How to Make an Overflow Drain for a Kitchen Sink

Many of us have done it.

Keep this from ever happening again!Keep this from ever happening again!
We start to fill the kitchen sink and get distracted. Before we know it, we are running for towels and a mop to clean up the overflow. Most kitchen sinks do not come with an overflow drain, but with a little work, you can retrofit one into your kitchen sink to eliminate the fear of the dreaded overflow.

Measure at least 1 inch down from the rim of the sink and mark the spot.

Select a hole saw to match the size of your drain fitting. Keep the drain size to 1 inch or smaller. Drill the hole carefully.

Apply a liberal amount of plumber's putty to the underside of the drain attachment and feed it through the hole. Screw on the bottom side until it fits tightly and the putty starts to extrude from the fitting. Wipe away the excess putty with a damp cloth.

A screw-operated hose clamp is easiest to install and will hold firm.

Attach the hose to the drain fitting and seal it with a hose clamp. Repeat this step on the drainpipe with the auxiliary drain joint.

Pour a glass of water directly into the drain to test it. Watch the pipe as the water drains and feel every fitting to ensure that there is no leakage. If there are leaks, tighten the screws. Apply silicone caulk to each joint as an added protective measure, if desired.

Things You Will Need

  • Drill
  • Hole saw
  • Plumber's putty
  • Drain fitting
  • Rubber pipe
  • Hose clamp
  • Drain pipe with auxiliary drain joint
  • Silicone caulk (recommended)


  • Although you can place it anywhere, the back of the sink is the best place for a this type of overflow drain. The hose used to drain will be out of the way and is less likely to be caught by something and dislodged.


  • Do not place the overflow too low as it will damage the usefulness of the sink. An overflow positioned too high on the sink will not be effective.
  • Wear proper eye and ear protection to avoid injury.

About the Author

Adrian Traylor began writing professionally in 2008. His work has been seen in various conference publications and academic journals including "Eyes on the ICC." He holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Texas A&M University-Kingsville, a Master of Arts in international negotiation from the Monterey Institute of International Studies and a L.L.M. in international law from the University of Edinburgh.