How to Install a Countertop Dishwasher Under the Sink

If you’re tired of handwashing dishes after a meal, a countertop dishwasher can be the perfect solution for your home. These appliances are compact enough to fit under most sinks and use less water than standard dishwashers, so they won’t take up as much space in your kitchen. Installing one is easy if you have the right tools and know what you’re doing. This guide will show how to install a countertop dishwasher under the sink step by step with pictures!

How to Install a Countertop Dishwasher Under the Sink

Why is a dishwasher usually used to handwash your pots and pans?

A dishwasher is a convenient way to clean a lot of dishes at once. Unfortunately, many people also use their dishwashers as makeshift sink replacements. If you have a smaller home without the space for a separate sink and dishwasher, this might be your best bet if you still want an easy sink to wash dishes with. In this case, you would install the dishwasher under the sink and use it as a double-duty appliance.

What You’ll Need

  • A drill with a 1/2″ bit or equivalent hole saw
  • A household cleaner or degreaser
  • Teflon tape for threaded faucets
  • Pipe strap to attach the dishwasher drain hose to a cabinet leg
  • Dishwasher kit, available from most home improvement stores

These dishwashers typically require a special hookup kit that can be purchased at your local hardware store. The kit contains the hoses that attach to your faucet, drain hose, and electrical cord. You’ll also need to know how much clearance you have under the sink.

10 Steps On How to Install a Countertop Dishwasher Under the Sink

Did you recently purchase a countertop dishwasher but don’t have the space to put it? If this is the case, then there are ways that you can integrate your used dishwasher into your kitchen. This article will show you ten simple steps on how to install a countertop dishwasher under the sink.

Step 1:

Take out the old dishwasher. If you have an old dishwasher that needs to be replaced, then take it out. Place a bucket on the floor directly underneath where the machine will be installed, unscrew and remove any fasteners holding in place. Then carefully try to lift out the device from its spot.

Take Out the Old Dishwasher

Step 2:

Turn off the water supplies. First, you need to drain all water from your current dishwasher. If you’re using a hose, then place it under the kitchen sink and connect one end to the faucet and the other end to your countertop dishwasher. You will need to open up each hot and cold supply line at this point to make sure that no water spills out. Next, make sure the hose is draining the water to a drain outside of your home.

Step 3:

Take extra precautions with GFCI. If you have a dishwasher built into your countertop or has been there for some time, you may need to get rid of it before installing a new one under the sink. In this case, you will want to remove the GFCI plug first. You can do this by unplugging it, then taking off the cover and pulling out its terminal screws. If there is any water around the dishwasher, then be sure to dry it out before moving on.

Unplug GFCI Plug

Step 4:

Get the correct plumbing. There are different types of plumbing systems, so you’ll have to be sure that what’s going on under the sink is compatible with your dishwasher. In most cases, it will connect to a water inlet and a drain line. Your machine should already come with the correct fittings, but if not, then purchase them from your local hardware store. You can also opt to purchase a dishwasher kit that is specially designed for installing the appliance under the sink.

Step 5:

Take out all of your food from inside. Be sure to empty the cabinets and drawers below where you will be putting in your countertop dishwasher. You can remove or move around any appliances that may get in the way when installing your dishwasher. You also need to move the waterlines and electrical lines that are by your sink when you’re ready to add in your new dishwasher.

You Can Check It Out to Unclog Coffee Grounds From Sink

Step 6:

Attach the faucet adapter. The kit should come with a faucet adapter, but if not, then purchase one from your local hardware store or appliance dealer. The faucet adapter will attach to your current sink faucet and includes a hot and cold water line that you can place inside the cabinet directly underneath it.

Step 7:

Add in the dishwasher. If using a kit, read through all of the instructions carefully before installing your countertop dishwasher under your kitchen sink. Next, line up the holes on your machine with the faucet adapter and mark where you need to drill. Drill a hole large enough to accommodate your water lines through it, but don’t make them too large.

Step 8:

Install the dishwasher Screw in all of the necessary screws to hold in place your countertop dishwasher under your sink. Then you can test to see if your machine is attached correctly by turning on the water and checking for any leaks.

Step 9:

Place the dishwasher Once everything checks out, then place your dishwasher inside of your cabinet and click it into place. Be sure that there aren’t any gaps between the top and bottom cabinets, as well as if there is any space in between your dishwasher and your sink.

Step 10:

Make the final connections. Connect the electrical line to a GFCI outlet or attach it directly to an existing one if possible. Turn on both water valves under your sink, then turn on the power switch for the dishwasher itself. Add your dishes and wash them by following the instructions that came with the machine. You can then load your dishwasher after it’s finished running by using the cabinet above it.

Gather tools and materials You will need

  • Dishwasher-specific installation kit (usually includes the supply line and drain line)
  • Plastic ties
  • Silicone caulk
  • Teflon tape
  • Plumber’s putty or sealant
  • Wall protector strips 
  • Two adjustable wrenches
  • 1/2 to 3/4 inch open-end wrench
  • Tape measure

Tips and Suggestions

  1. Don’t forget the rubber mats to keep your dishwasher from moving around while it’s being used.
  2. Measure beforehand, so you don’t have to move your dishwasher once it’s installed.
  3. If you are using a specific dishwasher kit, then follow all of the instructions carefully before trying to install it yourself under your sink.
  4. Don’t skimp on tools; they are key to getting the job done correctly.
  5. If you aren’t too comfortable with home improvements or repairs, then get help from an expert that knows how to do it.

Please keep in mind that this is general information for educational purposes only and doesn’t constitute professional advice. Please consult a licensed contractor if you have any doubts about how to install a countertop dishwasher.

Frequently Asked Question

Can You Hookup a Portable Dishwasher Under the Sink?

Yes, a portable dishwasher can be hooked up under the sink. First, you need to find out if your sink is compatible with the unit. You may need to make some modifications before hooking it up.

Do Tabletop Dishwashers Have to Be Plumbed in?

Tabletop dishwashers are not necessarily plumbed in. However, if you want to use the power of your dishwasher when you’re away from home, it is recommended that you have an electrical outlet installed near your sink or faucet.

An important note: You must also have a reliable source of water nearby, as well as a drain line connected to your sink or faucet.

Can Countertop Dishwashers Be Built in?

Countertop dishwashers are usually built in because they are much smaller than a standard dishwasher. This allows them to be installed under counters and within cabinets that would otherwise not have enough space for a traditional dishwasher.

However, countertop dishwashers do require more maintenance than standard dishwashers due to the machine’s small size. It is also important to keep in mind that countertop models can only accommodate dishes up to 11 inches wide and 10 inches deep, which is less than a standard unit’s capacity.

Can You Get a Dishwasher That Doesnt Need Plumbing?

Yes, dishwashers that do not need plumbing are available and can be installed in your kitchen. These dishwashers use a suction-based system to draw water from the sink or showerhead and then wash dishes.

The most common type of this is a tankless dishwasher which does not have a permanent water source like a tank model. The only disadvantage of these models is that they require electricity in order to run.

What Kind of Adapter Do You Need for a Portable Dishwasher?

An adapter is a device that allows electrical devices to be used with different power supplies. There are two types of adapters:

  1. Power supply adapter- an AC/DC adapter that can convert the voltage and current requirements of the appliance you want to use.
  2. Voltage converter converts one voltage into another, typically to reduce the amount of electricity needed by a device while maintaining its performance.


With the right tools and supplies, you will be back up in the running in no time. Once you are done, measure out where your washer will go and make sure it fits the counter space. If not, try again until it does.

Disposable cleaning supplies like paper towels can be costly over time. Save by buying reusable microfiber towels to clean up after meals or spills throughout the home or office. It is also environmentally friendly since it can be washed hundreds of times before needing to be replaced. They dry quickly, reducing the chance of mold buildup in corners and crevices, which attracts germs and bacteria. This reduces cross-contamination among surfaces as well as makes them ideal for quick cleanups on hard floors without rinsing first, including inside refrigerators. 

Kitchen counters can get scratched easily if you are not careful. To protect yours, use felt pads under appliances, especially the ones that create heat like blenders and toasters. Part of being a responsible adult is taking care of your things so they last you for years to come!  

For more ideas on how to install a countertop dishwasher under the sink please contact us. Thank you for reading our article.

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