The plywood bottom of a kitchen or bathroom cabinet under a sink often becomes damaged over time from water leaks from the faucet or drain. To keep this from happening, cover the bottom of the cabinet with peel-and-stick vinyl floor tiles.

Watch this video to find out more.

Further Information


Theoretically, the inside of a sink cabinet shouldn’t be getting wet, but in the real world that’s just not the case. Too often there’s a leak, either from the trap or the faucet, and if water sits on the floor, it will eventually rot it out. So here’s a way to prevent that.

Buy some vinyl tiles. They’re only about a buck apiece and they’ve got a peel and stick adhesive on the back. Remove the paper backing, peel it off, and it’s a simple installation, as simple as just pressing it down. This is a very strong adhesive, and you’d be surprised, it just sticks right down.

It is important to make sure you clean the cabinet floor really well and remove all the dust or the glue won’t stick. Now, here’s one I trimmed earlier, I had to cut off an inch of the tile so it would fit. Slide that in the back, butt the seams up really tightly, as tight as you can get them, and press it down.

OK, and just keep going like that all the way across the floor of the cabinet. Let’s do the next one. This is a full size, I made the cuts in the back just so you’d have a full size tile right up front. Again, butt them really tightly together. Look at that seam, it’s almost invisible. Again, I’m going to continue like that across the whole floor. Now in the end, what you end up with is a floor that’s not only water resistant but really easy to clean.

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  1. Thanks, William, glad you like the sink-cabinet tip. Be sure to check out the hundreds of other Simple Solutions archived here. I’m sure you’ll find many other useful tips and hints. Thanks for writing and good luck!–Joe T.

  2. I had my kitchen floor redone, and I used the left over linoleum to put under my sink area and where I keep my pots & pans. Save me a lot of time and looks great!

  3. Great idea, Sue, and a great use for those left over tiles. Plus, putting tiles down under the pots and pans will protect the cabinet floor from scratches and wear marks that occur from sliding the pots in and out. Thanks for sharing your idea and good luck!–Joe T.

  4. this is such a good idea, but what I’m looking for is, something to hide, and protect further the cupboards at the bottom, where water has damaged the chipboard!

  5. Wish I would have seen this before water damaged the cabinet floor. Can I still do it? What prep should do before…e.g., sanding the raised areas of exposed particle board, etc. Secondly, it says not to install over finished or slick surfaces so how are you installing it on the inside of a cabinate which has a laminate floor?

  6. This damage is not caused by leaks but condensation on the cold water pipes. I used to have serious trouble with damp under the kitchen sink and solved this by cutting and epoxying extruded pipe insulation around every cold pipe in the cabinet. No problems since. take care of the source of the problem and be rid of the damp forever. The tiles may help protect the cabinet floor but its still going to be a watery mess if you don’t prevent the moisture occurring in the first place.

  7. OK fix for light occasional drips, but bad fix for leaks. The self adhesive vinyl tile has seams. The water will penetrate the seams and will get trapped under the vinyl. It will then take a very long time to dry out, rotting the wood and m causing a worse issue in the long run. It is better to get a cutting of vinyl sheet. Then lay it to fit under the sink and flash cove it up the back and front of the space under the sink where possible. If you can’t then just lay it in there. Protects the wood and easy to take out, dry the wood under it and put back if a leak occurs. (Flooring stores can probably give you waste cuts of the vinyl sheet for free.

  8. I prefer cat litter boxes from the dollar store. They only cost one dollar, buy two and they fit the entire left and right area, hold a ton of stuff and – – don’t have any seams! They catch and hold *all* of the water if there is a minor leak, including the cleaning supply bottles. (All bets are off for any protection if there is a major leak.)

  9. If you throw enough money at a problem, anything can be protected and/fixed. This is NOT an advertisement, endorsement, and/or a recommendation. The auto accessory manufacturer/distributor WeatherTech has a custom-made mat with sides that slip right onto the floor of standard kitchen and bathroom under-sink cabinets. I think that they are pricey, but I am more than satisfied with them.

  10. I agree with that one piece of linoleum or sticky vinyl is the way to go which can be molded to go up the sides. Water will get in between tiles.


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