What the worst home repair you've ever encountered?

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I just did some plumbing repair at home, and all I can say is that it's the messiest and the worst home repair I've ever done. But what can i do? it has to be done. I hope I did a good job, I wouldn't want to do it again any time soon.
How about you? what's the worst home repair you've ever done, and what's the lesson you learned after?
--
ownerbuilder2012


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It's called a "learning curve".
Every time you do something new, you acquire something as a result; whether it be tools, knowledge about products, knowledge in knowing what to expect the next time you do something similar, contacts you can go to for help or advice, etc. And, all of those things help you do a better job the next time around.
--
nestork


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The soft water copper tubing under my trailer leaked. I learned that I should not sand the tubing ends before using compression fittings.
The first shed I built was a total disaster. Turns out, using full sheets of plywood makes the shed too tall. Ought have cut them down to 6 feet. Roof should be gentler than starting with 90 degree angle truss, really hard to put on the shingles.
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
I just did some plumbing repair at home, and all I can say is that it's the messiest and the worst home repair I've ever done. But what can i do? it has to be done. I hope I did a good job, I wouldn't want to do it again any time soon.
How about you? what's the worst home repair you've ever done, and what's the lesson you learned after?
--
ownerbuilder2012



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Was doing the yearly trim of mulberry tree next to dads house. Dad liked it for it's shade. Years doing this, climbing up tree,and cutting from one story roof. Even used small chain saw at times. I'm up 3-4 feet on wooden ladder resting on tree. As I was falling backwards, I reach out my arm to window out of desperation, hear crunching sound of my arm, hit ground, twisting my ankle. I made it it to standing position. I raised left arm, and felt it slip out of joint. Went into house, took two ibuprofen. Went back outside to bundle remaining limbs of tree. I'm in denial. Next day nurse visiting dad suggested I go to hospital. Rotator cuff. After 6 weeks of therapy, I get operation, then 6 more weeks of therapy. My arm is still has problems going on 10years. My ankle is fine.
Greg
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Oh, dad. He was working on the garage coil spring one day, drunk. I'll spare the details. He recovered ok.
Greg
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This is a home repair tale, but it is related to a garage door spring.
I used to work with a guy who parked in his garage, got out of the car and hit the GDO button on the way into the house. The door spring let go and smacked him upside the head, splittng the side of face open. His wife wondered what was taking him so long to come into the house so she went out and found him barely concious on the garage floor.
He was out of work for a month and still looked beat up when he came back.
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On Fri, 28 Sep 2012 08:46:16 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03

I was working on my car in my garage in Chicago and kept hearing some faint yelling. After a couple minutes I went outside in the alley and tracked it down to a neighbor 2 garages away. He was on a ladder in the garage with a finger stuck between his garage door panels. He was trying to increase the tension on the torsion spring and it got away from him, slamming down with his finger in a gap. Don't even ask how the hell he had a gap there, I have no idea. He was an e-room nurse and was probably using medical training. I've adjusted the same type springs a few times and the door was always closed when I did it. Can't remember how I got him loose, but it was pretty quick. Think I lifted the entire door with a 5' wrecker bar I had then. But maybe I spread the panels. It was a new garage. His finger was really chewed up - to the bone. What I remember most is driving him to the hospital he worked at, Michael Reese. PITA, a 40 minute drive to the south side in bad traffic instead of a local hospital 5 minutes away. Then I waited a couple hours to take him home. His wife was out of town. He never even bought me a beer, but hey, what are neighbors for? Reminds me, I had my old wood panel door replaced with a metal one a month ago. Dinky torsion springs compared to the old ones. I like the new light-weight door. Safer all-around. And another paint job I avoided doing for 15 years.
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He's very fortunate you heard, and acted on the call. I thank you, in case he never does.
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
I was working on my car in my garage in Chicago and kept hearing some faint yelling. After a couple minutes I went outside in the alley and tracked it down to a neighbor 2 garages away. He was on a ladder in the garage with a finger stuck between his garage door panels. He was trying to increase the tension on the torsion spring and it got away from him, slamming down with his finger in a gap. Don't even ask how the hell he had a gap there, I have no idea. He was an e-room nurse and was probably using medical training. I've adjusted the same type springs a few times and the door was always closed when I did it. Can't remember how I got him loose, but it was pretty quick. Think I lifted the entire door with a 5' wrecker bar I had then. But maybe I spread the panels. It was a new garage. His finger was really chewed up - to the bone. What I remember most is driving him to the hospital he worked at, Michael Reese. PITA, a 40 minute drive to the south side in bad traffic instead of a local hospital 5 minutes away. Then I waited a couple hours to take him home. His wife was out of town. He never even bought me a beer, but hey, what are neighbors for? Reminds me, I had my old wood panel door replaced with a metal one a month ago. Dinky torsion springs compared to the old ones. I like the new light-weight door. Safer all-around. And another paint job I avoided doing for 15 years.
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Years later, one spring let loose. I could not even budge the double wooden door. Scary.
I did finally replace it with a steel/foam door.
Greg
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DerbyDad03 wrote:

Sounds like that poor guy had tension springs on his garage door and didn't have safety cables inside them. Bad move...
Sears (for one) sells them, cheap insurance against you, a loved one, or your vehicle getting whacked:
http://tinyurl.com/cck76hr
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia
(W1BSV + Brass Rat '57 EE)
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On 9/25/2012 10:24 PM, ownerbuilder2012 wrote:

Now over 70, I'm judicious about any repairs I may do myself and will call in a plumber even though I could probably DIY. I may nurse something along until something else builds up than I get most bang for my buck by having more than one job done by the pro when he comes out. I guess that is my lesson part.
As far as nightmare it was over a dozen years ago when a leak developed behind the toilet in our basement family room. Since it was in the wall and toilet had to be removed I had plumber fix leak. I patched the tile wall and had to replace seal and bolts on toilet tank which broke when toilet was removed. First time ever bolting on toilet, I cracked it so I got the plumber back with a new one. I'll never attempt bolting one down again as how many times in a lifetime does a DIY'er ever do it.
That was not only problem with this powder room. The shut off valves and drain pipes on sink needed replacement due to plumber jostling around old parts. Then at end the sink Moen fixture leaked and tiring of bringing back plumber, I replaced that one myself.
This toilet and sink mess took place over maybe a two week period not to mention that I was very ill at the time. It was a harrowing time.
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I'm pride myself on being a DIY person. A few years ago, I decided to build myself a 20'x20' workshop form the ground up. Everything was going well until I got to wiring the interior electrical outlets with a GFI breaker. Everytime I tried to use an outlet, it would trip the GFI breaker. I'm not an electrician, so after about two days of dinking with with problem, I called in an electrician. The guy came out and within a minute showed me my error in the breaker box. It was a simple thing that I overlooked. He didn't even charge me for the service call. I learned that sometimes its better to have an expert look into an issue, then to waste time with it. I also learned more about CFI breakers.
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Total bathroom gut. Smashed up an iron tub with a sludgehammer. A piece took off and knocked me out.
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On 9/26/2012 10:57 AM, rlz wrote:

I had electrical contractor come out and bid on a generator transfer box, I also asked him to include repair of the switch. He not only corrected it on the spot but did not charge.
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I'd dare to guess, if you post the name and phone number of honest electrician, he'll have more work than he can handle. Post also on Angies List and Craigslist.
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
I'm pride myself on being a DIY person. A few years ago, I decided to build myself a 20'x20' workshop form the ground up. Everything was going well until I got to wiring the interior electrical outlets with a GFI breaker. Everytime I tried to use an outlet, it would trip the GFI breaker. I'm not an electrician, so after about two days of dinking with with problem, I called in an electrician. The guy came out and within a minute showed me my error in the breaker box. It was a simple thing that I overlooked. He didn't even charge me for the service call. I learned that sometimes its better to have an expert look into an issue, then to waste time with it. I also learned more about CFI breakers.
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On Sep 25, 10:24pm, ownerbuilder2012

Basement bathroom remodel, complete gut, including taking down 2 walls to make it bigger. The only thing that was going to remain was the wall mounted toilet. That plan changed after I hit the toilet with a sledgehammer while removing the wall. Luckily I cracked the bowl above the water line, so there was no leak.
Lesson re-learned: (I first learned it while in the Boy Scouts learning how to chop wood) Be aware of your surroundings and clear the area.
Hmmm...maybe I should mention the time I clamped a 36" steel bar clamp to a railing while builiding my deck and then stepped back about 10 feet to see how the railing looked. As I walked back towards the deck, looking at a section away from the bar clamp, the tiny end of the steel bar - sticking out 2 feet from the deck - simply blended into the background. It caught me right in the center of the left lens of my safety glasses, cracked the lens, deflected upwards, and took a gouge out of my forehead. If not for the safety glasses, my eye would have been pushed back into my head.
Not technically a "home repair" error, but certainly a lesson learned about the importance of safety gear and, once again, being aware of your surroundings.
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On 9/25/2012 10:24 PM, ownerbuilder2012 wrote:

Why not do it neat the first time?

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On Wed, 26 Sep 2012 02:24:47 +0000, ownerbuilder2012

Put a 5/8" staple in my middle finger. Flush with the skin. Luckily it went on both sides of bone, and missed it. Had needle-nose pliers handy, grabbed it, screamed and yanked. It was all over, and I never even felt faint. Can't remember what I was stapling, just that I don't like that body-piercing stuff. And I used a real stupid way to figure out which end of my new stapler shot the staple. I never did a bad job. If I can't do it right, I have a pro do it. If your plumbing job doesn't leak and won't leak, and won't cause future problems, don't worry about it.
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Reminds me of the time I was drilling to install a CB antenna on the back of my van. Right back of the sheet metal fender was a spray can.....
Christopher A. Young Learn more about Jesus www.lds.org .
Put a 5/8" staple in my middle finger. Flush with the skin. Luckily it went on both sides of bone, and missed it. Had needle-nose pliers handy, grabbed it, screamed and yanked. It was all over, and I never even felt faint.
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On 09/25/2012 07:24 PM, ownerbuilder2012 wrote:

I had to fix the sump pump about 10 years ago, and in the process got bit by a black widow spider.
After being sick for a week, feeling like I was about to die, I started to get better.
I still see the widows underneath the house when I have work to do under there, but I make sure I have my big orange can of Terro with me and give them (and their nests) a good blast.
Bastards.
Jon
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