Bedroom + Bathroom Ideas

How to Replace a Bathroom Vanity

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Replace a Vanity

A new vanity is a great way to upgrade the style of your bath and add much-needed storage. Prepping is the toughest part of this job. Removing the old vanity often involves releasing rusted fasteners and repainting the wall behind the vanity. Order your new vanity and assemble it so you can take measurements and check the fit before removing your old setup. Once you remove the old vanity and make any needed alterations to the wall and floor, installing the new vanity is pretty straightforward. Do the plumbing the easy way by installing the faucet, drain assembly, and supply lines before attaching the vanity top.

How to Replace a Vanity

  1. Step1

    Start by shutting off the water supply valves to your sink. Turn them clockwise until they won’t go any further, then test the faucet to confirm the water is off.

    TIP: Use a rag or tongue + groove pliers to help turn supply valves.

  2. Step2

    Place a bucket underneath the P-shaped drain under your sink. This is commonly known as a P-trap. Loosen the slip nuts on the P-trap and slip it off the drain. The contents of the drain will empty into the bucket.

  3. Step3

    Move the bucket under the supply lines, then use an adjustable wrench to detach the hot and cold supply lines from the supply valves.

  4. Step4

    Many vanity tops are secured against the wall with caulk. Use a utility knife to break the caulk seal so it can be easily removed.

  5. Step5

    If your vanity top is attached to the cabinet below with brackets, loosen them with a screwdriver. If it’s not fastened with brackets, it’s most likely attached with glue or silicone. Use a hammer, chisel, and pry bar to detach it.

  6. Step6

    Remove any screws securing the vanity cabinet to the wall with a drill/driver. Move the vanity and scrape away any remaining sealant from the wall with a putty knife.

    TIP: Need to paint or tile? Do it before installing your new vanity.

  7. Step7

    Remove the doors and drawers from your new vanity, then position it in place. Make sure your sink’s stop valves and drain outlet are easily accessible. If not, mark and cut as necessary.

  8. Step8

    Since your old vanity may or may not have been properly attached to studs, use a stud finder to locate wall studs for your new installation. Mark each location so it will be visible once the vanity is pushed into place.

    TIP: Can’t find — or reach — a stud? Secure your vanity with a wall anchor.

  9. Step9

    Slide the vanity into place, making sure it’s level, back-to-front and side-to-side. If your vanity doesn’t have adjustable feet, adjust it with shims, trimming as necessary with a utility knife.

    If you’re fastening your new vanity to drywall, it’s best not to reuse existing holes. However, if your old vanity was attached to a tile wall, use the existing holes, marking them with a vertical line. Center the vanity and mark for screw placement. Drill your holes, then install the new vanity with screws.

  10. Step10

    Set the vanity top upside down on sawhorses. Place the plastic gasket on the faucet. Then, holding the faucet from below, screw on mounting nuts, keeping the faucet properly aligned.

  11. Step12

    Flip the vanity top and wrap the lip of the waste seat with a rope of plumber’s putty. Push the waste seat into the drain hole, then fasten the locknut onto the threaded end. If your drain includes a stopper mechanism, follow manufacturer instructions to properly connect it.

    TIP: If your unit has a gasket, putty may not be necessary. Check instructions.

  12. Step13

    Apply a bead of silicone caulk to the top edge of the vanity. Have someone help you carefully set the vanity top in place. You can choose to either let the caulk dry overnight or firmly clamp the vanity top in place so it won’t move as you complete the job.

    Apply caulk to any gaps between the bottom and the top of the vanity. This will seal it and provide a finished look.

  13. Step14

    Trim the drain extension or tailpiece with a miter box and fine-toothed saw, sanding off any burrs before assembly.

  14. Step15

    Attach the supply lines to the stop valve and complete your P-trap installation. Turn the supply lines back on and test for leaks. Gently tighten connections if needed.

  15. Step16

    Using silicone caulk, neatly caulk along the backsplash and the wall. Use just enough caulk to cover the gap. Wipe away any excess and smooth with your finger.

    Congratulations! You’ve installed a new vanity and faucet on your own.