Monday, August 6, 2012

Featured Fails

Sorry for the lack of activity here. My recent projects have been more suited to the Fail blog than the Goth It Yourself blog. :P

Fail 1: Door trim
I had great plans to replace the trim around the doors in my bedroom. Removing the old trim went smoothly. Then the fail began.  First, I attempted a fun paint treatment… which did not work at all.  I repainted the trim and then proceeded to install it… incorrectly.  :( And of course, I glued the trim to the wall, so this fail will be difficult to remedy.

Fail 2: Faucet handles
The cold water faucet in my shower suddenly began to offer only two choices – a tiny drip or Niagara Falls. Adjusting the water for a comfortable temperature was nearly impossible. Then the cold water began spontaneously turning itself off entirely. As my goal was bathing myself, not boiling myself, this situation required immediate attention.

Rather than just replace the cold water stem, I decided to take the opportunity to replace the entire set of clunky, ugly old faucet handles.  I bought a set of lovely brushed nickel cross handles with “universal” fit. And technically they did fit – they successfully turned the water off and on – but they left two inches of the bare stem showing. I tried again with a different handle kit that included shorter stems… which would not fit into my current plumbing.

In the end, I just replaced the cold water stem and stuck the ugly handles back on.  Not a total fail as I do have control over the cold water again... but not the successful change to pretty handles I was hoping for.  :/

Fail 3: Light bulb
I tried to unscrew a burned-out light bulb in my ceiling fan… and it broke off in the socket.  If it were a lamp, I could just unplug it and remove the bulb base with pliers. But of course it’s a ceiling fan, which is hard-wired into the house electricity. And of course I have no idea which breaker controls the fan, so I’ll have to shut off power to the entire house in order to replace the $*!@!(# light bulb.

Win:
I did manage to eke out one success… I replaced the flapper in my toilet!  Woo-hoo!  The replacement itself was fast and easy.  It was taking everything out of the over-the-toilet cabinet, unscrewing it from the wall, detaching it from the base so that I could get to the toilet tank, reattaching it to the base, screwing it to the wall, and putting everything back in the cabinet that was time-consuming.

I remind myself to be grateful for small victories and hope to soon post about a successful project! Or at least an interesting fail. ;)

20 comments:

  1. For the broken lightbulb: turn the light off, then take a raw potato, cut it in half and jam it into the remains of the lightbulg. You should then be able to unscrew the rest of the bulb by turning the potato.

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    1. Alas, I have no potatoes. My kitchen is not nearly as well stocked as my workroom. ;) Needle-nose pliers will work; it's just annoying to have to shut off power to the whole house.

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  2. Sorry so many of your projects didn't work out. We all have that, and the ones you have succeeded at are so amazing, so don't be disenheartened! I very much admire your skills and intend to try and do some of these when I have more money and my own house! :)

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    1. Thank you! I used to get very frustrated at any failure. Then I bought this wacky little house... where things rarely go right the first time... and began to grow accustomed to failure. ;) Now I mostly see it as a learning experience. I have certainly learned a lot in the past three weeks!

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  3. Bad luck is making it's way around I see.
    Hope tomorrow things are bright and going right.

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    1. Thanks! :) Yeah, I've had a little string of bad luck here. But I think things are looking up now. There are indications that good luck is on the way!

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  4. Bad things happen in threes so you should be able to do just about anything with success now =)

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    1. Ha ha! Excellent point! :D I guess that means now is the time to tackle the big projects. Or maybe play the lottery! ;)

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  5. I can totally empathize with the hot water dilemma.
    In mother's home, the faucet didn't work-- in fact it was threaded completely and just fell off so we had to use pliers to turn it when we wanted hot water.
    I don't know what occurred after the break but the water temperature was completely off-- a slight nudge would scald our bodies lol.

    Home improvement is such a royal pain in the ass lol
    I hope that solutions to any of your problems regarding it are found swiftly and easily!

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    1. It's easy to take the luxury of a comfortable shower for granted until you lose it. Getting it back becomes a high priority immediately. ;)

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  6. Stupid question: Whats a flapper?

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    1. A flapper is the rubber part of the flush mechanism that "flaps" down to seal the flush valve.

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    1. That would cut off the broach, leaving nothing for the handle to attach to.

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  8. Well bless your cotton sox! I know how frustrating it can be when things don't go exactly to plan, hopefully the fails are now over and you can get back to success :)

    I am looking forward to seeing the door trims once you have corrected them.

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    1. Thanks. I have an idea on the door trim that I think will work. I might even like it better than the original plan... then I can tell myself I meant to do it that way all along. ;)

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  9. awww, I was looking forward to some funny pictures! LOL
    Just kidding. Sorry that things have been frustrating but think of everything as learning experiences. ;)

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    1. I have "before" pictures, but it's the "during" pics that would have been funny. Me in the bathtub wearing boots, with tools and plumbing bits all around, cursing the faucet handles, might have been moderately amusing.

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  10. Faucets are always a pain. We've replaced all 5 sink faucets in our house and I think only the kitchen and one of the bathroom faucets were relatively easy - they other three were all total nightmares, and each presented a *different challenge so we couldn't even just learn from the first one! One of the bathrooms took us TWO DAYS.

    Flapper replacement is awesome fun! I've done two of those. Getting the old junk off is the hardest (my instructions say "hand tighten only" but apparently the guy who built the house had different instructions!). And the fact that you smell like Pirates of the Caribbean for two days after...

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    1. Plumbing connections seem unnecessarily complicated to me. If you don't tighten them enough, they leak. If you overtighten them, they leak. What's with that?

      I bought a lovely new faucet for my bathroom sink. I look forward to using it, if I can survive the installation process. It's going to be very awkward working inside a 30" vanity cabinet. :P

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