The Sinks Sense: Finding the Right Size Sink for Your St. Louis Kitchen

Written by Brittany Allen

mcdermott remodeling sizing up your sinksDoes size really matter? When it comes to your kitchen sink, the answer is yes, it does. Your sink sees plenty of action on the daily, so you need a good-sized sink that can rise to the occasion. 

With all the dishwashing that goes on in your household, filling and refilling the sink with water is a major pain and can be a real bill-killer. Fortunately, with a well-chosen sink, you can get the job done right the first time.

What Size Sink Do You Need?

So how do you know which sink is the right size for you and your family? Well, it comes down to a few different factors: preference, available space, budget, and utility. Read on to find out more about each, and how it can affect your final decision.

Before we get into it, though, let’s just clarify some of the dimensions we’ll be discussing.

  • Length: The measurement of the sink from one side to the other
  • Width: The measurement between the front and back of the sink
  • Depth: How deep the basin is

Basin Types

mcdermott remodeling sizing up your sinks

When choosing a sink, you’ll also have to think about the mounting installation. This will also factor into the size you ultimately select because different units require different amounts of space. Let’s talk about the two most basic kinds of sink installation, and how they compare.

Overmount

mcdermott remodeling sizing up your sinks

The overmount sink, also called the ‘self-rimming’ or ‘drop-in’ sink, is a popular unit because of its simple installation and affordable price tag. As the name might suggest, the overmount sink slides into a cutout and is then caulked around the rim that overlaps the countertop. However, the overmount has recently gone out of style somewhat. Because of its bulky appearance, it can’t really stand up to the ultra-sleek undermount kind. Plus, the lip that overhangs the counter takes up more counter real estate than its undermounted cousin, making them a better fit for larger kitchens.

Undermount

mcdermott remodeling sizing up your sinks

The undermount sink is installed from below and lies flush with the countertop, giving the unit a beautiful, seamless finish that many homeowners love. Because it doesn’t have a lip for crumbs and grime to get caught under, the undermount is easy to maintain, too. Adding to the appeal, this sink takes up less counter space because of its streamlined installation, making it perfect for petite kitchens. Depending on preference, an undermount sink can show some of the sink’s rim—called a ‘reveal’ style—or cover the edge completely, called the ‘overhang’ style. The installation process is more invasive than the overmount, and both the unit and the labor to mount it can make it more expensive. However, the undermount is beloved for its stylish aesthetic, neat lines, and cleanliness.

If you choose an overmount sink, it will cover a larger surface area, but the basin will be smaller than if you choose an undermount sink. Keep that in mind when selecting the dimensions.

The Right Fit

Now, it’s time to think about the size of the unit itself. The appropriate choice very much depends on your available cabinet space, as well as the installation method. If you have a pre-cut hole in your countertop, you’ll want to choose a unit of the same size or larger. It is much easier to make the cutout bigger than smaller, as you can imagine. 

It’s quite simple to measure how much space will be needed in your countertop for an overmount sink. The unit comes prefabricated, so just take the dimensions before you buy. It’s a little trickier to measure for the installation of an undermount sink, but still totally doable.

A good rule of thumb for measuring your cabinetry and countertop for an undermount is as follows: 

Take the dimensions (length and width) in inches of the cabinet base where you plan to install your sink. Then subtract three from each number. The numbers that you’re left with are the absolute largest dimensions that your undermount sink should be. This is because the undermount sink has a 1.5-inch lip on each side to help it adhere to the underside of the counter, so be sure to leave room for this space in your calculation.

If you’re left feeling a bit bamboozled by your options, we can help. For industry insight, crystal-clear communication, and unsinkable quality installations in St. Louis, look no further than J.T. McDermott Remodeling. With almost three decades of experience and a passion for home improvement, we simply can’t be beaten. Reach out today, and let’s get started. 

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