Water Leak Around the Sink & Countertop

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Water sometimes can leak around the sink.
Image Credit: Pascal Sirletti / EyeEm/EyeEm/GettyImages

Kitchen sinks are used daily and can certainly withstand quite a bit of wear and tear. It is important to maintain them, even in the ways we might not always think about. One of the best ways to keep your kitchen sink in order and also protect your countertops from any water leaks is by replacing the caulking on a regular basis. This job is relatively easy if you know what kind of caulk you need and the basics of caulk application.

Why Replace Caulking?

Over time, caulking may crack or fall away, which can leave a gap between your kitchen sink and the countertop. The danger that comes from a caulk-free kitchen sink is that water on the kitchen counter will seep between the sink and the countertop, inevitably leaving lots of water damage. If you notice that your kitchen sink is leaking around the edges and the caulking needs replacing, rest assured that it is a rather easy job to accomplish and will not break the bank.

Kitchen Sink Adhesive

Caulking is available in a few different types of materials with the most common being silicone or latex. The most popular color choice is simple white caulk. However, Home Depot shows that caulk is available in a multitude of colors, making it easier to blend the caulk in with its surroundings.

The caulk is available in different application forms as well. If you do not own a caulking gun, then this could be an extra expense, as a good caulking gun can help get the job done quicker and also leave a more professional looking finish. If you do not wish to make any additional purchases, then make sure to purchase a caulk that can be self-squeezed and not extracted by the use of a caulking gun.

Removing Old Caulking

If you are replacing the caulking around your kitchen sink, then you need to make sure to remove any traces of the old caulk before applying the new one. This task is best accomplished by using a straight-edged razor blade or a utility knife to cut away any of the old caulk. Simply follow the edge of the kitchen sink and the countertop respectively as the caulk could be stuck to either edge, and it must all be removed. Otherwise, the new caulk will not adhere to the surface.

Wipe away the remains of the old caulk. Some experts suggest using rubbing alcohol around the remains to remove any traces that you may have overlooked. Let the rubbing alcohol dry, and if you want to be sure to have straight lines, apply painter's tape around the edges of your sink and countertops leaving only enough space for the caulk. Some people who are used to applying caulk overlook using painter's tape for straight lines. However, be warned that if you are using a silicone-based caulk, the application process could get fairly messy.

Applying Caulking

Apply the caulk around the desired edge making sure the bead, or line of caulking, is consistent. Try to accomplish the application without breaking the bead. If you must lift your applicator, then make sure to slightly overlap the caulk when beginning again to ensure a watertight seal. Once you have done the entire area, spray with a glass cleaner. The glass cleaner will allow you to run your finger along the edge, giving the caulk a smooth finish, tight seal and removing any excess caulk. If you choose to apply painter's tape for straight-edged lines make sure to remove the tape immediately after you are done to avoid pulling up the dry caulking once it has set.

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Taking on the role of the household's 'handyman' was a natural path for me. Watching my dad as a child be able to fix anything made me want to be just like him. Now with a toolbox of my own I tackle any task that my home throws my way. If the task can be accomplished with my own two hands, I have never been the type to hire someone else to do it. There is nothing more satisfying than staring at your completed project while you brush some dirt from your hands.

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