Things to Consider When Choosing a Kitchen Sink

Things to Consider When Choosing a Kitchen Sink

 Thinking of buying a new kitchen sink?

Do you know the difference between an apron front, farmhouse sink, top mount sink, and undermount sink?

Do you understand the importance of sink configuration and the pros and cons of choosing a large single bowl sink vs a double bowl sink? 

Or which kitchen sink material is the best for durability?

We have done some in-depth research to provide you with everything you'll need to know before choosing a new sink for your kitchen.

Are you choosing a new sink for a kitchen remodel/renovation? 

The very first thing you need to consider is the application of your new kitchen sink. 

If you’re replacing an old sink but not the existing countertop, you'll need to make sure the cutout in your benchtop cabinetry will accommodate the size of the new sink. 

If the countertop space and cabinetry design allows, you may be able to size-up and choose a larger kitchen sink by expanding the cutout.

It is advised to never try and size-down with a smaller sized sink than the original cutout was initially designed for.

Are you choosing a new sink for a new kitchen?

Most people looking to buy a new kitchen sink are either undergoing a full remodel or kitchen renovation, where a new countertop will also be installed.

Or they are purchasing a new kitchen sink to be installed in a totally brand new kitchen.

In either case, there are some important things you need to think about before choosing the right kitchen sink for your ideal kitchen design. 

Below is a list of things to consider before choosing a new kitchen sink.

Best Kitchen Sink Style  

One of the most important decisions you will need to make is choosing the style of kitchen sink you prefer to have in your kitchen.

You need to ask yourself:

  • Will the sink style match my overall kitchen design and budget? 
  • Will the sink configuration serve it's purpose in terms of everyday usage and functionality?

Below are the most commonly used kitchen sink styles available. Plus some useful tips about their pros and cons.

Undermount sinks

Best undermount kitchen sink

 

Undermount sinks are installed beneath the countertop and fixed to the underside surface.

They provide no-barrier when transitioning from countertop to sink bowl — making it extremely easy to clean the surrounding areas of the kitchen sink.

PROS: Undermount sinks won't collect any debris or grime around the countertop rim and seal like top mount sinks and drop-in sinks do. 

CONS: Installation of undermount sinks can be a little more costly. The installation method requires a clear understanding of how heavy the sink is and the necessary bonding agent needed to hold it to the underside of the countertop securely. Installation might require professional help to install properly.  

 

Top mount sink (or Drop-in sinks)

Best top mount drop-in kitchen sink

Metal drop-in kitchen sink with drainboard by Buildmat

 

Top mount (or drop-in sinks) are installed by dropping them into a cutout hole in the countertop surface. 

They are some of the most common and widely used kitchen sinks due to their ease of installation.

PROS: Top mount or Drop-in sinks are typically less expensive than undermount sinks and are easier to install or replace.

CONS: The lip of the sink bowl rests on the countertop surface, which makes it harder to clean the surrounding countertop space. They also lack the sleek and seamless profile of an undermount sink.

 

Apron-front sinks and Farmhouse sinks

Best apron-front and farmhouse kitchen sinks

Stainless-steel Farmhouse sink by Buildmat

 

Apron-front sinks and farmhouse sinks are installed by making a cutout in the top and front-facing surfaces of your kitchen countertop.

You should consult with your kitchen designer, cabinet maker, or kitchen countertop provider before selecting one. 

PROS: The exposed front-facing surfaces of an apron-front or farmhouse sink can add both functionality and visual appeal to your kitchen. 

CONS: Installation requires extra considerations as you may need a specific type of base cabinet, countertop and available bench space. 

 

Best Kitchen sink material

When it comes to choosing the best kitchen sink material, there are different types of materials to choose from (stainless steel, cast iron, enamel, fireclay, porcelain, copper coated, porcelain sinks, stone sinks, composite sinks, etc).

When deciding on the right kitchen sink to go with, be realistic about how much useage the sink will actually get.

Also keep in mind how frequently and thoroughly you plan to clean it. 

 

Stainless steel kitchen sinks

stainless steel kitchen sink material

Stainless steel sink by Buildmat

 

Stainless steel is the most popular kitchen sink material for ease of use/cleaning, installation, and to achieve a modern kitchen design.

They provide a contemporary look with a sleek profile, especially when paired with composite stone, granite, or wood countertops. 

Undermount stainless steel sink models tend to have a more elegant and stylish look than topmount or drop-in sinks.

PROS: Affordable, durable, modern design and easy to keep clean.

CONS: Can be noisier than other kitchen sink materials and show water spots if not properly maintained on a regular basis.

 

Enamel coated kitchen sinks

enamel coated kitchen sink material

Enamel coated kitchen sink | Image courtesy of Krauss

 

Enamel coated kitchen sinks are typically constructed of a cast iron base, with a glass-based porcelain glaze for the finishing material inside the sink bowl.

They are available in a variety of different sizes and colors, with a more classic look and feel than a stainless steel sink has.

Most enamel sinks are going to be heavy, and may need the support of reinforced countertops and cabinetry to hold them securely in place.

PROS: Classic look, long lifespan, quieter usage than stainless steel sinks.  

CONS: Heavy and may require extra reinforcement, prone to staining if not regularly cleaned, susceptible to chipping when washing dishes due to a hard enamel surface. 

 

Fireclay and ceramic kitchen sinks

Fireclay kitchen sink material

Firecaly kitchen sink | Image courtesy of Consumer Reports

 

A fireclay sink is a type of ceramic kitchen sink. The clay sinks are molded and kilned at extreme temperatures.

A fireclay sink has a timeless look and appearance, making it a good choice for homeowners looking for durability with a vintage theme.

Due to a fireclay sink's heavy weight, extra support may be needed underneath the benchtop. 

PROS: Timeless look, durable, non-porous surface that is resistant to acid, alkali, and scratch marks.

CONS: Heavy and may need extra reinforcement underneath the countertop, prone to staining if not cleaned properly on a regular basis, limited sizes and colors available, can crack or chip over time.

 

Brushed copper and brushed brass kitchen sinks

Brushed copper sink material

Brushed copper sink by Buildmat

 

Brushed copper and brushed brass kitchen sinks have a premium grade stainless steel base, with a copper or brass coating for the finishing material inside the sink bowl.

They are available in a variety of different sizes, colours and patinas, providing homeowners with a standout focal point for any kitchen.

Most copper and brass coated kitchen sinks are available with under-mount, top-mount and farmhouse style installation options.

PROS: Has antimicrobial properties for cleaning, beautiful finish with changing patina, creates an attractive focal point in the kitchen.  

CONS: More expensive than most other kitchen sink materials.

 

Stone kitchen sinks 

Granite stone and marble kitchen sink material

Stone marble kitchen sink | Image courtesy of Remodalista

 

Stone sinks such as granite and marble are always unique in appearance, due to them being carved from a single block of stone with its own natural formation and colour pigmentation. 

They can easily match a home's decor with their versatile color patterns, and can be seen as both ornamental and functional.

They are available in a variety of different sizes and colour pigmentation, but are also very heavy so may require reinforced cabinetry. 

PROS: Long lifespan, heat-resistant, both functional and ornamental.

CONS: M​​​​ore expensive than other kitchen sink materials, sealant needs to be applied to the stone surface to prevent staining, scratching and damage caused by cleaning chemicals.

 

Composite kitchen sinks 

Composite kitchen sink material

Composite kitchen sink | Image courtesy of Amazon

 

Composite kitchen sinks are made from a blend of quartz dust and acrylic resins, which offer a similar look and appeal as stone — for much less cost. 

They provide a uniform look (not unique), and come in a wide variety of colours, shapes, sizes and styles. 

Composite kitchen sinks can absorb frequent and heavy use, but are vulnerable to exposure with extreme heat (which may burn, crack or damage the surface of the sink bowl).

PROS: More affordable than stone sinks while providing a similar look and feel, no sealing required before use, wide variety of colours and styles available. 

CONS: More expensive than steel surface sinks, can be damaged easily by direct contact with extreme heat, hard surface can break glassware when washing.

 

Best kitchen sink configuration

When it comes to choosing the best sink configuration, you need to consider the following:

  • Think about what you primarily use the kitchen sink for and how often you use it?
  • Do you have enough room in the cabinet space below to accommodate the plumbing required for two sink bowls?
  • Do you frequently hand-wash dishes and need an attached drain board?  
  • Do you have a garbage disposal unit and need a specific sink configuration to accommodate that?

 

Single bowl sinks

Single bowl kitchen sink configuration

Single bowl brushed copper sink by Buildmat

 

PROS: Large individual sink bowls are a popular choice for their ease of installation and functionality. Bigger items like pots and pans can easily be maneuvered and washed inside a large single sink bowl. 

CONS: You may need to coordinate different tasks in the kitchen if you want to do multiple things at the same time which require the use of a sink. 

 

Double bowl sinks

Double bowl kitchen sink configuration

Stainless-steel double bowl sink with drying rack accessory by Buildmat

 

PROS: Two people can use a double bowl sink at any given time. Each sink bowl has the ability to be utilized for different tasks in the kitchen. Great setup for washing and rinsing dishes. Good choice if you want to have a garbage disposal. 

CONS: Larger items like baking trays and long-handled pots or utensils cannot fit in most equal double bowl sink configurations.  

 

Best kitchen sink bowl depth

Best kitchen sink bowl depth

When deciding which is going to be the best sink configuration for your needs, also consider the depth of the sink bowls.  

Shallow sinks are going to be less expensive, but can also produce unwanted splashing outside of the sink when it's in use. 

Try to choose a kitchen sink with at least one bowl a minimum of 8″ in depth inside the sink bowl.

The deeper your sink bowl is  — the easier it will be to clean large pots and utensils.  

Always keep your functionality needs in mind when choosing the depth of your kitchen sink bowl.

 

Best kitchen sink size 

Best kitchen sink size

In addition to choosing the best kitchen sink material, installation type, number of bowls and ideal bowl depth, you also need to consider the different sink size options available. 

An extra-wide kitchen sink with a deep bowl will obviously give you more space for cleaning dishes and food prep, however cleanup time may take longer than usual, and it could reduce the amount of counterspace in your kitchen.

Choosing the best kitchen sink size for your kitchen design is important. 

Correct measurements will be needed to ensure there is enough space is allocated for the faucet, fixtures and other plumbing underneath the sink.

 

What is going to be the best kitchen sink for your home?

The best kitchen sink will depend on a wide range of factors. including your:

  • budget
  • cabinetry and countertops being used 
  • overall kitchen design 
  • personal preferences
  • and more.  

For the most versatile, durable and installation-friendly kitchen sink for your home — we recommend you check out our full range of high-quality metal kitchen sinks.

Best kitchen sinks for homeowners

From durable stainless-steel sinks, to elegant looking brushed copper and brushed brass sink bowls, all of our metal kitchen sinks are handmade using the highest grade materials.  

With a variety of different sink configurations and installation options available, you are sure to find the perfect kitchen sink for your kitchen. 

Click here to view our full range of high-quality, handmade metal kitchen sinks

 

Still need help choosing the best kitchen sink?

The team at Buildmat believe in educating our customers and assisting them to choose the best kitchen sink to suit their needs.

Feel free to contact us by email at sales@buildmat.com.au if you have any questions about how to choose the easiest kitchen sink to clean for your home.

Or call us directly on 1300123122 24