Stainless Steel Kitchen Sinks: A Guide for Home Owners
It might not be obvious at first, but choosing the right sink for your kitchen is one of the more important aspects of furnishing a house.
Choosing the best sink for your kitchen is a mixture of several elements; you’ll need something that works great when you’re cleaning your dishes, preparing your food, and everything else that you’d need in a sink - it has to be practical.
After that, if you want something that looks nice, you have to know that you’ve chosen the right type of material, style, and cost for your sink.
You may feel a little overwhelmed by the decision to choose a sink. Over here at Build Mat, we’ve come up with a short guide for you to make an informed decision.
Understanding what your kitchen sink needs
You have to ask yourself: are you refurbishing your entire kitchen which includes the sink too? Are you looking for a replacement for your current sink?
Whatever your choice is, you’ll have to consider these factors when looking or a new sink:
- The size and shape of your new sink
- The type of material that your kitchen counter is made from
- The type and size of the drainer for your sink
- The design of your sink (some sinks may not fit your current kitchen counter unless you’re looking for a complete kitchen renovation)
- The cost of the new sink
There are other factors to include but these are the main ones. Having a good understanding of these factors will allow you to choose a sink that looks nice in your kitchen as well as saving you money in the long run.
The factors to think about before your next purchase
In this section, we’ll cover the factors mentioned above in greater detail.
Material of the sink
Your sinks will go through years and years of water flow which (believe it or not) can corrode your sink. Fortunately, modern kitchen sinks are able to last basically forever.
So, it doesn’t matter if you want a marble or copper sink, it’ll last for a long time. With that being said, the best kitchen sink that you can get is always a stainless steel sink.
However, every stainless steel sink is not the same in grades. 18/8 stainless steel sinks (also known as grade 304 stainless steel) are the best choice for kitchen sinks as it has a higher resistance to corrosion.
Lower quality sinks are made from grade 430 stainless, a grade that is more vulnerable to rust and corrosion. A good way to find out if your sink is of the highest quality stainless steel is to test it with a magnet. If it sticks to the sink, it is a grade 304 sink.
Thickness (gauge) of the sink
Sinks are generally more expensive the thicker it gets. For stainless steel sinks, the thickness of it is measured by its gauge. The lower the gauge of a sink, the thinner it is.
However, the thickness of a sink does not affect the quality or performance of a sink. The only difference between sinks with different gauges is the noise generated by running water.
A 20-gauge sink (which is “thinner”) will emit a lot of noise when water runs on it. In contrast, a heavier and thicker 16-gauge sink is less noisy when water splashes on the surface of the sink.
If you are trying to cut costs as much as possible, there are sprays on the market that coats your sink with a layer that reduces the sound of water splashing on the surface. With the spray, you’ll be able to get a cheaper 20-gauge sink with zero noise emission.
The style and size of the sink
The size and style of a sink are determined by the layout and design of your kitchen. Bar sinks are the smallest category, requiring little more than a foot in either direction and about half that for depth.
Single-bowl sinks, on the other hand, run a bit larger, with widths of 20-25 inches as well as an average depth of 10-inch. If you are looking for double bowl sinks, they have the same measurements as a single bowl sink except that it is wider.
There are several other styles such as the oval sink but most of them should have measurements that are almost the same as the single and double-bowl sinks.
Style-wise, stainless steel sinks are usually available in two styles: a brushed-satin finish or a polished mirror finish. A mirror finish will look better but a brushed-satin finish is easier to clean and maintain.
Price of the sink
You can expect to pay an average of $250 to $450 (AUD) for a new kitchen sink. Something like a double-bowl sink with a 16-gauge stainless steel finish would cost you about $350 (AUD). Of course, the bigger your sink is and the better the finish is, you’ll have to fork out more than $500 AUD.
If you enjoy something more classy such as a marble sink, expect to pay up to $1,500 AUD. While many of these sinks come with a limited lifetime warranty, it’s important to have a chat with your retailer to understand what’s covered under the warranty.
Installation fees and process
Surprisingly, the installation fee for your sink is something that many homeowners forget about. If you are a handyman, this should not be an issue for you. If you are not, however, it’s best to contact your retailer to see if they provide free installations.
It’s also important to know that hot and cold water lines must be run from the house and insulated properly to protect against freezing during the winter season. You can also run cold water only through your tap.
Another aspect to keep in mind is that the sink’s drainage must be redirected to your town’s municipal wastewater system. You can get a plumber to do it for you for about $1,000 to $3,000 AUD depending on how much work needs to be done for your sink.
Your stainless steel kitchen sinks will need to be cleaned from time to time. A simple rinse and scrub with a sponge removes a lot of dirt from your sink. If you are worried about scratching the surface of your kitchen sink, use baking soda as it cleans dirt without leaving behind scratches.
Before winter, homeowners in cold areas must shut off the water supply and drain the lines to prevent the freezing and bursting of pipes. A good-fitting cover will protect the sink from rain, snow, and debris, extending its life.
Looking for the best kitchen sinks?
Over here at Build Mat, we have plenty of high-quality kitchen sinks for homeowners like you.
All of our collections are fit for Australian Standards and UPC certified as well as coming along with a 5-year warranty. View our Stainless Steel Sinks range.
You can also head over to our main website to have a look at out home improvement products which will definitely make your house look great!
- Jimmy T