single bowl sinks, centered drain vs side drain

nap101April 21, 2012

Can you tell my the advantages of a centered drain vs a side drain, because I personally see no reason why this has become a standard, but I'm willing to change my mind with a good argument. Am I just in the minority?

I am redoing my kitchen. I have a very tiny kitchen, most say they have a tiny kitchen but mine is really small. I'm removing the hot water heater from the kitchen, going tankless to the outside of the house, and removing a hall closet in order to get a full 8 x 10 galley kitchen (with a door at each long end)

I currently have a white cast iron single bowl sink with a drain on the left side.

I've lived with this for 20 years and have only small issues with the sink (wish it were a little deeper and a bit tired of the slight yellow stains near the drain that don't go away no matter how much bleach I use).

I want a good quality sink ss or cast iron white, but I am surprised by the limited choices I have to get an offset drain.

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I just bought the Elkay SS sink, and chose the offset drain. I think it's practical and allows for more storage below, as i will have a disposal.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 2:58PM
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I really wanted an offset drain in my new single-bowl sink. Mostly I wanted that because in my last sink every time I put a bowl down, especially the KA mixing bowl, it slid to the center drain and tipped, or sat over the drain and blocked it. In the end, other things drove the decision, mostly overall size. As you said, there aren't a lot of choices with an offset drain. I ended up with a 32" Kraus sink with a center back drain. HOWEVER, it comes with a grid in the bottom, so nothing slips to the drain or blocks it, so that turned out to be a non-problem. I had no idea how useful that grid would turn out to be. Love the sink, by the way.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 5:28PM
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I don't think there is a good argument for a center drain vs offset. If there is, I'd love to hear it too.

My new sink is a 36" single bowl with a right rear drain. This past week my GC installed the GD, water filtration system and the insta hot. Everything is tucked off to the side and I've got tons of room under the sink now. I've never had a sink cab with tons of room before. I've no idea what I'll put there!

Not a great picture but you can get an idea of how much room there is under the sink.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 6:02PM
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I think my GC thinks I'm nuts for getting the big Kohler Riverby which is a Kohler cast iron with the huge single bowl with the offset drain that slopes down just slightly so the water doesn't pool and goes into the drain. He kept saying, you know it slopes a bit, right? I was originally going to get the Cape Dory but the Riverby was introduced right before placing my plumbing order. I asked about it here and am glad I did. The offset drain means more practical under sink storage since the garbage disposal can go to one side instead of smack in the middle of the sink cabinet. Also I like that I can have a bunch of things off to the left and the disposal/drain off to one side.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2012 at 9:30PM
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My last sink was white, single bowl with rear left drain, top mount. The faucet was also offset to that side. With the remodel, I wanted to get the same thing but in SS because, like you I was sick of the stains and having to constantly haul out the bleach. I needed a sink to fit in a 30" base and could only find this size with a center drain, since I really wanted undermount. The choices were very limited. So now I have center drainT and faucet. At first it was off putting and I was always turning the faucet to one side or the other because it was always in the way....I don't hate it, but I think I do prefer the offset...faucet off to the side and out of the way when stacking dishes in the sink, and more room under the sink.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 12:36AM
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nap101, I, too have a small kitchen. We are going from a double bowl sink by the PO (although each bowl is too small to lay anything flat when washing) in a 33 cab to a single bowl sink in a 27 cab so I can squeeze in an 18 DW.

I want the drain to the side in the new sink because I am hoping to squeeze a trash can under the sink and with the drain to the side I might be able to keep all the plumbing in one corner, get the trash can in there and still have room for my cleaning products. I do not have a hot water thingy or a GD or water filter.

Every sink I have ever had had the drain in the middle . . . I just think to the side is so much better!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 7:08AM
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Sounds to me like the manufacturers need to be listening to their consumers. Having the plumbing to one side so the rest of the under-cab is more usable is a huge plus to discerning kitchen planners (that's us!). Having a center placement is a lot like a divided sink - it's just the way it's been done before. Do you suppose sink manufacturers bother reading forums like this?

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 12:13PM
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I love having the drain in the center, toward the back. I tend to have a lot of things going on in our 30" wide sink at once. The center drain allows me to put a pan of sudsy water on one side and a draining colander on the other side and I still have the drain clear in the middle for pouring water from a pasta pot. Since the drain is toward the back, we still have plenty of room in the cabinet for storage (we don't have a garbage disposal.) I'm really glad we don't have a drain off to the side.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 12:50PM
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I recently went to a plumbing store, laying out my requirements. I forgot to tell her I wanted an offset drain and of course the only sink that met all the other conditions had a centered drain. When I asked the salesperson why sinks would be made this way, she said that particular model was an older one and the machines that make it haven't been re-tooled yet, as most of the newer sinks do have an offset drain.

Do sinks drain water less well (not proper English!) with an offset drain?

Zelmar, can you tell me what kind of sink you have and whether things accidentally slip down your drain? I'm also looking for a 30", but the hard part if finding one that is 8" or

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 1:11PM
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I love my Kraus sink and faucet. I have the same one as suzannesl! I haven't had a chance to use it yet, but it will definately be an improvement over my old double SS sink. I love the grid feature also; I don't have a disposal BTW. Sorry for huge pic!!!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 1:39PM
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We have a Blanco Precision stainless steel sink. It's zero radius and has a fairly flat bottom.

I would not get a zero radius sink again. I really like the looks of the ones that are close to zero but have more forgiving sides/corners. The corners in my sink need special care.

We have a grid in the bottom, which enables water to move under objects in the sink. It also keeps things from falling toward the drain.

When using our sink, I'll often think about some of the arguments for the offset drains but I always conclude that I'm glad ours is in the center (centered side to side, but set toward the back.) I usually set things down off to the sides of the sink and almost never in the middle.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 2:04PM
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I took awhile to write my previous post (I left the computer for a while) and didn't see harleysbud's sink. That's exactly what I would look for now!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 2:10PM
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Imagine you are a right-handed person, scrubbing a baked-on cookie sheet. You're holding the cookie sheet tipped up with your left hand, and scraping and scrubbing toward the drain -- easily done because the drain is in the right rear corner of your sink! If it were in the center, the cookie sheet would more likely cover the drain -- you wouldn't be able to set it down flat to scrub without covering that drain -- a colander with vegetables would have to straddle that center drain instead of sitting securely in the bottom of the sink pitched toward the right rear center. The crusty pan that is soaking in your sink does not cover the drain that you need to quickly rinse something else. It's just better design. If you are a left-handed person, you might want the drain in the left corner.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2012 at 8:30PM
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Given a choice on which side to place the back corner drain, I chose to put it on the same side as the dishwasher. Otherwise the water line to the DW has to dangle through the otherwise open space on the non-plumbing side of the undercab.

1 Like    Bookmark   April 23, 2012 at 2:57PM
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