Many good kitchen sink cabinets have gone bad by hanging out with a low-down, nasty, drip. For most homeowners, there’s an out-of-sight, out-of-mind mentality regarding this cave of a cabinet space.
There are a whole bunch of potential problems tucked inside that cupboard— household cleaners, dirty rags, the kitchen trash can, as well as your sink’s plumbing, the garbage disposal, dishwasher drain, and maybe a reverse osmosis (RO) system. The problem is, nobody wants to stick their head down there and check it out.
Here are a few tips that can save you the cost and aggravation of dealing with water damage down there:
Don’t store garbage under the sink—especially if an RO system is there. RO-system tubing is not the sturdiest stuff, and the constant pulling out and shoving in of a waste basket is just asking for trouble. Plus, it makes it kind of stinky down there.
If you store wet rags and cleaning chemicals, put them in a plastic bucket or tub. This will keep moisture and spills contained.
If your sink is a drop-in or undermount, make sure the connection between the sink and countertop is caulked. This is a very common cause of water damage, and one I often find even in newly constructed homes.
If you have an RO system, have it professionally serviced annually. A pro will change the filters, sanitize the system and check for leaks.
At least once a month, bend down, open the cabinet, and take everything out. Inspect the cabinet and plumbing. Run water in both sides of the sink and look for leaks. Take a sopping wet sponge and run it around the lip of the sink from the outside. If you see any sign of dampness inside, get it fixed immediately.
And remember: An ounce of prevention is worth a gallon of cure. (Ben Franklin might’ve said that.)