Bathroom Vanity not secured

Old 01-22-04, 07:49 AM
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Question Bathroom Vanity not secured

I bought a house in 10/2003. Paid a home inspector to point out that which I needed to know. However, thus far, we are not using the master bath. Last week I noticed that the 36" wide bathroom sink cabinet is not attached to anything. The only thing that attaches the sink cabinet (vanity) is the plumbing and I say this can not be right. If one were to grab the sink, the whole unit would pull away from the wall and rip the plumbing out.

Now, common sense would say "Mr E, just bolt the cabinet to the wall, caulk it, and move on. That is what I intend to do. But my real question for you experts here is:

Is there typically a building code or the like that mandates that a fixture such as this be attached in some way to the wall?

I ask because obviously one of two conditions exist:

1. There is no code and it is acceptable as it (not smart but not illegal)
2. The home inspector missed a big item

Your help is putting my mind at ease is greatly appreciated.

Mr E
Old 01-22-04, 10:20 AM
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A vanity preferably should be leveled and screwed to wall studs through its frame for added stability, but there is no code requiring it as far as I know.
The sink should be held onto the vanity base by a few dollops of caulk. The plumbing should not be the only thing holding the sink to the base, or be in any strain. That would eventually cause leaks.
I have seen vanities free-standing and attached to the wall both, in many places, so apparently it's just a matter of choice.
This is not something structural or mechanical or "major" that a General Home Inspector would be concerned with.
Just measure over from the nearest corner for 16" stud centers, drill pilot holes and put in a couple of screws. That will hold it.
Good Luck!
Old 01-22-04, 03:42 PM
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There is no code issue here and it's not all that surprising that no one noticed it. Inspectors don't generally try to move cabinetry. It's also possible that screws were installed, but didn't hit a stud. That's never happened to ME, of course.

In any event, it's very easy to fix. Remove drawers or open doors so you can see and reach the top rear part of the vanity. There should be a board ~3" wide running all the way across - just under the counter top.

Use a stud finder to locate at least 2-3 studs across the vanity. Drive 3" screws through the 3" wide board and into the studs. If the board is away from the wall, slide some shims between the board and wall before you drive the screws.
Old 01-22-04, 03:59 PM
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Talking Thank you!

Thank you all for responding. I knew that securing it would not be a problem, I was really just concerned about if it was a code violation that my home inspector missed.

I will be fixing it this weekend! Thanks again.

Mr E

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