Q: Dear Ed: Last year I remodeled my bathroom and realized I made a mistake. To save money, I had a standard drop-in bathroom lavatory sink installed, when I really wanted a vessel bathroom sink. Will this now be a big job for me to upgrade to a vessel sink, and can I keep my present vanity in place?

—Shelly, Rhode Island

A: The good news is you should be able to keep your present vanity base and lav sink plumbing in place.

The bad news is you will most likely have to remove the entire vanity countertop along with your old sink.

Once your contractor has the open vanity base, he or she can start the new vessel sink and countertop installation. Vessel sinks mount above the vanity top and usually require a smaller drain hole in place of a larger sink cut out.

Finally, make sure you choose a deck-mounted vessel sink faucet, not a wall-mounted unit. With the taller vessel faucet installed on the countertop as well, you should be able to go with the flow to easily tap into the existing water lines below.

Master Contractor/Plumber Ed Del Grande is known internationally as the author of the book "Ed Del Grande's House Call," the host of TV and Internet shows, and a LEED green associate. Visit eddelgrande.com or write eadelg@cs.com. Always consult local contractors and codes.

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