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Question DetailsAsked on 6/19/2013

Can an under mount composite sink be removed below the granite top?

My under mount composite sink is stained and ugly. I want it cut out and replaced with an over mount porcelain sink. Can this be done?

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2 Answers

Voted Best Answer
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Composite sinks can be refinished - either professionally with power buffers, or yourself.

Here is a link on how to do it yourself, if the staining is not too deep - http://homeguides.sfgate.com/restore-...

Professional refinishing is viable if the sink is true stone - if synthetic then the refinishing cost might about equal a new sink.

If you really want to replace it - look underneath the sink. If the sink has bolts (typically 4-6) with metal tabs holding it to the underside of the countertop, then replacement is relatively easy a it is only caulked and bolted in place, although it does require removal of a good amount of the drain pipes under the sink to get the sink out. If there is not a visible means of connection or seam, or if the sink edge extends laterally beyond the top of and sits on the wood cabinets then it can be done, but may require getting a countertop contractor in for unmounting the countertop piece to cut the sink off and put it back in place and seal the seam.

The new rim mount sink would then be installed like any other sink. Again, depending on the sink you choose, might require counter contractor modify the opening size to fit, and of course there will be some minor plumbing adjustments underneath because the old drain pipes will be short for the new sink.

I would talk to your countertop contractor for an estimate.

Bear in mind that undermounts are VERY popular with both real and simulated stone countertops, so putting in a rim mount may affect kitchen desireability come resale time. Also, ceramic would be the last choice for most homeowners - stainless is much easier to keep clean, and is far more resistant to stains, chips, etc.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD

0
Votes

Thank you for the complete and comprehensive answer. I don't see any brackets holding the sink, just screws so I'll deal with that.


I was hoping you'd say a "dremel" like tool could be used from the top to trim around the edge of the granite so we could just lift it out from above, unhooking all the pipes and hoses of course. :)


Off to find someone to do it now, after I find the right sink to replace it of course

Answered 7 years ago by Guest_98126872

0
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Two added thoughts after your reply:

After you disconnect the pipes, remove garbage disposal, etc, you may be able to pull it out the top. The screws hold up the weight. The mating surface should be water-sealed in one of 5 usual ways -
1) ribbon putty, which is a lot like silly putty but gray or white - does not stick too well, so once the screws are out you may be able to pry the sink free with a putty knife worked in around the edges (ONLY do this if thick granite - 3/4" or more, not thin veneer type - you do NOT want to crack it prying
2) plumbers putty, which is an orange or yellowish oiled clay - again, does not stick much, so easily pried or just fall away from that
3) silicone caulk - which can really stick pretty good, and needs to be cut with a thin piece of metal or very thin knife blade to release
4) adhesive - which definitely will not pry away - needs to be cut with a thin blade like a freehand hacksaw blade
5) strip foam sealant - like weatherstripping - will not stick much at all
6) you may be very lucky and have a sink the plumber did not seal - some skip that step, figuring it will not leak much

In pretty much each case except the foam strip, the sealing surface will be about 1-2 inches wide all around the opening, so a dremel tool or similar will not reach in far enough to cut much of it.

While you are trying to pry it free, you need to hold it in place (unless you have a body builder who wants to lie under the sink and hold it up for a half hour or more). Once you remove the piping, you can unscrew the drain fitting on the bottom, leaving an open drain hole. Lay a piece of scrap 2x4 or equivalent strong wood across the top of the countertop, extending at least a foot either side of the opening. Use a rope or lifting strap or other method capable of holding 50 pounds or so safely, tie it off around the 2x4, run it down through the drain hole, and tie it to a piece of wood about a foot long put across under the drain hole, and tighten the rope so there is just about 1/2" slack - enough to let the sink drop free of the countertop once released, but not enough to let it fall into the undersink area. Once it is free, you may be able to slack off the rope and tilt and lift the sink out the top, or you may need to slack the rope and lower it down into the cabinet to remove it. Depends on sink configuration - if round, you will never get it out the top as the sink diameter is more than the hole. If rectangular or oval, usually can be tilted up and out, but it is really easier on the back to go down. The same method can be used for new sink installation. Be sure to always have control of the sink - when it releases, you do not want to be cuaght by surprise, or you can really hurt your back trying to hold it. Like grabbing a thrown watermellon - not likely to end well.

One afterthought on the rim-mounted sink you were talking about - talk to a countertop specialist about what type of water seal to use UNDER the rim - you need a seal to prevent waer splashed on the countertop from getting down under the sink into the cabinet, but for resale value you do NOT want to permanently stain the granite around the opening. I really do not know what to use for that. I know you do NOT use plumbers putty - it has oil in it that penetrates the stone. I presume some sort of latex or silicone caulk is used, or maybe there is a compressible plastic seal material.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD




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