Here is an in-depth guide on How to Choose the Right Kitchen Sink Size for your needs.
Choosing the right sized kitchen sink is an important decision that requires careful consideration of your space, lifestyle and design preferences. The size of your sink impacts the functionality and look of your kitchen. This guide will walk you through the key factors to consider when selecting a kitchen sink size so you can make the best choice for your home.
Measure Your Existing Space
The first step is to take measurements of the existing sink base cabinet space. This will determine the maximum dimensions a new sink can fit. Be sure to measure:
- Width of the sink base cabinet. Standard widths are 30”, 33”, 36”.
- Depth from the wall to the front of the cabinet. Standard depth is 21-24”.
- Existing sink hole opening dimensions.
This will give you the basic footprint for what sink sizes can fit in your current kitchen layout.
Consider Your Kitchen Work Style
Think about how your current kitchen is used and identify your needs:
- Smaller sink sizes around 22” wide work well for minimal washing. Best for a kitchen with simple meals, minimal baking or food prep.
- Medium sinks around 30” wide offer a good washing workspace while still fitting in most cabinets.
- Large sinks 36” or larger create an ample washing area great for busy cooks and bakers.
You’ll also want to factor in the size of your dishes – larger sinks fit bigger pots and pans.
Choose Your Sink Installation Type
Sink installation types include:
- Top mount sinks drop in from above. They have a visible rim around the countertop cutout. Offer more flexibility for sink sizing.
- Undermount sinks attach below to a pre-cut countertop opening. Provide a seamless look but less flexibility for sink dimensions. The countertop opening must match sink size.
Undermount has a streamlined look but less flexibility to adjust sink dimensions if needed.
Select Your Ideal Sink Depth
Standard kitchen sink depths are:
- Shallow: 5”-6” deep. Best for hand rinsing as they have less washing workspace.
- Medium: 7”-9” deep. Most popular depth that fits washing needs without excessive splashing.
- Deep: 10”+ deep. Extra depth for filling pots and stacking dishes. Potential for more splashing.
The sink depth impacts functionality and splashing. Select based on your needs.
Choose the Number of Basins
Kitchen sinks come in single, double or triple basin configurations:
- Single basin sinks offer one large, continuous sink bowl. Provides maximum washing space. Best for busy cooks.
- Double basin sinks have two equal-sized bowls split side-by-side or front-to-back. Allow for separating washing tasks. Popular choice.
- Triple basin sinks feature three smaller bowls. Excellent for heavy prep work and keeping tasks separated.
Think about your meal prep and washing needs to determine if single, double or triple bowls suit you best.
Consider Drainboard Space
Having room around the sink for drainboards or drying dishes is key.
- For top mount sinks, make sure to allow at least 2” of countertop space from the sink edge for drainboards.
- For undermount sinks with no countertop lip, allow more space such as 12-16” for roll-out drying racks next to the sink.
Adequate drainboard space prevents water from collecting on the counter.
How to Choose the Right Kitchen Sink Size
When selecting your new kitchen sink size, it’s important to balance the existing cabinet size, your workflow needs and style preferences. Here are some common kitchen sink size options to consider:
- Width: 18”-22”
- Depth: 5”-7”
- Best for light washing tasks and small kitchens. Allows more countertop workspace.
- Width: 25”-30”
- Depth: 7”-10”
- Popular standard size that fits most kitchens. Room for washing dishes and some food prep.
- Width: 33”-36”
- Depth: 7”-10”
- Provides ample room for washing large pots and baking sheets with deep sinks.
Extra Large Sink
- Width: 40”+
- Depth: 10”+
- Extra wide single or double basin sink. Offers maximum washing space for busy cooks.
Tips for Measuring Your Kitchen Sink
Follow these tips for measuring an existing kitchen sink accurately:
- Measure from the backsplash or wall to the front of the sink edge.
- For double basin sinks, measure the overall width including both bowls.
- Note the widths of each basin if replacing a double bowl.
- Measure sink depth from underside of sink to top of the rim.
- Confirm your cabinet opening width and depth.
Accurate sink measurements ensure your new sink will fit properly.
Choosing the Right Kitchen Sink Material
Kitchen sinks come in a variety of materials like stainless steel, enamel, porcelain, composite granite, and more. Each has their own pros and cons:
- Stainless steel – Most popular, durable, scratch-resistant, budget-friendly. Can be noisy.
- Enamel over cast iron – Glossy finish, retains heat, prone to chipping.
- Porcelain – Glossy, decorative, may chip over time.
- Composite granite – Durable, heat/scratch-resistant, no seams. Higher cost.
Select the sink material that best matches your budget, aesthetics and durability needs.
Complementary Kitchen Faucet Selection
When selecting a new kitchen faucet, make sure to choose the right faucet mount to match your sink:
- For top mount sinks, look for faucets designed for surface mounting.
- For undermount sinks, find faucets made for through-counter installation.
Also consider the faucet handle style, finish, flow rate, and special features to perfectly complement your new sink.
The kitchen sink is a major focal point so it’s important to get the size right. Carefully measure your existing space, evaluate your needs and lifestyle, and select the ideal sink dimensions and configuration for your kitchen. Balancing practicality and visual appeal will ensure you have a sink perfect for food prep, washing, and designing a beautiful, useful kitchen.
Common FAQs about Choosing a Kitchen Sink Size
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about selecting the right kitchen sink size:
What is the most common kitchen sink size?
The most popular kitchen sink size is 30-33 inches wide by 20-22 inches front-to-back. This medium size typically fits well in standard sink base cabinets and provides adequate washing space for most kitchens.
How big of a kitchen sink do I need?
Kitchen sink sizes range from compact 18 inch small sinks up to large 40+ inch extra-wide sinks. Consider your kitchen workflow, dishes, cookware size and existing cabinet space to choose the right sink size for your needs. If you cook large meals and bake often, go for a larger sink.
What kitchen sink size is too big?
An oversized sink can disrupt the kitchen work triangle, look awkward if cabinet space is limited, and allow more splashing. Avoid going more than 3 inches wider or deeper than your existing hole opening to keep the sink in proportion. Extremely large sinks over 40 inches wide are only recommended for spacious kitchens.
What is the standard kitchen sink depth?
The most common kitchen sink depths are between 7 and 10 inches. Standard medium depth sinks around 8 inches deep allow comfortable washing without excessive splashing. Shallow 5-6 inch sinks and deep 10 inch+ sinks are options for specialized needs.
Should I get a single or double sink?
The choice between a single vs double sink comes down to personal preference and kitchen workflow. Double basin sinks allow multitasking and separating dirty dishes from clean. Single sinks maximize full sink volume for filling stockpots and baking sheets. Assess your needs to pick single or double.
How much countertop should be around a kitchen sink?
Allow at least 2 inches of countertop around a top mount sink. For an undermount sink with no lip, plan for 10-16 inches of countertop beside the sink basin for a drainboard and drying area. Adequate counter space prevents water pooling.
Determining the ideal kitchen sink size and configuration takes careful consideration of your current space, how you use your kitchen, and visual appeal. Measure your existing base cabinetry, think about your needs, and use the tips provided to select the perfect kitchen sink size that strikes the right balance of practical washing workspace and attractive focal point.