Why You Should Use a Farmhouse Sink
In this section of our buying guide we will consider all pros and cons of the farmhouse sinks, in order to make your choice easier.
Advantages of Using a Farmhouse Sink
Farmhouse sinks give you a large space to work with, so you can easily get dishes done or even wash other larger objects in them, like buckets, large pots and pans, and even babies and small children.
They’re so large that you can practically do anything in them, including wash, clean, or use anything in them. Given their deep features, you have the ability to fit more water and dishes in them than most other types of sinks.
Most farmhouse sinks have the ability to protrude past the rest of the surrounding countertop space. Given that, this added touch can give your kitchen a classy and modern look.
It adds dimension and depth to your kitchen, which can prevent your cooking area from looking boring or bland.
- Various styles and materials to choose from
They’re also beneficial because of the wide variety of styles and sink materials to choose from. More specifically, farmhouse sinks are usually just classified for their large size and deep bowls.
Other than that, they can be produced out of practically anything, such as porcelain, stainless steel, cast iron, copper, fireclay, and even marble.
Given that, you have the opportunity to choose the material that works best with the rest of your kitchen decor.
When most people do dishes, they’re required to lean over their countertop space and sink in order to reach the dishes and rinse them under the water faucet.
This causes back strain, especially if you’re required to stand in that same position for a long period. Because of that, having a farmhouse sink is beneficially ergonomic.
It doesn’t have that additional counter space in between you and the sink, so you aren’t required to lean over at all to do dishes. Consequently, you can comfortably relax and simply wash your dishes while in standing position.
Depending on the specific type of material that your farmhouse sink is composed of, these sinks have the ability to last for long periods of time because of their durability.
More specifically, they are produced with a thick material that’s likely stable enough to withstand a large amount of wear and tear. Given that, you can expect that the sink stays installed in your house for anywhere up to 20 plus years.
Disadvantages of Using a Farmhouse Sink
Because of their large size and depth, most people that want farmhouse sinks in their kitchen area are required to remodel the surrounding cabinetry and countertop that’s already been installed in their kitchen.
They can really only be installed using either under-mount style or top-mount. Because of that, you’re most likely going to have to redo much of your countertop and cabinetry in order to properly install a farmhouse sink in your kitchen.
If you’ve already done your research, then you can tell that farmhouse sinks are one of the most expensive types of sinks on the market. They’re large and require a high amount of material to make the sink.
Because of that, they tend to be more expensive than other sinks. But the price obviously varies according to the certain type of material that you want your sink to be made out of as well as the type of installation and faucet that you want.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Farmhouse Sink
Before you make a purchase you should consider the following features:
They are deeper and bigger than the traditional sinks; hence it is easier to wash the bulky pans and pots in them.
Also, you can minimize the time you spend on washing the dishes because you will not strain to reach the sink.
Different farmhouse sinks come in different sizes meaning that you have a wide range of sinks to choose from.
Larger farm sinks look appealing, but you should only pick them if they are compatible with your preference and available room.
If your space is limited, you can invest in sinks with unique configurations to make them as appealing as the larger ones.
3. Kitchen sink style
Different sinks come with different styles, i.e. single bowl sink and double bowl sink. Some even have three bowls! Let us delve into the details of each sink to help you choose the best.
- Single Basin Farmhouse Sink
The single basin farm sinks are very easy to install. They come in different sizes so you can choose one that fits your kitchen and preferences well. They are great for small kitchens and are way cheaper than double basin models of the same size. The sinks, however, are small and can make washing larger dishes difficult when the sink is full.
The Kraus KFR1-33GWH is a single basin farmhouse sink.
- Double Basin Farmhouse Sink:
These are larger than single basin ones but are more expensive.
A double basin sink is better because it allows you to store your dirty dishes on one side and wash them on the other.
The main limitation of these apron sinks, however, is that the faucet is placed in the middle for most models, which will limit the cleaning of big pots. It also limits your movement, making you slower and less efficient when cleaning up. However, you can easily fix this by having the faucet on one basin.
Our top pick, the Kraus KHF203-36 comes as a double bowl type.
- Round Basin Farmhouse Sink:
These sinks are undoubtedly very attractive but can be limiting when installed as a kitchen sink. They waste a lot of space and require custom made counters to install. They are mainly ideal as hand washing and brushing sinks.
4. Sink material
Getting the right material for apron front sink is very important. The material will determine the durability of your sink, affect its compatibility with the kitchen colors and decor, and affect the sink’s maintenance.
You can choose from a wide variety of sink materials with each coming in different finishes and colors.
Some of the most popular materials include fireclay, stainless steel, and copper.
The Kraus KHF203-36 is made from stainless steel while the Lordear White Farmhouse Sink is from fireclay, and the Adams Farmhouse Copper Kitchen Sink is from copper. There is also the cast iron material from which KOHLER K-6488-0 is made.
Let’s consider each of these materials
Fireclay is one of the most popular materials for making farmhouse sinks and for obvious reasons. The timeless appeal of fireclay makes for a beautiful setting. It is also durable and virtually scratch-resistant.
Fireclay sinks are types of ceramic sinks. Clay is carved into the shape and size of the sink then molded at mild temperatures for 2 days. When dry, porcelain enamel is applied on the farm sink and then put in a kiln and heated to 2000 degrees Fahrenheit for almost 24 hours.
The high temperatures allow the enamel to fuse into the ceramic, thus increasing the strength of the farmhouse sink. They have a vintage appearance and are highly durable.
Fireclay sinks, such as Kraus KFR1-33GWH, have a rough craft quality and can be molded into any shape. They are very quiet since the enamel does not let out a lot of noise.
The hard enamel on fireclay sinks is resistant to scratches and stains, which makes maintenance very easy.
However, harsh abrasive products can scratch and dull the basin.
A farm sink grid can help prevent this by preventing knocking of the finish by your pots and pans. It also adds to your storage space. Despite all these great features, fireclay sinks are limited in color and finish. They are mostly off-white and white. They’re able to have simple patterns, but they’re most popular for their simplicity in style and design.
These sinks are very heavy and feature complex plumbing conditions that can be hard to figure out on your own.
You also have the option to choose a porcelain farmhouse sink, which also has its benefits. Porcelain material is generally less durable than fireclay since it’s not resistant to scratching or cracking.
But you do have the ability to re-surface scratches, cracking, and chipping that takes place on the sink’s surface. This gives you the ability to make your sink look better even after damaging it. Dishes and pots can also chip the enamel of the sink.
Among the most common sink materials, stainless steel gives a modern look and classy finish. It blends with most kitchen decors and is very durable. They come with rubber pads to absorb vibrations from your sink activities. This reduces the noise that it produces.
Stainless steel, however, is prone to easy scratching. This is easily solved with a bottom grid that protects it against scratches. Stainless steel sinks have to take a specific shape as designed by the manufacturer. These sinks are very noisy when pots and dishes bang against them.
They are also very handy when it comes to durability. It lasts for a long time but is not resistant to scratches, fingerprints, and water stains.
Stainless steel farm sinks, as for instance Lordear Apron Front Deep Single Bowl Sink, are very easy to install and will rarely require the services of a professional contractor.
Copper is a material that is increasingly being used to make farmhouse sinks. A copper sink, as, for example, Adams Farmhouse Copper Kitchen Sink, may appear too austere when it is new as many come with a hammered finish.
However, over time, the surface of the copper attains a beautiful patina as it reacts with materials that come into contact with it.
This material is highly durable, making it one of the top for farmhouse sinks. Sinks, such as KOHLER K-6488-0, made from this have a porcelain enamel coating, which makes them highly durable. Additionally, it comes in different colors and does not make any noise when being used. It can resist up to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit, which means that placing a hot pot on it will not damage it.
5. Dimensions and cabinet sizes
Most people don’t realize how large farmhouse sinks are until they actually receive it in the mail and are ready to install it.
That’s why it’s important to consider the dimensions of the sink that you’re trying to purchase.
Not only that, but you’ll want to make sure that it fits inside of your cabinets, so you’ll need to measure your cabinet beforehand and make sure that you find a farmhouse sink that’s able to fit within that those dimensions.
From the entire products reviewed, the KOHLER K-6488-0 is the biggest as it comes with 35-11/16 (L) x 21-9/16 (W) x 9 (D) inches dimension.
There are several installation options, including an under-mount, flush-mount and raised sink. Installing a farmhouse sink is not like installing regular sinks. It has to be supported by reinforcements under it for it to fit and work well.
Most regular sinks feature the top mount installation, which means that the sink is more visible. Most farmhouse sinks, on the other hand, feature under-mount installation. This means that they are installed below your kitchen counter.
The sinks, therefore, are more efficient since they are less visible and bulky. When cleaning, you just need to wipe the dirt straight into your sink, which makes cleaning of your tabletops very easy.
Under-mount farmhouse sinks are also ideal for kids and shorter people because of the reduced height of the sink.
Farmhouse sinks are not cheap. Prices vary in terms of the material, the size, and number of basins, among other factors.
When planning to buy a cheap farmhouse sink, you need to know that it is not a small investment. As a result, you should choose the one that suits your kitchen needs.
Since it is a long-term investment, there is no problem investing extra to get a highly durable kitchen fixture.
The Lordear White Farmhouse Sink is the budget pick on this roundup.
A sink’s gauge is the technical term for how thick the sinks outer material is. This is an important feature to consider before purchasing an apron front sink. Typically, the smaller the number is, the thicker the sink is.
Because of that, if you want a thin farmhouse sink, then you’ll want a sink with a gauge that has a higher number.
Since farmhouse sinks are already large as it is, you’ll want to keep in mind the weight of the sink. If you choose a thicker sink, then it will be extra heavy.
The Lordear Apron Front Deep Single Bowl Sink, for example, comes with gauge 16.
It’s important that you consider what kind of faucet you want your farmhouse sink to have. They can typically come with a variety of different faucets for your convenience.
Most farmhouse sinks won’t already come with a faucet included, so you’ll want to make sure that your sink either comes with one or that you’re going to purchase one separately.
You have the option either a deck-mounted faucet or a wall-mounted faucet. Deck-mounted faucets will be mounted to your countertop behind the farmhouse sink.
Because of that, you’ll have to make sure that you have enough countertop space for the faucet.
On the other hand, you can choose a wall-mounted faucet, which is mounted to the wall that’s above the sink.
They’re recommended for you if you don’t have enough counter space. They also offer an easier clean-up process and are easier to install.
You should consider what type of finish you want on your sink, since that will ultimately determine the sink’s durability and how long it will last.
Most of the materials that farmhouse sinks are produced with require a finish coating that can protect that material from water.
Not only that, but it’s also important to consider the finishing because it will determine what your sink looks like since the finishing will essentially make your sink more attractive.
There are different types of finishing. Some include fireclay, porcelain, brushed stainless steel, and patina.
The Adams Farmhouse Copper Kitchen Sink, for example, comes with a patina finish. The Latoscana LFS3318W, on the other hand, comes with a fireclay finish. The KOHLER K-6488-0 comes with a porcelain finish.
How to Wash Dishes in a Farmhouse Sink
Organize your dishes
First and foremost, you should make sure that you organize all of dishes and separate them according to their category, like cups, plates, utensils, pans, etc. Make sure that you sort these dishes out on your countertop before you put them into the sink.
This helps to make sure that you don’t damage the sink. It also makes the dishwashing process easier, since everything is already organized to have put away together after drying.
Fill one side with soapy water
After you have your dishes organized on the countertop, you can now fill one side of the sink with warm, soapy water.
Make sure you don’t fill the sink too high since you’ll risk splashing the water everywhere and the water level rises after the dishes go into the bowl.
After you have one side filled, you can then carefully place the dishes into the soapy water to soak while you’re washing them.
After you stack all of your dishes together according to their type and place them into the water, it’s important that you wash each dish individually.
This helps you make sure that each dish is cleaned properly, and it prevents you from getting any injuries from digging in the sink for dishes.
Rinse on low
After you wash each dish on its own, you should rinse each one individually using your water on low. This helps to make sure that you save water and don’t make a mess with it splashing everywhere.
Once your dishes are washed and rinsed, you can place them in a specific drying zone that you’ve previously setup. This can either be with a drying mat or with a drying rack on the other side of the counter space.
After they’re dried, you can then put your dishes away in the cupboards according to their types.
How to Keep Farmhouse Sink Clean?
Cleaning your farmhouse sink without damaging it is no big deal, when you follow these tips:
- Assemble your cleaning supplies. You’ll need a good abrasive cleaner like Comet, Ajax, or an all-natural substitute; a scrub brush with strong bristles; scrubbing pads or steel wool; and depending on whether or not there’s grease in the sink, you may need dish liquid or another type of grease-cutting surfactant.
- Remove all large and small loose debris that may be left in the sink. This includes dirt clumps, rocks, sticks and leaves, shells, pebbles, etc. If there is any stuck-on adhesive material, remove anything that’s loose- but don’t stress about removing all of it, just yet.
- Do a pre-rinse of the sink and wash away any remaining loose dirt. This should leave you with a relatively smooth surface, which is a great place to begin scrubbing.
- Clean the sink with your cleaning solution and scrubbers or brush. Sprinkle the abrasive cleaner into the sink, allowing it to coat the entire surface of the sink.
- Add a little water and use the scrub brush to begin scouring away the dirt and stains. If the sink is deeply stained, you may need to pause and let the cleaner soak in for a few minutes.
- Rinse, inspect, and repeat. When you have finished scrubbing the entire surface of the sink once, rinse the sink and see if your efforts have removed all the stains and dirt.
- If there is still dirt or ground-in stains, repeat the cleaning steps above, and maybe allow the cleaning solution to soak for a longer period. You can do this as many times as you need to!
- It will take a little time and effort, but when you’re finished cleaning your farmhouse sink, you’ll be free to use it without worrying that it will contaminate anything you’re trying to clean.
To care for fireclay and porcelain sink:
- Use a soft cloth and mild cleaners when cleaning your sink.
- Wipe the sink with a soft rag to avoid water spots.
- Gently place the heavy pots and dishes on the sink to prevent it from chipping or cracking.
- Use a rubber mat to protect the bottom of your sink.
To care for stainless steel sink:
- Dry your sink with a soft rag after washing the dishes to prevent water mineral spots.
- A stainless steel pad will mat the finish on mirrored, shiny or highly polished surfaces. Therefore, it should not be used.
- Keep your sink free from standing water because this water will lead to a build-up of mineral deposit on the sink and cause it to appear dull.
- Remove stubborn stains using a mild abrasive and by scrubbing in a circular motion to preserve the sink’s finishing.
- Do not leave steel utensils, cookware or water spots for a prolonged period. Utensils made from iron can leave rust spots on your stainless steel sink.
- Never use steel wool or scouring pad to clean the sink because it will discolor your sink.
- Do not use cleaning agents that contain hydrochloric acid or sulphuric acid because they will damage your sink.
- Never leave salt, mustard, mayonnaise, citrus fruits or pickles in the sink for a prolonged period because they will wear down the surface of your sink.
- Lastly, do not leave cleaning pads, rubber mats or sponges for an extended period because they will trap water and discolor or stain your sink.