If you’re thinking of doing a major renovation of your kitchen, you might be thinking of replacing a sink that’s seen better days. In that case, you’ll need to choose your sink’s material as well as such other characteristics as its size, shape, whether it’s for light or heavy use and whether it has one, two or even three bowls. Here are four of the best kitchen sink materials for your renovation:
Fireclay is very much like porcelain as it’s a white, glazed clay that’s fired at a very high temperature. This makes fireclay sinks beautiful, tough, easy to take care of, stain and scratch-resistant and long-lived. These sinks are most often shades of white though they can come in blue or black if you order it, and it’s just the material for an apron sink with a single, deep, roomy bowl.
Fireclay sinks are expensive because they are handmade, and no one sink is identical to the other. They’re also heavy, and you’ll need a professional to install it.
Stainless steel sinks can tolerate a lot of punishment, and they look fantastic when installed in a countertop made of natural stone or wood.
Despite their good looks and toughness, stainless steel sinks are very affordable, yet there are some things you’ll need to know before you buy one. Make sure that the steel is 16 to 18 gauge and make sure to learn the series number. The best stainless steel sinks to buy are 300 series because they’re non-magnetic, resist corrosion and can tolerate screaming hot pots and pans. Cons of stainless steel sinks are that they make a great racket when something is dropped in them and show water spots.
This is the sink that grandma used, and since it’s a durable sink, it’s probably still in use. The enamel sink is made of cast iron with a vitreous glaze. It’s excellent for light to medium work and is one of the few additions to your home that can increase its value. It’s not that pricey but needs pampering since it stains and chips easily. Enamel sinks are also heavy and need reinforced floor cabinets.
Solid surface sinks are affordable and just right for small kitchens as they can be custom made. They’re not expensive, but they don’t last as long as the other sinks discussed here and are prone to scratches and stains. On the other hand, counters and cabinetry don’t need to be reinforced to bear their weight. Indeed, they can be part of a solid surface countertop, which means there are no seams that can leak.
Fireclay, enamel, stainless steel and solid surface are but four of several materials to choose from for a new sink. All of them have advantages and drawbacks, but they’ll all help you get the jobs of washing dishes and preparing food done. Your choice depends on your taste, the needs of your family, the overall decor of your new kitchen and, of course, your budget.