It’s hard to beat the convenience of an outdoor garden sink. They’re great for refilling your watering can or cleaning up after digging weeds.
Frank Kecset of Glued-N-Screwed created this garden sink for our DIY Challenge series here on The Home Depot Blog. He built an attractive butcher block-style counter and used a salvaged sink for the project.
Follow along his step-by-step instructions to build your own outdoor garden sink.
Easy Outdoor Garden Sink
Sometimes, whether through a renovation or a trip to the local repurpose store, you end up with an extra sink. After re-doing our countertops, my fiancée and I had the old cast iron, porcelain coated sink from the original countertops and it just seemed a shame to waste it — so I turned it into an outdoor garden sink.
- (3) 2 x 6 x 8 pine boards
- (5) 2 x 4 x 8 studs
- (1) 1½ in. Plastic Center Outlet Waste
- (1) 5/8 in. Dia x 15 ft. Remnant Garden Hose
- (1) Zinc Faucet Adapter
- (2) 1 in. x 10 ft. Galvanized Steel Pipe
- Had 8-, 18-in. lengths cut and threaded
- (1) 1 in. Galvanized Malleable Iron FPT x FPT Coupling
- (1) 1 in. Galvanized Malleable Iron Floor Flange
Starting off with some 2 x 6’s and 2 x 4 studs, I arranged them in a way to create a striped pattern that I desired for the top.
This would allow me to mark the placement for my biscuits which help with joining boards like this together and thus creating a strong top for the sink to rest on. Biscuits are essentially small ovaloids of wood that, when inserted and glued, swell to ensure a tight joint between the thin edges of two boards.
Please consult your biscuit jointer manufacture’s instructions on setting up your particular machine. They have several functions and can be somewhat difficult to use properly.
Biscuits will ensure a clean, even top for my sink as well as help with keeping the boards aligned over time. In junction with pocket holes, the top will be steady and solid to last for years of use.
After all your biscuit holes are cut and pocket holes drilled, assemble the top of the outdoor sink with an ample amount of glue. Clamp the boards (I prefer bar clamps for their strength), and let then sit overnight.
After the top has been allowed to cure overnight, mark the location of the sink basin; this will be different depending on your sink. I prefer to use chalk to mark the outer perimeter, then marker for my cut lines. This allows me to be able to work from the outside in, ensuring a more accurate cut.
With a newly cut hole in the top of the counter, it’s time for the flanges. For the legs of the sink, I used 1 in. galvanized pipe and 1 in. galvanized floor flanges. To mount the floor flanges to the underside of the top in each corner, I used wide headed screws (i.e. cabinet screws). In order to make sure the pipes didn’t move, I tightened them snugly with a pipe wrench.
As an optional addition, you could add a shelf to your legs. If this option is desired, this is the time to do it. Simply make your shelf — I used a 2 x 4 with 1 x 4 edges to keep things from falling off, then slide it over the pipes prior to putting the 1 in. galvanized couplings on. (Remember to think upside down.) When right-side up, the shelf will be a great place for soap, a rag or a scrub brush.
After assembly, take the sink frame out to its desired location and, using a rubber mallet or other softer hammer, tap it into the ground a few times to keep it steady.
As a second option, you might want to add a 1½ in. Center Waste Kit to join the two drains (if you have two) in order to direct the waste water downwards. This is certainly not required as the sink will work without it, but it’ll keep splashing down to a minimum and allow drain water to exit closer to the ground.
Lastly, you’ll need a PVC faucet cap and faucet to garden hose connector. These connectors, if not located in plumbing, can be found near the landscaping section and are very inexpensive.
The cap is used to cap off the handle you don’t want (I capped the hot) in order to provide back pressure and keep the water from leaking out. The faucet (male) to garden hose (female) connector is used to go from the faucet threads to the garden hose and allow for water to flow right up through the faucet.
After you get it all hooked up, all you have to do is grab the necessities and enjoy your new outdoor sink.