It’s often said that quick and easy ways to change the look and feel of a kitchen is to change the hardware found in the space – and one of the most used (and most noticeable) pieces of hardware in a kitchen is the faucet. And these days, faucet selection is near endless between styles, finishes, filtration systems, and water pressure/eco-friendliness.
Here are some tips to keep in mind while shopping for a new faucet:
Style – Not just the style of the faucet is important, but also the style of your sink and greater kitchen should be considered when looking to replace a functional part of the decor.
So, what’s the style of your kitchen?
What kind of look are you going for, and what kind of look does your kitchen have?
Do you love the look of antique farmhouse-style fixtures but have a sleek minimalist kitchen?
Are you going for something more streamlined and modern but have a French Revival decor aesthetic?
Will that brushed nickel beauty really look right with your stainless steel sink?
Really think over how the new faucet will look as a part of your whole kitchen, not just by itself.
Features – You have to consider the sink space you’re trying to cover with your new faucet as well.
Does the faucet head pivot to reach a double-basin sink?
Will you want a sprayer as well, and if so, would you prefer if it were separate or built-in to the faucet?
Do two handles make more sense for how you’ll use it, or does a single lever seem more efficient?
Just because it looks nice doesn’t mean it’ll work they way you want it to.
Fit – Faucets attach to sinks in a manner of different ways. There are universal, four-inch spreads, eight-inch spreads, all-in-ones, with and without sprayers, etc.
Make sure you thoroughly check out your sink’s specifications before purchasing a new faucet only to find it isn’t compatible. No one wants to replace a perfectly good sink to make the faucet attach properly.
Efficiency – As every part of home improvement becomes more eco-conscious, you should truly consider the amount of water you use in your sink.
Does it really need to come gushing out like Niagara Falls, or could you live with a little less pressure and a little more money in your wallet from the water bill savings?
Also, do you find yourself begrudgingly filling up a water filtration pitcher every three uses, wishing there was a better way? Or does your fridge have a built-in filtered water dispensing system.
Really look at your everyday needs when it comes to water usage before you spring for all the bells and whistles that you may never use, or before you skimp on some creature comforts that would streamline your daily routines.
Cost – Yes, that state-of-the-art motion-activated faucet is not only gorgeous, but touted as the most up-to-date technology. But could you spend that $500 more wisely about your home?
Home improvement stores aren’t the only place to find fixtures. Online retailers often have greater selection of styles and finishes, and with places like Overstock and Amazon, you can often find great deals on quality faucets that look like a million bucks but could cost you under $100.
Need – Are you faucet shopping because yours shoots water sideways out of the handle, or are you just bored with what you have? Are you replacing something before you sell your home, or do you plan to be washing dishes in that sink for years to come?
Plan accordingly. There’s no sense in splurging on a faucet you don’t intend to stick around to use; and on the flip side you don’t want to buy an inexpensive fixture just to have it break on you in a couple of years.
Feel – As with door handles and drawer pulls, a faucet needs to feel good in the hands that use it. There’s nothing worse than looking at a beautiful chrome faucet only to have it feel like cheap plastic in your grasp.
Any other suggestions for finding the perfect faucet? Let us know your dos and don’ts.
photo: Kohler faucets at the 2010 Builders’ Show