Should I Use Plumbers Putty Or A Gasket When Installing A Sink Drain?

Installing a sink drain can be a tricky process. You’re likely wondering what is the best material to use for a secure and water-tight seal: plumber’s putty or a gasket?

Plumber’s putty has been used for many years and is the traditional choice for sink drain installation, but gaskets are becoming more popular.

In this article, we’ll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each material, as well as how to apply them correctly.

By the end, you’ll have a better idea of which material is best for your sink drain installation.

What Is Plumber’s Putty?

Plumber’s putty provides a strong seal to keep water from seeping out, so it’s a great choice when it comes to plumbing projects.

This putty is made of a combination of oils and flour, and is applied to the drain opening before connecting the sink drain. Unlike other sealants, plumber’s putty won’t harden over time which means it won’t crack or break.

It also has unique sealant properties that allow it to form a watertight seal as soon as it’s applied. The drying time for plumber’s putty is also much shorter than other sealants — usually only a few minutes.

This makes it ideal for quick plumbing projects.

What Is a Gasket?

You may be wondering what a gasket is, and it’s actually pretty fascinating – gaskets can be as little as 1/32 of an inch thick and are capable of withstanding up to 15,000 pounds of pressure per square inch!

A gasket is a mechanical seal, typically made of rubber, metal, or paper which is used to fill the space between two or more surfaces and provide a tight seal. Gaskets are used in a variety of applications, including plumbing, and they provide superior sealing efficiency and durability compared to other materials.

They work by compressing between two surfaces, creating a seal that stops any liquid or gas from escaping. Gaskets are used in a variety of ways, such as in cars to prevent oil and other fluids from leaking, and in plumbing to seal two surfaces together and prevent leaks.

Gaskets can also be used to stop noise and vibration from traveling between two surfaces. They’re a great alternative to other materials as they’re more durable and provide more efficient sealing capabilities.

Advantages of Plumber’s Putty

Installing a sink drain can be made easier with plumber’s putty, offering superior sealing and durability for the job. Plumber’s putty is a non-toxic sealant that provides excellent waterproofing solutions for sink drains.

Plumber’s Putty is also incredibly easy to use and provides a strong seal that will last for a long time. It’s very resistant to temperature changes, which makes it an ideal choice for sinks located in areas where temperature fluctuates often.

Plumber’s Putty is also non-staining, so it won’t leave any unsightly marks on the sink or drain. Additionally, it’s less likely to crumble or degrade over time, providing a longer lasting seal.

Finally, Plumber’s Putty is quite affordable, making it a great option for those on a budget.

Advantages of Gaskets

With gaskets, you can ensure a tight, long-lasting seal without breaking the bank. Gaskets are made of non-toxic materials, making them safe to use around food and drink.

They are designed to create a watertight seal that won’t leak, keeping your sink drain in place. Gaskets are easy to install, and they are designed to withstand extreme temperatures.

They’re also durable and can last for years with proper maintenance and care.

Here are some advantages of using gaskets when installing a sink drain:

  • Made of non-toxic materials
  • Create a watertight seal
  • Easy to install
  • Withstand extreme temperatures
  • Durable and last for years

Disadvantages of Plumber’s Putty

You’ll need to be careful not to over-tighten the connection when working with plumber’s putty, as it can break and cause a messy situation. Plumber’s putty is a soft, malleable dough-like substance used to create a temporary seal between two surfaces. It’s a readily available and relatively inexpensive product, but it has some drawbacks. One major disadvantage of using plumber’s putty is that it can stain some types of surfaces, such as marble, granite, and laminates. In addition, its flexibility makes it prone to water leakage.

Table Staining Leakage
Plumber’s Putty Yes Yes
Gasket No No

Using plumber’s putty for installation can be a quick and easy solution, but it’s important to consider the long-term effects that can come with it. The staining and water leakage are two major issues that should be considered before deciding to use this material.

Disadvantages of Gaskets

When working on a sink or drain, you’ll need to consider the long-term effects of the materials you’re using – gaskets can be a great option, but they come with their own set of drawbacks.

Gaskets are not as durable as plumber’s putty and can be prone to wear and tear over time. This can lead to leakage, especially if the gasket is used in a pressurized environment.

Additionally, rubber gaskets are prone to developing an odor over time due to the breakdown of the rubber material. This can be a concern for some homeowners, as the smell can be difficult to get rid of.

In some cases, gaskets may not provide the same level of watertight seal as plumber’s putty. If the gasket is not installed correctly, it may not be able to keep the water from leaking out of the drain. For this reason, it’s important to make sure the gasket is installed properly and that it’s replaced regularly to prevent any leaks.

How to Apply Plumber’s Putty and Gaskets Correctly

By taking the time to apply plumber’s putty or gaskets correctly, you can ensure that your sink or drain won’t be plagued by pesky leaks, like a leaky boat struggling to stay afloat. The right sealing techniques and proper drain installation are key when using plumber’s putty or a gasket.

Here are four steps to ensure a proper application of either material:

  1. Clean the sink surface and the drain, removing any dirt, grime, or debris.
  2. If using plumber’s putty, roll the putty in your hands to form a rope and then wrap it around the drain in a circular motion.
  3. If using a gasket, press it firmly against the sink surface and into the drain.
  4. Use a wrench to tighten the drain, ensuring both the plumber’s putty or gasket is securely in place.

By following these steps, you can ensure that your sink or drain will be installed correctly with the best possible seal.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best material for a sink drain installation?

When it comes to the best material for a sink drain installation, the two most common sealant types are plumbers putty and a gasket.

Plumbers putty is a soft, malleable material that is used to seal around drains, faucets and other plumbing fixtures, while a gasket is a more rigid material that is often used to create a water-tight seal between two surfaces.

When installing a sink drain, it’s important to choose the right sealant for the job, as it’ll affect the longevity of your sink drain.

The installation techniques for both plumbers putty and a gasket can vary slightly, so it’s always best to consult with a professional to ensure that your sink drain is properly installed.

Is Plumber’s Putty or a Gasket easier to install?

Deciding whether you should use plumber’s putty or a gasket when installing a sink drain can be a tricky decision.

When it comes to DIY tips and installation tips, both materials have their advantages and disadvantages.

Plumber’s putty is easy to apply, but it doesn’t always form a strong seal.

A gasket, on the other hand, is more difficult to install, but it generally provides a stronger, more reliable seal.

Ultimately, the decision is up to you, but be sure to factor in the difficulty of installation when making your choice.

How durable are Plumber’s Putty and Gaskets?

When it comes to durability, plumber’s putty and gaskets both have their advantages.

Plumber’s putty is less expensive and easier to install, but gaskets are more durable and require less maintenance. They can also be more eco-friendly, as they are often made of recycled materials.

Ultimately, it comes down to cost comparison, environmental impact, and the individual needs of the user.

When do I use Plumber’s Putty and when do I use a Gasket?

You’re standing in your bathroom, sink drain in hand, and you have a decision to make. What sealant are you going to use to complete the installation?

To make the best decision, it’s important to understand the benefits and drawbacks of each. Plumber’s putty is an affordable, malleable sealant made from clay, linseed oil and other materials that works to seal drain materials, like metal or plastic. It’s easy to install and can be shaped to fit any drain, but it’s not as durable as a gasket.

Gaskets, on the other hand, are more expensive, but their rubber or neoprene composition makes them better able to handle the stress of sink drain installation and provide a better, longer-lasting seal.

So, when it comes to plumber’s putty or a gasket, the choice is up to you.

How long will Plumber’s Putty and Gaskets last?

When it comes to drain longevity, your choice of sealing method makes a big difference. Plumber’s putty is a great choice for short-term sealing needs, lasting about five years before needing to be replaced.

Gaskets, on the other hand, can last up to 20 years before needing to be replaced. So, when it comes to longevity, gaskets are the clear winner.


When it comes to installing a sink drain, you have two great options: plumber’s putty and gaskets.

Plumber’s putty is easy to use and a great sealant, while gaskets are a more durable and reliable choice.

Both options have advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to consider your needs and the specifics of your installation before making a decision.

No matter which option you choose, be sure to apply it correctly for a lasting, strong seal.

So, go ahead and choose the option that works best for you – your sink will thank you!

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