Enameled cast iron kitchen sinks are a stalwart in American homes and for good reason. Not only do they look beautiful for years, they can also take all the wear and tear that comes with being the undisputed workhorse of the kitchen.
Enameled cast iron kitchen sinks have been in American kitchens for decades because of their superior durability, easy maintenance and variety of colors and configurations available. The enamel coating is baked onto the cast iron shell for an impervious surface that shines like glass and only really requires hot water and mild soap to keep it clean. However, there can be some drawbacks...
Let's examine the pros and cons of enameled cast iron sinks:
Durability that lasts for years: While cast iron on its own would be a brittle kitchen sink material that damages easily, once it's coated with porcelain for a kitchen sink, it transforms into a hearty fixture you'll be glad to have in your kitchen. Additionally, cast iron doesn't crack or dent like other materials such as solid surface or stainless steel.
Color choices: Because color is added to porcelain while it is in liquid form before it is applied to the cast iron base, you'll have a veritable riot of hues from which to choose.
Glossy finish = easy maintenance: You don't need anything special, really, to keep your enameled cast iron sink clean; just hot water, mild soap and a wet cloth and water to rinse away the soap. Warning: stay away from abrasive cleaners or you risk scratching and etching your finish.
2 mounting options: Your cast iron sink can be mounted either as a drop-in or an undermount so you can further customize the look of your kitchen.
Weight: Enameled cast iron sinks are heavy, often coming in at around 150 pounds or more so you'll need to be sure your cabinets and countertops are appropriately reinforced to successfully hold your sink no matter which mounting option you choose. An under mount application will require the most .
Potential chips and rust: The porcelain coating on your sink has the potential to chip, exposing the cast iron underneath and leading to rust. There are porcelain repair kits you can use to try and maintain the integrity of your sink, but chances are you won't replicate the perfect finish with which you started.
Stains and scuffs: The very finish that makes an enameled cast iron sink so appealing is also what will vex you if you're not careful. Heavy pots and pans can leave scuff marks if you don't keep a protective grid on the bottom of your kitchen sink. Porcelain is also susceptible to staining so beware leaving tea bags or coffee grounds on the surface for any amount of time.
Drop-in sinks will come with pre-drilled faucet holes, so take note of either the faucet you've chosen to make sure it will fit or how many holes you need to fill. A single-hole faucet can be used with a three-hole sink because an escutcheon plate will cover the unused holes.
Under mount cast iron sinks will require deck-mounted faucets, no different than any other under mount sink, so you're free to choose however many holes you'd like and have them drilled through your countertop.