Everything but the Kitchen Sink
November 5, 2017 1:42 PM   Subscribe

Mrs. pjern and I are refreshing our kitchen. Some questions have arisen.

We've replaced the stove, microwave, and dishwasher with new stainless steel units, and are eyeing the kitchen countertops, which after 25 years of hard use are a mess of delaminating and broken laminate.

We have pretty much settled on a new Corian countertop, and a stainless steel sink. Found a nice Kraus that we both like, but I'm wondering about undermount vs, drop-in. Drop-in seems to me to be more potentially troublefree, but undermount looks nicer. I'm wondering is there are any pitfalls to that, or is a built-in Corian sink really the way to go?

I'm dropping a bit of cash here, I'd like to get it right. Hive mind, please do your thing.
posted by pjern to Home & Garden (14 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
 
Look at Ruvati for the sink — I got an undermount from them and it’s pretty great (thick steel, well made, relatively cheap). Their metal tends to be thicker than their competition at the cheap end of things. Undermount is the way to go, IMHO.
posted by aramaic at 1:49 PM on November 5 [1 favorite]


I put a Rehabitat stainless takeout undermount in my Corian countertop and the first time I wiped crumbs on the counter into the sink, unimpeded by any lip whatsoever, I knew I made the right decision. So yes, undermount.

Two other features to consider: 1) a negative offset for the cutout, which is to say, have the hole in the Corian a 1/4" or so smaller than the outline of the sink and 2) have some shallow, sloped drain grooves routed adjacent to the sink to carry water from a drying rack or wet veggie prep to the sink.

Last of all, if your sink ends up having a tinny sound when you place dishes in it, get a roll of rubberized/asphalt flashing from Home Depot for about $15 and stick it to the underside as a cheap sound deadener.
posted by klarck at 2:16 PM on November 5 [12 favorites]


I don’t think there’s any question that undermount is the answer. So much easier to keep clean.
posted by raisingsand at 2:41 PM on November 5 [3 favorites]


Undermount. You just wipe stuff into the sink. So nice.
posted by fingersandtoes at 2:53 PM on November 5


I basically redid my kitchen to get undermount instead of drop-in. It's not even close. Get undermount. I have never heard of anyone having their undermount sink like... drop out or anything (though I'm sure it has happened, especially with diy installers. Get it professionally installed). And you don't get all that grime around the edge that happens with drop-in.
posted by brainmouse at 3:02 PM on November 5


klarck-

What's the advantage of a negative offset?
posted by pjern at 3:09 PM on November 5


The offset is the way to go. It makes crumb sweeping painless, there's no cruddy corners, and it looks much tidier. If you go to any kitchen showroom, this is likely how you'll see undermount sinks mounted.
posted by DarlingBri at 3:21 PM on November 5


Yes, this is my only regret about going with granite tile countertops when we redid ours a few years back. The black granite is amazingly strong, but the edge around the drop-in sink is sub-optimal. Spills flow the wrong way, etc.
posted by Devils Rancher at 3:28 PM on November 5


Negative offset eliminates that exposed stainless horizontal ledge around the perimeter of the sink that comes from a positive offset. Horizontal wet surfaces lead to grunge. (I guess one could go with a zero offset.) Also, I diy'd, and the negative offset was a bit more forgiving in placing/centering the sink in the cutout.
posted by klarck at 3:59 PM on November 5 [3 favorites]


How tall are you both? An undermount sink may place the bottom of the sink lower than the bottom of a drop-in sink, especially if your countertops are a thick material.

I am 6'1" and my wife is like 5'4"; we have an undermount sink and standard height counters, and the bottom of the sink is fine for her but I am forced to bend forward while doing dishes. We recently re-did the kitchen and this is the one thing that makes me frown. (Not that I would change it, because then she would be the one suffering.)
posted by wenestvedt at 7:24 AM on November 6


Seconding wenestvedt. We just went though the same process, and 6'5" me remarked last week about that very issue. Not a huge deal, but something to think about.
posted by MrMoonPie at 9:24 AM on November 6


Has anyone with an undermount ever swiped under the ledge to see if there is grunge growing there? I'd almost rather the grunge I can see than the grunge I can't but maybe that isn't an issue?
posted by Preserver at 10:36 AM on November 6 [2 favorites]


We had a stainless-steel undermount whose glue started to fail, and then the sink bent slightly in the middle so no amount of regluing would fix it. After attempting to fix it a couple of times, we gave up and bought a drop-in.
posted by telophase at 10:57 AM on November 7


Adding to my comment above: the sink was installed by the (low bidder) contractors who built the house, and we had professionals come out and try to fix it before buying the drop-in.
posted by telophase at 10:58 AM on November 7


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