Guest Blog: Know Your Options About Sink Materials That Aid Healthy Living
No one wants to spend long hours in the kitchen because kitchen work can be quite stressful if continued for long. Creating efficient work spaces in kitchens is a must for which you must have the proper layout of kitchen equipment and fixtures to ensure a smooth workflow that enhances efficiency.
When designing a kitchen, you must follow the traditional concept of the kitchen triangle or the golden triangle that stipulates placing the cooktop, the sink, and the refrigerator in such a way that it forms an imaginary triangle with the sink at the apex. It means that you must pay attention to sink placement in relation to the cooktop and the refrigerator. However, if you are doing kitchen remodeling, then it does not require thinking about the layout unless it contradicts the concept, and you can select a new sink of the same size and put it in place.
Clean kitchens create a healthy living environment, and to keep kitchens clean, the focus must be on the ease of cleaning the sink, which is most prone to getting dirty and can become a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. How easy it is to clean sinks regularly by scrubbing and rinsing depends as much on the sink design as on the sink material. The following are your options for different sink materials.
Stainless steel sinks
If you are looking for an all-purpose sink that is highly durable and versatile, then there is nothing better than a Kraus stainless sink or something similar. Stainless steel sinks have been most popular for years, and it keeps enjoying the confidence of homeowners through upgrades and improvements. With time, there has been considerable improvement in the quality and design of stainless-steel sinks and the present-day sinks are less noisy and despite being made from thicker material, 16 to 18-gauge sheet it is less expensive than its predecessors.
Stainless steel contains nickel and chromium that brings the bright shine and luster of the sinks besides imparting anti-rusting and corrosion-resistant properties to it. The percentage of the elements is indicated by numbers like 16/10, meaning 16% chromium and 10% nickel. You can choose between a mirror-like finish and satin finish. Easy cleaning of stainless-steel sinks makes it more attractive despite its vulnerability to water spots and scratches. That stainless steel will not crack, chip, stain or fade is also a reason for its popularity.
Cast iron sinks or enamel sinks
Cast iron is a brittle and heavy but durable iron alloy used for sink making, but it needs a surface coating of enamel or porcelain to create a smooth and glossy finish that is easy to clean. The cast iron, together with the porcelain coating makes the sinks last very long and easy to clean and maintain, which are the main factors of sink selection. Cast iron sinks are heavy and mostly suited for undermount installation, but Drop-in designs are also available. Cast iron sinks can withstand heat, and it is an eco-friendly material that can last very long. The porcelain surface is non-porous and stain resistant that reduces the frequency of cleaning except for rinsing with water and mild cleaning solutions often. The sinks are available in a wide range of colors.
The color and appearance of copper sinks put it in a class of its own that makes it more attractive than stainless steel and porcelain. The elegant looks of copper add warmth to the interior decor and create a relaxed environment that boosts the overall appeal of the kitchen. The high appeal of copper sinks makes it the focal attraction of the kitchen and works equally well for traditional and contemporary kitchens. The anti-bacterial properties of copper make it a hygienic choice because it can kill almost all bacteria and germs in a natural way, which is a great benefit for creating a healthy kitchen workspace. Copper is a highly durable metal, and the sinks can retain its beauty and integrity even if made from recycled copper. Although copper sinks are prone to scratches, it is corrosion and rust-resistant.
Stones that used to be a popular material for kitchen floors and countertops are also very good for kitchen sinks. Stone sinks bring back the old-world charm to modern kitchens to create a distinct style derived from natural materials and offer one of its kind beauty and warmth that is simply unmatched. Marble and granite are the most popular stones for sinks that are durable, versatile, and suitable for all kinds of use. Kitchens look exceptionally beautiful with stone sinks and each of which is so unique that you will never find a similar one anywhere else. This happens due to the natural origin of stone that has a unique tone and texture. Stone is porous, and to mitigate the problems of the material, absorbing liquids stone sinks need proper sealing to prevent scratching, chipping, and damage from cleaning products and chemicals.
Fireclay sinks have high decorative and aesthetic appeal besides having a long lifespan due to its durability. The ease of cleaning makes the eco-friendly material a favorite for those inclined towards designer kitchen fixtures and equipment, which you will find in spacious modern kitchens as well as farmhouses. Fireclay is a man-made material made from natural materials by fusing white clay and glaze at very high temperatures to produce a type of enamel. These sinks are more like luxury fixtures due to their high cost and are also very heavy that only suits undermount installation.
The heavyweight of Fireclay sinks draws comparisons with cast iron sinks, but unlike enamel sinks, Fireclay sinks do not scratch or stain. The cost of installing the sink is high because it requires reinforced countertop and cabinetry to support the heavyweight of the sink. Color choices are limited because these sinks are mostly in white or off-white color, and only rarely you might spot black and blue color.
Whichever type of sink you select, ensure that it can handle the kitchen workload by considering the family size to determine the sink size.