How to Fix a Leaking Kitchen Sink Basket Strainer Plug

How to Fix a Leaking Kitchen Sink Basket Strainer Plug

The kitchen sink basket strainer plug for our double bowl sink had been leaking for a couple of months and it was driving me batty. It made washing up difficult because the water would drain away while washing up the pots and pans. Even more frustrating was when both plugs stopped sealing, so we couldn’t swap the plugs. It’s one of those things you don’t realise is annoying until you have to fill the sink and you can’t. But you soon forget until you need to fill the sink again!

The reason our sink plugs wouldn’t hold water was because the rubber washer underneath needed to be replaced. You can pull apart the plug by untwisting the middle handle part, which allows you to replace the rubber washer underneath. This is the seal that allows the plug to stop water going down the drain.  It didn’t matter how I contorted  the washer, the plugs wouldn’t keep the water in.

rubber seal on kitchen sink basket plug

The only thing that worked, was putting pressure against the plug with my fingers, while the sink filled up. When the sink was ¾ full, I could release my fingers and the plug would seal. I didn’t want to have to do this every time I filled the sink though.

For another temporary fix, you can use a plastic sandwich zip lock bag to act as the seal behind the plug so the sink holds water. Push the plug through a sealed sandwich bag and insert it into your sink drain. You can use the plastic bag a few times before it deteriorates.

Alternatively, if you get jack of the ‘temporary’ fixes, you can head to your local hardware or plumbing store and replace the plugs for new, which is what I did.

I headed to Bunnings, because I had to get some plants, and enquired if I could get the new rubber seals so I wouldn’t have to replace the whole plug.

Unfortunately, they haven’t been stocked for a while, so most people have to resort to buying a new plug. They cost me under $8 each. You can find the plugs near the PVC traps (bends that are installed under your sink and basin) and plug and waste section. They weren’t in the plug section where I was looking!  If you can’t find them, ask someone to show you.

kitchen sink basket plug

New kitchen sink basket plugs

We’ve been using our sink for 9 years, and both plugs deteriorated within a few weeks of each other. The sink basket strainer plugs are usually the one size for most sinks. But it is  best to take your old plug with you so you can match like for like. If you find your plug is a different shape to what is at your local hardware store, head to a plumbing store like Reece or Tradelink and see if they can give you the washer seal or order in the new plug to suit your sink.

If you put your plug in, and it still leaks, you may need a plumber to come out and replace the whole plug and waste.

new kitchen sink plugs

kitchen sink basket plugs

Because the plugs are shiny new, I had to give my sink a good clean. I sprinkled Dominant Soaking Powder around the wet sink, and especially around the drain where it can go brown. Leave it for ten minutes, then give it a quick scrub and your sink will look sparkling new. I’ve used gumption before, and have gotten the same effect, but it required more effort in scrubbing.

How to Fix a Leaking Kitchen Sink Basket Strainer Plug

It’s now so much less hassle filling up our sink bowls. We also don’t use as much water when we fill them.

Ever had a leaking kitchen sink basket strainer plug? How do you clean your kitchen sink?