Sink Materials


We have been bouncing all over the place so I'm posing the question to the public, what's the best sink material for a kitchen sink? We have looked at stainless steel with sound deadening and it's sturdy, lightweight, easy to mount, doesn't stain, chip or get affected by heat or hot water. But it looks industrial. We have looked at porcelain cast iron sinks as we have white appliances but the counter top company is sounding touchy about mounting it under counter because it's so dang heavy. We have heard porcelain marks and dings and isn't the sturdiest of sinks. We have looked at granite sinks as they advertise that they don't chip, stain and aren't affected by heat and we like the black with the color scheme we were heading for. The last counter place we talked with said they refuse to mount granite sinks because they chip so easily. We also looked at cast sinks like Americast which also has a coating they advertise can handle 1000- degrees but we have heard they mark and rot and are not worth the effort.
We're kind of leaning back to stainless but would rather not have the industrial look but do we have any other options? We're redoing the kitchen complete and the stainless sink we're replacing has been in the house for 26 years and is still in mint condition.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

With the economy as shaky as it is, wouldn't it be prudent to not obsess over fancy ways to waste money and simply appreciate the outstanding quality/performance durability of your SS sink? If you want to throw a more modest sum of money around and have a conversation piece in the kitchen, then go wild with some of the avant garde faucets from Kohler, especially, and even staid old Delta. Wall mount controls, two foot high goose neck outlets, there's enough foolishness out there to have fun without being stupid. SS appliances are big now, so are range hoods. Why not sinks? The patina on your 26 year old sink is priceless from an appearance standpoint. If you put it out on the curb it would be gone before you got back in the house in many places. If you must replace the sink, consider the many variants available today, again citing Kohler as an innovator. The array of products out there is really dazzling, so have fun deciding.
Joe
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yea the counter top guy want you to use stainless so he has an easy job, Use cast iron porcelin and tell him to build a brace under it.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I don't see stainless as "industrial". I have it and would use it again. You said yourself that the old one is in "mint condition".
I like the aesthetic effect produced by echoing the stainless look in the trim on the wall oven and a few other elements in the kitchen.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

For what it's worth a cast iron sink has a thicker coat of porcelain than a metal sink. Another factor is what type of counter tops? If it's granite an undermount sink looks the best but once you say undermount the price jumps up. There's a wide price range of stainless sinks. There are some really nice stainless sinks out there. Cast iron sinks are very strong and durable. Another thing to think about if you are going to use a Tile in or undermount sink, it's there until you change the counter top. If you do a tile in I would stash enough tile (and trim pieces) to do a sink replacement. Also a lot of the newer sinks are deeper than your old one so if you going with a deeper one (they are nice) make sure your waste stub out is low enough. You might have to lower it that's an additional cost factor. Myself I never cared for clay/porcelain sinks. In my house I have granite counters with a stainless undermount; stainless sinks have come a long way.
Sounds to me like your doing a major kitchen remodel so I might add this, think about every thing you want in advance such as additional electrical outlets. Under counter lights, trash compactor just whatever try and avoid extras that's were the$$$$ add up. I will assume your contracting the job out if so ask for PROOF of Liability and workman's comp insurance. Last thing you will get sick of eating out have fun.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

For the record, cast iron sinks, AFAIK, are actually coated with enamel. While it's fired and forms a hard surface similar to porcelain, I believe in the sink business porcelain means it is a solid ceramic product, formed out of a clay type material, containing no metal. If you look at Kohler cast iron, they do not refer to them as porcelain, but rather enamel coated.
I have one and am very satisfied with it. I looked at American Std which only makes Americast, which appears to me to be the mystery spam of metals. It's not true cast iron, but some composite, lighter weight metal. If you look at one carefully in the store next to a Kohler, there is no comparison. The finish on the Kohler looks rich and luxurious compared to the duller looking American Std. The Kohler also has a slightly uneven, slightly ripple like look to it, as it takes on some of the texture of the underlying cast iron. I think that makes it look more authentic.
I've had mine a couple years now and no chips or any problems at all. There is no question it can chip, but it also depends on if you're a total idiot or have kids, etc who are. With reasonable usage care I don't see chipping of a ture quality cast iron sink as a problem. I like the warm look of a white sink compared to stainless. When I'm doing prep work, etc, the white background makes it easier to focus on and see what I'm doing.
Regarding the counter company, I don't know what being "touchy" about undermounting a cast iron sink means. If they can't tell you a simple yes or no regarding undermounting a cast iron sink, I'd find another granite company. Also I'd stay away from the counter company that refuses to mount a cast iron sink because they allegedly chip so easy. Even if that were true, what business is it of theirs? It's your sink and your kitchen. It sounds like they are saying they are too dumb to handle it the right way while installing it. Cast iron sinks are widely available in undermount versions and with all the granite out there today, it's hard to imagine that it's a problem. I'd also check with Kohler and see what they say.
Another factor is what type of counter tops? If it's granite an

Price of the sink or install in the countertop? Either way, compared to the cost of a job including granite countertops, the cost delta has to be negligible, especially for something that is a focal point and will be there for decades.
There's a wide price range of stainless sinks. There are some really

Yes, I went with a double sink that is very deep on the left, larger bowl side. It was the Kohler Marsala, which uses a single hole in the back at the divider point, which lets both bowls go all the way back, giving additional depth. I'd also look into the sinks that have a lower center divider. Also factor in the garbage disposal plumbing with regard to the waste stub.
Myself I never

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Stainless steel will look the best in the long run. White sinks get a dingy, grungy look way too easily. Stainless cleans up easily. Besides, stainless steel below the counter won't look nearly as "industrial" as a giant stainless steel refrigerator.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 17 Sep 2008 08:40:57 -0700 (PDT), mike

This is our experience as well; we are very happy with our undermount stainless steel sink after living with a nice white, but maintenance-intensive high-end Kohler cast iron sink. Life is a lot easier with the stainless, and the sink really isn't that visible relative to other appliances/elements in the kitchen (plus we do have a high-end stainless GE range hood and a pair of high-end stainless pendant lights to go with a stainless-topped center table).
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

What exactly is so maintenance intensive about a Kohler cast iron sink? I have one and find it's very easy to keep clean. I use mostly just dishwashing soap and water to clean it, occasionally soft scrub for anything that is harder to remove and it cleans up very easily. I've had stainless too, and can't say that there is any big difference in how easy it is to keep either sink clean.
Life is a lot

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Thu, 18 Sep 2008 00:39:37 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

The white cast iron showed dirt almost instantly, sending the OCD individual in this house into a tizzy just about any time it was used and not immediately cleaned up, whereas the stainless is less obvious. The other thing for us was that periodically we had to bleach the cast iron sink (this one was 20+ years old) to get stains out, something we don't have to do with the stainless.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yes, I see your point.

For anything that doesn't just wash off, I use Soft Scrub that comes with bleach already in it.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri 19 Sep 2008 01:22:17a, KLS told us...

This OCD individual freaks at the sight of a water spot on a stainless steel sink. I'll never own one again..
--
Wayne Boatwright

*******************************************
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

The OP noted that his old stainless sink was in mint condition, so his water likely isn't a problem. If yours is, you might try cleaning your stainless items with vinegar or oxalic acid based cleaners like Bar Keeper's Friend.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.