maybe that's odd, considering my line of work, but i always thought sinks were one of those details that didn't matter a TON. especially if you are opting for a "normal" under mount sink and not a vessel or apron front sink.
well, after spending some time with janessa at chariot wholesale (a sink, faucet and tub wholesaler here in salt lake), i got SCHOOLED in all things SINK.
and now, i think i just might be...a sink snob. and you might be too, after reading this post!
one of the things i love about my job is that i get to learn something everyday...and one of the things i love about blogging is getting to share that knowledge! lucky you! hee. hee.
the first thing i learned is that sinks are rated by their thickness, also called "gauge"
the gauge of a sink is generally between 15 and 22.
the lower the number, the thicker the metal.
most sinks available for purchase at home improvement stores have a gauge between 20-22.
most sinks in commercial kitchens have a gauge between 15 and 18.
so why do you want a higher gauge (thicker) sink?
thicker metal sinks mean that the sink is less likely to dent or bow.
most quality sinks, or sinks that have a lower gauge are really quiet. they don't make that hollow, tinny sound when items are dropped in them. better quality sinks also have superior undercoatings which helps to absorb sound. (i actually didn't realize that sinks even HAD undercoatings on them until i went sink shopping at chariot)
*a word about undercoatings:
not only do they help absorb sound, but they also protect against condensation and help maintain sink water temperature. good stuff!
what else should you look for in a stainless steel kitchen sink?
*optimum combination of chromium and nickel
stainless sinks are usually labeled with the amount of chromium and nickel contained in the steel. there are combinations of chromium and nickel that allow for superior corrosion resistance and durability. an optimal ratio of these two metals allows the sink to "gives" a little, reducing the chance of dish breakage. the ratio is usually something like "18:8" or equivalent. this means there is 18% chromium and 8% nickel in the stainless steel. the higher the percentage of these alloys that are present, the better the grade of stainless steel. (so, a "20:10" ratio is better than an "18:8" ratio.)
what else should you consider?
bowl depth, taper and radius are the three basic sink measurements.
depth is the distance from the top of the rim to the bottom of the sink next to the drain.
the bowl taper is the slope on each side of the sink from rim to bottom.
radius is the measure of the bowl's corners and bottoms where the sides and bottom meet.
the point to remember from all of this is: the deeper the bowl, the straighter the slope, the smaller the radius, the more useful the sink capacity.
you should also consider the type if sink that you want...single bowl? double? what type of edge and bowl shape do you want?
so, what did i end up buying?
for the kitchen, i opted for the versailles edge culinary style single bowl 15 gauge sink.
(i totally felt like ralphie from a christmas story when i just wrote that!)
here it is again, in the showroom:
and for the bathrooms, i chose a white, square porcelain sink:
it is called the "tideway" and is similar to the kohler K-2297-0
cant wait to see them installed!