Monday, April 21, 2014

DIY Outdoor BBQ sink

There are many possible configurations for setting up your outdoor sink.  I will only touch on my final outcome.   In my case I used a stainless steel table.  I live in a climate that rarely gets below 20°F on the coldest winter day.  So you may have to modify your installation to compensate for harder freezing.

I am able to use mine year round for the most part.  But I do keep a gallon of RV water system antifreeze handy to fill the sink drain trap when it really gets cold.  Draining is an alternative but not necessary in my case.

My hot and cold water supply was tapped off my kitchen sink which is on the inside of this exterior wall.  I put copper T's with a vertical copper pipe to 1/4 turn shut off valves.  These supply the BBQ sink with Hot and Cold water.  I further used braided burst resistant flexible supply lines between the exterior 1/4 turn shut off valves and the sink faucet connections. 

On the horizontal pipe coming out of the house, on the other outlet of the copper "T",  I installed hose bib valves on both the Hot and Cold.  These further extend the hot and cold to my garden hose via a Y adapter laundry sink hose.  My dogs appreciate a warm bath rather than cold.

In cold weather country you would need to install freeze proof valves or shut off valves on the inside so during winter the exterior lines could be turned off and drained.

I chose to install my exterior sink back to back with my kitchen sink for several reasons.  First this was the area I had my BBQ grill to begin with.  Secondly I had Hot and Cold water just through the exterior wall.  Lastly there was an exterior 1 1/2 drain clean out on the exterior in this location.  I further made connections for a outside garden hose (with Hot and Cold)!

The existing clean out amounted to a plastic 1 1/2 threaded female connector with a threaded male plug screwed in.  That was flush with the exterior stucco.  I simply unscrewed the male plug.  I then screwed in a new threaded male adapter (Male end threaded with the other end a female solvent connector).  To this I glued a T and extended the horizontal with another female threaded adapter to accept the old plug.....thus re-establishing the clean out.  The T had the other leg pointed up to plumb to the drain trap off the sink.  This clean out solved all kinds of issues such as draining the water, venting the drain, etc.

The Stainless table that was used was picked up at Costco. (Stainless Prep Table)  The sink was purchased new from Home Depot. (Deep Bar Sink)  The sink is just the correct size to use a 1/2 steamer tray lid as a cover to keep dirt out of the sink.  Total cost of material is about $300.  Less if you are able to scrounge some of your material.   I was able to complete my installation including the stucco patch in one day.  A second day of touch up painting and I was ready to start cooking and washing hands outside!

I used a grinder with a thin abrasive cutting wheel to cut out the sink hole.  I tried a jig saw first but it puckers the metal too much.  Go slow with the grinding wheel and cool the metal often with a wet rag to avoid turning the metal blue from heat.  A few strips of wood underneath will give the sink clamps something to hold to and also stiffen the top.  Use clear silicone caulk to seal the sink to the counter, as well as attaching the underside wood strips.

If you put some thought into your drain installation you will be able to disconnect the sink and unscrew the T from the wall if you ever wish to put things back to the way you started.

In my case I had to cut through the exterior stucco to get to the water lines behind the sink.  Then a patch and paint job to complete the installation.  I now have an exterior sink with hot and cold water.  In my case I use it next to my BBQ grill.  Other uses might be a potting table, or for use when working outside on vehicles or machinery.   In my case I also have Hot and Cold connected with a Y hose that attaches to a garden hose. Note: if you are using a hose on Hot water, buy a Hose rated for Hot water or you will soon ruin a standard hose.


Rick Beach has been cooking for over 45 years.  "If you want to add the years Mom used sifting and measuring cornmeal as a baby sitter, while she herself was baking...then its even longer"!  Equally at home using the conveniences of a modern day kitchen, or outside cooking over coals from a campfire.  An accomplished Dutch Oven cook as well as cooking and setting up for 100+ person events.  While many recipes might be handed down family favorites, others are new personal recipes that have been created over the years.  You might find Rick cooking anywhere in the western area of the USA. Loves the Outdoors, Traveling, Camping, and Cooking.  They make for a great combination.


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  2. That rubber garden hose should not be used for potable water you should be using:

    1. Thanks for the tip but I am in agreement with you. The Black rubber Y hose is actually hooked to feed the red hose from the hot and cold supply. The supply source is coming through the exterior stucco from inside the wall via copper. The Y adapter is so the hot & cold water can be blended for giving the dogs a bath off the hose.. The sink you see is hooked up with braided burst resistant faucet hoses off the 1/4 turn shut off valves T'd off the copper coming out of the wall. The T's are just behind the brass hose bib valves that the black rubber Y hose is attached too. The potable water to the sink is not running through the red rubber hose, or the black rubber Y hose.


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