Whether you're starting the remodeling process or just replacing a faulty sink, you may find yourself intimidated by the task if your kitchen has granite countertops. While the counters themselves are sturdy, the way that sinks are installed into stone counters creates a point of vulnerability – meaning that you risk damaging the stone, which can be incredibly expensive to fix. Thankfully, the process of removing a sink from a granite counter is far less scary than it seems and can be done at home with the right tools. You'll need to be patient and careful, however, as you may otherwise run the risk of harming your stone.
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Sinks for Granite Countertops
Sinks for granite countertops can be installed in one of two ways: top-mount or undermount. These terms refer to how the sink attaches to the granite itself. Top-mount sinks are inserted from above and have flanges around the rim of the sink that keep it from falling through the hole cut in the granite. Undermount sinks, sometimes known as under worktop sinks, lack significant flanges, so they're installed from below and glued to the underside of the granite to provide a seamless appearance. Regardless of the mounting, removing a sink from granite begins by completing the same initial tasks, as demonstrated by Rainforest Plumbing on their YouTube video.
First Removal Steps
The first thing you'll need to do to remove your sink is to disconnect it from its water connections and the drain pipe. If your sink has a garbage disposal, it will need to be disconnected as well. It's advised to turn off the water main before starting the removal process, after which you can disconnect the sink from its various brackets and connections. The following steps will depend on the mounting of the sink.
Removing Top-Mount Sinks
If your sink is top-mount the removal process is relatively easy – though depending on the size and weight of the sink, you may want to get a friend to help. If your sink's flange is secured to the granite with glue or a similar substance you'll need to remove it, but it's likely that you need only lift the sink up and out of its place in the granite countertop. Be careful with the sink's removal as dropping it will likely damage the stone counters.
Removing Undermount Sinks
Stone kitchen sinks with an undermount require additional steps. Lacking a flange to keep them stable above the hole in the granite, undermount sinks are generally glued to the underside of the stone with an epoxy or similarly durable substance. This will need to be dissolved or chipped away, either with a hand tool or an epoxy remover such as xylene, for which you need ventilation and a respirator. Sometimes, warns Crowley's Granite & Quartz, there's no alternative to chipping away part of the granite.
It's advised to have something to secure the sink in place while you chip away at its glue to prevent it from falling and hitting you or the pipes the sink was previously connected to. You'll need to be very careful when doing this to prevent potential damage to the granite. However, once the sink has been released from its bonds, it's easy to remove it through the cabinet below.
Blake Flournoy is a writer, reporter, and researcher based out of Baltimore, MD. As a handyman's apprentice operating out of the Atlanta suburbs, they made a name for themselves repairing appliances and installing home decor. They have never seen Seinfeld and are deathly scared of wasps.