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Outdoor sink

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  • Outdoor sink

    Hi all,

    Browsing though the photos I see a lot of sinks incorporated into the outdoor areas. I was wondering, of those that have sinks in their setup how much do you really use it? My build site is about 10-12 feet from the door that leads to the kitchen and I'm thinking I really don't need a sink outside since its that close.
    Any thoughts will be appreciated
    The set: as of could change as it has many times already
    Custom Gas B.B.Q
    Wood B.B.Q
    2 pot burners
    Deep fryer
    Mini Frig?

  • #2
    Re: Outdoor sink


    Agree with you on the sink. I don't have one and really don't see a big need.
    On the off chance I do need to rinse my hands, I have a gargen hose about 20' away I don't do any outdoor prep work (too damn hot and humid 5 months of the year), that may be why I don't see the need.

    As for the grills - A MUST
    Frig - A MUST (I have to have a beer during fire building)
    What the heck....go for the whole plan (the BOSS cut a few of my ideas), always plan for more than you want; that way you can at least end up with the things that mean the most.



    • #3
      Re: Outdoor sink

      Well.. To offer a differen opinon. I've had an outdoor BBQ/fireplace far from the inside kitchen with no sink, and now have an outdoor kitchen close to the indoor kitchen (20 feet tops).

      I use my outside sink a LOT and would prioritize it ahead the burners and the fridge, behind the grill and wood oven. In fact, I plan to add a disposal to that sink, an oversight in the original plan.

      I use the sink to wash dishes, glasses, hands, grill tools, pizza paddles, you name it. I also use it as the designated sink for cleaning paint brushes, tools, etc. I put in the deepest one I could find for that reason.

      If you are on a raised foundation and can place the sink on an outside wall to your home, plumbing is not a big problem. If not, I could understand the reluctance to install, could get expensive getting plumbing in place.
      - JC


      • #4
        Re: Outdoor sink

        cost was another deciding factor. The majority of FL homes are on a slab - consierable cost and effort to add any plumbing. My closest water access would have involved cutting my 2 yr old pool deck, then patching and trying to match the finish....I had to agree with my wife on this one, no way.

        I did have the foresight to have a utility sink (paint brushes and such) installed in my garage when the house was built but never thought I'd need any 'outside' plumbing.


        • #5
          Re: Outdoor sink

          Thanks all for the replies. I'm still riding the fence on this one..Hook up is not a problem and I was gonna make the sink out of some left over granite pieces from a job so cost isn't really an issue and no spousal unit ..I paid for that mistake years ago (technically I think I'm still paying attorney related fees somewhere) best money I ever spent..and I sleep better knowing that I'm sure I created a nice college fund for my attorneys child
          I don't know..I'll think and plan it to death and then one day just get a hair up my butt and do it..
          Its my constant battle of right brain and left brain...I know, I know they have medication for that
          thanks guys


          • #6
            Re: Outdoor sink

            A small (12" dia) stainless steel sink was reasonably important for me, not only to rinse glasses etc, but also to wash my hands to save having to go inside. I know my wife will be happy with less mess in the bathroom or laundry sink!

            But I'm not going to the expense of plumbing it into my sewer system - just a waste pipe to a small gravel-filled bottomless concrete tank in the garden. A stocking over the end of the pipe should catch any solids.

            It's only grey water after all, and as long as I can access the tank to empty the stocking periodically, and use eco-friendly detergent & liquid soap, I don't foresee any problems.



            • #7
              Re: Outdoor sink

              Hi All!
              I'm putting a sink in as well! I'm guessing everyone is just putting in a cold water supply. (I am) I put a pipe in connected to a dry well and I'm going to put some sort of filtration 'thingy' in the drain pipe so no 'stuff' gets into the ground.
              Best to all,
              View my pictures at,


              • #8
                Re: Outdoor sink

                Yep, at this stage just cold water is all I plan to have. But in case I change my mind, I've got a natural gas supply right there - for an instantaneous gas hot water service. These days, they don't even have a pilot light, so no wasted gas while it's waiting to be used! But I doubt I'll ever go down that path - I don't think the tree roots would respond well to the hot waste water!


                • #9
                  Re: Outdoor sink

                  I too am including a sink. Like Hendo I just used a dry well. Much to my surprise I got the blessing of the city building department for it. I got a really nice 23" square 10" deep stainless steel sink on eBay for $8.99. Shipping costs were high but still a really good deal. I hooked the cold water supply up to my sprinkler system main line so when I blow out the sprinklers in late fall I will blow out the sink line at the same time (important consideration in Montana). I also have a gas line near by if I decide I have to have hot water, but figured I would give it at least a season or two before I make that determination.



                  • #10
                    Re: Outdoor sink

                    I'm on my second outdoor kitchen. Sink in both. First one had a small "bar-type" sink with only cold water draining into a french drain. When I built my second one in the new house, I plumped in hot water, plumped it into the sewage system and put in a big deep 26" sink. I use mine all the time. It's also great for cleaning up after working in the yard.

                    I am now kicking myself for not putting in a dishwasher

                    One reason not to run back and forth from the inside kitchen is the AC bill during the summer here in Houston. For you guys with a great climate, not a big deal I suppose.


                    • #11
                      Re: Outdoor sink

                      Ok now, looking for opinions.
                      How useful is an outdoor kitchen area. is it worth the cost and trouble? Sub question, do I need a roof over the area?
                      My plans include a large deck right of the back of the house, and the oven/smoker/grill pit wich will be about thirty feet away from the house. The house is just above grade, so there are no stairs involved. The back door is actually on the side of the house, not the rear. I cook on my beat up old charcoal grill probably four or five nights a week, I dont really mind walking out the side and then around back, but could down on trips to the kitchen if I install an outdoor kitchen on the future deck. The spot I am thinking of would put the counter up against the kitchen wall, so water, drain and electric would be a breeze.
                      My problem is this, do I need a cover? If I roof that section of deck, I block all natural sunlight to the kitchen window. That would also extend the future drive way roof and create an enormous section of roof back there, almost bigger than my house.
                      Stainless steele sink and graniet or cement counter are options, but are there good weather resistant cabinet materials? I have no problem with a seasonal cover.
                      So, do any of you think the possible usefullness of the sink, countertop and fridge will be worth the extra cost and design flaws of a roof?
                      Thank you for any time you give this poor DIYer.


                      • #12
                        Re: Outdoor sink

                        Ok, time for some opinions.
                        is an outdoor kitchen really worth the cost and effort.
                        also, should I cover counter and working space with a roof?


                        • #13
                          Re: Outdoor sink

                          Huh, some how I keep posting things twice

                          Huh, some how I keep posting things twice...


                          • #14
                            Re: Outdoor sink

                            Opining as another DIYer I lean more towards a minimalist design - I think you need counters, but why do you really need a fridge outdoors? I know others here have done that, but I can keep beer cold without a fridge, and pizza ingredients can stand for an hour or so outside. If I had a day long pizza party where I want the ingredients to stay cold next to the prep area a portable cooler would fit in just fine.

                            Sink? How about a few bowls/buckets of water - one for cleaning and another for rinse.

                            Cover is very much a weather dependent thing, and depends whether you need something for shade or rain protection in your climate. Where I live, rain is the biggest issue. I built my oven with a short overhang intended to be enough to hide under when it rained - my design failed (too short) and it served no purpose. My next oven will skip that feature and instead have a portable umbrella placed in front of the oven for shelter as needed.

                            Counter materials - as a DIYer, think about casting concrete countertops yourself. It's a good all weather material and is no fuss - you don't really have to worry about resealing it regularly like granite (sealing helps protect against stains, but concrete is rustic - let it stain!). You can touint it, acid stain it, include bits of material for color, even grind to a polish for visual appeal. Or you can just use melamine as a mold and stay with the fairly smooth work surface that gives you. A fair amount of web information about the options for that.

                            Cabinets? How about a wire rack? How much outdoor storage is needed?

                            Last edited by maver; 06-13-2007, 09:20 PM.


                            • #15
                              Re: Outdoor sink

                              I agree with Maver, but really this is a matter of taste rather than being "right" or "wrong."

                              I have decided against a refrigerator. My prep area will have an overhang which will accommodate one of the many coolers I have accumulated. My kitchen is planned for an oven, grill, tandoor and counter tops. I plan on including a separate bar/counter top as another prep/seating area. While I can certainly see the advantages of a sink (and I love Sharon's idea of hooking it up to the sprinklers for the fall blow out), I really don't think I need it.

                              As for the roof, my wife would cut off my hands if I killed ANY of the light coming into the house. If you really want rain protection, could you install one of those retractable awnings over part of the area (not the chimney of course )?
                              "You better cut the pizza in four pieces because I'm not hungry enough to eat six."

                              -- Yogi Berra

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