Copper sink - pros and cons?

dkotovFebruary 2, 2013

I love the way it looks with off-white glazed cabinets but maintenance? Please share your thoughts. Thank you!

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camphappy

I have two copper sinks and love them. They are one of my favorite things about my new kitchen. If you understand they have a "living finish" the maintenance is very easy. I wash them down with a soapy cloth and that is it. No scrubbing pot marks, no chipping.
If you want the copper color to look the same and be consistent throughout you will go crazy. Occasionally I will get a bright copper spot in the sink from where something acidic was left in it. It will darken back naturally in about a week or two to match the rest of the sink. (There is a sulphur solution that can be used to speed up the patina if needed or desired.)

There is a GW thread from the past that has a list of who makes a good copper sink owner and who does not. If I find it I'll pass it on to you.
Good luck with your decision.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 12:45AM
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Poohpup

Agree with everything camphappy said. I've got two Rachiele copper sinks in my kitchen and love them. They are pretty darn bulletproof and really easy to clean. I love the living finish. It's kind of fun watching it change.

The complaints that I've heard about copper sinks have been from people who purchased one with a sealed finish or are trying to keep the sink finish uniform. If you can't embrace coppers living finish, then a copper sink isn't for you. If you can, I can't imagine a better sink.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2013 at 8:33PM
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nerd

I am considering copper sinks but heard that one needs to wipe them dry after each use and not let water sit in them. Have you found this to be the case? I love the look but am concerned about the upkeep (we have well water also).

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 3:35PM
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Poohpup

Nerd, I'd never use a sink that had to be dried out after each use. I'd always wanted a copper sink but was put off hearing the same thing. I ended up putting two copper sinks in my current kitchen after learning that it was the sealed finish on copper sinks that I wanted to avoid.

If you have a copper sink that has a raw copper interior, you won't need to dry it out. But the finish won't remain uniform. Over time it will turn the same color as an old copper penny. Acidic foods will strip the patina back to raw copper which will change back to the darker patina over time. I've also found the my sink reacts with some metal pans left to soak overnight. One of the things I love about my sinks is watching them change. Maintenance is easy, I just use a sponge and soapy water to wash them. If you can embrace copper's living finish, you'll love having a copper sink.

The apron of my 36" copper farm sink has a sealed finish that won't change.

This is the interior of the sink after I used ketchup to write a birthday message to my daughter. The message started to fade within a few days. You can see how the finish looks in the rest of the sink with lighter spots here and there.

I ended up buying my copper sinks after reading about them on this forum. Both my sinks are made by Rachiele, a small company in Florida. You can find lots of information on their site.

I hope that helps.

Here is a link that might be useful: Rachiele copper sinks

    Bookmark   February 6, 2013 at 4:39PM
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PRO
Rachiele, LLC

Poohpup, how long did it take for the birthday message to disappear? I have to say, your kitchen is absolutely stunning. Do you mind if i steal the birthday photo for my site? (Dino)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 4:30PM
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Holly- Kay

Poohpup, I am in love with your Rachiele copper sinks. I still have my kd looking at Kohler enameled cast iron. I am not sure price wise and not sure if I could deal with the bright spots. My DD has a copper sink in her kitchen and I love it! I figure the Rachiele would double or triple my sink expenditure.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 7:56PM
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gpraceman55

@holly-kay - We were wanting a copper farmhouse sink for our upcoming kitchen remodel, but thought that the price would be too extreme. We actually found a nice hammered one on the Home Depot website for only $699. The reviews on it are very good. The online photos show it mounted over the counter, but you can install it as an under mount, which we plan to do.

We ended up ordering that same sink from Menards, as they had it on sale recently for $559 plus free shipping. We received it last week. It will look awesome once we have our new cabinets and crema bordeaux granite installed!

Here is a link that might be useful: ECOSINKS copper farmhouse sink - single bowl

This post was edited by gpraceman on Wed, May 1, 13 at 14:24

    Bookmark   April 30, 2013 at 9:22PM
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PRO
Rachiele, LLC

Poohpup sent a follow up photo after 5 days. This is what her sink looked like. I thought this would be helpful to see.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2014 at 9:10AM
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Mrs_Nyefnyef

I know this is an older thread, but just regarding gpraceman's post above about getting a copper sink for a low price. You have to be wary about those. Those lower-priced copper sinks are usually lacquered, which leads to trouble, and also not good-quality or pure copper, which leads to trouble. For a copper sink, you get what you pay for. Copper is expensive and expect to pay $1700 minimum for a copper sink. If you cannot afford that, there are many other types of excellent sink materials that would be a great choice and affordable, but don't buy instead an "affordable" copper sink. I am linking a thread that shows the consequences of an inexpensive copper sink.

Here is a link that might be useful: Thread about Copper Sink

    Bookmark   May 27, 2014 at 10:53AM
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Haver99

The Ecosink referenced is essentially the Lucca made by Thompson Traders. I spoke with the manufacturer, and these are 14 gauge copper, and are not lacquered. The reviews on the Home depot site are outstanding.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 7:47PM
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TheCopperSmith

Best to buy a copper sink with no sealant on it and let it patina naturally. You can't stop the patina process, and why would you want too? It looks amazing, and any sealants will stop the natural anti bacterial benefits and great colors.

Here is a link that might be useful: World CopperSmith

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 6:09PM
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bisondaktelcom

GPRaceman, I see your post that you bought a copper ecosink from Menards. Just wondering, how is it working out for you? Any downsides of that sink? It looks great on the website! Thanks much!

Here is a link that might be useful: copper sinks pros and cons?

    Bookmark   January 13, 2015 at 11:34PM
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gpraceman55

Our sink has worked out just fine. No regrets. More expensive sinks may have some sound deadening material on the underside. I got some of that material off of Amazon pretty inexpensively and applied it to get the same effect.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2015 at 12:05AM
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gpraceman55

Seeing some of the comments from Mrs_Nyefnyef, I'll have to disagree when it comes to this particular sink.

This sink is not lacquered at all, so it does lose the patina when you put something acidic on it. However, the patina will return over time. It can get darker marks if you leave a hot pan sitting on it. We've had that happen but have been able to clean it and have the patina return without much trouble. We are well past sweating any loss of patina, as we know it will return before too long. We certainly do not go to the trouble of drying out the sink after each use.

It is not thin gauge metal. It is 14 gauge, which is pretty thick. Some of the more expensive sinks I saw were only 16 gauge (bigger number means thinner metal). You cannot easily flex the metal, if you try by hand.

It is not a cheap copper alloy. The manufacturer states that it is 99.98% pure solid copper. They could be lying, but after 1-1/2 years using this sink, I really have no reason not to believe them.

Overall, I think it is a great sink. I really don't see what spending several hundred more dollars would get us, except maybe some sound deadening applied to the underside. As I mentioned in my previous post, you can get that material inexpensively and apply it yourself. It is the same stuff that people use in their cars for sound deadening. It comes in a sheet, you cut it to size, then peel and stick.

Checking Menards website, they do currently have that sink on sale for $559.20, thru 1/17/2015, with free shipping. That's the same deal that we took advantage of. This is the exact same sink that Home Depot carries. Regular price is $699.

http://www.menards.com/main/kitchen/kitchen-sinks/ecosinks-handcrafted-antique-single-apron-front-14ga-pure-copper-kitchen-sink/p-1741895-c-8510.htm

This post was edited by gpraceman on Wed, Jan 14, 15 at 11:34

    Bookmark   January 14, 2015 at 11:29AM
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theshepherdgirl

Hello gpraceman!

I am looking at possibly buying the sink you purchased at Menards. Looks like the sale ends today, so I will need to make a decision quickly. Anyway, in the picture of your sink in your (beautiful!!) kitchen, I was wondering - how old is the sink in the picture? I think I would be perfectly fine with the patina change to the bowl of the sink, but what about the front of the sink that isn't subjected to much water? Does that change color too? Thanks for your help!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2015 at 1:53PM
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straikar

Oops!

I just bought a copper sink at Menards--delivered to our front door yesterday--an even cheaper one--originally 599 on sale for 399.

It's a two basin traditional model.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2015 at 5:28PM
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gpraceman55

@theshepherdgirl

That photo was shortly after our kitchen was completed. That was about 1-1/2 years ago. The patina that you see there is pretty much what it looks like today. I don't really notice a difference between the patina on the apron and that of the sink basin.

This post was edited by gpraceman on Sat, Jan 17, 15 at 17:46

    Bookmark   January 17, 2015 at 5:45PM
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