Before you buy a new faucet, you have to match the type of faucet to the sink, so your faucet mounting holes line up. Here’s a guide to matching your sink to a faucet, and buying new faucets for old sinks.
Prior to buying the faucet figure out what type of sink you have. There are two main types, the first is a center set faucet, the second is a widespread faucet.
Center set faucets require three holes set 4 inches apart from the center of each hole. Center set sinks have this arrangement.
Widespread faucets require three holes set 6 or 8 inches from the center of each hole. Widespread sinks feature this type of set up.More about: Faucet Hole Dimensions and Distance.
Faucets with sprayers require a fourth hole in the sink top. You can drill this hole yourself if your sink does not currently have a hole for the sprayer. It requires a carbide tipped drill to make a pilot hole and a carbide tipped hole saw with a guide bit.
If your faucet has independent handles and a spout, it can install in any type of sink with any arrangement of holes, as long as the handles and spout fit into your holes.
Your sink mounting holes must match your faucet, unless your faucet has independent handles and a spout. The above applies only to faucets with a single base plate that contains the handles and spouts.
Single Handle Faucets install into a center set or widespread configuration depending on the model. Typically, a single handle faucet has a base plate that covers up the two holes meant for the handles, since it requires only one hole. If you want to install the single handle faucet without a base plate, you must have a sink with one single faucet hole, or drill the hole yourself into a sink without any holes at all. If the faucet has no base plate, do not install it into a sink with pre-drilled tap holes, as both handle holes (the holes on either side of the center hole) will be exposed.
Faucet Hole Size
Faucet holes are 1 3/8 inches wide (diameter).