Installing Kitchen Sinks

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Plumbing a kitchen is usually one of the last steps of a remodeling project or new construction. This section covers the major kitchen plumbing jobs.

Most of the time a sink will fit perfectly in a precut countertop opening, but test fit the sink and check that it sets level.

Apply plumber’s putty around the sink’s drain hole and seat the strainer assembly. Flip the sink upside down, tighten the drain nut and “tailpipe” piece.

Flip the sink upright and install the faucet, valves, and handles. Tighten down these items and hook up the water lines to a tee fitting.

You can also hook up the water lines coming into the valves and avoid doing that once the sink is set. Set a “self-rimming” sink in the hole and fasten any included mounting clamps underneath it. Run a bead of clear-drying caulk around the rim.

If the sink isn’t self-rimming, run a bead of plumber’s putty on the bottom of the lip and caulk the opening to keep water out. Seat the sink and tighten any clamps.

imgRemove any rags or cap blocking the drain stub and glue on a threaded adapter to the stub. Screw on a trap to the adapter threads and sink drain.

Screw on water supply lines (if you haven’t already) and attach them to the shut-offs. Use a “two-headed” shut-off if you’re also going to connect to a dishwasher.

Run some water down the drain to block sewer gases, and check each line and drain joints for leaks.

The garbage disposer is normally installed with the sink. However, connect the supply lines to the faucet first, so you don’t have to work around the disposer once it’s in.

A special strainer and mounting assembly usually come with the disposer or sink. Attach the assembly with a snap ring and secure it with its included fasteners.


Hang the disposer on the mounting assembly and line up its drain hole to face the other sink’s drain. Attach the discharge tube to the disposer’s housing.

Fit the drain tube into a tee that connects to the other sink drain and the trap. Tighten those connections. Then connect the sink trap to the waste pipe.

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