Kube Kitchens

Kitchen Sink & Taps - A Guide

Inset Kitchen Sink Double Belfast Sink Undermount Sink
See sink photo gallery and discriptions further down the page
Choosing a kitchen sink and set of taps may not be the most important part of kitchen design, but there is no doubt that they can add significantly to the overall look of your kitchen.  There is an endless selection for you to choose from and when deciding on the type and design of sink to go for, there are a few things to keep in mind.
1.  What kind of worktop have you chosen for your kitchen?

If you have chosen a laminate worktop then you will have to go for an inset sink which slots into a cut-out in the worktop with the top lip sitting on top of the worktop.

If you are having granite fitted then you have the choice of going for an undermount sink which will sit underneath the granite in a neat and flush way.  You can also fit undermount sinks to solid surface worktops like Corian or LG Hi-Macs and to timber worktops.

Of course, if a Solid Surface worktop is your preferred choice, then you have another option.  The great thing about Solid Surfacing is that it can be moulded to pretty much and shape with seamless beauty.  And this includes the sink.  The sink can be integrated using the same material as the worktop and you can choose to have it the same colour or in white, bone or whatever colour tickles your fancy.  This of course is extremely hygenic as you no longer have the build up of dirt you sometimes get around the edge of traditional sinks.

2.  What look are you trying to achieve with your Kitchen Design?

As I have said earlier, the sink and taps that you choose can greatly enhance the finished look of your kitchen.  Sink and tap manufacturers have recognised this over the years and focus very much on creating sinks and taps that fit in with the latest kitchen designs and trends.

When choosing a sink and taps for a contemporary kitchen, make sure you opt for a sleek, streamlined design.  Of course your worktop choice will have a say in whether it is an inset sink or undermount sink.  When choosing an inset sink, get one that has clean sharp edges with a very streamlined draining board.  Having a contemporary looking kitchen that has straight lines will not look well with a soft edged sink and a standard curved tap.

For traditional kitchens you have more options to play with.  Any sink really will go with a traditional kitchen and again it will depend on the worktop you choose.  Undermount sinks will basically go with any style kitchen while a Belfast sink is more in keeping with traditional kitchens.  The one thing you must have with a Belfast sink is a solid worktop.  What I mean is that it must be either granite, marble, timber, solid surface etc.  Under no circumstances put a Belfast sink with laminate worktops.  Any excess water spilling over the edge of the sink can over time damage the laminate worktop.  Another reason is that a Belfast sink needs the worktop to overhang the lip of the sink so that water off the draining grooves can flow directly into the sink.  If it was laminate worktop the edge of the worktop would have an edging tape on it which would get water damaged.

Selection of Kitchen Sinks

Stainless Steel Inset Sink
Stainless Steel Inset Sink

A stainless steel inset sink sits on top of the worktop and into a cut-out.  Typically, inset sinks are used with Laminate worktops but they can technically be fitted to any worktop.  Most sinks are made with 18/10 stainless steel to ensure maximum toughness for everyday use.  Inset sinks come in a variety of sizes and can have a single large bowl, double large bowl, large bowl with a half bowl or even large bowl with a 3/4 bowl.
Bowl & a Half Ceramic Undermount Sink Undermount Kitchen Sink.  Bowl & a Half with Stainless Steel Drainer
Undermount Sink

When you choose to go with a solid worktop for your kitchen such as granite, quartz, soild surface or timber, you have the option of fitting an Undermount sink.  As you can see from the photograph, they are very neat and tidy as they sit underneath the worktop so that no lip is visible.  Available in all the usual bowl sizes, they are also available in stainless steel, ceramic and even composite stone.
Bowl & 3/4 Undermount Sink Double Bowl Undermount Sink
Belfast Sink Double Belfast Sink
Belfast Sinks

For a more traditional kitchen, Belfast sinks can offer a great way of enhancing the overall appearance of the kitchen.  Available in single bowls (usually 600mm wide) or double bowl (usually 800mm wide), they are tradionally made of ceramic.  However, in recent years, innovation has taken over and we can now get them in stainless steel and teak.  Both these offer a great alternative if you don't like ceramic.
Stainless Steel Belfast Sink Teak Belfast Sink
Composite Sink 
Composite Sinks
Looking for something a bit diffrent to stainless steel sink?  Then Composite sinks are a great alternative.  Great advantages of these sinks include being less noisy than stainless steel or ceramic, extremely tough, hard wearing and resistant to stains and scratches.  Available with the usual bowl options they can compliment both contemporary and traditional kitchens thanks to a wide range of designs. 
Stainless Steel Range Sink
Range Sinks

When you think of Range sinks you will be forgiven for thinking of old fashioned sinks of years gone by.  But sink manufacturers see these as a very modern twist on those old sinks.  Range sit-on sinks sit on top of the kitchen cabinet with the worktop butting up against it on either side.  Available in various sizes they can help break up a long run of worktop space which might otherwise look drab.
Black Ceramic Inset Sink
Ceramic Inset Sink

Another alternative to a stainless steel inset sink is this ceramic inset sink.  Made with the same material and process as a Belfast sink, they are both tough and stylish.  Again available in a variety of styles, the one pictured is from the Franke Mythos range and is available in a gloss black or white finish.  These can be fitted to any worktop and fit in as any normal inset sink.
Glass Sink With Stainless Steel Bowl  Glass Sink

What about this for a stylish sink.  By combining tough glass and a stainless steel bowl, Franke have designed a truly innovative kitchen sink.  Asthetically, this sink will enhance any medern kitchens as it exudes class and sleekness while remaining practical with its stainless steel base.  This particular model is available in both black or aqua tones to suit any kitchen design.
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Irish Kitchen Designers Institute