Whether you’re giving your kitchen a complete overhaul, or simply updating the décor, installing a new kitchen faucet is certainly going to be part of the job. If it’s been a while since you last shopped for a faucet, and you’re not sure where to begin, then check out these four tips to help you find the perfect one for your space.
- Mounting Matters
First, decide if you want a deck-mount faucet or a wall-mount faucet. Wall-mount faucets attach through the wall and hang over the sink.
Deck-mount faucets attach to the countertop or rest on the sink. If you choose this type, then the number of holes on your sink is important. These are your standard options:
- Combination handle/spout faucets require a single hole, plus an additional hole for the sprayer.
- Handle/spout faucets with integrated sprayers require a single hole.
- Traditional faucets need four holes total: one each for the hot and cold taps, one for the spout, and a fourth for the sprayer.
If you want to add soap dispensers, instant hot water dispensers, water filters, or other optional components, then you’ll need more holes. If you’re starting from scratch, choose your faucet before your sink so you can buy a sink with the appropriate number of holes for your selection. Or, holes may be drilled into the sink to accommodate your faucet if needed.
- Focus on the Finish
Most kitchen faucets come in a range of finish choices, typically some color of metal. In the silver family, options include chrome, nickel, stainless steel, platinum, and pewter. For a warmer tone, you can try brass, gold, bronze, or copper. Metallic finishes can be either polished, brushed, or satin, depending on whether you want a bold shine or a more muted gleam.
If you’ve picked out your kitchen sink, then you obviously want your faucet to match. Easy decision. But if you haven’t picked out the sink, consider that smudges and stains show up on chrome and polished finishes more easily than brushed and satin finishes. That may be a factor in your decision.
- Consider Ultra Low Flow
If you’re environmentally focused, or want to save on water bills, this may be important to you. Since 1992, federal regulations require that faucets made in the United States have a maximum flow rate of 2.5 gallons per minute (GPM), which has resulted in thousands and thousands of gallons of water saved each year.
But, you can choose to have an even lower flow rate. In 2008, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) started the WaterSense program to encourage the manufacture of high-efficiency faucets with a flow rate of 1.5 GPM or less. While not a federal regulation, most manufacturers have products that meet WaterSense criteria, so be sure to ask your salesperson if this interests you.
- Take a Look at Technology Trends
If you haven’t bought a faucet in a long time, then you’re probably not aware of all the cool new faucet features out there, like:
- Motion-activation: Motion-activated faucets enable you to turn the water on and off, adjust the flow, and raise or lower the temperature,
- Laminar flow: Laminar technology emits water in a clear, solid stream for a smooth and silky feel and no splashing. It feels luxurious, but laminar-flow faucets still meet federal water flow standards, with some models even meeting the stricter WaterSense criteria.
- Filtration and more: Many manufacturers make faucets that offer built-in filtration, instant chilling, and even carbonation for clean, cold, sparkling water on demand.
Shopping for a new kitchen faucet doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Follow these tips and you’re sure to find the perfect faucet.