The best fireclay sink
The country-style kitchen has been popular in America for decades, and the trend doesn't seem to be waning. A fireclay sink is often the centerpiece of such a kitchen. These sinks have a body made of molded ceramic, and their glossy non-porous finish is durable and resistant to a variety of stains. For a rustic-looking, durable kitchen fixture, consider choosing a fireclay sink.
The following buying guide can help you choose the right sink for your needs. We also included a few reviews of some favorites, like our top pick, the Rohl White Shaws Original Single-Bowl Fireclay Kitchen Sink. Its original Shaws' blue logo will give your kitchen the perfect amount of classic country cachet.
Considerations when choosing fireclay sinks
Drain position is important, regardless of the type of fireclay sink you choose. A drain can either be offset to the rear, in a corner, offset to one side, or centered. The most popular position is in the center of the sink.
Garbage disposal compatibility
Although most fireclay sinks are garbage disposal-compatible, a few may not be designed with a disposal in mind. If this is the case for your chosen sink, then you might need to add an external flange to make it so.
The width of your sink is the most important factor in making sure that you have a good fit. Although sink dimensions vary, most fireclay sinks have a width of 30 inches. That being said, some smaller models measure 24 inches and larger ones can reach 36 inches. Choose the size you want in conjunction with your current or preferred cabinet.
The most common depth for a fireclay sink is between eight and 10 inches. Most fireclay sinks are farmhouse style, which means they have an apron or front panel that sticks out slightly from the cabinets. The apron on fireclay sinks is most often the same depth as the interior of the sink. Keep in mind, that reaching into a deep sink can sometimes be uncomfortable or awkward for more diminutive users.
Fireclay sinks don't come in a wide variety of colors, though you do have some choices. The most common colors are white, cream (also known as biscuit), black, and though less common, grey or blue.
Dual basin design
You can find both single and dual basin design fireclay sinks with relative ease. Think about your regular sink usage habits when deciding between a single or dual basin design.
Metal grid strainer
Removable metal grid strainers are becoming more common when you purchase a fireclay sink. These strainers sit atop the drain and capture small food particles and other items, so they don't go down the drain and clog up your sink.
A few fireclay sinks incorporate an interior rim or lip that can hold small kitchen accessories like a floating dish drainer or a cutting board, parallel to the bottom of the sink.
A slanted interior fireclay sink uses gravity to push the water toward the drain. This helps avoid a buildup of stagnant water in any part of the sink.
The apron of your fireclay sink can be a focal point of your kitchen if you want it to be. Some sinks have aprons that are bowed or flourished. Others have sculpted panels and grooves. A few models even include floral or geometric patterns along the front.
Many fireclay sinks are reversible, meaning that the front and back of the sink are interchangeable. This allows you to install the drain either on the left or the right, depending on your preference and/or plumbing needs.
For a little added flair, you can get a fireclay sink with the manufacturer's logo stamped on the apron or the inside of the bowl. This design feature is a throwback to the traditional farmhouse sink designs of the past.
Fireclay sinks cost between $300 and $1,300. For $300, you can get a 24-inch white or biscuit fireclay sink. If you spend $500, you'll find mostly 30-inch single basin options, a few of which may have curved apron designs. A $1,000 fireclay sink is either a single or dual basin model, comes in a variety of different colors, and has a number of additional design features such as curves and colored markings.
Q. Are farmhouse sinks the only ones made from fireclay?
A. No, they aren't. Although farmhouse kitchen sinks are the most popular style of fireclay sink, they are not the only style. There are all different shapes and sizes of fireclay sinks, and some are even designed for bathrooms.
Q. Is undermount the only style of fireclay sink available?
A. No. In addition to undermount, fireclay sinks are also available in drop-in and semi-flush mounting styles. There's an option for you, no matter what your needs are.
Fireclay sinks we recommend
Best of the best: Rohl White Shaws Original Single-Bowl Fireclay Kitchen Sink
Our take: It's hard to beat the original, and that goes for this classic sink from the original English farmhouse sink maker.
What we like: At 173 pounds, this is a solid sink that can take some punishment.
What we dislike: Expensive, but well worth the price when you consider its durability.
Best bang for your buck: Sutton Finefixtures 30" Fireclay Sink
Our take: A classic country feel at a price that won't break the bank.
What we like: The glossy finish is easy to clean.
What we dislike: Some users had problems with shipping.
Our take: Classic sink with a few special extras.
What we like: Very durable. Features a metal grid strainer and excellent scratch-resistance.
What we dislike: A few users found the strainer missing when the sink arrived.
Adam Reeder is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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