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Bathroom Plumbing Fundamentals: Installing A New Sink

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A new bathroom sink can be a great way to bring new life and a whole new look to your bathroom vanity. If you want a sink that rests below the counter with a lip that sits above the edge, you'll be looking for a self-rimming sink. These are convenient and fairly simple to install, even for do-it-yourself home improvement enthusiasts. Here's a look at the steps to install a self-rimming sink on your own.

Shut Off the Water Supply

One of the most important things you can do before you make any changes or additions in your bathroom is to shut off the water. There should be a shut-off valve located near the bathroom sink, along the pipe that runs to the sink. Turn the valve to shut off the water.

Make Sure the Bowl Fits

Once you are certain that the water supply is cut off, you'll need to be sure that the sink fits into the space cut out for it in the counter. It may mean making a new cutout, particularly if you're installing a sink in a new countertop. The advantage to installing a brand new sink, though, is that most of them come with a template to make sure that the hole is sized appropriately. You can use a small saw to cut a hole in the counter.

If you're installing a single sink, you'll want to measure the diameter of the sink from edge to edge at the widest point and measure your countertop width as well. The hole should be cut so that the sink is centered on the counter. If you're installing two sinks, you'll want to place them equally spaced on the countertop.

When you're working with a brand new countertop, use a small drill bit to drill a starter hole. Then, you can use a jig saw to cut the opening out.

Attach the Drain Assembly

Before you install the sink, you need to attach the necessary plumbing, starting with the drain assembly. Apply an even line of plumber's putty on the bottom edge of the fixture where the drain pipe fits on the sink, then secure the drain pipe in its place. Attach the washer and gasket before tightening the lock nut. When you tighten the lock nut, you'll want to secure the pipe with pliers to keep the housing from spinning when you tighten the nut.

Install the Faucet

Follow the installation instructions that come with the faucet you selected for your sink. Since every faucet secures differently, it's important that you are attentive to the steps detailed in the paperwork with the model you selected.

Secure the Sink in Place

Turn the sink upside down and apply a thin bead of sealant or silicone around the edge of the sink lip. Then, align the sink with the bead of sealant facing the counter. Press the sink into place securely with even pressure on each side of the sink. Work your way around the entire edge of the sink to ensure that it's sealed properly. The seal is essential to prevent leaking around the sink.

Once the adhesive sets, run a thin bead of caulk around the outer edge, along the seam where it meets the counter. Work from underneath the sink to secure the pea trap. Tighten the nut atop the pea trap with a wrench so that you can be sure it won't leak. Then, affix the flex hoses from the fixture to the water valves.

With the steps presented here, you can give your bathroom a whole new look by installing a new sink and fixtures. If you aren't comfortable with the process, you can work with a licensed plumber (find out more here) to ensure that the sink is installed properly and isn't vulnerable to leaks.


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