One element you might’ve overlooked in your big home improvement project is the importance of a good kitchen sink. Considering how much time you spend preparing and eating food, a kitchen sink matched to your needs can change your life.
There are lots of different types of kitchen sinks out there, and each will come with a unique set of features. Some people fawn over the spacious look of a farmhouse sink, others love the practicality of an island sink.
What’s important here is to figure out what works best for your lifestyle and aesthetics. Here are some popular kitchen sinks, explained:
Single vs. Double Basin Sinks
One of the main things you’ll have to decide when choosing between different types of kitchen sinks is whether to go with one basin or two. A double basin, otherwise known as a double bowl sink, might seem like an upgrade to the single basin design, but single basins can actually be more convenient and provide a cleaner look.
Rather than thinking of the number of basins, another way to go about this is to think, “Do I want a divider or not?” Without a divider, you’ll be able to fit more items in your sink at once, and it could be easier to wash large pots and pans. With a divider, though, you can separate clean dishes from dirty dishes as you wash.
If you’re planning on using a nice dish rack, you might not need the double basin feature.
One of the main advantages of this separate area is that it allows for easy drainage and can sometimes replace a dish rack. But if that’s not a big deal to you, the freedom of a single basin might be more appealing.
These are also called apron sinks, but it has nothing to do with what you’re wearing when you use it. The “apron” is the front piece of the farmhouse sink, a flat vertical surface made of the same material as the rest of the sink.
Farmhouse sinks are usually large and often have only one large basin (though some come with two). The classic look is a white porcelain sink, but these days you can get stainless steel versions as well.
It’s usually an undermount look, meaning the edges don’t rise above the surrounding countertop. And we’ll talk more on undermount sinks in a later section.
These sinks look like double basin sinks, but one of the sections is actually a drainboard, or a grooved surface meant to capture dripping water and funnel it into the main section.
This means you’ll have less depth than a double basin sink or a sink that extends its single basin to the area where the drainboard is, but you might find that the convenience makes up for it. The drainboard can save you countertop space since it’ll cut down on your need for a dish rack, and it’s easy to clean.
Drainboard sinks are usually made of stainless steel, and this helps keep the whole thing in good condition for longer. Plus, you won’t need to add any absorbent mats or towels to this drainage situation—the water will just flow into the basin.
And when you need to clean the drainboard, just hose it off with the faucet or a faucet extension. It’s well within reach of the water flow, so you can do this every time you use it.
These sinks are small and usually built for a specific purpose. For example, many people call them bar sinks because of their utility in a home bar.
You’ll likely have trouble doing any major washing in these sinks since their dimensions won’t allow for many objects at once, but these little beauties are great for food prep and a source of water.
If you’re going to go for a prep sink, you’ll probably need to make sure it’s not the only sink in the kitchen.
You might have seen these sinks on cooking shows and magazines of dream homes. Island sinks bring a whole new world of possibility to food prep, especially if they’re not the only sink in the kitchen.
As their name might imply, island sinks are sinks that are built into a kitchen island. And once you try it for yourself, you’ll understand why they’re all the rage. These sinks make cooking extra convenient and allow you to make more use of your island area.
If you’re looking for an island sink that’s separate from your main countertop sink, you can split their purposes. For example, you can leave dishes in the main sink and wash your vegetables in the island sink.
No more dodging dirty pots and pans while trying to keep water running over a clean veggie!
Top Mount Sinks
Top mount sinks are some of the most common types of sinks. They’re installed over your countertop, with their edges resting above the countertop surface.
These sinks are also called drop-in sinks or self-rimming sinks. With these, you’ll have to remember to clean the rim as well as the basin.
Farmhouse sinks are one example of sinks that often come in an undermount design, but the world of undermount sinks extends far beyond this one shape.
Unlike a top mount sink, under-mount sinks don’t have a rim that rests above the level of the countertop surface. Instead, it’s as if you cut a hole in your countertop, and everything below the surface is your undermount sink. You’ll be able to see the edges where your countertop ends in a layer above the start of the sink material.
This look can be very elegant and can make the whole sink setup look more organic. It can also be easier to clean. One downside is that the lack of a rim can make the area surrounding your sink more prone to spills.
Types of Kitchen Sinks: Choose What’s Best For You
There are lots of things you can work on while doing home renovations. But a kitchen sink is something you’re going to use every day. When something goes wrong, it could have a big effect on your mood.
When things work well, though, your kitchen sink could make you happy every day. So stop upgrading everything but the kitchen sink—have a new sink be part of the action! Look through the types of kitchen sinks that speak to you, and you’ll be well on your way to a perfect kitchen experience.
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