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How To Easily Replace A Leaky Kitchen Sink Basket

If you noticed a small puddle or drops of water under your kitchen sink, the leak may be coming from the basket strainer. Here is how to test and see if the basket strainer is the source of the leaks and how to replace it if it is.

Test For A Leak In The Kitchen Sink Basket

The first thing you need to do is confirm that your suspensions are correct. You can do this by first wiping away any water that is on the plumbing under your sink so you can run a leak test. Then, fill your sink up with water and touch a tissue to the basket strainer and the bottom of your sink under your cabinet. 

The basket strainer is the device that connects your sink to your drainpipe. It is generally made of metal and held in place by a gasket and locknut. If the tissue gets wet, the leak is coming from the sink basket.

Remove The Old Sink Basket

First, you are going to need to use slip-joint pliers to remove the coupling nut. The coupling nut should be located at the base of the strainer basket where it meets with the threads and the drainage pipe. 

Once you have disconnected the drainage pipe from the basket, you need to remove the basket. Use your slip-joint pliers again to unscrew the strainer locknut that is located on the top of the basket near the base of the sink. This lock, as the name implies, holds the basket in place. If the locknut is rusted over, you'll want to spray some penetrating oil on it to loosen it up. If that doesn't work, use pliers to turn it or knock it out with a chisel and a hammer. 

When the locknut has been removed, you can finish removing the basket. You will have to unscrew the basket in order to remove it. You can use your pliers to assist you with unscrewing the basket. 

After you unscrew the basket, lift it out of the sink from the top and remove the locknut, gasket and friction ring from the bottom of your sink. Use a putty knife to scrape away any putty that is stuck to your sink, but be careful not to be too aggressive and damage your sink.

Attach The New Basket

Now you need to attach the new basket. Take plumber's putty and roll it in between your hands to create a rope that is as thick as a writing pen. Take this rope and put it around the lip of the drain opening; it should cover the entire edge around the lip. Press it into place.

Then, take the new basket and push it down into the putty. Hold it there firmly for a couple of minutes. Excess putty may squeeze out of the sides; just use a washcloth to wipe it away.

Once the strainer is in place, follow the directions on the package and attach the rubber gasket, friction ring and locknut. Place the cardboard ring on the underside of your sink, followed by the rubber gasket and the bottom of the basket. Then, use your pliers to tighten the locknut. 

Finally, re-thread the drainage pipe and the bottom of the sink basket together.

Allow the putty to settle for at least a day before using your new drip-free sink and enjoying your new sink basket. If you don't feel comfortable doing plumbing repairs yourself, contact a professional plumber. 


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