Outdoor Kitchen Sink and Faucet Buying Guide
When installing an outdoor kitchen, you will need to choose the right kitchen sink for the job. While indoor and outdoor kitchen sinks are similar, there are features you will want to make sure the outdoor kitchen sink has so that it will hold up in the elements of the outdoors.
Before we get started on what to look for in an outdoor kitchen sink, it is important to know that your outdoor kitchen sink will require proper plumbing and draining. You will need to decide if you want hot and cold water connections or just cold water. You will need to factor this cost into the total budget of your outdoor kitchen sink.
Once you have set up the water lines and plumbed the outdoor kitchen, you are ready to shop outdoor kitchen sinks. You will need to consider the material, shape, size, and style of the many outdoor kitchen sinks and faucets to choose from to decide which one is right for you.
The Material of the Sink and Faucet
More important than the size, style, and shape of the sink and faucet will be the material it is made out of. The material of the sink and faucet will have to withstand the tests of time (or at least the outdoor elements).
Stainless steel is the most popular and tried-and-true material of outdoor kitchen sinks. Stainless steel is resistant to stains, erosion, and corrosion, perfect for prolonged periods of rain, wind, and sun. For outdoor sinks, it doesn’t get more reliable, durable, and dependable than stainless steel. Make sure the outdoor sink you are looking at says it is made out of stainless steel. Don’t go by looks alone, as a cheaper material, such as aluminum, can look similar to stainless steel.
Outdoor sinks can also be acrylic or quartz (stone). Acrylic is cheap and can easily be damaged, so if you’re looking to cut costs/corners, you can choose this material, but you likely have problems. Quartz is a stone sink and is resistant to heat, scratches, cracks, and stains and would suffice as an outdoor kitchen sink.
The material of the outdoor kitchen sink faucet is just as important as the sink itself because the faucet will be in the elements as well. To withstand the elements, the faucet will have to be made of a material that can resist cracks, corrosion, and stains.
Like the kitchen sink, the best material for the job is stainless steel, but you will need to make sure the faucet is, in fact, stainless steel and not faux stainless steel. The best stainless steel for the job is 304-grade stainless steel, as this grade of stainless steel will be resistant to corrosion, erosion, and stains.
The Shape, Size, and Style of the Sink and Faucet
There is a lot we are going to cover in this section because each of these components must be carefully considered when buying an outdoor kitchen sink and faucet.
First, let’s talk about the shape, size, and style of the sink itself. Your outdoor sink can be a single-basin or double-basin. Single-basin is also known as a single bowl. This means the bowl of the sink is one big bowl with no divider in between.
A double-basin sink is also known as a double bowl, which means the sink has two bowls that are separated by a divider in between. Single-basin sinks are typically not as wide as double-basin sinks, so if you are limited on space and countertop surface area, you may need to consider a single-basin sink; however, if you are considering a farm sink, the width of this style of single-basin sink will not be smaller than a standard double-basin sink.
This is because the farmhouse sink is built around the idea that you will have a large, deep sink bowl equivalent to the sink bowl of a double-basin sink. So think about the maximum width the sink should have so you can decide what size sink you should choose.
Another style of sink to consider is a bar sink. Bar sinks are extremely basic, usually single-basin, and can be round, square, or rectangle. Bar sinks are ideal for outdoor kitchens because of their functionality and small size.
Now, let’s talk about the faucet.
As we mentioned in the introduction, you will need to decide if you want hot and cold water connections or just cold water. This will determine the style of faucet you will be able to have in your outdoor kitchen sink. Remember that the faucet will need to be stainless steel to be the most durable for the outdoors.
The spout of the faucet will likely be stationary, swivel, or pull-down. A stationary faucet is a faucet that stays fixed in one place. A swivel faucet is designed to move from side to side, which is ideal for double-basin sinks. A pull-down faucet will have a spout that can detach from the faucet. This is ideal if you want your outdoor sink to have a sprayer, but you don’t want to have to install additional hoses to your outdoor sink.
So think about the function and size of your sink so that you can decide which faucet is right for you. For example, if you plan on having a bar sink with a single bowl, you likely won’t need a swivel faucet. This means you may be able to save money by purchasing a stainless steel fixed faucet. However, if you will have a double-basin sink or a large farmhouse sink, you will likely want to choose a swivel faucet with a pull-down spout so that you can control the water to reach all the areas in the sink.
Your outdoor kitchen is not complete without an outdoor sink. With a little plumbing and a few decisions, your outdoor kitchen can have a fully functioning sink for you to use during any outdoor dinner party or barbeque.
Just make sure you clean your sink regularly as the outdoor elements can cause the sink and faucet to appear dirty more quickly than indoor sinks. For stainless steel sinks and faucets, use a quality stainless steel cleaner and a soft cloth to keep the sink looking like new.