When you're designing a new kitchen, there are numerous decisions to make about the look, functionality and aesthetic of the room. To make these decisions easier, be sure to educate yourself on the different sink material types and design options so you’re less stressed when you finally do have to make the choice on which sink is best for your home.
9 Types of Kitchen Sinks
Depending on your style and budget, there are several different sink materials that should work for your kitchen’s style and daily usage. The nine common types of sink materials include:
- Stainless Steel: One of the most common and affordable sink options, stainless steel is naturally heat- and stain-resistant and a versatile option because it is available in numerous shapes, sizes and styles. The downsides of stainless steel sinks include that they can scratch easily and be noisy if a sound-absorbant pad isn’t installed underneath.
- Composite Granite: This material is attractive and durable and doesn’t show any unattractive water marks. Composite granite has the look and feel of natural stone while being resistant to chips and scratches, has good heat resistance and can withstand many household acids. With composite granite, however, you will have increased daily maintenance compared to other materials and certain porous types are susceptible to staining.
- Fireclay: An uncommon sink choice, fireclay is perfect if you’re designing a farmhouse kitchen. Nearly indestructible, fireclay sinks are fired at over 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit and receive a special coating that makes them resistant to chips, scratches, stains and acids. Keep in mind that fireclay sinks are very heavy, so your cabinets will have to be sturdy enough to handle the added weight, and you will have limited faucet options — choose either wall- or counter-mounted faucets.
- Enamled Cast Iron: Another durable and heavy sink, enamled cast iron features a tough enamel finish that will last a lifetime. Like the fireclay sink, your cabinets will need to be modified to accommodate the extra weight.
- Quartz: For continuity with your countertop, consider having a quartz sink. Lighter colors will help hide scratches and nicks, while darker options will show more wear and tear.
- Copper: For a stunning statement in your kitchen, consider having a sink made from copper. Copper sinks are durable and naturally rust-resistant and antimicrobial. This material will require a bit of extra maintenance — cleaning chemicals and heat will affect its patina and it needs regular treatment to prevent unwanted coloring.
- Solid Surface: When you don’t like quartz or stone, but want to keep a clean and continuous counter look, invest in a solid surface sink. Depending on the material you choose, these can be quite durable or show scratches easily.
- Soapstone or Natural Stone: Often a pricey option, natural stone or soapstone is unique, not affected by acids or chemicals and is resistant to microbial growth, but can form a patina over time.
- Porcelain: Similar to an enameled cast iron sink, porcelain is also coated after it is fired and is easily incorporated into farmhouse or rustic kitchen styles. If you’re not careful with your porcelain sink, it can scratch, which leads to rust buildup in the underlying material.