How to plumb a waste pipe for a bathroom sink

Written by jay p. whickson
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Whether you want to move the sink or found that your present pipes are in bad condition, the steps are very similar. Plumbing new waste pipes might involve using chrome, and even though this article is written using PVC pipe, the process is basically the same. The difference is that you'll use thread compound or Teflon tape instead of the primer and cement described here to be used on the PVC pipe. You'll also use channel locks to tighten the chrome pipes, not hand-tighten them, as you would with PVC.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • PVC pipe
  • Plastic pipe saw
  • Pipe cutter or tube cutter
  • Copper pipe
  • Fittings for PVC pipe
  • PVC solvent cement
  • Plumber's putty
  • Putty knife
  • Slip joint extension piece
  • Primer
  • Cement compound
  • Channel lock pliers
  • Teflon tape

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  1. 1

    Find out the length from the trap to the stack. An extension of 5 feet from the trap to the stack for an arm that's 1 1/2 inches in diameter is normal. You'll need to make sure your drain follows code. If you're just replacing old plumbing with new, don't worry about the stack unless you're changing the location, in which you'll have to make sure it's not more than code allows.

  2. 2

    If you're installing the drainpipe, it should come out of the wall 19 inches from the floor and be centred 8 inches between the two water pipes. Add PVC pipes to place the drainpipe where you want to attach the P-trap.

  3. 3

    Roll some plumber's putty into a snake, and put it around the opening for the drain. Insert the drain and tighten it underneath. You'll need to tighten it enough that most of the putty mushes out. This helps create a good seal at the drain. Use a set of channel locks to do this.

  4. 4

    Press the nylon insert washer into the flange tailpiece. Tighten the tailpiece onto the drain spud. You may need to add a slip joint extension piece if the pipe doesn't fit into the wall properly. Dry fit the P-trap to the sink drain and wall. You may need to add a slip joint extension.

  5. 5

    Hand tighten the P-trap at the drain and, if it fits properly, loosen the fittings. You'll need to spread primer and then cement compound on the outside and inside of the connections at the drain, then tighten them back again.

  6. 6

    Check for a leak. If you find one, take apart the fittings. If there's no leak, spread the primer and cement on all fittings and tighten it again by hand. Again, test for leaks by filling the basin with water and releasing the water. There shouldn't be any leaks.

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