, but I kept going until the shed was down and stacked into neat piles. There was one last piece of plywood lying on the ground. With the hammer in my hand, I used the claw to lift up the plywood. Out from the ground came the bees! I dropped the plywood and started running, but one of the bees was gaining on me! My instinct was to start waving my hands to ward off the bee, but I forgot I was holding my hammer! The emergency room doc was laughing so hard that he had a tough time keeping the stitches straight as he worked on the gash above my eyebrow. — Norman Bullock
Two Times the Water Damage
With the main water supply to the house turned off, I installed the shutoff valves. Then I went downstairs to turn on the water supply so I could check the joints for leaks. As I walked back upstairs, fancying myself a master plumber, I heard the sound of gushing water. I had forgotten to turn off the shutoff valves! The bathroom was flooded and the ceiling below was ruined. But my soldering job held up perfectly.
Broken Toy Box
The toys at my northern Michigan cabin were multiplying in the garage, so I decided it was time for an addition. I doubled the length of the garage, making it an end-to-end, two-car structure. To save money, I hand-framed the roof rather than use factory-built trusses. With all this extra garage space, I’d be able to buy even more toys!
After several snow and ice storms up north, I received a call from my neighbor, who asked the dreadful question, ‘Remember the garage you used to have?’ The weight of the snow had caused the roof to cave in, crushing my speedboat, trailer, snowmobiles and dirt bike inside. After careful forensic study, I figured the overloaded rafters had pushed out the walls until the roof collapsed. Probably, I hadn’t used enough crossties, leaving me with the lesson that a sturdy toy box is worth spending more for.
Lesson Learned the Slimy Way
As I inserted the hose into the drain, my wife asked, “Don’t you think we should cover the other drain?” But it was too late. I’d already flipped on the vacuum, causing stinky, slimy water to shoot out of the other drain and drench us. Next time I’ll let her finish talking before I start working.
That is One Mighty Fan
What a Turkey
I grabbed a small hammer and a screwdriver and started tapping on the ice. One, two, and on my third tap, there was a loud hissing sound. I had ruptured a refrigerant line that was just below the ice. The estimate to repair the line and replace the coolant was about the same as the price of a new freezer—$350. I bought the new freezer and put my very expensive ‘free’ turkey inside it.
A Flush to Remember
– Rob Kiesling
“I Did What You Said, Dad”
Floor Sander Stampede
I quickly discovered that the sander’s switch was still on. The thing started up and shot across the room like the rabbit at a dog race, with me chasing it. It crashed through the wall I had just painted, leaving a hole about the size of…well, a floor sander. Even worse, my wife and daughter had been watching. They quietly left the room. I also left the room…to get my drywall tools.
I felt the lines to make sure I wouldn’t tap into the hot water and decided to use the one at the bottom, since it felt cold. I attached the saddle clamp to the line and screwed down the needle until it pierced the pipe. No water came through the line, so I went upstairs to make sure the icemaker was turned on. After a few trips up and down the stairs, I smelled gas and realized that I’d tapped into the gas line. I told my wife and kids to get out of the house while I closed the saddle clamp, stopping the flow of gas. I called the gas company from the neighbor’s house. This goof was too close for comfort. — Cameron LiDestri. Next, check out 100 home repairs you don’t need to call a pro for. We’ll show you how to do it yourself!