The Individual Touch of the Copper Kitchen Sink
The copper sink’s most individual quality is in its makeup.
Copper is a non-porous, non-staining, naturally durable metal. It does age by
oxidation to form a patina. Yet instead of damaging copper’s appeal it only
adds to it. The patina will form over time as the natural luster of the copper
slowly dulls by way of color combinations from pink to green to golden brown.
Copper is much softer than its main metal
sink counterpart, stainless steel, and will therefore scratch easier.
Fortunately, scratches will disappear on their own as the patina literally eats
them right up. Anything that comes into contact with the copper will have some
oxidizing effect on it, including water, and this helps the patina to be absorb
scratches and blemishes.
There are some important considerations when shopping for a
copper kitchen sink.
- The Weld. The copper should be welded, not soldered, as soldered joints will turn black over time. The welded sink will be more expensive, as copper sinks tend to be by and large, but the added cost is worth it when it comes to the quality of the sink. Kitchen sinks should also be on the thicker side (around 16 gauge) for durability purposes. With copper bathroom sinks you can get away with a thinner gauge.
- Non-Wax Finish. Some manufacturers will put a wax or lacquered finish on the inside of the sink. Generally, these are not a good idea as they require more maintenance. Kitchen sinks simply get too much wear and tear and the copper is naturally durable on its own.
- In Square. Because copper sinks are built individually, you must take human error into account when shopping for them. In addition to welding and a non-lacquered finish you should make sure (if you have the chance to inspect the sink in person) that it is square. Many are built out of square and can cause trouble for your countertop fabricator at installation time.
- Purity. Some copper sinks, especially those imported from other countries, have significant amount of impurities—most notably lead and mercury. A quality copper sink will state that it is lead and mercury free. Your best bet is to find a sink made in the USA and that is 99.9 percent pure copper.
One of the more prohibitive problems with copper is cost,
but the individuality and aesthetics of the sink are unrivaled by any other
metal. Copper apron
sinks are often popular because they make work easier at the sink and
accentuate the qualities of the copper itself. Copper sinks may be hammered as
well, offering that handmade appeal, although some inspection of the hammering
job may be necessary to make sure that the sink will drain properly.
Considered to be one of the most durable metal choices available for a kitchen sink, copper can also serve as a focal point for any design. Many people love the patina that forms over time and wouldn’t trade their copper kitchen sink for anything. Here is some more information to help you decide if it’s the right choice for your kitchen.
Certainly one of the more expensive metal choices on the market, copper sinks can range between a few hundred dollars to a couple thousand, depending on the size and quality of the sink. Contact local installers for price quotes and more information.
Copper is non-porous and non-staining.
It is a naturally durable metal.
Many people enjoy the appearance of the patina that will form over time.
It is softer than stainless steel, and thus more prone to scratching.
Copper sinks are generally rather costly.
Copper ages by oxidation, which will change the color and appearance over time.
Generally copper is considered to be one of the most durable metals for a kitchen sink available—and of course, the thicker the better. It can be damaged under extreme heat and is more prone to scratching, but should last the lifetime of your home.
Cleaning copper is as easy as cleaning all metal sinks. Simply wipe it down with a clean damp cloth and non-abrasive soap if necessary. Occasional polishing will help remove surface scratches.
Common Questions and Answers
What are some important things to consider when shopping for a copper sink?
- The Weld. The copper should be welded, not soldered, as soldered joints will turn black over time. The welded sink will be more expensive, as copper sinks tend to be by and large, but the added cost is worth it when it comes
HistoryWith use as early as 10,000 years ago, copper is considered to be man’s oldest metal.
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