Redoing your laundry room gives you a chance to make it look like an actual part of the living space in your home, rather than a drab, utilitarian annex. Adding neat, tidy and stylish equipment and fixtures adds to the effect.
A laundry tub made of soapstone, for example, will look less depressing than a fiberglass or plastic basin. However, the weight of soapstone will require you to make some additional changes, especially if you are going for a larger sink, such as one that has double bowls.
Soapstone is a nonporous material that does not require as much care as granite when used for a countertop or a sink. It absorbs heat rather easily, and while it does not become hot, it does get warm when sunlight hits it.
Soapstone slabs generally weigh about 20 pounds per square foot of material, although that will vary depending on the thickness of the stone.
Laundry sinks don’t usually rest on cabinets as part of a countertop assembly the way most kitchen sinks do. These often attach directly to the wall or have minimal support underneath.
A soapstone laundry sink would definitely need a solid base, however, to support the weight of the stone. Without proper support, the sink could tear out the drywall and bend the pipes.
The weight of the sink must be evenly distributed. According to the Vermont Soapstone Company, the support should hold at least two opposite sides.
In other words, instead of a central pedestal, use a support that holds the front and back of the sink, or both sides.
Weight of Double Sink
Using a double sink in the laundry room will require more materials for supporting the sink, as double-basin soapstone sinks aren’t just single basins with a central divider. These sinks are wider, with the additional material adding more weight.
For example, the Green Mountain Soapstone Corporation lists the weight of its single-bowl kitchen sinks, which are smaller than laundry tubs, at between 200 and 250 pounds. Its double-bowl sink weighs 335 pounds.
An exact weight can't be determined unless you know how much soapstone the sink uses. However, considering that laundry sinks are much bigger than kitchen sinks because they are meant for rinsing larger items of clothing instead of smaller dishes, the weight of a double-bowl laundry tub will be quite high.
Make sure that the type of soapstone used for the sink is architectural soapstone, or steatite. Soapstone is also available in a softer form, called artistic soapstone, and while you could use this as a sink material, it scratches more easily.
Fixing the scratches with mineral oil can become burdensome over time.