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How To Choose A Kitchen Faucet

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Okay, you’re remodeling your kitchen and want a new faucet. Either that, or you’re tired of your old, outdated faucet and want to replace it. You’ve got lots of decisions to make.

The kitchen faucet you choose should reflect how you’ll use it. It should complement the sink design and the wall styling. Below, we offer a bit of advice for choosing the perfect faucet.

Types Of Kitchen Faucets
You can choose a sink-mounted or wall-mounted faucet. Sink- or deck-mounted faucets are placed over existing holes in the countertop. If you’re replacing an old faucet with a new one, your countertop already has several holes drilled.

These are the holes for the cold and hot water intake valves. There’s probably a central hole for the mixed intake. Standard measurements of the holes and the distance between them make it easy to fit a new faucet into place.

Many faucet designs are one-piece and have an integrated handle and spout. If one of the existing holes isn’t needed, that’s okay. It’s covered and hidden from view by the new faucet plate.

Wall-mounted faucets fit into the wall. You will need to drill new holes if the old faucet was a deck-mount. Be sure to get the correct measurements before you drill!

Some of the deck-mounted faucets need only one intake hole. These kits often come with additional pieces called escutcheons. These are ornamental plates that cover unused holes in the countertop.

Faucet Designs
This is where the fun begins. You’ll want to choose a pleasing faucet handle design. One-handle faucets have a single control that alters the flow of cold and hot water.

These handles rotate side-to-side and allow you to choose the perfect water temperature. The handle may be on the side of the faucet, or it may stick out toward the front. The faucet neck can be rotated right and left, allowing for the use of a double sink.

Two-handle faucets have separate hot and cold water controls. These fasten to the countertop or wall mount on either side of the faucet neck. These designs are usually coupled with a high-mount faucet neck for ease of use.

Both of these faucet types can be purchased as a kit containing an additional intake port. This allows for the installation of a sprayer hose. The spray hose is connected to the tubing that carries the mixed hot and cold water flow.

Hands-free faucets are something to consider. They work on the same principle as those hands-free dryer machines in public restrooms. They have sensors that detect either motion or a slight touch.

Hands-free faucets are great for use when the hands are very dirty or have food residue on them. A slight touch of the sensor or a wave of the hand controls the water flow as well as the temperature. The water temperature can be programmed into the system.

Matching Faucets To Sinks
Do you have a large single-tub sink or a double sink? Are you going to be washing a lot of big pots and pans? You might want to consider a high-arc faucet neck that delivers the water from a higher elevation.

Related Read: Standard Kitchen Sink Size & Dimensions – How to Pick One

The standard height for a low-arc faucet ranges from three to eight inches above a deck-mounted plate. High-arc faucets are generally 10 inches in height. 

Prep bar sinks are inexpensive and easy to install. Consider one of these if you need a small amount of water for rinsing. You can install a single-control faucet that delivers a lower water flow, and this frees up your larger sink for bigger jobs.

Faucet Finish
You want your new faucet to be visually appealing. The finish you choose is up to you, but you want to explore other options from the traditional chrome finish. Faucet finishes range from steel to copper to brass. 

Think about the overall look of your kitchen. You want it unified, so choose a faucet finish that complements the tone of your wall surface and cabinets. Black and silver go well with dark wood cabinets, and brass looks exciting when the cabinetry is lighter in tone.

Control knobs for the cold and hot water flow can be ornamental as well. Look over the plastic and glass knob selections and see if any of the surface designs catch your fancy. Many of the designs are available in several different transparency tones.

Special Features
We’ve already mentioned sprayer hoses, but there are many other available features you’ll want to investigate. Look carefully at the faucet designs with additional outlet ports. You can install a water filter under the sink and have a separate filtered water outlet above the faucet plate.

You can also install a heater element beneath the sink and attach the outlet from the filter to a high-pressure tap. This is great for a quick non-soap wash. You can even use this tap for making instant coffee or other hot beverages.

Some faucet models also have a built-in port for a soap dispenser. You can load the soap supply manually and simply press the top of the tap to get a dollop of soft soap. This eliminates the need for a bottle of detergent or hand soap on the kitchen counter.

Consider a pull-down faucet. These can be wall- or deck-mounted. They high-arc neck contains an inner hose sleeve that pulls down and stretches. This makes it easy to reach every corner of the sink.

Do It Yourself?
Most faucet kits are modeled for easy installation. Once you’ve selected the design with the proper hole measurements, installation is accomplished in a few steps. If you have the simple tool box necessities, you have everything you need.

Faucets are installed either from above or below. Most designs that fit on the countertop are fastened into place by a series of bolts that fit upward from beneath the sink. The installation kit contains the bolts or screws, rubber washers, and sealant.

The base plate is pulled down by the pressure of the tightened bolts. You may wish to line the plate with a special sealant. This is usually purchased separately.

The intake hoses from your previous faucet can be used for the new installation. Of course, you can always buy new ones. These are attached to the faucet valves in the same manner that a spray top is attached to your garden hose.

If you don’t feel comfortable about installing the faucet yourself, a contactor can do the job in a short period of time. Hire a contractor that charges by the job and not by the hour! Make sure the person is licensed and bonded.

Wall-mounted faucets are a bit trickier to install because the intake hoses have to be longer. This may require cutting out a small portion of the wall tile or other finish. If you’ve never performed this sort of work, it’s worth the price to hire someone to do it.

Remember that the purchase of a faucet set from a chain supplier can be combined with the installation charge. Many of the home improvement stores offer installation by a contracted expert. 

Enjoy The New Look
First, decide on the faucet placement and design. Next, choose your faucet finish. Finally, add on any special features you want. 

Once it’s installed, your kitchen will take on a whole new look. It will positively alter the overall appearance of the sink area. You’ll be proud of your new faucet design!

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