Learn about all the options available for kitchen sinks.

It is so much more than a mere rectangular bowl in the middle of your countertop. Your kitchen sink is the only product used for food prep and cleanup. I'm Lacey Howard. We've done homework on every other product in the kitchen. Now for the kitchen sink. Begin the process of selecting a new sink by assessing your kitchen. If you're planning to replace the sink, pay attention to existing cutouts in your countertop. That more than anything will guide your choices. If you're planning a more extensive remodel, you can move the sink to any location with plumbing and choose any size basin you desire. Remember you may be able to go with a larger basin, but you can't go smaller unless you replace the countertop. If you're planning your kitchen from scratch, place the sink in a designated cleanup zone with ample countertop on either side. The other corners of the kitchen work triangle, your range and refrigerator should be conveniently located in relation to the sink. A 1-, 2-, or even 3-basin rectangular sink is a great starting point, but if you have this base, you can choose to include a smaller square bar or prep sink as long, shallow vegetable sink or a corner sink. Your sink must be extremely durable and stain resistant to put up with daily use. Popular materials for sinks includes stainless steel, enameled steel or cast iron, acrylic composite and solid surfacing, stone and copper. Whatever material you choose, look for a sink that features that features a flat basin bottom which lets glasses rest solidly. Deep rimmed edges and lowered basin dividers for less overflow, and undercoating to reduce noise, and drain holes placed at the back of the basin. This gives you more room for storage in the cabinet below. To keep your sink in its place, it must be securely mounted and sealed so no water seeps through. When it comes to mounting, you have 3 options. A drop in or self-rimming sink has a raised lip that rests on the countertop and helps support the sink. An undermount or rimless sink is recess below tile stone or solids everything countertops. To save money you can install a drop in sink yourself, but leave the other options for the professional. Look for calendars for rinsing fruit and vegetables; cutting boards for chopping food right over the garbage disposal; drainboards and racks for air drying dishes; mini troughs that holds sink essentials; and although they are not too glamorous, food waste disposers are essential tools. Look for a model that cuts down on noise while it chops and whisks away your scraps. Not sure what size of sink you need? The national kitchen and bath association recommends a 22 to 24 inch single bowl model for a small kitchen. If your kitchen is larger than 150 square feet, you could do a double or triple bowl model. You can even add a second sink for multitasking.