The kitchen is to the home what the sink is to the kitchen. Most kitchen designs begin and end here as the kitchen sink is that necessary piece of the complete kitchen picture. The kitchen sink requires functionality, a working space without restrictions and most importantly, a great design element. Today’s kitchen sink manufacturers have it all worked out for you so whatever your needs may be you can be sure to find a sink that fits.
Considerations and Materials for Kitchen Sinks
As you will soon discover, there are hundreds of sink designs available. Many of which are inspired by consumer demand which can make the decision process for buying the right kitchen sink quite daunting. Thankfully, we’ve laid it all out for you to help narrow your kitchen sink search and get you insight into the ever changing sink design market!
Make a kitchen sink wish list
The first step in choosing your kitchen sink is to ensure that you make a wish list before purchasing and write down some basic requirements you may have. Make a list using two columns. The first being “needs” and the second “wants”. Weigh out the results and break down exactly what will work best for your home. Some sample questions to think of are:
- What do you require from a kitchen sink? Scratch resistance, amount of use and family size all need to be considered
- What do you need it to be, small, large, deep, durable, colorful, heat resistant, standard, or stylish?
- What is your budget? Cost considerations will play a key factor in your decision
- And most importantly, finding the right kitchen sink means choosing the right material that will best suit your needs. There are several different materials to choose from which range in durability, price and design and choosing the right one will affect your design and feel of your space so be diligent in your research!
Stainless Steel kitchen sinks
No stranger to most kitchens around the world, stainless steel sinks are so versatile and also great looking!
Stainless steel sinks are very easy to clean and install, they are also heat resistant and their style selection is enormous, resulting in a variety of great prices. Stainless steel sinks also vary in durability. Thickness is measured in gauges, lowest being sturdier and quieter. Stainless steel is also 100% recyclable a great eco product.
Cons – Stainless steel sinks are generally loud, can scratch and dent.
Solid Surface & Acrylic kitchen sinks
Solid Surface and Acrylic kitchen sinks are available in so many styles and incredible colors. Acrylic sinks are very light weight that resist staining and are often made with built in germ-fighting properties. These sinks are also highly valued for their design ability as integrated sinks are becoming quite the design trend! Integrated kitchen sinks are formed along with your countertop creating a seamless product with a surface that is incredibly easy to keep clean.
Cons – Acrylic kitchen sinks cannot be cleaned with abrasive cleaners as the finish will be damaged. These sinks are not very heat resistant, hot pots and pans will certainly damage this product.
Enameled & Porcelain Kitchen Sinks
Enameled & Porcelain kitchen sinks are generally made from cast iron, or metal cast where an enamel or porcelain coating is applied and then fired. This process creates a smooth, strong, and non-porous sink surface. These sinks are generally heavy and are also available in a wide variety of styles, colors and finishes.
Cons-Because Enameled & Porcelain sinks are coated, they can often stain and will chip if heavy objects are dropped onto its surface.
Fireclay kitchen sinks
Fireclay kitchen sinks are a traditional kitchen sink creation that is clay based. Fireclay sinks are glazed and fired in intense heat creating an incredibly strong and non-porous sink surface. Fireclay sinks are resistant to acids and heat and can be cleaned with abrasives.
Fireclay sinks are heavy and beautiful and can also be quite expensive. These sinks are definitely a consideration if your looking for a sink to last over the long haul.
brass & copper kitchen sinks
Brass and copper kitchen sinks will most definitely shine in your home, however these sinks must be used with caution as they are not nearly as durable as other kitchen sink materials. Brass and Copper are non-porous and will not stain, however they will oxidize and change in color. This is known as having natural patina. You can preserve their luster with proper cleaning and should you wish to keep your brass and copper sinks shiny for life, consider using wax treatments to seal in the luster
Cons – Brass and copper are softer metals and will scratch, scuff and dent fairly easily. Also hot pots and pans must also be avoided as they can also damage your sink!
Quartz stone composite kitchen sinks
Quartz composite kitchen sinks are becoming a very popular choice among consumers today as they are incredibly durable. Quartz stone sinks are made for 92% quartz stone and Resin. These sinks are extremely stain, scratch, and impact resistant while being completely tolerable to heat. Quartz Stone kitchen sinks are available in many exciting colors and styles . If quartz is not your first choice, you can also consider using Granite.
Granite composite sinks are developed to be incredibly scratch, dent, stain, impact and heat resistant. Of course these sinks are not purely natural stone.Like Quartz Stone, Granite stone sinks are combined with other materials and resins to create an entirely non-porous surface which can withstand anything. These are the most durable sinks on the market today and of course cost a pretty penny.
Concrete cast kitchen sinks
Definitely one of the sexiest choices for kitchen sinks on the market today! If you want to put the WOW factor into your kitchen and price is of no concern then inlaid concrete is the one and only material for your kitchen sink! Concrete sinks can add both a rustic and modern appearance to your kitchen depending on the style chosen.
Cons – A traditional concrete sink is susceptible to staining and therefore the color is affected. Some see this as a negative, however most owners of traditional concrete counters and sinks are well aware of this color variation due to staining and feel that this process is what brings character to these sinks.
Today’s advances in the concrete industry have led to a new product that does not stain allowing home owners to have the style and beauty of concrete without the stain factor. Check out www.sonomacaststone.com who specialize in concrete sinks and nucrete. These sinks are seriously unbelievable and there is really no limit with respect to design.
Sexy Shapes and designs for sinks
Size and shape of your kitchen sink is the next difficult decision to make. What is required from your kitchen sink in this department? The choices are endless from 1 to 3 bowls, deep and shallow, arched, round, and square. Analyze the various sizes of your cooking and baking utensils which will help depict the proper shape required for your kitchen sink. One very important consideration is choosing a sink shape that also works with your faucets and accessories. There are 1, 2 and 3 hole faucet sinks on the market and this can definitely effect your choice as various faucets come with various plating options. You do not want the right sink with the wrong faucet or vice versa. So do some research!
Types of Mounting techniques for kitchen sinks
Gone are the days where there was only one way to install your kitchen sink. Now there are even ways to get sexy with how your sink gets connected!!
Traditional – Where sinks are dropped into the countertop and secured. These are the designs of the past but still get the job done. Edges are visible and therefore harder to keep clean. This installation is relatively easy and much less expensive. This does require a sealer to prevent water ingression between your sink and countertops.
Undermount –This technique is where the kitchen sink is secured underneath the countertop. This is the biggest trend today in kitchen design as this installation creates a beautiful smooth line across the counter allowing for easy clean up. There was a time where this form of mounting was not an option for home owners with laminate countertops, however today there are options available to undermounting sinks to laminate countertops.
Farmhouse/Apron & Belfast – These sinks get to show off a little! Found traditionally in country style kitchens these sinks are built into the countertop leaving the front side of the sink visible. Timeless and beautiful
Integrated – The sexiest sink installation today is the integrated sink. This can only be done with solid surface, Quartz Stone Engineered sinks and of course, stainless steel. These materials are shaped and formed so that the sink is actually a part of the countertop! This makes for an entirely ridge free surface that is the ultimate in sink design!
Although some choose to have a simple kitchen sink that functions well, others choose to go all out and make their kitchen sink a can’t miss focal point of their space. There are literally hundreds of amazing designs out there and in conjunction with the perfect faucet, you can be sure to find the kitchen sink of your dreams. Believe us, the kitchen sink for you is out there!