A guide to what you need for a portable washing sink

No Plumbing? No Problem: A Guide to What You Need for a Portable Washing Sink

Posted by | 25-11-2021

The pandemic has brought the need for proper handwashing to the forefront for businesses and events. While hand sanitizer dispensers can be used in many situations, adequate handwashing with soap and water is preferred. Washing with soap and water is also a must where food is prepared or served as well as for washrooms.

If you require a washing sink but don’t have plumbing, you might lose what to do. Fear not! Portable handwashing sinks are the ideal solution when plumbing isn’t available. Here’s our guide to what you need for a portable hand washing sink.

What are Portable Hand Washing Sinks?

As the name implies, these portable, mobile sinks offer hot and cold running water using tanks to provide fresh water. They are plumbing-free so that they can be used anywhere. They are easy to transport for use in environments without access to plumbing. They include a heater that provides hot running water. Portable washing sinks or “stations” have:

  • Large water tanks holding 16 gals (60L) fresh water and 21 gals (80L) wastewater.
  • Gravity water dish located on the side of the unit for easy filling.
  • Quick drainage valves located underneath the unit
  • Three hundred series stainless steel construction - 18 gauge commercial grade.
  • Fully assembled and ready to use, just fill the water tank
  • Includes towel bar and soap dispenser.
  • Locking doors & heavy-duty casters.
  • Fully self-contained with 3/4” direct water connection hose included.

Ancaster offers the only fully certified portable sink on the market, UL, CSA & ETL Sanitation Listed.

How Do Portable Sinks Work Without Plumbing?

Portable sinks use water tanks instead of water hookups. One tank contains clean water, while the other holds wastewater when the water is running. They keep water hot using electricity. They are completely self-contained and simply need to be filled with fresh water. Once finished, you can empty wastewater easily into any drain. The sinks are also designed to be used indoors and outdoors making them ideal for events.

How Can Portable Sinks Be Used?

The beauty of portable sinks is they can be used anywhere. Their sleek stainless steel design makes them suitable for professional settings from medical clinics to spas and food service stations to offices. They come in various sizes, allowing you to use one to three basins to suit your needs. Because they are on casters, they can be easily moved from place to place. This is convenient if you run a campsite and decide to shut off some areas during the down season or at outdoor events when different areas are in operation. Portable sinks are ideal for:

  • Popup medical clinics and medical offices
  • Outside of daycare and early learning centers
  • Spas and salons
  • Tattoo parlours
  • Commercial / Foodservice operations
  • Outdoor camping areas
  • Outdoor festivals and concerts
  • Backyard events such as weddings
  • Classrooms
  • Construction sites
  • Food events such as food truck festivals
  • Outdoor bars
  • Swimming pools
  • Beaches
  • Parks

Wherever you need running water, you can use a portable washing sink.

How to Set Up a Portable Sink

As already mentioned, setup is quite easy. Simply unpack the sink and roll it into place. If using an electric water heater, you just need to let the heater warm-up, and you’ll also want to check the water pressure. Heaters are designed to heat water to a safe level of about 40 degrees above room temperature, but are also adjustable.


One of the most popular accessories is a foot pump. In the pandemic era, people are more comfortable not touching the taps, so this is an excellent option if you want to limit touchpoints at a business or clinic. You can also make cleaning up easier with a water drainage pump. Units stored for the winter require a Cold Storage kit.

If you would like more information about portable hand washing sinks, call Ancaster Foods at (855) 888-9644 or contact us here.

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