How Does a Kitchen Sink and Faucet Work?

Dale Devries

Kitchen sinks come in a wide variety of types, styles and materials. The single-bowl sink is great if you wash a lot of big pots. The double-bowl sink makes it a breeze to wash dishes or do any multi-tasking in the kitchen.

How Does a Kitchen Sink and Faucet Work?

Types of Kitchen Sinks and How They Work

The triple-bowl has a small center bowl, great for washing vegetables or hooking up to the garbage disposal. Then you have the apron sinks in single or double bowls for that farmhouse look in a modern kitchen. Apron sinks, sometimes called farm sinks, have an exposed front panel that sometimes have beautiful murals painted on them in many themes.

The most popular sink materials are come in porcelain, stainless steel and solid surface. More expensive and elegant sinks are found in various stones, copper and other metals. Each comes in various thicknesses and quality and some come in many different colors.

To make things even harder for you there are different ways of mounting the sinks too. The self-rimming sink sits on top of the counter with a rim attached to the sink. The rimless sink attaches to rim under the edge of the counter. This is easier to take care of but hard to install. The undermounts rim goes under the counter making it easier to keep clean with less likelihood of leaking around the rim. The solid surface sink is fused to the counter top giving it an almost seamless surface.

You can see why making a decision on what sink you want in your kitchen can take some time. A sink is designed to be nothing more than a bowl that holds water when you block the drain or a place to enable you to rinse, fill or dump liquids when the drain is open. Without faucets the sink cannot function for what it was designed to do.

Types of Faucets

There are four common types of faucets which include the ball, disc, cartridge and compression. They are as follows: • The ball faucet was the first of the washerless faucets. You can tell a ball faucet because it has a single handle that sits on top of a ball right over the faucet spout. • The disc faucets have a wide, normally round body with a single lever. These are newest in faucet technology. • The cartridge faucet may look exactly like a compression faucet but the feeling when turning it on or off is different. You can get them in single levers or double knobs. • Compression faucets are the oldest type of faucets in the bunch and they are also the faucet that will need the most repair. However this type is also the least expensive.

How the Faucets Work

Each faucet works a little differently: • Ball faucets mixe the temperature and flow of the water through slots in the internal ball. This type of faucet leaks more than other washerless faucets because it has more parts. • Disc faucets have two ceramic discs housed in a wide cartridge that control flow and mix temperature. These faucets are a higher quality than the ball faucets and don't need repair often. • Inside the cartridge faucet there is a stem that moves up and down to regulate the flow. In the single handle you would push it back and forth for flow and side to side for temperature. • Compression faucets work by having a stem that looks like a screw go through a washer and as the knob is turned it comes up allowing the water flow or down closing off the water flow. Compression faucets will always have separate hot and cold knobs.

Working Together

An indoor faucet is not much good if there isn't a sink to catch the water and a sink isn't much good without the faucets to get the water from. Together they give you the ability to use and hold water in your kitchen. This enables you to wash the dishes, rinse the vegetables and wet wash rags to wash counters and stoves down. Some things just work better together and the kitchen sink and faucet are a great example.