Farmhouse and Apron Front Sinks. Pros and Cons
Apron front sinks or farm sinks are a common fixture in northwest homes, weather truly a farmhouse kitchen or an NW contemporary design, they add a timeless elegance that is now almost synonymous with luxury. Stainless steel, copper, and granite composite are available, but the most common apron front sinks installed today are porcelain or porcelain-coated cast iron. These sinks are available in all the standard sizes and configurations, and in many cases are designed to be under mounted. Though popular and beautiful, apron front sinks cannot be installed in every application and can take different maintenance than a conventional sink. Here are some things to keep in mind when deciding if an apron front sink is right for your kitchen.
Apron front sinks require a specially designed cabinet or modification to a standard sink base. If you are purchasing new cabinets, you will have to make sure your cabinet designer knows you intend to use an apron front sink. If you intend to install an apron front sink into an existing cabinet layout, you will need a carpenter to reconfigure the sink base to allow for a different application.
Due to the difference in sink bottom height, some plumbing modifications may be necessary within the wall to allow the sink to properly drain. There are some circumstances where there is not enough room for this, or it will hinder the use of garbage disposal.
Apron front sinks do not guard against splashing as much as conventional sinks as they are much thinner on their front edge than the typical countertop set back of other sinks. This can cause a variety of problems but most notably water damage to the cabinetry. There is a potential for water damage to the floor as well however that is typically not as catastrophic as damage to the cabinetry. The 2 most common methods to counteract this problem are choosing a sink with a built-in drip rail such as the Kohler Whitehaven, or to install a small, countertop material barrier below the sink to catch any drips before they hit the wood.
Apron front sinks are the most difficult to remove and replace when under-mounted. Removing and replacing an under-mount sink is never easy but some apron front sinks can be impossible to remove once the countertop is in place without removing the countertop first. Natural stone in quartz countertops cannot be