How To Install A Bathroom Sink Floating Shelf

Let’s Begin

You’ve decided you want a basin with a base, but you don’t want it to take up superfluous space and you want it to look modern and stylish. You need a floating bathroom shelf. Want to know all about floating shelves, how to make them and how to install them? Read on!


What Is A Floating Shelf?

floating bathroom shelf

A free-floating shelf is a surface designed to hold items up while it looks like nothing holds it up. It achieves this by having hidden brackets installed within both it and the wall. These hidden brackets hold it up and against the wall, giving it the look of something that is free floating.

They are often used for basins, which makes them perfect for the bathroom.


Why Choose A Floating Shelf?

A bathroom sink floating shelf is ideal for many people. They are great space savers, as they do not have a pedestal or vanity that take up extra space. So, if you are looking to decorate a smaller bathroom or cloakroom, this could be perfect.

As well as this, unlike a shelving unit, the plumbing is easily accessible when under a floating sink shelf, as it is completely unimpeded. This means, by having your sink on a floating bathroom shelf, you could save yourself a lot of time, effort and money when it comes to cleaning and maintenance.

Another reason floating shelves are a great choice is their adjustable height. There is no set height for the shelf, it all depends on how high or low you install the hidden brackets. This means your shelf and therefor your basin can be at the customised, exact right height for you.


Is A Bathroom Floating Shelf Safe?

weight for a floating bathroom shelf

Yes, a floating sink shelf is safe because of their strong, steel, hidden brackets. They keep the shelf attached to the wall and bear the weight of the basin and other items on the shelf. As long as your shelf is properly installed and you don’t overdo the weight, it is perfectly safe.


Is A Bathroom Floating Shelf Accessible?

Extremely so. Because a floating bathroom shelf uses no extra space underneath the shelf and it can be installed at any height, it is the perfect shelf for someone with mobility issues and has to use equipment such as a wheelchair. This is because you can easily fit part of the wheelchair underneath the free-floating shelf, making it extremely easy to use.


What Aesthetic Does A Free-Floating Shelf Fit?

A Floating Bathroom Sink Shelf is perfect for a modern, contemporary and minimalist household. The simple and elegant design lends itself to minimalism as it uses no extraneous parts and has an extremely clean silhouette. It also suits modern and contemporary bathrooms too, because its floating nature evokes a feeling of futurism and progress.

Couple this shelf with a wall hung toilet to really embrace the modern and minimalist look and go the extra step by making it a white bathroom shelf, to tie the look together.


How To Decorate A Bathroom Sink Floating Shelf

Shelves aren’t just functional, they’re also beautiful. The floating basin shelf lends itself to decoration and personalisation because it is already quite a bold piece that draws the eye. We recommend adorning it with anything you want to be centre of attention in your space, so something that can represent your theme. Maybe a lovely, drooping plant next to your basin to emphasise a biophilic theme, or maybe a little metal ornament to reflect a more industrial theme. Follow the fun and let the free-floating shelf help you express yourself.


Floating Shelf Vs Wall Mounted Shelf

wall mounted shelf

But how does a bathroom floating shelf compare to its sister product the wall mounted shelf?

The primary difference is clear to see, the floating bathroom sink shelf appears to be floating, while the wall mounted shelf has visible brackets so that you can see it is mounted on the wall.

Functionally, this means there is more space underneath the floating bathroom sink shelf for ease of access. They are both safe and sturdy, so you don’t have to worry about installing your basin either way.

The main consideration you have to make is an aesthetic one. Ask yourself: do you want to see the brackets or not? Once you have your answer, you know which shelf is right for you.


Where Can I Install A Bathroom Sink Floating Shelf?

You want to attach your floating basin shelf to a wall stud. This is because a wall stud will provide much more support than the wall itself, especially as the hidden brackets will be on the inside of the wall. You can use a gadget called a stud finder to locate studs in your wall, when you are figuring out where to install. It is worth investing in a more expensive one that can also detect piping and wiring to ensure you do not accidentally damage any of your home’s infrastructure.


What Sink Is Best For A Bathroom Floating Shelf?

counter top basin

The best sink for a floating sink shelf is the counter top basin. The counter top basin is designed to sit on surfaces like shelves, making it perfect in this context. The beauty of counter top sinks is that because they do not have to stand freely or be attached to the wall, they can come in a number of interesting shapes and designs.

For example, the polygon basin is a beautiful and striking sink that is only achievable because it is a counter top sink. A floating sink shelf allows you to pick an interesting and creative basin, so embrace your wild side and look for something that really stands out.


How To Make Your Own Floating Bathroom Sink Shelf

What if you can’t find the exact floating basin shelf you desire? Well, you can make your own!  Here’s how.

Choose Your Shelf Material

wood for floating bathroom shelf

First thing’s first, you need to choose a material. Because this will be housing a basin, you want something cuttable. Teak wood is your best bet as it is a sturdy and naturally water resistant wood. You could also go for plastic or glass, but you would want these shelves custom made beforehand.

Shape Your Shelf

Once you have your teak wood, mark it up according to how you want the shelf to look. Make sure to take into consideration the size and shape of the basin, as you don’t want a shelf that can’t handle your sink. Now sand it! You will want to make sure this shelf is as smooth as possible to prevent uneven installation and even worse, splinters.

Waterproof Your Shelf

Now, you need to waterproof it. Get some waterproofing coating and use foam brushes to evenly spread it over your DIY shelf. Depending on the brand you may need to do multiple coats after specified intervals, so be sure to follow the instructions provided.

Once it is waterproofed, you’re ready to install. But how exactly do you do that?


How To Install A Floating Shelf

floating shelf

Install Hidden Brackets

First up, install the hidden brackets. You will need to bolt these to your wall studs and then build interior wall around them. If you do not currently have access to your wall studs, use a stud finder and then cut out a section of the wall so you can access them.

Make sure to add your relevant decoration to your wall as you rebuild it, such as tiles, as it could be more difficult to do at a later stage.

Attach Shelf To Brackets

Now, depending on your floating bathroom shelf you will either have to put it on top of the bracket using adhesive, or slide it onto the bracket, as it has bracket sized holes in its back.

Once the shelf is on, use a spirit level to make sure it is level, if not, move the shelf until it is.

Seal Edges With Silicon

Now, use silicon to seal the edges between the shelf and the wall to make sure that no moisture or water that could splash out of the sink could get between them and cause damp or mould.

Let It Set

If you are sticking your shelf to the bracket using adhesive, make sure to use a lot and leave the shelf to rest with some weight on it to ensure sticking. You will also need to leave the shelf for sometime to make sure the silicon sets. Once this is done, you’re ready to install the basin.


How To Uninstall A Floating Shelf

But before we move on to the basin, let us check how to uninstall the shelf, should you ever need to. When uninstalling a floating basin shelf, you will need to cut out the section of wall it is attached to if you wish to remove the brackets.

You can then simply unbolt the brackets from the stud and rebuild the wall how you desire.


How To Install A Counter Top Basin

So, now the shelf is in, how do you properly attach the basin to it?

Prepare The Shelf

First of all, you need to place your basin on top of the shelf and draw with a pencil where the waste hole is, once this is done you need to cut out that hole from the shelf. We advise using a saw bit attachment for a drill as they will help you get a perfect circle.

You will also need to do this for the location of the tap.

Attach To Counter

Now, use silicon to cover the base of the basin and then place it on top of the shelf, lining it up so the shelf hole is perfectly under the waste hole. The silicon is what will stick the basin to the shelf.

Install The Waste And Trap

Now attach your desired basin waste by placing it in the waste hole and install your trap. If you have a bottle trap, attach it to the waste outlet pipe and then use the adjustable connector to connect the cannister to the waste hole.

Install The Tap

counter top tap

The tap is next. Attach the hoses to the ends of tap and slide them through the hole. You will then be able to clamp the tap together so it stays in place. Once you have done that, connect  the taps hoses to the water inlet pipes.

Seal With Silicon

Once this is done, use silicon to seal around the edge of the basin and tap, to make sure they don’t leak. Test it for leaks by running some water and using silicon to reinforce any areas you spot leaks.

With that, you have installed your counter top sink on a floating bathroom shelf.


How To Uninstall A Counter Top Basin

When removing a counter top basin, you will also be removing the counter, as the basin is sealed to it with adhesive and because there are holes in it specific to that basin, you will need a new counter for a new counter top sink.

Uninstall The Tap

Before anything, you will want to uninstall your tap. To do so, make sure your water is off and then remove the tap hoses from the inlet pipes. Have a small container underneath them ready, in case there is any extra water.

Then loosen the clamp holding the tap together, cut the silicon seal holding it to the counter and lift the tap out of the counter.

Uninstall The Trap

Now, remove the trap by disconnecting it from the waste outlet pipe and the basin. To do this, simply loosen the nuts holding it to each.

Uninstall The Counter

Now to uninstall the floating sink shelf, please refer to our earlier section.


How To Clean And Maintain A Bathroom Floating Shelf

There are three steps toc cleaning your floating bathroom sink shelf.

First of all, you will need to dust it with a microfibre cloth to ensure there is no build up or debris on it. Then you will need to wipe it down with anti-bacterial wipes, to ensure it is sanitary and as clean as possible. Finally, you will want to use polish and a different cloth to buff the wood and make it shine like its brand new. If you do these things regularly, you will have a hygienic and stunning floating basin shelf.


My Floating Shelf Is Sagging, What Do I Do?

One of the worst things that can happen with a floating shelf is that it begins to sag. Not only does this just look wrong, it renders the shelf useless, as anything put on top is likely to fall off.

So, why does this happen and what can you do to fix it?

Typically, there are two reasons this could happen.

  1. The Shelf Warps
  2. The Wall Is Not Level

Now, a wood shelf may begin to warp over time, but a stone resin one will not. This is just one of the reasons to invest in a stone shelf.

In fact, if your wooden shelf does warp, there’s not much you can do outside of uninstalling it and trying to apply pressure in a way that reaffirms the shape.

Meanwhile, if the wall is at fault, there is something you can do.

You can install a shim!

A shim is a small slither of material that acts as a wedge and helps bolster furniture where elements aren’t quite level. We advise using a plastic shim, as a wooden shim could warp or even rot in the humidity of the bathroom.

To install a shim, all you have to do is hold the shelf in place and insert the shim in the gap left between it and the wall.

Voila! You have fixed your floating shelf.


To Conclude

The bathroom sink floating shelf is a wonderful thing that looks like it could be ripped from the interior of a sci-fi hero’s home. This modern fixture is ideal for anyone looking to adorn their bathroom if storage, decoration and a basin in a stylish way. They are easy to install and suit a minimalistic aesthetic to a tee.