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Replace a Kitchen Sink and/or Fixture

Step 2: Mount the Fixtures First

If you are installing a sink and faucet, do everything you can before mounting the sink. And read the instructions: Faucets vary widely in the way they are mounted and connected. Occasionally, manuals can be helpful.

Attach the Faucets and Spigots

Attach the faucets, spigots, or the one-piece unit to the sink. The attachment may be made with a single 12" nut or a large lock ring, as shown. When attaching a metal ring to a metal pipe, plumber's grease will prevent rust.

Attach the water supply tubes. Tighten the supply tube with a wrench.

Attach the Dishwasher Air Gap

A dishwasher air gap is a safety measure. If the drain plugs, the dishwasher will dump its wastewater into the sink, not into the sink cabinet. As a fringe benefit, it puts a slug of hot, soapy water into the drain, helping keep it clear.

Attach 58" and 78" tubing to the air gap with hose clamps. Leave the hoses long enough to connect as shown in the diagram. Then attach the air gap to the hole in the sink. The air gap prevents floods if the dishwasher drain plugs.

Step 3: Connect the Tailpiece and Drain

The top of the sink is now connected. The type of drain connections depend on whether you will be installing, or reinstalling, a garbage disposal.

Disposal Duties

Disposals require a specific type of tailpiece connection, which attaches with three screws. If you have an existing disposal, it's simplest to use the existing attachment if it is in good condition. To replace the disposal, shut off the circuit, disconnect the wire, remove the disposal, and install the new one, following directions that come with it. To install a disposal on a new sink, attach the tailpiece, and then follow directions for the disposal.

Connect the Tailpiece

If you're not installing a garbage disposal, connect a tailpiece to the new sink with silicone caulk. Masking tape will protect the sink and tailpiece from the caulk, which can be tough to remove. Trim masking tape away from the flange on the tailpiece.

Place silicone caulk on the bottom of the upper tailpiece and push it through the sink drain hole. Assemble the rubber washers and the housing, and then tighten the lock nut and wipe off extra caulk. When the caulk is dry, remove the masking tape.

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Simple Home Improvements © 2004 by David J. Tenenbaum. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


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