Making Sense of Kitchen Sink Design
In nearly every home, there exists a convenience that has only existed for the last two centuries – the kitchen sink. Often taken for granted, this invention has only been around for 200 years. Invented in around 1820, the old kitchen sinks were basins with deep bowls. Pitchers of water, often kept on the side of the basin, were used to fill the bowl. This method saved the user from washing dishes outside of the home and shuffled in the era of better hygiene.
Having to use a dry basin sink, while a step forward in hygiene and food preparation techniques, was inconvenient and still required improvement. The dry basin sink required a homeowner or user, still, to walk outside and fill a pitcher with water and then bring it back to use in the dry basin sink. This took a great deal of time and was very inconvenient. An additional step was necessary if the water needed to be hot for cooking or sterilization. The invention of running water and indoor plumbing solved a great majority of this problem by bringing water, and subsequently hot water, into the home. This made for an improved process of getting water into the sink and allowed the user to run hot water or cold water through kitchen sink units.
The invention of kitchen sink ideas is a leap in modern cleanliness, better food standards, less disease and more convenience for cooking and washing dishes. The ability to wash and clean fruits and vegetables before cooking, wipe down and sterilize counter tops, clean hands before cooking and several other points of hygienic convenience have ushered in a new movement of clean kitchens and clean food. This has substantially lowered the rate of diseases such as salmonella and other food borne illnesses. This has saved a great deal of people from unnecessary illnesses and even death. This new and improved technology has also encouraged a wider range of home cooks and aspiring chefs than ever before.
Differences in Sinks
This video takes you through all sink configuration options in the market:
The variety of standard kitchen sink ranges in size, functionality, features, price, materials and design. The prime differentiating factor when choosing a kitchen sink comes down to the number and size of the basins. With the drop in kitchen sink price, there are a variety of excellent models to choose from and with more features than ever before! Coupling the differences in sizes, configurations, materials, colors, designs and accessories of sinks, the configuration options are limitless. Homeowners that so desire may find cheap kitchen sinks that match the basic needs or luxury kitchen sinks. With a tremendous variety of design options and available accessories and materials, there is a sink for everyone and finding the perfect one for you is a matter of looking in the right places.
Single sinks carry one basic basin and typically one faucet. Oftentimes a spray faucet is included for tasks such as rinsing fruits and vegetables or cleaning dishes. A single basin with depth is convenient for washing large pots and pans, as well as preparing large meals. If you are buying a new faucet, you should ensure that it matches your new kitchen sink. A single basin with depth is convenient for washing large pots and pans, as well as preparing large meals.
Single sinks are not for everyone, though, as having a single basin can mean a lot of management of dishes contained within one sink only as separation within the basin is not possible.
Over the years, single sinks have evolved into deeper, wider and far more diverse designs. This is, by far, the most popular model of sink. This is due, in large part, to the cost efficiency of purchasing this model of sink. Kitchen sink prices have dropped substantially over the years. Cheap sinks are prevalent nowadays with a wide variety of kitchen sink design choices. A very popular and versatile model of sink is a single, deep basin ranging 33-36 inches in width and 8-10 inches in depth.
Accessories may be purchased to expand the capabilities of these sinks into more organized and larger sized basins.
Double-basins are great for performing separate tasks at the same time. Having a split in the middle of the sink allows for separating dishes or having dishes on one side and food on the other, significantly speeding up food preparation time. Having the ability to use both sides of the sink for food preparation means that you can wash and clean twice as many fruits and vegetables or store pasta on one side while still using the other side to construct a heavenly tomato sauce. Double-basins come in equally as handy when using them for cleanup as both sides of the sink may be utilized for cleaning pots and pans as well as silverware at the same time. Dishes may be soaking on one side while being scrubbed on the other side.
While having two smaller basins means great things for multi-tasking, it creates smaller work spaces and the inability to use the sink for larger pots and pans. Double-basin sinks come in a variety of shapes and sizes including 50/50 models as well as 60/40 models.
Double sinks aren’t necessarily the best option for everyone. They are a great choice for anyone who wants a wider range of flexibility than single basin sinks offer, but the double-basin size is an adjustment for anyone that has been primarily using single-basin sinks for a long time. However, if flexibility is your priority then having a double-basin sink is the way to go.
Three basin sinks are considered a rarer sink option for nicer, upgraded kitchens. This option is the top kitchen sink option for many people as it contains three separate work spaces. Oftentimes the work space consists of two basins and a third basin that contains a garbage disposal or a small rack for silverware to be washed and contained. Having a garbage disposal contained within a separate space means that the garbage disposal may be accessed even when other dishes are in the sink. This prevents the disposal from being blocked when washing larger dishes or posts and pans.
Shapes and Varieties
Modern kitchen sink comes in many different shapes and varieties. The options contained within are limitless in regards to what your desires for a sink may be.
Farmhouse sinks are a popular option. They have a very vintage look and feel that are popular amongst more traditional home owners. With a more accessible side option, they are easier for shorter people or children while remaining a very nice aesthetic choice.
Double-farmhouse sinks are very similar to farmhouse sinks, but contain a double-basin design within the farmhouse layout. They do have the same functionality and considerations as a traditional double-basin kitchen sink, but are aesthetically more pleasing.
Rounded Side Sinks
In more clean-cut, modern kitchens, many homeowners are opting for high end kitchen sinks with curved designs as opposed to square edges. Sleek and minimalistic, this style of contemporary kitchen sinks will feel right at home in a stainless steel kitchen or a kitchen containing rounded edges and newer appliances.
Deciding on Materials
Deciding on the best kitchen sink material to use for your sink can be a difficult decision. There are a variety of options available to you and the decision generally will come down to the best fit for your lifestyle and the surrounding kitchen space.
Copper sinks are relatively on the upper side when it comes to cost. However, they are pretty sleek and come with delightful finishes. Copper does not rust and has strong anti-microbial properties. Research has shown than most bacteria cannot survive for more than a few hours on a surface made out of copper.
The only thing that needs to be paid attention to is that copper is a highly reactive metal and will react to it’s surroundings over time. The color of your sink will change gradually as the natural patina develops on the surface. This can lead to dark spots on the surface and even some blue or green spots. This can be prevented by polishing your copper, but please note that polished copper does not exhibit any anti-microbial properties, since there is a barrier between the copper and it’s surroundings.
Stainless steel kitchen sinks are among the most durable of the lot. If you’re considering going for these, make sure you go for a lower gauge unit. The lower the gauge, the higher is the quality of your sink.
The only drawbacks with these are that they require constant maintenance and have a tendency of showing water spots.
Granite and Granite Composite Materials
Granite and/or granite particles may be mixed with other materials such as polymers to create a new granite composite material that is scratch and chip resistant as well as having more durability than traditional porcelain sinks. Water spots and other defects are easily hidden in the speckled design that granite and granite composite materials naturally display.
There is some general and basic maintenance associated with light colored granite composite sinks as they may stain from various dyes and chemicals contained within water such as hard tap water. Maintenance on granite and granite composite sinks is cost effective and not difficult, oftentimes just requiring a special gentle cleanser.
Porcelain is the most popular material choice in kitchen sink sale. Porcelain is a durable and traditional material often chosen to form the basin in sinks. Porcelain sinks come in a variety of colors and designs. As the base of porcelain material is glass, many intricate designs exist.
Porcelain carries with it some inherent downsides in the form of literal black marks. Porcelain is made from a glass-like material and therefore can chip and become damaged by dishes and other items placed in the sink.
Fireclay sinks look and feel almost the same as porcelain enameled sinks. They are however made of a composition of clay and minerals. The drawbacks to these are very similar to that of porcelain sinks, meaning they can etch, scratch and chip just as easily. The only point where fireclay kitchen sinks are forgiving is the rustic section. Since these sinks are composed solidly out of the mineral-clay composition with no cast-iron underneath, they don’t run the risk of rusting.
Beautiful and natural, natural stone sinks provide a beautiful authentic period look. These sinks, often made of soapstone, are a natural look that can accentuate your kitchen décor aesthetically.
Natural stone counters aren’t for everyone. Materials are costly and may be easily damaged by chips or using incorrect cleansing materials for the job. Special cleaning agents are required in order to properly care for the stone.
Acrylic sinks are composed of fiberglass, resin and sometimes plastic. They are pretty easy on the pocket, are extremely low in weight and have a decent finish.
Since there is no layering on acrylic sinks, they can easily be sanded in the event of a scratch.
One drawback throughout their history has been the fact that acrylic sinks have a very low tolerance for temperature. However, a lot of manufacturers these days are working on options that mitigate this issue and are able to offer reasonable heat resistance on their products.
Solid surface sinks are made using a combination of resin and minerals. It is a great alternative for stone sinks and is extremely durable and can be repaired. Like acrylic sinks, solid surface sinks can be polished and sanded as well in the event of a scratch.
We need to inform you, however, that most repairs to solid surface skins require professional assistance and can run up quite a budget.
A wide variety of sink accessories exist to expand out the capability of your sink and give you a more affordable range of options from your unique kitchen sinks. Kitchen sink manufacturers are constantly designing new options for you to utilize in your new sink or existing sink. This allows you to buy kitchen sink with low price and still have luxury sink features.
Various inserts have been designed to expand the basic capabilities of your designer kitchen sinks. Inserts such as cutting boards, knife blocks, racks for dishes, racks for dishcloths, utensil spaces, colanders, preparatory bowls and areas to store cleaning materials all expand out and centralize your workspace. This can lead to quick preparatory times as well as an easier method for cooking dinner for your family or even prep for larger friends and family meals.
Having integrated, yet removable inserts such as a place to store utensils allows you to have them close by for easier and faster food and dinner prep time, as well as the added advantage of having them at your fingertips for easy clean-up and washing of dishes after you finish cooking your meal.
Determining a perfect fit can be a science if you are unfamiliar with the dimensions of your sink. If financially feasible and possible, it’s best to go through the manufacturer for the accessories you opt to purchase, as opposed to buying kitchen sinks for sale from wholesale kitchen sinks. They will work and fit better with your existing setup and kitchen sink set.
All inserts should be removed after use in order to provide for a more cleanly and sanitary environment. The kitchen is oftentimes the dirtiest place in the home and proper sterilization of kitchen sink accessories is vital to ensure that you do not spread germs or disease in your used kitchen sinks, and subsequently, your home.
Finding a good place to store the accessories for your sink is a vital part of controlling the germs and bacteria in your kitchen as well. Having them easily accessible, while important, isn’t always the most practical option. Designating a special spot to store your accessories is ideal.
If you are in the market to open your own business or restaurant, or if you have special family or dietary needs then having a custom made sink may be the right option for you. Custom sinks are available through most manufacturers and these specialized sink systems give you a faster prep line and prep time. If you have multiple people cooking in your kitchen or if you cater or serve more complicated meals, this option may be the best for you. These are generally used for industrial environments and may contain a number of features not available in consumer sinks, such as refrigerated inserts or condiment inserts.
Vessel sinks are the most popular up and coming design in the sink world. They are becoming more popular in home designs. These sinks have a distinct period look, while also looking very clean and remaining very affordable for the average consumer.
Vessel sinks have been in the market for a few years, but show absolutely no sign of slowing in popularity for rooms such as washrooms and bathrooms. This is due in part to the kitchen sink cost effectiveness, while still being aesthetically pleasing. Sink kitchen prices continue to drop as materials get cheaper and designs become more streamlined. Many builders are putting them in new homes and encouraging them in fresh construction designs. Oftentimes they are placed in sushi or Asian fusion restaurants and upscale dining establishments. From there, the popularity has grown at such an enormous rate that they are being included in many kitchens as well.
Vessel sinks were invented during the Industrial Design Movement. They are, essentially, a newer version of the wash basins that we mentioned at the beginning of this article in which people would use a jug or pitcher next to a bowl with depth – or, the first sink.
Vessel sinks may be constructed from a variety of materials including copper, glass, pewter, wood, ceramic, stones, bronze and even limestone. The wide variety of materials used for the construction of the vessel sinks allows each individual to fully personalize and customize their sink options. This makes the integration into any kitchen easy and seamless. By using a vessel sink, you may have a practical, designer, and cool kitchen sinks option.
Finding Your Perfect Sink for Kitchen
With the ever-decreasing prices of kitchens sinks, finding the right models and best kitchen sinks for you is a matter of determining what you’d like to see out of your sink. There are many kitchen sink options available. With the increasing popularity of serving large, quality meals at home and many aspiring cooks out there with inspiration from shows on TV, magazines at the grocery store or family recipes, having a quality sink for kitchen is vital to ensure your goals are met in the kitchen and the aesthetic outline fits within the design structure of your home.
Having a good and functional sink is one step towards recreating the experience of a restaurant quality cooking atmosphere. Obtaining and using the proper kitchen sink inserts is another part of the process that will help you streamline your cooking experience. Having a better cooking experience means better meals, faster cook times, better tasting dishes and, as a byproduct, having a better and more streamlined cleaning experience as well.
Final Practical Considerations
Ensuring that you purchase a kitchen sink cheap with the right dimensions is essential to making sure your new sink will fit seamlessly within your current kitchen structure and be the best kitchen sink for you over the long term. Measuring the sink dimensions and verifying those against the manufacturers’ dimensions is a key first element to making sure you are looking into the right sink for your kitchen space. Finding a sink you believe to be the perfect kitchen sink for you, only to later find out that it doesn’t fit within your space, can be a frustrating ordeal that can be easily avoided by ensuring you have the correct dimensions in the first place.
Finding a material that flows with your current kitchen setup and makes sense for the purpose of how you use your sink is an important part of shopping for your new sink. There are a variety of materials available to you, so finding one that fits within your goals is an essential part of sink shopping. From stainless steel to soapstone to natural rocks and stones, there is a material available to you for your perfect sink. If you are unable to find the perfect sink premade, you may go back to the kitchen sink store and have them custom construct a sink for you and your purpose. Oftentimes this is an important step if you want a non-traditional sink such as a double-basin vessel sink or restaurant style culinary sink.
Before deciding for good on a material, you will want to consider things such as the function and purpose of the sink, as well as your own ability to keep up with the maintenance. Material such as stainless steel doesn’t chip or scratch, but become dirty looking with water spots and stained in environments with harder natural tap water. If you are going to be cooking with hard tap water, it may not be worth the extra effort in cleaning to purchase a stainless steel sink. You may want to consider a sink made from porcelain instead. However, if, for example, you are going to be using the sink for washing of black pots and pans, you likely will not want to use porcelain as it scratches easily and may become chipped by the rubbing of black pots and pans against the sides.
Composite materials are also an option. Composite sinks may be made of granite, graphite, acrylic and even fiberglass. These materials give the homeowner a wide variety of aesthetic options to choose from while offering a speckled material that both looks nice and provides a means for hiding stains, chips and imperfections.
Another consideration for purchasing a sink is determining the space in which you will place the sink. If you have a space already constructed in your kitchen, having a drop-in sink may be your best option. These sinks, often called self-rimming sinks, have a rim or lip that sits upon the kitchen sink top. This provides for a faster and easier installation by do-it-yourselfers or home owners that may not be familiar with installing a full sink. These are quick and easy options for you to install a new sink if you’d like to change the look of your kitchen with a brand new, cheap kitchen sink.