Choosing your kitchen sink
You may be wondering why dedicate a whole article to choosing a kitchen sink? However, when you consider how long we spend at or near the kitchen sink it’s quite important to get it right!
There’s more to consider than you might think, so we’ve gone through the following in this article:
- What will you be using the sink for?
- Number of bowls
- Do you want a built-in drainer?
- Inset or undermount?
Sink size / What will you be using the sink for?
It may seem obvious but once you’ve worked this out, it will make your decision easier. You will want something big enough to cope with your day-to-day chores but space constraints may limit your options.
If space is an issue, you can opt for an extra wide or extra deep bowl to maximise the space you do have available. Equally, if you are a keen baker and perhaps use a lot of baking trays, it may be worth having an extra wide or extra deep bowl to make cleaning up a bit easier.
Or for your utility room, a large single stainless-steel sink could be a great choice if you want to double the space up as a boot room.
If you have an island in your kitchen, then you may want to consider an additional island sink to make food preparation or cooking easier. There are some great smaller sinks (e.g., 180mm wide) to consider if you don’t want to compromise your island space.
Number of bowls
The main choices are single bowl, double bowl or bowl and a half; these can be with or without a drainer. The more interesting options are those that you can add accessories to such as a built in removable multifunctional colander or sinks with edges for adding top rails to create a second working level.
Even if you have a dishwasher in your kitchen, it will be useful to have a drainer for your sink to allow any hand washed items to dry. If you don’t want to have a sink with a drainer, then consider having draining grooves cut into your worktop.
The classic shapes are square or rectangular, however circular and corner sinks are becoming more popular where there are space constraints. Farmhouse and Belfast sinks also continue to be popular.
Stainless steel has been a very popular choice for some time now. They are easy to clean, durable and cost effective. However, they will scratch over time and will dent if heavy items are dropped on them.
In recent years, composite sinks have become more popular (e.g. Blanco Silgranit range). Made from a blend of natural granite and acrylic resin, these sinks are extremely hard wearing, heat resistant and scratch resistant. The material also has low porosity and so inhibits bacterial growth making it very hygienic. Though more expensive than stainless steel these sinks will not scratch and age like a stainless steel sink will. There are also a range of different colour options.
Ceramic sinks are another traditional choice and often associated with the traditional farmhouse sink style. The material is hardwearing and if looked after carefully they will last a long time, but they can eventually become discoloured and start to crack.
A more modern material is Corian – these are often used where a Corian worktop has been installed, as the nature of the material means the sink is seamlessly moulded to join onto the worktop. The resulting effect is very beautiful, giving the appearance of one continuous worktop and sink. Corian is prone to scratching over time and care needs to be taken not to place boiling pans directly onto it; however, any damage from dropping objects onto it is fully repairable and scratches can be removed through periodic repolishing.
Inset or undermount?
An inset sink is installed so that the sink sits on top of the worktop – i.e. your worktop is templated and installed and then the sink is fitted on top. An undermount sink is installed so that the sink rests on a frame underneath the worktop – i.e. the sink and frame are put in place and then the worktop is then templated and installed.
An inset sink is much easier to install it is ‘dropped-in’ on top of the worktop without the need to build the underneath support required for an undermount sink. It will catch crumbs and moisture around the outer edge though and can make cleaning your worktop a little more difficult. Some people also feel that it doesn’t offer as streamlined a look as an undermount sink either.
There is a lot to consider when choosing a sink and it’s vital to get this right at the design stage. By going through the above though and working out what is most important to you, you should be able to ensure you make the right choice for yourself.
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