Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Kitchen Faucets

Kitchen remodeling is such a huge part of the building industry that there is a dazzling array of products, manufacturers, and options from which to choose.  Plumbing fixtures are no exception.  This blog will review kitchen faucets and the next, kitchen sinks.  One thing for sure is that your kitchen will have a faucet and sometimes more than one.

Style and Finish:  Kitchen faucets are available in almost any style and finish you can imagine.  Often the style and finish will be chosen to match other design elements in the kitchen.  Polished chrome is the least expensive choice.  Stainless steel is a durable and inexpensive option that matches many sinks and appliances.  Brushed nickel is a very popular choice and other options include bronze and brass in a variety of finishes.  White enamel is available although we have found the finish hard to maintain.  The shape and look of the faucet also can vary quite a lot from a simple straight line to a large arch and everything in-between, and from very modern to very traditional.

Single Handle Faucet:  A single handle faucet is the most common choice, with one handle controlling the volume of water and the hot/cold function.  A single handle faucet takes up little space on the counter, although some people find the volume and temperature can be difficult to adjust.

Double Handle Faucet:  The double handle faucet has a separate handle each for hot and cold water and offers better temperature control.  The do require three holes in your sink or counter {faucet, hot, and cold}, creating a more cluttered look. The additional handles can also be more difficult to clean around.

Pullout Spray Faucet:  Another option is a faucet that includes a pullout sprayer.  The pullout feature can be used to clean the sink area, to wash vegetables or for washing dishes. Pullout sprayers generally have more water pressure than the older separate sprays mounted adjacent to the faucet.  It also saves space and clutter on the sink or countertop.

Wall Mounted Faucet:  This is an increasingly popular option.  The faucet is mounted on the wall behind the sink, which makes it easier to use for filling large pots, frees up space on the counter, and gives the kitchen a unique look.  One limiting factor to using this type of faucet is that many sinks are on an exterior wall and having the piping and faucet located in there can make freezing a concern.

Second Faucet:  Many larger kitchens have two sinks, often a clean-up sink and a prep sink or bar sink.  Typically the faucets will be similar or matching styles and finishes with slight variation in size to match the function they serve.

Whatever faucet choice you make it is important to choose a well-made and durable faucet, and it is worth spending a little extra to do so.  The kitchen faucet is often used several times a day and long-term performance is a plus.

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