Construction Pro Tips
Fix a leaky kitchen sink
You can buy everything you need at home center. Kits for side outlet assemblies (like the one shown here) or center outlet assemblies (where the trap is beneath the center of the sink) contain most of the essential parts.
Here are some pointers for a smooth project:
- You’ll have to cut a few pipes: both tailpieces, the waste arm and maybe the trap arm. A fine-tooth hacksaw works best.
When in doubt, mark and cut pipes a bit long. Better to cut twice than cut too short and make an extra trip to the hardware store.
- Don’t forget to insert tailpiece washers. Other joints require cone washers. The only joint without a washer is the ground joint at the trap.
- Assemble everything loosely until the whole assembly is complete. Then tighten all the slip nuts.
- Hand-tighten the slip nuts. If any joints leak when you test the new assembly, tighten them slightly with slip-joint pliers.
- When you’re all done, test the assembly for leaks.
But you might also need:
- Long tailpieces. The tailpieces that come with kits are often only a couple of inches long.
- A trap arm extender. The arm that comes with the kit may not reach the drainpipe that protrudes from the wall.
- A dishwasher wye that has a connection for your dishwasher hose.
- A disposer kit that allows the waste arm to connect to a garbage disposer.