How to Install a Floating Vanity

Lead Image
  • 10-20 hours
  • Advanced
  • 500-5,000
What You'll Need
Pencil
Construction adhesive
Nails and screws
Drill
Saw
Chisel

Floating vanities are popular for their elegance—their elevated, wall mounted frames convey a simple, almost magical confidence. To install one of these clean, powerful elements, start by cleaning out your space. Bathrooms can be a tight squeeze and if you don’t want your whole project to be a flush, make sere to clear and clean your space before you start.

This project will likely take two to four days to complete so make sure to plan accordingly and pick a time where you can install the vanity without needing the restroom for daily use. Collect all of your supplies, measure to make sure your vanity will float comfortably in your space, and then get started.

Step 1 - Read Up

Instruction packets can be a pain to read through, but it’s really important to familiarize yourself with the construction of the particular floating vanity you've chosen to install. Every vanity will be a little different, so when you start with the instructions, you set yourself up for success.

Step 2 - Stud Notching

Start beneath the drywall at the studs. Use a pencil to mark the wall with the width of the vanity, with the attachment points landing on the studs. Mark the wall above the rough plumbing—for a thirty-eight inch floating vanity, draw the second mark thirty-six and a half inches above the floor. Leave a spot for the top of your standard 2x6 brace.

hands using a stud finder and making wall marks with pencil

As you make your marks, make sure you’ve accounted for the height of the vanity from the floor. Once you’ve made the initial mark, use the ruler to make a mark five and a half inches lower. Use a saw to cut an inch and a half deep at each mark. Take a chisel and clean out each groove so that they are all smooth.

Step 3 - Brace Yourself

As you add the braces to the notches in the wall, make sure your brace is cut correctly. Cut a standard 2x6 brace to the length of your vanity. Use construction adhesive to secure the brace into place. Then use deck screws in each stud to secure the brace.

Take a break as a plumber adds in supply lines, then throw up the drywall and any molding you decide to use on the wall. This step takes a while, so give yourself plenty of time.

After the drywall's good to go, you’ll need to mark the location of the brace. To find the right spot on the wall, take the thickness of the vanity from the finished height of the countertop and draw a line with that same dimension from the floor.

Step 4 - Plumbing Holes 101

Next, you will need to locate the pluming source and on the wall and measure to find the location that you will need to cut the holes in the back of your vanity. Mark the back of the vanity and use a hole saw to make the holes in its back. It’s easiest to tackle this step if you remove the doors from the vanity.

drill with circle saw cutting hole for pipe in piece of wood

Step 5 - Place the Vanity

Grab a fellow handyman and a few buckets to help put the vanity at the right spot on the wall. Place your floating vanity on buckets or piles of wood that raise it to the right height in the right position. Make pilot holes in the vanity on the middle of the back rail—preferably these holes would go on each end of the vanity.

Then fasten the counter to the wall with the lag screws that the instruction manual suggests using. Make sure that everything is nice and level. Then add a few more pilot holes near the door bays and anywhere else your particular instruction manual suggests. Use the same lag screws to tighten these.

Add the doors or drawers back on and call it a day!

floating bathroom vanity with shelves under sink

Next Steps

Now that your vanity base is securely fastened to the wall, work with a plumber—or continue your DIY—by attaching the sink and faucet. You will need a general knowledge of plumbing to make sure that you end up with running water and no leaks.

After you’ve taken a load off and rested a little, try adding some personality to your newly remodeled bathroom with DIY decor candles or continue on the DIY train and add a new bathtub to complete the new look.