Garage utility sinks are meant to be practical and durable, which is why their plumbing is often exposed. Though the plumbing hookups look complicated, this visibility actually simplifies installation when you know how to install a utility sink in garage areas. Best of all, it allows you to work with the pipes without worrying about any excess cabinetry or other aesthetic concerns.
Installing a utility sink will require pipes that have hot and cold water to supply your faucets, and a drain line that will carry wastewater away.
Table of Contents
How to Put a Utility Sink in Garage
1. Connecting the Water Lines
- Soft copper tubing
- Crescent wrench
- Compression fittings
- Compression couplings
- Copper clips
Note: Turn off all water at the main valve source before starting work.
Measure the distance between hot and cold water pipes and where you wish to install your utility sink. Cut two pieces of copper tubing to this measurement, leaving a few inches extra than you need. You can cut off any excess tubing later. Though copper tubing is durable, try to keep this distance less than ten feet.
You want water to flow freely and easily from your pipes to your sink. The farther away your sink is from your plumbing, the more risk of leaks and possible problems may occur in the future.
Locate the exposed hot and cold water pipes on the wall. With your wrench, screw a compression coupling onto the end of each pipe. Be sure this coupling fits tight and will not come loose.
Now take your soft copper tubing and attach one end to the compression coupling on one pipe. Repeat this process for the other pipe. Use a compression fitting to attach the tubing to the coupling, and tighten these items with your crescent wrench.
One tube will be for your hot water and one will be for your cold water. Be sure to mark which is which so you can hook them up appropriately later when installing your sink and fixtures. You can do this with a magic marker or with a small paper label.
Run each of the copper tubes along the wall, attaching them to the wall as you go with copper clips. Try to keep these two tubes side by side for a more uniform appearance. They should end at where you will eventually install your garage utility sink and faucet handles. Be sure to not bend these tubes. Doing so can cause breakage or leakage. These tubes are made of copper, so they are not as flexible as other materials.
2. Installing the Drain Pipe
- PVC pipe
- Plumbers putty
- Y PVC pipe fitting
- Large wrench
- Drain assembly
Locate the drain hookup vent pipe that is usually located lower on the wall near the floor. Thoroughly coat the threads on this pipe with plumber's putty. Screw on the end of the Y fitting so that one half of the "y" portion is pointing toward the floor and the other is pointing toward the ceiling. When the putty dries this should create a watertight seal.
Screw the flange portion of the drain assembly into the top area of the Y pipe. This includes the strainer. Some drain assemblies come with the faucet you buy, but they can also be purchased separately. If you wish to install a garbage disposal, or if you have a utility sink with an extra thick bottom, you may have to purchase a flange extender to cross the extra distance.
On the other side of the Y, install the P-trap. The P-trap is a piece of PVC piping that prevents gas or air from any outside source from traveling up your drain and causing odors or smells. Use plumber's putty again on these threads so the seal is tight.
Make sure the Y piece is fully outfitted before attaching to the main drain line. Screw this on and secure with plumber's putty. Always be sure the pipe is placed at a pitch where water will drain successfully. If it is too level, water will not drain downward.
3. Installing the Sink
- Utility Sink
- Plywood or other wood
- Silicone sealant
Measure sink first or use a template that often accompanies sinks. Use these measurements as a guide and cut a hole in a piece of plywood to match. Using this piece as your countertop, construct the countertop to support your sink using wood nails to secure everything in place.
Provide plenty of support to the countertop, and take the sink's size and weight into account. Though you do not have to construct a full cabinet underneath your sink, you want a sturdy base to hold your sink. Use a level to make sure all surfaces are sitting even. Having all surfaces level is essential to your sink draining well.
When the countertop is constructed, mount your sink. Use silicone putty around all the surfaces of the sink to create a watertight seal where the sink's edges meet the countertop.
Install faucet fixtures and hook up water lines to each faucet handle. Make sure you attach the faucet and sprayer head to the appropriate lines. If you have a separate sprayer, use an extension coupling to connect the sprayer to the water line. If the sprayer is already installed inside the faucet spout, you can skip this step.
Using the drain assembly that came with your faucet kit, connect the sink drain to the drain pipe you previously readied in the last set of instructions. Use plumber's putty and silicone glue around all attachments to ensure tight seals. Clean up any excess dried silicone or other plumber's putty. Turn on the water at the source, and your sink should be ready to use.
Allow the water to run for a full minute while you look underneath the sink to make sure there are no leaks. Check the drain, the faucet couplings, and the P-trap. If everything remains dry during this time, congratulations! Your sink and plumbing has been successfully installed.
By the end of this process you should have a sink in your garage area that can be used for everything from rinsing off muddy shoes to hosing down a pet. With the right tools and methodology, installing a garage sink can be easy. If done correctly, a utility sink should stand up to daily use with ease and last for several years.