Help! Leaky Sink!


I'm at my Mom's house and I heard a water drip, then a trickle and now its a steady stream of water leaking from below the sink!  I know my Momma's got some water damage under there but I just need a quick fix until she can get the bigger problem resolved.  Here are some pics of the problem.  It seems to be leaking from the top, what should I buy to seal this off?  Any particular brand that you guys know of that will work for sure??


Picture of Help!  Leaky Sink!
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All of these fittings are quite common and easy to repair. The large gray fitting at the top is the nut that secures the basket strainer to the sink. There is usually a fiber an a rubber gasket between the nut and the bottom of the sink drain hole that seals between the bottom side of the sink and the strainer. On the top side of the sink is the strainer itself that is usually chrome colored (sometimes white or ivory colored to match the sink. The seal between the basket strainer and the top side of the sink is either made with plumber's putty or silicone. Seals made with putty often leak after the putty dries out and begins to deteriorate. It is fairly simple to repair or replace and the parts should be available at any hardware or DIY store.

To replace the strainer you will have to disassemble all of the fittings below the strainer. Then remove the large basket strainer retaining nut. If the strainer is sealed with putty, it should be relatively easy to remove. If it was sealed with silicone you might have to use a rubber mallet or a block of wood and a hammer to dislodge it. Once you remove the strainer basket, clean the drain hole on both sides of the sink and remove any particulate matter. The opening must be clean and smooth to make a good seal.

One you have removed the strainer and cleaned the sink you are ready to install the new basket strainer. The new fitting should come with the strainer, retaining nut and usually 2 gaskets. The gaskets go under the sink between the nut and the sink bottom. I prefer to use clear silicone to make the topside seal between the sink and the new basket. Use a good bead of silicone all the way around the strainer. Place the strainer in the drain hole, then place the rubber gasket on the bottom side first, then the fiber gasket. Next, screw on the retaining nut. Once it is good and tight, quickly clean up the excess silicone on the top side with denatured alcohol. Let the drain sit over night so the silicone sealer can cure. The next day you can reassemble the rest of the drain fittings and use the sink again.
zurichko (author)  diyoutdoorsman6 years ago
Thank you very much! I'm off to the hardware store to pick up the new strainer. Thanks again!
Kiteman6 years ago
Quickest fix: stop using the sink!

I'm not familiar with this style of waste fitting, but it looks like the grey section is fastened through the sink by half a dozen screws or bolts?

That section is also corroded.

I'd try undoing the screws and looking for a perished rubber or silicon washer that will need replacing.
It really IS a very easy fix IF the sink is not too old. When I went to fix mine (because the ancient pipes underneath corroded through) you can imagine the corrosion at the drain itself......a heavy duty wrench made JUST for that purpose was purchased just to get it off, and even then I spent 3-4 days WS-40'ing it and hammering on it to free it up.
zurichko (author)  Kiteman6 years ago
You're funny, but that's what we did...for the time being. Off to the hardware store.
zurichko (author) 6 years ago
All fixed! No it wasn't an all day thing. I love my Momma but she really thought I should wait until my husband was there, in case I needed "help." Granted, I did need some muscle but not much else. Thanks to everyone who commented!
Looks like you did a great job. I hope I was some help.
zurichko (author)  diyoutdoorsman6 years ago
Very much so! Thanks again!
zurichko (author)  The Ideanator6 years ago
Man, I could have used the one from my winnings but it hasn't come in the mail yet. I'll keep it in mind if it happens again. Thanks for the great idea....your screen name fits!
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