The kitchen sink is one of the hardest working features in your home. It is also one of the most important, with the kitchen being an area of the home that attracts so much attention from visitors, and with the kitchen sink being involved in so much of your everyday life. A tired-looking kitchen sink can give the wrong impression and make your whole kitchen look grimy and old. We are going to look at refreshing your kitchen by replacing your old sink with a nice new one.

The Parts You Need To Know

To replace a basin and kitchen tap, the main parts we need to understand are :

The flexible tap connectors - these bendy pipes connect your tap to your internal plumbing

The waste and overflow - this is the large plastic pipe that connects to your plug hole and overflow to provide waste water with a place to travel

Bolts and washers - these connect the tap to the basin, with a nut on the other side to clamp it in place.

Step One

Your first job is to ensure the water-flow is isolated. Many kitchens will be fitted with compression fittings. These are small connectors that house an ‘olive’ - a circular piece of plumbing that helps create a watertight bond between two pipes. If you do not have compression fittings, then we recommend picking some up and getting them installed, as they can save you lots of time and energy down the line. Compression fittings have a notched screw in the centre that you can use to isolate your water supply using a screwdriver.

The flexible tap connectors and plastic waste pipes should then be disconnected from the internal plumbing of your building. This should simply be a case of unscrewing the bolts and pulling the pipes apart.

compression fitting diagram

Once these two things are done, the only thing connecting your tap and basin should be the bolt and nut that fixes the tap to the basin, and any sealant around the edge of the basin.

At this point, you should unscrew the tap from beneath using an adjustable wrench, and pull it out of the hole from the top, bringing the flexible connectors with it (although sometimes, the hole will be a tight squeeze, and you may have to remove one or more of the flexible pipes before it pops out.)

Step Two

There is usually a small bolt and clasp underneath the basin that you must undo in order to get the basin free from the counter. This can be done with a screwdriver and should not be too difficult. If there is still sealant between the lip of the basin and the worktop, you can work a small utility knife along the edge, cutting the sealant.

You can then carefully, but firmly, lift the basin and tap from the worktop. Basins can be large and very heavy, especially ceramic ones, so it is always handy to have an extra pair of hands for the heavy lifting portion of this job.

Also, make sure that you remove any bits and bobs of old sealant around the edge of your worktop, so the new basin can fit cleanly to the surface.

Step Three

You should try a dry run first, to make sure everything fits - place the new basin into the hole in your worktop. Check for any areas where the hole needs filing down, or if the space is a little too tight you can remove the basin and saw a larger hole. It is important to note that you should not install your new basin too close to the edge of your worktop, as this can weaken it structurally.

If your dry run is successful, and you feel ready to install your basin, then apply a thin bead of sealant around the hole, then fit the basin on top. Some sealant will push out around the sides, you can wipe this up for a neat finish.

Step Four

Finally, place your tap into the tap hole, bolt into place and reconnect your plumbing and waste. When this is done, the tap should be gripped firmly onto your new basin, the hot and cold internal plumbing should connect with the flexible tap connectors, and your waste system should be connected to the large plastic waste system of your home.

All that remains is to test that your connections are watertight. Turn your water on from the compression fittings, test, and keep an eye open for any leaks or loose bits.

Hopefully this guide will help give you the knowledge and confidence to change your kitchen as you see fit, and achieve the look you want in your home. As always, we recommend paying close attention to manufacturer’s guidelines and if you do not feel comfortable and confident undertaking the work yourself, then please contact a trained professional who can ensure the job is a success.

If you have a change in your home coming up, or a bit of DIY to do, why not send in some snaps? We would love to see your finished handiwork, and all the mess you create along the way!

Visit again soon for more DIY tips, product and helpful new articles.

Alex, Victorian Plumbing