Bruce W. Maki,
||In the previous article,
we had installed the supply stop valves, installed the faucet on
the sink top, connected the supply hoses to the faucet, and
glued the sink top to the vanity.
|The supply hoses were connected to the stop
valves. We used stop valves and supply hoses with 3/8"
||There is just a little bit of slack in the
Note the sink drain, at the top, and the drain pipe at the
lower left. These need to be connected.
|The sink drain parts. We bought an S-trap kit
and a 1-1/2" extension tube. This assembly connects to the
slip-joint adapter fitting that we earlier glued to the PVC
An S-trap is used when the drain runs down through the
floor. If the drain pipe runs horizontally into the wall, a
P-trap is used.
||The sink stopper pop-up lever was installed in
the sink tailpiece extension. (Moen calls this piece the
|The pop-up lever is held in place with a special
wing-nut threaded cap. We're just testing the fit, it's too
early to assemble this.
||The drain body has a white plastic gasket or
sleeve to seal the connection with the tail piece.
|Looky here... the drain piece (and all that
silicone sealant) had to be removed, and a ring of plumber's
Why? Because we forgot one thing... the threads on the
tailpiece prevented us from positioning the drain body the
right way. In order to get the pop-up lever pointing to the
back, we needed to rotate the tailpiece another 1/2 turn
or so. But not with silicone sealant holding things in
On other types of drain basins (such as kitchen or laundry sinks,
showers and bath tubs) there is no pop-up that has to point a
certain way, so the rotational position of the tailpiece does not
matter. In those places I prefer to use silicone for a sealant.
But.. Plumbers Prefer Plumber's Putty:
I'll agree that most plumbers seem to prefer plumber's
putty, but I believe it is an ancient material that has been
surpassed by modern materials, such as silicone. Too many
plumbers spend their time doing primarily new construction
work, and do not spend enough time doing repair and
maintenance work to see the consequences of their chosen
materials. I have seen numerous leaks that are the result of
plumber's putty and it's non-adhesive properties. I just
replaced a kitchen sink drain basket that I installed only
two years ago... because the threaded metal locking ring had
snapped, which allowed the drain basket to move, which broke
the seal formed by the putty. But silicone caulking in that
same situation would probably bond the parts together and
prevent the leak.
The primary benefit from plumber's putty, from my
perspective, is that you can assemble some parts and then
use them right away. With silicone you really must wait
an hour until the caulking has at least skimmed over,
but it's best to wait 24 hours until it has fully cured.
||The tailpiece is pushed into the putty. The
excess goo is easy to wash off.
|The big nut underneath was just
That black rubber washer is the part that does all of the
sealing in this type of drain. If the plumber's putty were
to leak, all that would happen is water would be able to get
into the same place where the overflow tube brings excess
water... right back into the drain. (See the
previous article for a photo of this concept.)
||The drain body was installed, and the tailpiece
was turned so the lever pointed to the back.
|Once the pop-up lever was pointing the right
direction, we tightened the big nut with a large crescent
wrench. It is actually quite easy to bend the big flat washer if
you are not careful.
Pop-up Drain Stopper:
||The pop-up drain stopper parts. This only looks
|The vertical piece connects to the trip lever
with a spring clip.
||The visible part of the pop-up connects to
another piece under the sink. This photo is only to show how the
parts go together... the actual connection must be made behind
|We put a little silicone grease on the
pop-up trip lever ball.
This is not the same as silicone caulking or
silicone spray lubricant (like WD-40). This is a thick,
gooey grease product specifically for lubricating plumbing
parts. It will not attack the rubber seals in valves, and
water will not wash it away.
||The lever was installed in it's socket, and the
linkage was connected.
The pop-up rod was connected, behind the basin.
||The S-trap is all that remains.
The S-trap was installed. The slip-joint fittings make it
easy to install this section. The slip-joint nuts are only
(firmly) hand tightened.
The water runs. The water drains.
||The cabinet door pulls were installed.
|The vanity and sink are done.
We found it necessary to run the water for about half an
hour to flush out the odor from the solder flux used in the
new copper pipes. It is important to frequently check for
leaks at this point, as this is when they are most likely to
Other Related Articles:
Installing a large
Installing a laminate
vanity counter top, and cutting the hole for the sink.
- Adjustable Wrenches
- Channel-Lock Pliers
- Braided Flexible Faucet
- S-Trap Drain Kit, 1¼"
- Plumber's Putty
- Silicone Grease
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