No kitchen can be complete without a sink, and it will not be wrong to say that the sink is the heart of the kitchen. The sink is the most used utility in a kitchen set-up for prepping food, rinsing dishes, washing hands, and even going to the extent of bathing the puppy. Choosing a sink that serves your purpose depends mainly on how well you envisage the nature of use and its extent. The size of the family and the kitchen size are important factors that determine which sink would be most appropriate. Along with the size comes the functionality of the sink that must support your everyday needs, and the appearance is also critical for selection.

Stainless steel sinks are most common because of its shiny looks, high durability, and rust-proof quality. When you are shopping for a new sink, you must be aware of the other types of sinks based on material and the installation method. The design of the kitchen countertop and the way you design the kitchen cabinets also influence sink selection. 

Sink types 

There are a variety of styles, with a choice between an apron-front sink, under-mount sink, and drop-in sink. Sinks are also classified by the nature of the placement and use like corner sink, prep sink, utility or laundry sink, and bar sink. 

Apron-front sink

This sink comes with a deep bowl and board or apron, which is an extension in the front. To install the sink, it might require modification of the cabinets or cabinets with a special base to accommodate the broad apron in the front.  The front face of the cabinet that comes under the sink will be shorter and smaller than the other cabinets adjacent to it to provide space for the apron. Apron-front sinks, also known as farmhouse sinks, have large, deep bowls.

Drop-in sink

The drop-in sink sits inside the countertop in a pre-cut opening and is securely held in place with screws and clips from the underneath. For support and stability, the sink has a rim along the perimeter that helps the sink to rest on the countertop top and provides support and stability. The sink can have one or more mounting holes for installing faucets and are easy to install and remove.

 Undermount sink

Undermount sinks look like drop-in sinks in that it sits inside an opening created in the countertop top. But the manner of installation is different because there is no tip or lip provided in the sink design. The sinks are mounted to the countertop top’s underside and held in place with brackets or clips and adhesives. The absence of rim gives a sleek appearance to it and eases the process of cleaning the area around the sink. A granite or quartz countertop that provides a solid surface is ideal for installing undermount sinks. 

Corner sink

To utilize the countertop space effectively by using the corners of countertops, placing a corner sink strategically is a standard practice in interior decoration.  The sinks come in L-shape and add more flexibility to the space around the countertop. Stainless steel is the chosen material for corner sinks, and it comes with undermount or drop-in installation.

Prep or Bar sink

Prep sinks, also known as bar sinks, play second fiddle to the main sink in the kitchen and installed specially for performing small tasks like rinsing fruits and vegetables and washing hands. However, in small-sized kitchens, the prep sink could be the only one that serves all purposes without the need for another big sink.

Wall mount sink

This type of sink hangs from the kitchen wall at the height of the countertop. You can install it with additional support from behind the wall to bear the weight. The sinks have a vintage appeal that suits both farmhouse themed kitchens and industrial kitchens. Porcelain, cast iron, and stainless steel are the chosen materials for these sinks.

Sink materials

Sinks are made from a wide variety of materials with stainless being most popular in addition to porcelain cast iron, copper, acrylic, fireclay, granite, and composite material.

Stainless steel – Stainless steel sinks are available in various designs, and regardless of the thickness or the gauge of the material, the sinks are durable, lightweight, and easy to clean. The anti-rusting properties of stainless steel and its shiny, bright looks enhance the kitchen aesthetics.  The versatility of stainless steel allows manufacturers to produce sinks with both undermount and drop-in designs. Special coatings and pads are available to muffle the sound of water falling on stainless steel sinks,  

Copper – Copper is another shining metal that does not rust or tarnish which makes it an excellent choice for sinks. Moreover, the characteristic of copper to develop patina or a mild coating on the surface adds to the beauty of the sink. Besides, copper possesses antimicrobial properties that resist viruses and bacteria.

Cast iron – Cast iron sinks come with a porcelain coating to provide a permanent shiny appearance that is also easy to clean. The sinks have a long life, highly heat resistant up to 1000oF, and available in undermount and drop-in construction.

Granite – Granite sinks consist of a blend of acrylic and granite sprayed over a resin base that is completely scratch-proof, stain-proof, and can resist heat up to 537oF. The protective barrier can fight bacteria.

Porcelain – Porcelain sinks are not pure porcelain, but porcelain-coated on steel for providing a smooth, shiny, and stain-free surface that is also scratch-resistant. It can resist heat up to 1000oF and comes with easy to install dual mount options. An insulated backing helps in noise reduction.

Acrylic – Molding an acrylic material to give the shape of a sink is the method of fabricating acrylic sinks with a fiberglass backing for reinforcement support and sound muffling. These impact-resistant sinks are also stained resistant and easy to clean and install.

A mixture of quartz and granite particles together with acrylic and polyester resins go into the making of composite sinks, but the color choices are limited.