Composite or Stainless Steel Sink: Which Is Right for You?

Is a stainless steel sink the best design choice for your kitchen? Or could a composite model add more character? More importantly, how will each option stand up to day-to-day use?

These are good questions to ask, especially when you’re investing time and money into a major kitchen remodel. You might have thought you had the hard decisions out of the way after you chose the stone for your countertops, but selecting a sink is equally important. Not only is it a noticeable part of the design, it has to function well too.

Stainless Steel: What You Should Know

A stainless steel sink may seem like the obvious choice. It’s popular. It’s sleek. It matches your appliances.

If you choose a stainless steel sink, make sure you get one with a thick gauge. The lower the number, the thicker the gauge. A 16-gauge sink is thicker than a 22-gauge option, and definitely more desirable. The thickness of the steel affects the performance of the sink considerably.

For example, a thick gauge muffles the sound of dripping water and clinking dishes. If you turn the faucet on full blast in a thin-gauge sink, the tinny-sounding noise is hard to bear.

When you drop a glass or a plate inside, you worry less about it breaking than you would with stone or composite.

Maintenance is easy — just wipe to remove water and mineral spots. Though the sink may sustain light scratches over time, they’re not very noticeable unless you have a shiny finish, and superficial scratches can be easily buffed out. Brushed finishes hide wear and tear well.

Composite: Understand the Pros and Cons

A composite sink is typically formed of 80 percent crushed tone and 20 percent resin binder. Since they’re created under high pressure, they stand up to heat well. Still, some resin finishes can melt, so check with the manufacturer before putting hot pans into the sink.

Composite sinks are extremely strong and durable, but the hardness can be a drawback as well. Drop a glass, and it can easily shatter on contact.

Unlike stainless steel, composite sinks offer a range of color options, allowing you to pick the shade that best fits your kitchen. However, you will have to use manufacturer-approved cleaning materials to avoid discoloring the finish.

Choosing Your Material

When you’re considering either a composite or stainless steel sink, weigh the pros and cons with the help of Intermountain Stone & Marble. Both types offer different advantages, and both are available in a variety of price ranges, styles and shapes. We offer advice and show you a range of styles to help you get the best sink for your kitchen.

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