Whether you are building a new home or remodeling your 1930’s bungalow, selecting the fixtures for your home can be a stressful and tiresome task. With so many new products on the market, it’s hard to know what is the truth and what is hype. Are the “latest and greatest” really that great, or just modern day snake oil?
The area of the home that tends to get the most attention these days is the kitchen. Everyone has heard the expression “everything but the kitchen sink.” Well, often times, when it comes to design, homeowners and designers give a lot of thought to “everything but the kitchen sink.”
In reality, the sink should be one of the first items selected. The early selection of the sink allows you to select from a much wider variety of sizes and styles of sinks. So many in fact, that it’s hard to know where to start.
Stainless Steel: There are many varieties and qualities of stainless steel sinks. However, stainless steel is one of the best materials available for a kitchen sink. Stainless steel is affordable, won’t rust, melt, crack, stain, or chip. However, there are few things to keep in mind when shopping for a stainless steel sink.
18 gauge stainless steel is th lightest gauge of steel that you should consider, but 16 gauge is preferred. A polished finish sink will look beautiful at first, but even small scuffs and scratches will show up. Therefore, a brushed or satin finish steel is your best choice. Stainless steel sinks are available in many styles such as drop-in, undermount, apron front, farmhouse (or farm sink).
Porcelain: Porcelain coated sinks can be a great choice, but special care must be taken to protect the finish. The less expensive brands will certainly have very thin layers of porcelain which can chip and crack. Once the finish has chipped, the cast iron will begin to rust and discolor the sink.
If quality of the glazing on the porcelain is also very important. If the glazing wears off, the porcelain is prone to staining from coffee, juices, etc. Porcelain sinks tend to be very heavy and pricey. They are typically seen as drop-in, and farm front sinks.
Manmade Materials: Composite materials are finding their way into the market, and some are better than others. One of the biggest complaints that I have, is their inability to stand up to high heat. Who hasn’t taken a hot pan off of the stove and set it in or on their sink. If you were to do that with some of the composite sinks available, you would have a ruined sink on your hands.