Top 5 DIY bathroom disasters

We've all been there - the falling ladders, that burst pipe you accidentally drilled into, the bumps, the bangs, the bruises.

What's important is there are (usually) people out there who have made much more catastrophic errors in the past that we can all learn from. Stories like these often have the power to gain notoriety the world over, with the victims even becoming DIY legends in their own right.

While these anecdotes are often prime examples of how not to do something, they can sometimes be funny, gruesome or just downright shocking.

So, if you're feeling a bit glum about the progress - or lack of it - that your current project is making, take a well-deserved break to read through how it could be so much worse.

1. A tale from Down Under: The importance of wet-sealing

This first disaster was reported by the Australian building firm Renovation Perfection. The company was called in after the unfortunate homeowner tried their own hand at doing up their bathroom, only to ignore advice to seal all of their tiles.

However, this move ultimately proved itself to be a bad one. When water seeped through the grout, it began to warp the timber architraves, eventually leading to a tile cracking in the shower itself.

As more liquid leaked through the unsealed area, adjoining rooms soon also started to become damaged, with carpet, plaster and architraves all suffering the consequences.

The situation went from bad to worse, with termites moving in as a result of the damp conditions and decaying wood - eventually leading to the entire room (and everything else that had been affected) being demolished and transported away in a skip, forcing the owner to start from scratch.

How much did this error ultimately cost them? A cool AU$48,800 (£27,000). Check out our range of seals here.

2. A series of unfortunate events

Tellingly featured on, this next story starts with a couple who had a "tomato sauce disaster" and wanted to wash the offending mess off in the bathroom sink.

However, the T-shirt in question inadvertently blocked the plughole, so when the pair returned after leaving the tap running, they found an inch of water over the floor and curling-up lino.

To try to assess the damage, the husband tried to remove the lino and the wood underneath it to check the state of the floorboards. A major flaw to the plan was that he didn't have any tools to do this, so instead used his swiss army knife.

What happens next is not for the faint hearted - after forcing a large piece of wood away from the floor, the material pinged back, causing the knife to snap shut. As a result, the poor man ended up slicing his own finger to the bone. Ouch!

3. Slow-leaking sewage

Of course, no top five DIY disaster list would be complete without a tale from the toilet and our next example does not disappoint.

CNN Money tells a story of a blunder that involved a pair of do-it-yourself wannabes redoing their bathroom, with the husband making the mistake of not sealing the loo properly. However, the story doesn't end there.

The wife then unknowingly drilled through the waste pipe when putting a picture on her wall, causing a slow leak that went on for weeks before it was noticed.

Eventually, they couldn't not know something bad had happened when sewage water started seeping onto the floors of their house via the walls, where the waste had built up.

4. Flooding nightmare

We found this story on MSN and it is a prime example of just how bad things can get when you experience a leak.

The couple in question had gone on holiday for two weeks, leaving a damaged pipe fitting in the process. The offending part caused a fortnight of leaking water to go unchecked, meaning they were greeted with six inches of flooding in every room on the ground floor and a basement that was now a swimming pool.

Fortunately, they were covered by insurance. However, the house itself was a complete write-off and had to be knocked down.

5. Definitely not a light bulb moment

Last - but certainly not least - is a tale posted by a user on NetMums called Annie S.

Annie's dad had been working on doing up her bathroom and after finally finishing the tiling, the last job on his to-do list was putting a new light in.

Unfortunately, this didn't prove to be as simple as it perhaps should have been. Her brother Josh - who was helping - slipped when unscrewing the bulb, pulling the cable out - along with the light itself.

That wasn't the end of it, though. Not wanting to admit he'd made a mistake, Josh then attempted to wire it back up on his own, without telling his father. When electricity was restored, the circuit and the fuse were both damaged, leaving Annie with just two working lights upstairs and needing a full rewire for the house.

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