Comparing Undermount And Drop-In Sinks: Which Is the Right Choice For Your Kitchen?
Kitchen sinks come in two basic styles: undermount and drop-in sinks. The primary difference between these options has to do with how they are mounted. As you might guess, undermount sinks are mounted underneath the surface of the counter. Drop-in models, on the other hand, are set into a hole in the countertop, with the edge of the sink sitting on top of the counter.
There are advantages and disadvantages to both options. Once you have a better understanding of how these sinks differ, it should be a lot easier to decide which is the right option for your kitchen.
One of the biggest advantages of undermount sinks is that you can wipe crumbs directly from the countertop into the sink. Since the lip of the sink is under the counter, you don’t have to worry about the crumbs getting stuck on the edge of the sink. Instead, they just fall right in where they can be washed away.
Even though that is a convenient feature, undermount sinks also have some drawbacks in terms of cleanliness. The primary drawback is that the space between the countertop and the sink can get extremely dirty over time. Small bits of food and other contaminants can find their way in, even if the area is sealed with caulk.
Drop-in models, on the other hand, don’t have that problem since there aren’t any cracks or openings where food particles and other debris can accumulate. That makes them a lot easier to clean over time.
Drop-in style sinks also tend to be more affordable than their undermount counterparts. Of course, the cost of the sink can naturally vary based on its size, the manufacturer, and the materials that it is made out of. When comparing two sinks that are similar in terms of their quality and materials, however, the drop-in model will almost always be cheaper.
Another drawback of undermount sinks is that they can’t be used with laminate countertops. The way that the sink is mounted exposes the underside of the edge of the countertop to water. With laminate countertops, this can cause the MDF underneath to quickly break down.
This isn’t a problem with drop-in models since they are mounted on top of the countertops. That means that the MDF that is used underneath laminate countertops is protected from moisture.
When deciding between undermount and drop-in sinks, you also have to take into account the overall appearance that you are going for. Undermount models are quite popular right now and can give your kitchen a sleek, modern look. Drop-in style sinks, on the other hand, are slightly more old-fashioned, meaning that your kitchen may not have that modern designer look if you go with a top-mount sink.
Regardless of which sink style you choose, you should look for a high-quality model that is made out of durable materials. Some of the best materials include stainless steel, fireclay, and porcelain-enameled cast-iron. All of these materials are not only attractive but also extremely durable, making them a great choice for a kitchen sink.