The range of kitchen faucets is so wide that the choice of a particular model is a real challenge, especially for those who are just starting their renovation work. Upright or wall-mounted, single or double handle, with swivel or pull-out spout? Wondering what kind of kitchen faucet to buy? The following article will help you choose the right faucet for your kitchen.
Upright or wall-mounted faucet?
The first factor you should consider when choosing a kitchen faucet is the type of installation. At the water installation stage, you should decide how to install the faucet – directly in the sink or wall.
A standing faucet
A standing faucet requires the hot and cold water connections to be properly routed so that they are under the sink. You will connect the faucet to these using the flexible connecting hoses included in the kit. The sink or worktop in which the standing tap is to be installed must also have a properly prepared opening. Upright kitchen faucets, also known as pillar faucets, are nowadays the most popular choice due to their easy and quick installation and a wide range of available models. They are functional and fit into any kitchen.
Wall-mounted kitchen faucet
The wall-mounted kitchen faucet is connected directly to the installation without the use of connecting hoses. An important issue is the distance between hot and cold water connections, which in the case of wall mounting should be 15 cm. Classic wall-mounted faucets are becoming less and less common in new buildings, but are often used in renovations of old kitchens, where the use of a standing faucet would require rework of the water system. Their advantage is also the fact that there is no need to create special holes in the sink.
Twin-handle vs. single-handle faucet
Another issue that determines the comfort of using a kitchen faucet is how to control it.
Classic two-handle faucets are the least functional solution – they require both hands to set the right temperature and pressure, which is often cumbersome in the case of kitchen work. In addition, the use of tap faucets is less economical, as regulating the water stream takes more time than with single-handed faucets, which means that some water is simply wasted. The most optimal choice for the kitchen is the single lever faucet.
The single lever faucet allows you to conveniently control the water jet with just one hand, which is very practical, for example, if you have dirty hands and do not want to completely dirty the handles. A slight upward movement is all it takes to turn the water around. A single lever faucet also allows you to adjust the water temperature and pressure more quickly, saving you money. Remember, too, that a single lever faucet is easier to clean – the lever is usually smooth because you don’t have to twist it, so dirt doesn’t stick to it as easily as it does to cocks.
The most important spout
A key element affecting the practicality of a kitchen faucet is the type of spout. It is important that it has a long-range, which makes it possible to work comfortably in two sink compartments. The height of the spout is also not insignificant – the higher the height, the better the freedom of movement in the washing area, which is necessary when washing tall pots or large metal sheets or filling bottles with water. However, a high spout will not work in combination with a shallow sink chamber, as water will become spilled. The faucet spout can be rotatable, removable and movable, taking into account the range of movement. How do they differ?
The ergonomic swivel spout
The ergonomic swivel spout ensures optimal use of the space around the faucet. The range of maneuvering of such a spout depends on the angle of its rotation, which can be up to 360°. This guarantees easy access to the sink, which is important when you want to fill a large pot or bucket with water by placing it directly in the sink chamber. A faucet with a pull-out spout additionally increases the range of the faucet and makes everyday activities as easy as possible. Thanks to the ability to completely remove the spout from the faucet and control it in any way, it provides precise water jet control, which significantly improves dishwashing or vegetable rinsing. Since such a faucet usually comes complete with a shower hose, the access to water is no longer limited to the sink area – thanks to the pull-out spout you can fill with water even containers standing on the floor without having to lift them or thoroughly wash the tiles over the sink.
Movable spouts are most often used in professional or semi-professional batteries. They are equipped with a practical, flexible spring, which after unfolding automatically folds to the original position and does not require manual placement in the original place. For this reason, faucets with such a spout are most often used in catering outlets, where the work on the sink must be done quickly and precisely. Nowadays, however, many people decide to buy such a faucet also at home because of the high comfort and freedom of movement that it provides during kitchen work.
Have you planned your sink in a cabinet under the window and are looking for a way to enable comfortable use of the kitchen faucet as well as convenient opening and closing of the window in the room? In such a situation, the optimal solution is to buy a window faucet, which can be pulled out or lowered. It is easy to use and very functional when it comes to the development of the space under the window. The pull-out faucet should be removed vertically and put aside, while the pull-out faucet should be pushed into a worktop or sink. The under-window faucet can be used with a swivel or pull-out spout.
Sink taps, like all kitchen equipment, are available in many different finishes. The most important selection criterion is the color matching of the faucet and sinks so that they form a harmonious whole. For sinks and steel chambers, chrome-plated or stainless steel, polished or matt taps are the best choices. Granite and ceramic sinks form a harmonious duo with faucets coated with special coatings imitating granite and ceramics. When matching the faucet to the sink, it is also worth noting the shape and size of both elements. Square/rectangular sinks integrate well with faucets of geometric shapes, with visible angles, maintained, e.g. in a cubist style. On the other hand, sink with rounded edges, on corners or in a chamber, as well as round sinks and suspended chambers look good with taps with a high arc-shaped spout.
What else is worth remembering?
Finally, a few remarks on important aspects that determine the long-term and trouble-free operation of a kitchen faucet.
Type of valve
First of all, before buying a particular model it is good to know what type of valve it is equipped with. It is the “heart” of the whole faucet and has the greatest impact on the comfort of use and durability of the product. The most durable are ceramic valves, which guarantee the smooth operation of the faucet and easy adjustment of the water jet. They ensure failure-free operation even for a dozen or so years. Secondly, an economic faucet should be equipped with a water aerator, which undetectably allows for significant water savings. It is also worth paying a lot of attention to keeping kitchen fittings clean. Systematic removal of stains from the stone is the basis, which ensures impeccable appearance and long-lasting gloss of the faucet. Many manufacturers also offer batteries coated with a special coating, such as chrome, which prevents the adhesion of dirt and facilitates daily care.
A kitchen faucet is an essential part of any kitchen. Together with the sink, it creates a practical water zone that you use every day to prepare meals and wash dishes.