The Ultimate Bathroom Sink Buying Guide
The Ultimate Bathroom Sink Buying Guide
Table of Contents
- The Ultimate Bathroom Sink Buying Guide
- An Introduction To Bathroom Sinks
- Bathroom Sinks Explained
- The Difference Between A Basin And A Sink
- Basin Materials
- Basin Sizes
- Bathroom Or Cloakroom Basin
- Basin Colour
- Basin With A Tap Hole Or Basin With No Tap Hole
- Should I Choose A Slotted Waste Plug Or Unslotted Waste Plug?
- Concealed Waste Or Unconcealed Waste
- Basin Mounting Style
- Basin Shapes
- Double Basins
- Basins With Vanities
- Basin Prices
- Final Thoughts
An Introduction To Bathroom Sinks
The humble sink is one of the most important fixtures in your house. Sinks provide hydration, hygiene and in some cases, the look of high art. There’s a seemingly infinite variety of sink basins, from round sinks to pedestal sinks, to stone sinks, to double sinks. The staggering variety of choice can be overwhelming, so let’s dive in and breakdown the pros and cons of each type of sink, so you can make an informed decision when kitting out your bathroom.
Bathroom Sinks Explained
Let’s start with a quick explainer, so everyone is on the same page. A bathroom sink, or basin, is a vessel capable of summoning water through a tap and disposing of it through a waste. The main body of the basin holds the water to stop it spilling and can even store still water through the use of a waste plug. Basins are typically used to wash body parts like hands and faces, as well as in cleaning rituals like the brushing of teeth. More often than not, they are also used as a source of drinking water. Every home in the UK must possess at least one and a great many possess at least two.
Now we understand the basics, let’s break down all the different variations.
The Difference Between A Basin And A Sink
You’ve probably seen the words basin and sink used interchangeably and because of that, you’re probably wondering what the difference is, if any.
Well, it’s similar to the old rule of “All thumbs are fingers, but not all fingers are thumbs”.
This is because a basin is specifically a bathroom sink.
Therefore, all basins are sinks, but not all sinks are basins.
You can interchangeably call the sink in your bathroom either a basin or a sink, but you cannot do so for your kitchen sink.
That is simply a sink.
A stone resin basin is made from many broken and reforged stones. To make stone resin, a bounty of stone chippings is acquired and then reformed using resin to make them water resistant. This method of creation allows the basin to take almost any shape seamlessly. The stone resin body is extremely durable, scratch resistant and water resistant. In fact, a well maintained stone resin basin can last a lifetime.
However, due to their excellent strength, stone basins are more expensive than your average ceramic basin.
Stone resin basins are perfect for the person looking to spend a bit more to never have to spend again. If you’ve decided on your forever home, now you can decide on your forever sink with a stone bathroom basin.
Ceramic basins are made from a clay blend that has been shaped and fired. They the classic basin material and water resistant and scratch resistant. A well maintained ceramic sink could easily last you many years, but they are not as innately durable as their stone resin cousins. Interestingly, however, they are typically cheaper. This makes them ideal for someone looking for multiple matching basins and doesn’t want to break the bank.
Acrylic is a form of plastic, which makes acrylic basins extremely light in comparison to other types of sinks. It is also typically the cheapest kind of sink, making it ideal for anyone truly constrained by a budget. However, it is unfortunately not as durable as the other options and much more prone to scratches, stains and discolouration to its material. If you’re looking to save some short term cash, this sink is perfect for you.
Stainless steel sinks are popular in the kitchen, but you don’t often see them in the bathroom. This is because their benefits don’t always outweigh their problems in a bathroom environment. Stainless steel sinks are extremely durable, which is perfect, however they are also extremely loud and not very scratch resistant. This means, if you need to wash your hands late at night, you may wake someone up, and worse if you do so in the dark, you may scratch the sink. These sinks are perfect for anyone looking for a rustic or industrial theme, but other than that it is best they stay in their prime environment, the kitchen.
When it comes to basins, size matters. Being able to get a sink small enough to fit in your cloakroom or a basin big enough to accommodate two people is very important. So, let’s interrogate the different aspects of a basins size so you can plot out the best option for you.
Basin Length & Width
The length of a basin determines it utility. Too big and it can’t fit in a small space, too small and it means only one person can use it at a time. Durovin Bathrooms sells a great variety of basin lengths, including 350mm cloakroom basin, 400mm counter top basins and 1200mm large basins, so whatever space you have to fit your sink into and whoever you need to accommodate, it can all be easily achieved with Durovin Bathrooms.
Deep Or Shallow Basin
The depth of a basin is the height of the usable bowl. The depth determines how much water can be stored in the basin. If you plan to bathe a cat, or similar small pet, in the basin then a deep fill basin is ideal for you. However, if you run a company and have public bathrooms, it is best to have shallow basins. This is because, if someone were to fill a basin, another person could drop their phone or similarly important object into the water.
Bathroom Or Cloakroom Basin
Your basin’s location is important. This is because despite the title of “bathroom sink”, basins can also inhabit another room. The cloakroom. Cloakrooms are substantially smaller than bathrooms but often feature sinks and toilets. Turning an old cupboard or alcove into a cloakroom is a fantastic way of increasing your home’s value and improving your quality of life.
When picking a basin for your cloakroom, you will probably want a micro basin. Micro basins are extremely small, typically around 400mm x 200mm, but able to be even smaller. These basins are designed to be cloakroom basins and to fit into any space. So, keep in mind your location before you pick a sink.
Another important element to keep in mind when choosing your basin, is the aesthetic you are trying to achieve. Certain basin colours fit different aesthetics. For example, a black basin is extremely modern looking, whereas a white basin is extremely classical looking. Do research into the kind of aesthetic you wish to cultivate and use colour theory to determine what colour of sink is best for you.
Basin With A Tap Hole Or Basin With No Tap Hole
Let’s not mince words, this is a crucial decision that cannot be looked over.
Whether to have a tap hole in your sink or not will define what you can do with it. Keep in mind if you drill your own tap hole, this could damage the basin and will almost definitely mean it can’t be refunded. On the other hand, if you have a tap hole in your sink but have wall hung taps, then you end up with an odd and redundant hole in your basin.
On the other hand, if you pick out a beautiful, stylized basin with no tap hole and pick taps that require basin mounting, you have redundant taps. The reason some basins don’t have a tap hole is because this frees up their design to be inventive and stylish. As well as this, by having wall mounted or counter top mounted taps, you can choose the positioning of the tap with much greater customizability than if your only option was the designated tap hole.
So, what is the choice you need to make? Essentially, decide on what taps you would like before finalizing the sink purchase. A basin with a taphole is for taps that mount to the sink, whereas a basin without a taphole is for taps that mount elsewhere, such as to the wall or counter. Please keep this in mind when looking for basins!
Should I Choose A Slotted Waste Plug Or Unslotted Waste Plug?
This choice is also of grave importance.
There are two types of waste plug, slotted wastes and unslotted wastes. Slotted wastes connect to the basins overflow system and prevent the water from reentering it. Unslotted wastes simply prevent leaks. Whether you need a slotted or unslotted waste plug depends solely on whether your basin has an overflow system. If you have an overflow system, you need a slotted waste, whereas if you do not have an overflow system you need an unslotted waste.
Always check whether your sink has an overflow system before purchasing a waste plug!
Concealed Waste Or Unconcealed Waste
Now, this choice is more down to stylistic preferences. A concealed waste plug hides the mechanical nature of the plug and instead makes it look more like the rest of the basin’s body. This look is very minimalist and smart, whereas a visible waste plug is more of a traditional and classic look. It is also worth keeping in mind, a concealed waste plug is harder for people to tamper with if you have a public facing bathroom or kids that like to mess with things.
Basin Mounting Style
Let’s move on to the main body of the basin. What style should we go for? There is a wide range, with a big variety of pros and cons, so let’s explore every avenue.
Freestanding sinks are the most modular basin. This is because they are pedestal basins and most can be connected to the plumbing via the floor, allowing them to be divorced from the wall and placed anywhere. If you are chasing a specific look or need to make use of an odd space, this is perfect.
Wall hung basins save you a lot of space that can free up the floor space in your bathroom and allow for extra fixtures to be installed. They are also extremely accessible, as they have nothing blocking the underside of the basin bowl. However, if you cannot build into the wall to plant the basin frame, then you will have to build the wall out and this can take up even more space than the average sink. So, if you are looking to save space this is the ideal basin for you, but it is imperative you check whether your wall can be built into beforehand.
Naturally, counter top basins sit atop counters. They are designed to be anchored down to a surface and have their piping thread through it. This means the counter completely supports the basins weight and the basin can have a much more liberal design philosophy as the mechanism of support does not have to be considered. If you are looking for an interestingly shaped basin, you are most likely to find it with counter top basins.
Semi-Recessed basins are like counter top basins, except for one key difference. Instead of sitting on top of a surface, semi-recessed basins are built into the surface. This saves space on top of the surface and is a popular sink style for kitchens. If you want maximum shelf space in your bathroom, this is ideal. Plus, if you want your basin to be lower and more accessible, while not having to worry about installing a wall frame, the semi-recessed basin is the perfect solution.
The hybrid basin is a basin that is combined with another fixture or furnishing. This is so they have a combined utility while taking up less space, or can unite to provide a whole new utility. For example, the toilet with an integrated sink is a toilet with a sink on top. This recycles water from the basin into the cistern of the toilet, allowing the user to use much less water. As well as this, the toilet with a sink on top takes up much less space than having a separate toilet and sink, making it ideal for cloakrooms and smaller bathrooms. There is a big variety of hybrid basins, such as the sink with integrated towel holder. Hybrid basins are perfect for anyone looking to save space and money while maximizing utility.
Another important factor to consider when choosing a basin, and the aspect you will probably notice first whenever you see a basin, is its shape. While a basin requires a bowl element to catch and drain water, what shape that takes can vary extremely. The shape of the basin hinges on the style of mount. A wall mounted basin and a pedestal basin will naturally have to be designed with different philosophies in mind. Let’s explore the different kinds of basin shapes and see what’s on offer to you.
A square basin is quite a common sight. Their uniform shape makes them easy to fit into any environment, as they can be scaled quite easily to a number of sizes. If you are looking for simplicity or for a shape that suits a deep fill or micro basin sizing, then choose the square basin.
Rectangular basins are increasingly popular in modern bathrooms. Their shape make them ideal for fitting into any space as they have such a variety of sizes. As well as this, they make ideal wall hung basins as their proportionally long and straight backs fit to walls with ease. If you are looking for a modern basin that is perfect as a wall hung or counter top basin, then the rectangular basin is for you.
Round Basins, or circular basins, are extremely pretty and chic. Their smooth form makes them ideal for any stylish or classical bathroom. They are most suited to being counter top, semi-recessed or pedestal basins. This is because they do not have any straight edges that make them suitable for wall mounting. If you are looking for a simple and stylish basin, the circular basin is perfect.
Oval basins combine the aesthetic principles of rectangular basins and round basins. Their long but curved form gives you that extra space in the bowl as well as the classically charming curves. Oval basins are best suited to counter tops or being semi-recessed. If you are looking for a practical, yet pretty basin, an oval basin is right for you.
D Shaped Basin
D Shaped basins are a great variation on oval basins. By having the extra space on the side, the basin gives the user extra shelf space while also making the basin more suitable for wall mounting. If you are looking for extra space on your sink, the D Shaped Basin is ideal for you.
Finally, we have the broad range of uniquely shaped sinks. This includes shapes like our Seven shaped basin, our trapezium shaped basin and our polygon basin. These are basins with specific, custom and rarer shapes. These uniquely shaped basins are atypical and can make a great focal point in your bathroom. If you’re looking for a bold and interesting look, these basins are perfect for you.
Did you know you can buy conjoined basins? These are known as double basins and they feature either one singular, yet large, bowl with two taps or two distinct yet connected bowls. These basins are capable of allowing multiple people to use them simultaneously which cuts down on your waiting time and allows a greater quality of life. If you are looking for convenience and luxury, you should get a double sink.
Basins With Vanities
Another interesting twist on the basin is that you can get basins with inbuild vanities. These are wall mounted basins that have the vanity cupboard attached to them, giving you lots of extra storage. If you are looking to increase your storage without taking up much space, a basin vanity is ideal for you.
The final thing you need to consider when shopping for bathroom basins is your price range. Each basin costs a different amount, so you need to be sure you can afford what you want. Typically, smaller basins, ceramic basins and rectangular basins are cheaper than the alternatives, like our Brussel 305R compact cloakroom basin only being £41.14. Meanwhile double basins, stone resin basins and unique basins are a bit more expensive, such as our luxurious stone resin freestanding basin the Colossum 34 being £278.25. Budget appropriately while you shop, to make sure you don’t overspend!
Basins are a necessity for any home and hopefully you now understand all the subtle differences in your basin options and have the tools necessary to decide which kind of basin is right for you. Browse our range of basins to find your perfect basin and don’t forget to check our offers page to see if there are any basin discounts.