How to Choose the Right Plumbing Fixtures
The right plumbing fixtures can really help set the tone for a fantastic remodel. But with so many options, it can be difficult to choose. We help our clients narrow down their selections using a good-better-best model. Here’s a look at some good-better-best kitchen and bathroom faucets, sinks, and shower fixtures, along with pricing for each to help you decide with confidence.
Ok, all kitchen faucets need to deliver water to your sink. But what’s the difference between a $180 faucet and one that costs $1,800? Here’s a look…
In our good category, you’re going to have a basic faucet that turns on and off, controls the water temperature, likely has a pull-down feature, and comes in a standard finish like chrome or polished nickel. A common brand name in this category is Delta, and you can expect to pay around $180 and up for one of these.
Now moving up to the better category, you’re going to have more finish options. You’ll likely also have a feature that turns on the faucet just by touching it. And you’ll have more luxurious finish options like gold or brass. Kohler makes a lot of faucets in this category. Expect to pay around $580 in this group.
The best category of kitchen faucets will be very high end will high quality internal components usually made up entirely of metal parts so they last longer. The finish options are also more elevated including ones like patina-ed brass and black matte. Waterstone makes a lot of faucets in this range and they start at around $1,800.
With kitchen sinks, you have an even wider variety of options. The good category will include more simple stainless steel models that can be either top mount or undermount. They’ll last a long time and do what you need them to do, but don’t have any fancy finishes. These start at around $520.
The better category of kitchen sinks will include ones made from materials like cast iron and enamel. A Kohler farmhouse sink would fit into this group. Expect to pay between $1,045 and $1,740 for one of these.
If you do a lot of cooking and need a sink that can handle prep work, clean up, and more, you may want to consider a workstation sink. These sinks feature tons of accessories like cutting boards, drying racks, and colanders. And they can double as extra counter space. They come in a variety of configurations, but in terms of cost, they start at around $3,480.
Turning to bathroom faucets, in the good category you’ll find your standard, single handle lever that controls water flow and temperature. These come with basic finishes like brushed nickel and start at around $200.
When you get into the better category, you’re looking at more finish and configuration options, such as double handles, and choices of contemporary or traditional styles. These start at around $300.
The top line bathroom faucets offer many more patina and finish options, such as gold finishes or patina-ed brass, and the internal components will also be higher quality, like brass or stainless steel. These will start at around $600.
Bathroom sinks can be one of those items that you can easily overthink. They really serve one primary function and it can be tempting to go overboard. That’s not to say you shouldn’t go for top shelf if it matches your aesthetic and your budget allows, but the starting models will usually do the job just fine. These will include a basic over- or undermount stainless steel sink in an oval shape which costs around $200 and up.
The better category sink will be a higher end material like porcelain that will usually be undermount. These are a bit more elegant than stainless steel and start at around $350.
And in the best category, you’ll see a lot more custom finishes like a hammered copper or stylized glass. These can also include sinks that rest above the counter. Models in the best category will start at around $600.
Now let’s talk about shower fixtures. Much like kitchen and bathroom sinks, shower fixtures also move from good to better to best based on their finishes and internal components. One primary factor that also influences category and price is the number of options they include.
In the good category, you’ll have a single diverter with a fixed shower head. To move up into the better category, you may have a handheld shower head that can move up and down on a bar and is also removeable. The best category will have even more options — things like multiple body sprays or waterfall shower heads.
To sum up, when choosing the right plumbing fixtures for your remodel, you want to determine what fits within your budget and then you can use the good-better-best system to figure out what matches your aesthetic as well.
If you want to get the best quality fixtures, have your contractor source and install your items for you. You’ll get a higher quality than you’d find at your local home improvement store and you’ll also get a warranty.
Are you thinking about a kitchen or bathroom remodel and aren’t sure where to start? We’d love to discuss your project. Simply schedule a conversation with us!