Whether you’re replacing a faulty sink or remodeling your entire kitchen, you may be intimidated by swapping out your sink if you have granite countertops. While granite is known for being particularly sturdy, the way that sinks are installed in these types of countertops results in some weakness. While it can be done, changing a sink in a granite countertop puts the stone at risk of damage, which can be very pricey to repair.
Fortunately, the process of removing a sink in a granite countertop is far less challenging than it seems – so long as you have the proper tools. In addition to having the necessary tools and supplies, you’ll also need to be especially careful and patient to avoid harming the granite.
Granite Countertop Sinks
Kitchen sinks can be installed in granite countertops in one of two methods: top-mount or undermount. These terms describe how the sink is affixed to the granite. As the name suggests, top-mount sinks are installed by inserting them from above. They feature flanges around the edges of the sink that prevent it from falling through the hole in the granite.
Undermount sinks, on the other hand, do not have these flanges. Instead, they are installed from beneath the countertop and adhered to the underside of your granite. This creates a seamless look that many homeowners desire in their kitchen. Regardless of the mounting type, the procedure of removing a sink from a granite countertop has the same initial steps.
Initial Removal Preparation
Before you start removing your sink, you must disconnect the drain pipe and water connections. If your sink has a garbage disposal, this will also need to be disconnected. It’s recommended that you shut off the water main before you begin the removal. Then, you can easily disconnect the sink from its numerous brackets and connections. Once these steps are complete, the remaining steps will depend on how your sink is mounted:
How to Remove Top-Mount Sink in a Granite Countertop
If you have a top-mount sink, the removal process is pretty straightforward. However, depending on the size and weight of your sink, you may want to enlist the help of a friend or family member. If the flange of your sink is secured to the granite with some form of adhesive, this will need to be removed first.
Insert caulk remover into the area between the granite countertop and the rim of the sink. Let it seep into the connection and work at decaying the caulk. Then, insert a utility knife inside of the gap between the countertop and the sink remove. Move the knife slowly along the perimeter to release the pressure and remove more caulk. Once the pressure is removed, you should be able to hand lift the sink out.
In most cases, though, you’ll only need to lift the sink up and out of the hole in the granite countertop. Be especially careful during the removal, as dropping the sink on the stone can result in significant damage to the countertops.
How to Remove Undermount Sink in a Granite Countertop
Undermount sinks in granite countertops typically require some additional steps than their top-mount counterparts. Since undermount sinks lack a flange that holds them in position above the hole in the granite, they are glued underneath the stone with an epoxy or some other durable adhesive.
In order to free the sink from the granite, the epoxy needs to be dissolved or chipped away. This can either be done with a specialized epoxy remover, such as xylene, or a hand tool. If you choose to use an epoxy remover, make sure that you allow for proper ventilation and wear a respirator. You should also wear eye protection to shield your eyes against dripping epoxy remover. Unfortunately, with these sinks, chipping away at part of the granite is often unavoidable.
While you chip away at the glue, it’s recommended to have something that holds the sink in position. This will prevent the sink form falling as you work and hitting either you or the pipes it’s connected to underneath. Removing an undermount sink from granite requires precise care to avoid any potential damage occurring to the stone. Though, once the sink has been freed from its bonds, it can be easily lowered through the cabinet below.
Consult Plumbing and Granite Experts
Before you decide to change the sink in your granite countertops, it’s always best to get the opinion of a professional plumber or granite expert. While it’s not impossible for the average homeowner to handle the removal of a sink, the risk of damaging your granite countertops in the process is far less when you enlist the help of professionals.
For over two decades, Anytime Plumbing has been providing the best plumbing services in Santa Cruz County, and beyond. Allow our experts to handle the removal of your kitchen sink, and ensure that no damage occurs to your granite. Contact us today and we will gladly answer your questions, address any concerns you may have, and start scheduling your appointment!