How to Replace a Kitchen Sink

By Gene and Katie Hamilton

Tools Required
  • Slip-joint pliers
  • Hammer
  • Nut driver
  • Screwdriver
  • Hack saw
Materials Required
  • Sink with clips
  • Strainer
  • Flexible plastic riser tubes
  • Bucket
  • Plumber's putty
  • Silicone caulk

Before You Begin

The steps involved are listed below, but if you're looking for a contractor, click Home Advisor a free service that matches homeowners with qualified prescreened contractors.

Make sure the new sink will fit in the original opening. If you choose a sink that's smaller than the existing one, you'll be forced to replace the countertop because of the size difference. If you decide to replace the sink with a larger one, be sure to measure the distance between the sides of the cabinet to ensure that you have sufficient room for the larger opening. Also make sure that internal partitions for drawers don't interfere with a larger sink.

Clear out all of the paraphernalia from under the sink and have a small bucket to catch the water in the trap. Remove the drain lines with slip-joint pliers because they aren't worth reusing.

These installation instructions are for an easy-to-install Grip-Rim Plus sink with self-nailing spring clips.

  • Step 1 : Remove the old sink

    Turn off the water. If you have shutoff valves on the supply lines going to the faucet, turn them off. If there are no shutoff valves, it's a good idea to install them because without them, you must turn off the water to the whole house while you're working on the sink.

    If there is a garbage disposer, unplug it from the receptacle and use a screwdriver to loosen the screw or bolts that hold it in place. If it's hard-wired, turn off the electricity, and then disconnect the wiring.

    Remove the water supply pipes leading from the wall to the faucet. Place a bucket under the p-trap to catch the water in the trap. Then loosen the compression nuts and remove the trap.

    There are two types of sinks. A self-rimming sink is held in place by a built-in rim and a series of clips underneath the sink that secure it to the countertop. Use a screwdriver to loosen the clips and remove them. Then push up on the sink from underneath to break the seal between the sink and countertop.

    The other type sink is called rimless or flush-mount and is held in place by a separate sink rim. This system also uses clips that not only hold the rim to the countertop, but also secures the sink to the mounting rim. Because the sink and rim are separate pieces, you usually find a series of tabs that keep the sink from falling through as you remove the clips. Before you loosen the clips on a rimless sink, make sure that the tabs are bent or that corner clips are installed.

    With a nut driver or screwdriver, loosen the screws in the clips and begin removing them. Recheck that the sink is secure before you remove the last few clips. Then, lift the sink out of the opening. If it's too heavy to lift, as a cast iron sink may be, carefully lower it to the bottom of the cabinet or have someone help you lift it so that you can remove it from the kitchen.

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