How to Cut a Hole in a Stainless-Steel Sink

We list the tools you'll need and give in-detail instructions, recommendations, and tips
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Last updated: August 27, 2023
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Stainless-steel sinks have many advantages. They are sturdy, lightweight, resistant to scratches, shocks and easy to maintain. In addition, many stainless-steel models exist, and they are very affordable.

The main problem encountered when installing a faucet on a stainless-steel sink is that they are often not perforated!

If this gives you the possibility of positioning the faucet “where you want”, you still have to drill the sink. Stainless steel Trusted Source About Stainless Steel Materials – The Why and The How | ISM Get a better sense of how certain alloy ingredients provide resistance to industrial chemicals. Like other steels, stainless steels are tough and durable. For these reasons they remain an essential material choice for most miniature valve designs. is a hard and rather resistant material. And it can be tricky to break through if you don’t know how to do it.

We are going to see how to cut a hole in a stainless-steel sink and make a clean and neat hole to accommodate the faucet.

When Do You Need to Drill a Hole in a Sink?

How to Cut a Hole in a Stainless-Steel SinkWhen installing a new sink, it is often the case that the faucet hole has not yet been drilled. On most classic sink models, the faucet has to be installed on the sink and the location of the faucet is simply marked. However, some sink types are not designed for direct installation of the faucet on them. For example, if you have a farmhouse sink, you can install the faucet tap on the counter behind the sink. The undermount sinks are also like the farmhouse models and may not require drilling a hole into the sink directly.

This absence of a hole makes people resort to passing the taps through the worktop and not through the sink. To integrate the faucet directly into the sink, you will therefore have to drill it.

It should be noted that the method of drilling a sink directly depends on its material. You have to carry out the work carefully, so as not to permanently damage or deface a new sink!

Tools and Materials Required

To successfully drill your sink, you must have the following tools:

  • A pencil
  • An electric drill
  • A hole saw
  • A drill bit adapted to the material
  • A hammer
  • An adjustable wrench
  • A needle
  • Scotch tape
  • A sandpaper
  • Protective gloves
  • Protective glasses.

The Hole Cutter: An Essential Tool for Drilling a Stainless-steel Sink

How to Cut a Hole in a Stainless-Steel SinkTo cleanly cut out the location for the faucet, you need a hole cutter Trusted Source Hole saw - Wikipedia . It is the only tool that ensures a perfect cut and therefore a clean and neat hole to insert your faucet.

Apart from the purely aesthetic aspect, poorly done drilling inevitably leads to leakage problems at the base of the future faucet.

Indeed, the O-ring (supplied with the faucet) will not be able to play its sealing role with the support (the sink). Because a badly cut hole does not have an exact diameter and very often the O-ring will not fit. Then it will cause water to seep along the fittings below the sink!

How to Use the Hole Cutter to Cut a Hole in a Sink

In the instructions below, we will make a 35 mm diameter hole with a 35 mm hole cutter. This is the most common diameter for installing a faucet. The Laiwei Bi-Metal Hole Saw is a good 35mm hole saw that is suitable for cutting through steel. However, depending on the faucet you have chosen, remember to check its installation diameter and get the right hole cutter!

Step-by-Step Instructions

Most kitchens are equipped with stainless steel sinks. This is a good thing as it is a material that is relatively easy to drill.

Before starting work, make sure your hole cutter is the right size. The hole must not be bigger than the tap!

Here are step-by-step instructions on how to do it:

1. Drill a Pilot Hole

How to Cut a Hole in a Stainless-Steel SinkChoose the location of your faucet then mark it with a marker. A little trick is to put a small piece of tape on the place you are going to drill so that the bit does not slip at the start.

With your drill, start by drilling with a small 4 mm drill bit to make a pilot hole.

Then enlarge this hole with a larger drill of 10 mm. The DEWALT 20V Max Cordless Drill would be suitable for this job. There’s an option to include a complete drill set that includes everything needed.

Tip: When you drill metal, your drill should not turn too fast.

2. Install the Hole Cutter

How to Cut a Hole in a Stainless-Steel SinkPosition the top of the hole cutter over the sink and screw its second part under the sink. This end piece is screwed in until it comes into contact with the sink.

3. Tighten the Punch for Cutting

How to Cut a Hole in a Stainless-Steel SinkScrew the hole cutter with an adjustable wrench, until it pierces the sink to the correct dimensions. The teeth will go into the sink and cut it out gradually. You need to tighten until the hole cutter comes free. You then get a perfect hole and the right size to install your faucet.

What If the Hole Drilled into the Sink Is Too Big?

Before drilling a hole in a sink, note the diameter of the faucet.

A hole that is too large will inevitably lead to a problem with the faucet installation and will be neither practical nor aesthetic. If the hole is still visible at the base of the faucet, water may also flow into it and cause humidity problems.

If it is too late and the tap hole is a little too big, there are different solutions available to you:

  • Attach a rubber gasket or washer if the thickness of the hole allows. This allows you to discreetly fill the hole, but will only work if the hole is slightly too large.
  • Use a repair epoxy, sealant or clay paste to fill the hole around the faucet. Knead the dough and form a crown around the hole to seal it. Smooth, clean the burrs, and let dry. However, if you use a quick dry sealant that wouldn’t allow reshaping until it’s dry, you can smoothen the rough surface with sandpaper. The Mandy 120 To 3000 Sandpaper has the right grit for this type of smoothening.
  • Buy a thicker faucet if you have no other solution.

Of course, the ideal is to drill a hole in the sink that is the right diameter!


  • As a rule, sinks are equipped with markings or indications for drilling. Hence, there is the need to read the instructions carefully before installing the product.
  • Remember to wear protective gloves, because cut stainless steel can be sharp.
  • Depending on the sink used (one or more tanks or even a large tank and a small tank), the installation location of the tap may vary. You must also take into account the type of tap you are going to install because very often the sinks placed on the furniture do not have much space for the installation of the faucet.
  • Important: even if it seems logical, it should be remembered that it is essential to drill the sink BEFORE fixing it in its location.

Final Thoughts

It is better to know how to cut a hole in a stainless-steel sink when planning your kitchen or bathroom. In many cases, new sinks must be drilled when installing. Each material is indeed unique and delicate, and may therefore require special attention. However, drilling a stainless-steel sink with the right tools is child’s play. No need to call your plumber, just follow the instructions and tips provided.


About Stainless Steel Materials – The Why and The How | ISM
Get a better sense of how certain alloy ingredients provide resistance to industrial chemicals. Like other steels, stainless steels are tough and durable. For these reasons they remain an essential material choice for most miniature valve designs.
Hole saw - Wikipedia

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