removal and installation guide

Farmhouse Sink Installation Guide

If you’re planning DIY farmhouse sink installation, there are two issues you’ll need to master –providing proper support for the sink and cutting the front of the base cabinet to accommodate it.

If you’re hiring a kitchen contractor for the work, these farmhouse sink installation tips will help you make sure the job is being done right.

kitchen sink installation

Installing a Farmhouse Kitchen Sink

To do the work, you’ll need:

  • Tape measure
  • Level
  • Marking pencil
  • Circular saw
  • Wood glue
  • Wood screws
  • Painter’s tape (for cutting the base)
  • Drill/driver
  • Safety glasses or goggles

Supporting the Farmhouse Sink

Some cast iron farmhouse sinks weigh 300lbs or more. Loads like that need strong support. Take these steps to maximize support for your farmhouse sink.

  • Cut sheets of ¾” plywood to attach to the inside side walls of the base cabinet, so they’ll extend from the floor of the cabinet to the bottom of the sink
  • Attach the plywood with glue and screws
  • Cut angle iron to the inside width of the base, and install it on top of the plywood
  • Tip: Some installers cut the angle iron ½” to 1” longer than the width of the inside of the base, then notch the sides of the base to allow the iron to rest on both the plywood and the wood forming the base side
  • Cut a piece of ¾” plywood, and install it on top of the angle iron, using the 90-degree angles as a platform for the wood
  • Tip: You’ll have to know the exact height you want to sink to be and take it into consideration as you determine the height of the plywood pieces on the sides plus the plywood platform for the sink
  • Tip: The platform should be just slightly deeper than the sink bottom, so that it doesn’t extend to the back of the cabinet where it would interfere with water lines and connections to the faucet
  • Cut drain holes in the plywood with a circular saw

Some installers form side supports out of plywood strips four to six inches wide rather than sheets that extend all the way to the floor of the cabinet. The strips are glued and screwed to the side of the cabinet. While this arrangement will work for lighter apron sinks, it does not provide nearly as much support as the method we’ve described.

Cutting the Sink Base to Accommodate the Apron Sink

Because the depth of each farmhouse sink is different, manufacturers don’t typically precut the front of the cabinet.

When you have the sink and can make exact measurements, it’s time to notch the front of the cabinet, if necessary. We say that because some apron sinks don’t require you to cut the base cabinet. Instead, the apron you see at the front of the sink is not the outside of the sink bowl but a piece separated from it.

This style of apron fits over the front of the base cabinet and is more common with lightweight metal apron sinks such as those made from stainless steel and copper.

Farmhouse/apron sink installation tips:

  • Factoring the thickness of the countertops into the equation, determine the depth to which you’ll need to cut the front of the base cabinet
  • Measure the width, too
  • Note: There won’t be any trim covering the edge of the sink, so your cuts need to be clean and exact
  • Cover the place where the cabinet will be cut with painter’s tape to inhibit the cabinet wood from splintering
  • Trace onto the tape the lines for making the cut
  • Use a circular saw or jigsaw to cut along the lines
  • Support the cut-out wood, so that it doesn’t fall as you near completion of the cut and cause tearing or splintering of the wood
  • When the cut-out is complete, slide the farmhouse sink through the front of the cabinet and onto the platform you’ve built for it
  • Install the faucet, connect water and drain lines, and you can move on to countertop installation

As you can see, skill and precision are required to get professional results when installing a farmhouse kitchen sink. It makes sense to hire a professional rather than risk ruining the base or the sink if you’re not absolutely sure of what you’re doing and have the experience to do it correctly.

The Cost to Install a Farmhouse Kitchen Sink

In a large remodeling job, this will be part of the total estimate and might not be itemized.

If you hire an installer, here is what you can expect:

  • Farmhouse kitchen sink installation: $100-$250

The complexity of the job will determine where your estimate falls within that range. The more support and cutting that is required, the higher the cost will be. Keep in mind that these prices don’t include countertop or faucet installation. Prices for those jobs are included in our countertop and faucet installation and cost guides.

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Farmhouse Sink Installation FAQ

This farmhouse and apron sink installation Q&A covers other important information.

How many people does it take to install a farmhouse sink?

It depends on the weight of the sink. Stainless steel and copper apron sinks and those made of other light materials can be installed by one person. Porcelain and granite sinks, and those of similar weight, require two people. It typically takes three people to install a cast iron farmhouse sink.

Does a stainless steel apron sink require extra support?

Yours might not. Check the installation instructions for details. Keep in mind that even a light sink can become quite heavy when filled with water or a load of dishes. Extra support is never a bad idea.

How much does a custom cabinet for a farmhouse sink cost?

Custom cabinets are very expensive. Depending on the wood type, size of the cabinet, finish, hardware and style, the cost will likely range from $600-$1,500, and possibly quite a bit more.

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