Undermount  Sink Support System.  

 

And now for something completely different 

I designed this for my own home after reading horror stories on the Internet of sinks dropping when filled with water/dishes, and countertops cracking. As I could not find a proper solution for installing an undermount kitchen sink, I designed my own support system. It worked so well that I patented it!  

ARS would be open to offers from sinks and/or cabinet manufacturers through either a technology transfer or an outright sale of the patented technology, preferably providing product and service for the world market.

A detailed description of the ARS undermount sink and countertop support system can be found under "Patents" or by clicking on the patent number above.

Undermount sinks are primarily manufactured from stainless steel, copper, quartz, composite, fireclay and enameled cast iron, and are generally available in single, double and triple bowl configurations. Almost all undermount sinks have a continuous top rim flange that is designed to carry the full weight of a loaded sink. 

The ARS undermount sink and countertop support system is designed to support countertops, undermount sinks, bathroom vessel sinks and drop-in gas and electric cooktops typically found in new residential kitchens. It is especially suited to larger (heavier) single or double kitchen sinks which fit into European style box kitchen cabinets that are approximately 36” wide. The heaviest double bowl sinks are made of enameled cast iron and can weigh up to 144 lbs. The manufacturer of these sinks recommends that the support structure be capable of supporting 300 lbs., and that the sink not be attached directly to the underside of the countertop (countertop supporting the sink).

Triple bowl undermount kitchen sinks are generally manufactured from stainless steel, copper and enameled cast iron. They are approximately 40” to 48” long and require substantial support when fully loaded with water, dishes, pots and cutlery, etc. Triple bowl enameled cast iron sinks are usually drop-in (top mount) units due to their weight. The ARS undermount support system allows manufacturers to produce triple bowl enameled cast iron undermount sinks, as the support system is designed to support over 500 lbs. at a span of 50”.

The following outlines the key features of the ARS undermount sink and countertop support system:

 

  1. The support system can generally be installed before or after the installation of the countertop when using box style cabinets. Installing before is the preferred method, as all installation is from above the cabinet.

  2. The support system’s frame assembly and sink can generally be installed as a complete assembly from the top or through the box style cabinet’s front opening before the installation of the countertop. Installing from above the cabinet is the preferred method.

  3.  The support system’s frame assembly and sink can generally be installed as a complete assembly through the box style cabinet’s front opening after the installation of the countertop.

  4. The undermount sink’s rim flange is supported on all four sides with 100% contact with the support frame assemblies’ four frame rails, resulting in very little rim flange flex. The frame rail’s profile is designed using CAD (computer aided design) stress analysis to reduce bending moments, thereby reducing deflection in the frame rails, especially when the sink is fully loaded.

  5. The undermount sink’s rim flange is supported on all four sides with full contact with the support frame assemblies’ four frame rails. The support frame assembly can be used to compress the 100% silicon joint (once it has cured) located between the sink’s rim flange and underside of the countertop, thereby reducing the possibility of delamination, which allows the rapid growth of bacteria and mold.

  6. The support frame assemblies’ frame rails are isolated from the sink’s rim flange by Sorbothane® visco-elastic polymer vibration dampening/shock absorbing strips, thereby reducing the sound generated by the sink from being transmitted to the cabinet. High quality sinks are sprayed on the outside with sound deadening material to reduce noise emission, retain heat and reduce condensation.

  7. The support frame assembly (four rails) can be attached to the sink unit before installation into the cabinet, allowing the complete assembly to be raised and lowered in the cabinet which reduces assembly and future maintenance time.

  8. The support frame assembly supports both the sink and the countertop, thereby reducing stress on the weakest part of the countertop.

  9. The support frame assembly supports both the cooktop and the countertop, thereby reducing stress on the weakest part of the countertop.

  10. The side brackets (two types, one and two slot) are designed to be mounted against the cabinet’s vertical sides and flush to the vertical side’s top surface. The mounting holes are slotted and can be designed to index with the European hinge/shelf mounting holes already pre-drilled in the cabinet’s vertical sides.

  11. The support system’s frame assembly allows the sink to be partially lowered when the silicon joint between the sink’s top rim flange and the countertop becomes contaminated with bacteria and mould. If the sink is to be only partially lowered, and the sink’s drain or drains are plumbed with a slip joint(s), and the joint(s) allows sufficient travel, the slip joint(s) only needs to be loosened, and the plumbing does not have to be disconnected or removed. It is generally recommended that the silicon joint be replaced approximately every 3 to 5 years.

  12. The support frame assembly and sink can be quickly and fully lowered and/or removed as an assembly (after cutting through the silicon joint and removing the drain’s plumbing).

  13. The support system’s frame assembly can be adapted to provide additional support to a countertop, especially when using box style cabinets for dishwasher installations, and electric or gas cooktop inserts that require a large cut out in the countertop of generally 30” to 44”.

  14. The support system’s frame assembly can be adapted to provide additional support to a bathroom countertop and heavy vessel type sinks, especially when using wide box style cabinets with 1 cm. and 2 cm. thick countertops.

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The undermount sink support is shown with a Kraus Standart Pro 33" double bowl stainless steel undermount kitchen sink installed into an Ikea box style kitchen sink cabinet.

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The undermount sink support showing the four support rails which slot together for a tight fit (fast and easy assembly) and are supported by the adjustable side brackets. The side brackets are mounted flush to the cabinet's top surface for easy installation. Also note that when box style cabinets are fitted side by side, the vertical side walls are approximately 50 mm. thick when screwed together, and offer tremendous vertical load carrying capacity.

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The undermount sink support showing one of the side support bracket assemblies.

The support bracket's housing is physically attached to the box cabinet’s side by screws.  The housing has a lower ramp of 20 degrees to  the horizontal plane, two parallel vertical sides and a bottom slot. The top plate has two parallel vertical sides that fit and slide in the two vertical sides, located in housing. The top plate is raised and lowered by the bottom ramp plate and can only move in a vertical plane. As the bottom ramp plate is moved from side to side, the top plate is raised and lowered due to the bottom ramp in the housing. The longitudinal frame rails are located in the top plates and are raised and lowered by the top plates. Removing the top and lower ramp plates allows the longitudinal frame rails to pass through the support bracket's lower slot for installation or removal. 

This is only one variation of the design.

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The undermount sink support showing the four support rails and adjustable side brackets. Also shown are the four (black and attached to the top of the support rails) Sorbothane® visco-elastic polymer vibration dampening/shock absorbing strips and two of the four optional thumb screws that are used to secure  the support rails to the sink.