TIPS FOR CHOOSING A KITCHEN FAUCET YOU NEED TO KNOW BEFORE YOU BUY
CHOOSING A KITCHEN FAUCET
Know how many holes you have. You may need a deck plate to cover any existing or if you only have one, you may need to drill into your countertop. It’s easier to go with less than more.
Keep the finish of your hardware in mind
I personally don’t believe there are any hard and fast rules when it comes to home design but, personally, I prefer my kitchen faucet to match the finish of my kitchen pulls and handles. It’s easy on the eyes and makes the decor aesthetically appealing.
When it comes to choosing a kitchen faucet, the more spray options the better. I don’t want a trickle, I also want a jet steam so I easily clean stuck on food.
Most faucets are in front of a window, but if yours is below cabinets – take some measurements before you buy
This is a feature that I missed the first few times I was choosing kitchen faucets. Take into consideration the size of your sink (my old sink was a large one, and I couldn’t stretch the hose enough to clean the bottom corner), if there are any plants nearby you would like to easily water, or if you have coffee maker next to the sink to easily fill (I can’t be the only one who gets annoyed when I have to take the reservoir out of my Keurig each time).
Tips for Selecting a Kitchen Faucet
Height and Reach
Kitchen faucets are available in a variety of heights and reaches. You want to choose a faucet that offers the best combination for your space. If you have large cabinets over your sink, you want to make sure that the height of the faucet doesn’t make the space look overcrowded.
Kitchen Faucet Style
You need to choose a style before you start shopping for a new faucet. Take a few minutes to look around your kitchen and gauge your current style. There are some styles that you mix and match together and others that look awkward together. For example, you can add a modern shape and style faucet to your traditional kitchen, but it would look odd if your style is rustic farmhouse.
You already know that you want a sprayer to reach the gunk that lurks in the corner of your sink, but there are so many kinds. You can choose between a side sprayer and one that pulls out from the faucet. The central sprayer is easier to use and helps keep your sink area looking tidy and efficient.
Number of Handles
Most faucets come with either one or two handles. With two handles, you use one to turn on and control the flow of water while the other handle provides hot or cold water. If you choose a faucet with only one handle, water flow and temperature are controlled with a single handle, making it very convenient in a kitchen.
Number of Holes
Most sinks come with pre-drilled holes in them. There are typically two or three holes, and if your new faucet comes with fewer pieces to fill those holes than your previous faucet, then the holes need to be covered. Many faucets come with bridge pieces to cover a hole, but it’s a good idea to check the packaging if you’re going to need a cover to ensure it’s in there. For example, your old faucet had a side sprayer while your new one has a pull-down sprayer. The hole for the side sprayer is now empty.
How to Buy a New Kitchen Faucet
Start With the Sink’s Faucet Holes
There are many different kitchen faucet and sink designs available, but they’re not always compatible. Start by taking a look at your kitchen sink to determine how many pre-drilled faucet mounting holes are available. This applies if you’re installing a new faucet in an existing sink or buying a completely new faucet and sink.
Check the Water Lines
Make sure the new kitchen faucet you want is compatible with the water supply lines. Look under your sink towards the bottom of the cabinet and note the size of the existing water line and the shutoff valves. Here are a few guidelines to use when checking your water lines and valve
Consider the Finish
Even something as seemingly small as the finish of a plumbing fixture can make or break the aesthetics of your kitchen. There are a few rules of thumb. The kitchen faucet should match the finish of other sink accessories, such as the tiny dishwasher air gap, built-in soap dispenser, and sink-hole covers for unused holes. A faucet that has a shiny chrome finish will look out of place if the rest of the fixtures have a matte brushed nickel finish, for example.
How to Choose Your Kitchen Sink Faucet
Measuring For Kitchen Faucet Size and Reach
It’s important to check every aspect of the size of your faucet before you order. First, you need to address size as it relates to functionality. Second, to look balanced, your faucet should be in proportion to the sink. A large faucet would visually overpower a small prep sink, while a small faucet might look odd in a large sink and countertop area.
You may find height expressed as deck to top of faucet and/or deck to aerator. Make certain you are choosing a faucet with adequate height to accommodate the items you’ll be washing or filling. The higher the spout, the easier it is to fit tall pots under it for filling or cleaning. If you have a shelf above your sink or a wide window ledge, a tall faucet may not fit.
This important (and often overlooked!) measurement refers to the horizontal distance from the faucet spout to its point of connection with the sink or countertop. In other words, how far the faucet extends into the sink. This measurement determines how large an arc your faucet can cover within the sink basin. This aspect of your faucet also needs to be coordinated with your sink size so the water stream does not hit too far back or forward within the basin.
Clearance to backsplash
Let’s say you fall in love with a faucet whose single handle controls temperature by rotating back. You bring it home and install it, and it looks fabulous. Then you turn it on…and find out that the handle hits your backsplash before it’s fully extended. Check the product specifications to see if there is a minimum recommended clearance to backsplash. Make sure the space between your backsplash and the handle allows for the recommended measurement, or select a faucet whose handle(s) have only forward motion to operate.
When you shop kitchen faucets you will see terms like “8-inch center spread”. This refers to the distance from the center of one hole to the center of the farthest hole on the other side. Some widespread kitchen faucets come with flexible water line hoses that allow for some variance in spread.
Faucet Buying Guide
Faucet Findings & Shopping Tips
In the graphic below we highlight single-handle pullout faucets, a very popular style that combines a spray head and spout for convenience and flexibility. But our findings are applicable to other faucet styles too. Here’s what else to consider when shopping for a new faucet.
Match the Faucet With the Number of Mounting Holes
Most sinks come with mounting holes pre-drilled for faucets and accessories such as side sprays or soap dispensers. If you’re keeping your original sink, you’ll need to match what you have or get a base plate to cover any extra holes. The base plate sold with your new faucet can be used to cover holes in your countertop, but don’t buy a faucet that requires more sink holes than your sink has; it’s not a good idea to try to drill additional holes in an existing sink or countertop.
Spout Styles and Shapes
Straight spout faucets are compact and often inexpensive, but you might need to move the faucet to fit a big pot under it. Gooseneck models have higher clearances, but can cause splashing if your sink is shallow. Whatever style you pick, make sure the faucet head swings enough to reach the entire sink, especially if you have a wide or double bowl sink. Also keep the faucet proportional; a large sink can look odd with a small faucet.
Installation and Repair
Replacing a faucet and a sink at the same time is easier because the faucet can be installed in the sink, or in the countertop before the sink is put in place. Fittings that can be tightened with a screwdriver also streamline installation. Long water-supply hoses allow you to make connections lower in the sink cabinet where tools are easier to use. Though most faucets are guaranteed not to leak, if yours does, the manufacturer will give you only the replacement part—it’s up to you to install it.