Often the first item chosen for a kitchen renovation is the Kitchen Sink Mixer. A sink mixer alone can be enough to make your kitchen feel new, modern and fresh. But as soon as you begin to look into kitchen sink mixer options, you will find yourself in another world of choice that you didn’t even know existed. Do want pull-out? Do you want Vege spray? Do you want filtered water? Do you want a LED light?
The first thing to consider is the look and style of your kitchen and tap. Do you want a statement piece or do you want something discrete. Is your kitchen sink mixer beneath overhead cupboards or is it on an island bench? Is there a window behind your mixer or just open bench space. The aesthetic look of your mixer is your priority because no matter how it functions, you wont be happy unless your kitchen sink mixer looks perfect.
Once you have found a selection of aesthetically pleasing kitchen sink mixers, you now need to consider function…
Vege Spray is a kitchen mixer function which allows you to switch between normal water flow to a more shower-like spray. This function enables you to wash and clean your vegetables as well as quickly rinse plates and crockery before placing in the dishwasher. A Vege spray is also a popular function on laundry taps where it may be used to wash hair, dirty buckets or even animals in the trough!
Pull-out function is a kitchen mixer function that enables you to use your kitchen mixer within and beyond the confines of your kitchen sink. Once you have the option, you won't know how you lived without it! Pull-out kitchen mixers make cleaning the sink easy. It means that if your sink is full, you can fill a pot of water outside the sink. Or if it is beside your outdoor BBQ, you can rinse down the BBQ after a big Sunday night roast.
Make sure you opt for a non-fray nylon hose or something that comes with an excellent warranty as pulling your hose through piping a few times a day can cause wear and tear with the friction.
Having filtered drinking water option on your kitchen mixer is an excellent idea for areas that have hard water and where tap water is not drinking quality. Some kitchen mixers have built-in filtered water options where a small under sink purifier is connected below. Others have separate filtered water outlets installed beside your sink mixer.
If you have a double bowl kitchen sink, it is highly necessary for you to choose a tap with at least 180° rotation. Even if you only have the one sink bowl, being able to move the mixer nozzle from the centre to the side of your sink is irreplaceable.
The height of your mixer plays a large role in the possible functions. If your sink is shallow or you have many deep pots, make sure you opt for something that has a bit of height to it. There is nothing worse than trying to fill up a drinking bottle and being unable to get it under the tap… This is where the pull-out function also comes in handy.
Remember, the higher the mixer is, the more splash it will cause so take this into consideration as well when choosing your splashback and bench top material.
Is your tap going outdoor besides the BBQ or within an alfresco area? If so you will need to opt for a 304 grade stainless steel kitchen mixer. Stainless steel does not decay in an outdoor environment where rainwater and salt are in abundance. For this reason, stainless steel, although a little more expensive, should provide a much longer warranty than its brass and chrome counterparts. In saying this, if your kitchen tap is indoor, a brass mixer will be fine but will probably not last as long.
There are many other materials that work hand in hand with brass and steel kitchen sink mixers. Some involve plastic parts to keep costs low and some incorporate a range of other materials such as rubber to create interest and contrast within the mixer.
It is important when considering your material that it is functional, looks good and is easy to clean and maintain. There is no point having a kitchen sink mixer that looks like a piece of artwork if it takes hours to clean around all the cracks.
Do you opt for polished, brushed or a matte black finish? Brushed is the most functional finish as it will not show fingeprints as easily and will most likely match your kitchen appliances and sink. If you like the luxurious polished look, be weary that your mixer will more often than not need a wipe over. Matte black is a bold, contemporary alternative. Black tapware is easy to match with most kitchen interiors. Just be aware of the finish of these taps and over time, the black may scratch and age the tap more quickly.