A pedestal lavatory sink brings a touch of elegance and charm to the home, and because it takes up less space than a vanity unit, it is ideal for smaller bathrooms.
The following project shows how to install a pedestal lavatory sink, step by step. This is an inexpensive project that can be accomplished in a day. It is best to work with a helper, as the parts can be very heavy. The main difficulty lies in attaching the washbasin to the wall at the right height. This part of the job requires precision and dexterity.
Turn off the water supply by closing the shut-off valves under the sink. If there are no shut-offs, close your home's main water valve.
If the drain pipes under the sink are not exactly where you need them, use angle fittings (elbows) of different sizes to make the necessary connections.
A pedestal lavatory sink needs to be solidly anchored to the wall by fastening it to a horizontal support piece, called blocking.
1.1. Decide where to locate your pedestal sink.
1.2. Use a stud finder to find the blocking between the two wall studs at that location.
1.3. If there is no blocking, cut a hole in the drywall and fasten a piece of 2" x 4" horizontally between the two studs. Replace the piece of drywall, finish the joints and paint the wall.
2.1. Position the pedestal in the desired location.
2.2. Place the washbasin on top of it and ask a helper to hold it steady.
2.3. Check that the sink is level.
2.4. Trace the outline of the pedestal on the floor and the outline of the top of the washbasin on the wall.
2.5. Mark, on the floor, the locations of the anchoring holes in the pedestal base and, on the wall, the positions of the mounting holes at the back of the sink (accessible from below).
2.6. Remove both parts of the sink and put them aside.
If you do not have shut-off valves, this is the ideal time to install them. If you are working with copper pipes, use compression fittings on the valves rather than soldering the joints. With PVC pipes, use crimp rings that are compressed onto the pipe.
3.1. Run a ¼" bead of stainless kitchen and bathroom caulk around the bottom side of the new faucet. Even though most faucets nowadays come with a watertight plastic base, adding sealant will help ensure your faucet remains leak free. It will, on the other hand, make the faucet more difficult to remove when the time comes to replace it.
3.2. Insert the faucet tailpieces (metal tubes) into the mounting holes. Make sure the faucet base is parallel to the back of the sink.
3.3. Press down firmly on the faucet so that the caulk adheres well and forms a watertight seal.
3.4. Remove any excess sealant from around the base.
3.5. Conceal any visible faucet holes on the top of your sink with a special cover designed for this purpose.
3.6. Place the faucet cover over the hole(s) and tighten the bolt from below.
4.1. Screw the mounting and coupling nuts onto the faucet tailpieces.
4.2. Wrap thread seal polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) tape around the exposed thread of the faucet tailpieces to ensure a watertight seal.
4.3. Tighten the connections with a basin wrench or channel-type pliers.
4.4. Remove any excess sealant from the base.
5.1. Run a rope of plumber's putty around the sink drain hole and insert the drain flange into the hole.
5.2. Fit the seals and nut onto the drain tailpiece.
5.3. Insert the tailpiece into the opening and screw it into the flange.
6.1. Line up the pedestal base with the marks made previously on the floor.
6.2. Fasten the pedestal to the floor with wood screws. Do not over-tighten, as this could cause the porcelain to crack. If there are no anchoring holes to secure the pedestal to the floor, run silicone sealant around the base.
6.3. Fasten the mounting plate to the wall blocking.
6.4. Mount the sink to the wall plate and lower it onto the pedestal.
6.5. Once in place, check that the sink is at the correct height and lined up properly with the pedestal.
6.6. Tighten the mounting bolts behind the sink.
6.7. Apply silicone caulk between the sink and the wall, smoothing it with a wet finger or damp cloth.
7.1. Connect the braided flexible hoses to the faucet tailpieces.
7.2. Connect the other end of the hoses to the shut-off valves.
7.3. Bend the hoses if they are too long.
7.4. Hand-tighten, then tighten a further quarter- or half-turn with a wrench.
7.5. Hold the shut-off valve steady with a different wrench, to prevent damage to the pipes.
7.6. Remove the aerator from under the faucet spout.
8.1. Slip a rubber washer over the end of the piece of drain pipe that fits directly under the sink.
8.2. Screw a slip nut onto the strainer thread to connect the two parts.
8.3. Attach the P-trap arm to the wall waste pipe using a slip nut and washer.
8.4. Attach the bottom section of the P-trap to the other parts with slip nuts and washers. Tighten all the connections with a pipe wrench.
The plug body has a hole in it, through which to pass the pivot rod that moves the plug up and down. This hole must therefore be properly aligned with the rod before tightening the nut!
9.1 Insert the stopper in the plug hole, lining up the hole in its plastic stem with the hole on the side of the plug body.
9.2 Insert the horizontal pivot rod into this hole. Turn the stopper if necessary until the rod is properly inserted.
9.3 Hand-tighten the nut that holds the rod in place.
9.4 Pull the stopper to the "open" position; the horizontal rod should now be pointing downward.
9.5 Insert the vertical lift rod into the hole behind the faucet.
9.6 Assemble this lift rod onto the perforated extension rod (clevis).
9.7 On the clevis, find the hole nearest the end of the horizontal pivot rod (the rod pointing downward).
9.8 Pass the pivot rod through this hole and block it with the spring clip.
9.9 Pull on the lever to close the stopper and check the adjustment.
10.1 Turn on the hot and cold water supply. By convention, the hot water line should be on the left and the cold water line on the right.
10.2 Let the water flow through the faucet for a minute or so, to let out all the air and to eliminate any dirt or debris that could damage the inside of the faucet.
10.3 Check all the connections to make sure there are no leaks. Tighten up the joints a little if necessary.
10.4 Reinsert the faucet aerator.