Stainless or granite kitchen sink??

captncarsJune 21, 2014

So, I already purchased a Kraus farmhouse sink. I purchased it mainly on looks, I have never owned a stainless sink before. Now I think I want a Blanco Silgranit sink based on on the reviews of how durable and easy to take care of they are. Are stainless sinks hard to take care of? I have about one week before my cabinets are made so I need to decide if I want to change my sink soon. Help me decide!

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I think I am a good person to answer your question cause my last kitchen was a Silgranit sink, my current kitchen that I am renovating has a stainless steel sink, and my choice for my renovated kitchen is an apron front sink - but it will be a Kohler enameled cast iron. So I have or will be covering all bases!

I loved loved LOVED my Blanco Silgranit sink. I had the Blanco Super Single with the corner drain, which was the best configuration IMHO. In 5 years, my Silgranit sink never showed dirt, never stained, never scratched, and was so easy to keep clean. In the house we just moved into there is a stainless steel sink, and I have had SS sinks in other homes. I know people get heated on this topic, but for me, after having had the ease of Silgranit, I do not like stainless with its scratches, water spots, and it seems to look greasy/dirty very quickly. Other people feel differently (Trebruchet, I expect you to chime in with an anti-Silgranit message LOL).

So, you are likely asking why aren't I getting a Silgranit Super Single again since I loved it so much? It's because I found the undermount hard on my back. An apron front is easier on the back. An undermount sink is harder on the back because you have to lean slightly across four or so inches in the front. I read on this forum that this problem is made worse if you have a high arch faucet that is set toward the back of the sink, so that you have to lean even more into the sink. Blanco does not make a Silgranit apron front sink. Since I don't like stainless, and I don't want the irregularity of fireclay, I am getting a Kohler Whitehaven enameled cast iron apron front. It even has configuration of the single-bowl with the corner drain that I loved so much with my previous Silgranit sink. The Whitehaven is expensive, but it's something I use all day every day, so for me, it is worth it. It's pretty too!

You may want the more contemporary look of a stainless apron front sink, and I agree, they look really sharp! The Whtehaven is definitely more traditional, so may not go with your aesthetic.

Someone posted this video which I an copying and pasting below. There's a little ad at the beginning but it's short. The sink is shown with a bridge faucet, and I am not a fan of bridge faucets so will get a more contemporary single-hole faucet.

Here is a link that might be useful: Youtube video about Kohler Whitehaven

This post was edited by Sahmmy on Sat, Jun 21, 14 at 19:26

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 7:18PM
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Sahmmy (or anyone else). I went through the choices of all three of those too. We were planning the whitehaven apronfront for a while, but we ultimately decided it was too traditional for us. We thought about one of the SS apronfronts like the OP pictured, but we have very hard water and thought that would be difficult to deal with. We've got a Cinder Silgranit Super Single with the offset drain on order. I'm hoping that'll be 'the one' for us. I don't know what color yours was, but what are your thoughts on water spots on silgranit vs. stainless?

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 8:17PM
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i have the silgranite in anthracite and had a ss prior to the reno. i didn't hate the ss but i love the silgranite. no water spots or scratches so far but its only been a couple of months. i did break a glass as i had the habit of tossing things into the sink with ss so that is the only downside as of now.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 8:27PM
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Cal_quail - in answer to your questions, my previous home's kitchen had the Silgranit sink in anthracite, which is a charcoal-y black. Loved the color! It looked glamorous, and showed NOTH-ING. The anthracite color I think seems more a contemporary look, and my previous kitchen was a more contemporary style. But having said that, I've seen a couple kitchens on the Gardenweb with very traditional appearance, with soapstone counters and the anthracite sink that look beautiful and traditional. So the anthracite can go either way.

As to water spots, my current stainless sink shows them in one second of the water drying. Our water here is just a bit hard, not enough to need a water softener, just slightly hard. The water spots are annoying, though I guess there's worse things in life! But the Silgranit never showed a water spot, or a wine or coffee stain either. I am a little nervous that the Whitehaven will show coffee and wine stains, but everything in kitchen choices is a compromise on something.

This post was edited by Sahmmy on Sat, Jun 21, 14 at 21:52

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 9:40PM
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Silgranite super single in anthracite for about 18 months now, after a Kohler double bowl white cast iron for 27 years. The Kohler was fine, no problems but was ready for a change, and what a change! Absolutely NOTHING shows in this sink! ....I'm not sure I know when it's dirty ;)

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 11:02PM
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We got the Silgranit 1 3/4 bowl in Cinder. So far, we've been very pleased - it's been in for a few months now. Easy to clean, no issues with water marks, no scratches. Doesn't really show up as "dirty", so I just have to remember to clean it. ;-)

I don't usually stand at the sink for very long - most of my dishes go in the DW, and while I'm short (5'3"), I haven't really noticed an issue with an undermount sink.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 9:24AM
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My KD advised me against buying a ss farmhouse sink like the OP pictured because buttons and buckles rubbing against it while you wash dishes, etc. would scratch it.
Personally, I have never had an issue reaching into or across a regular undermount sink.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 2:44PM
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We went with Silgranit because I wanted a sink that didn't scratch. One GW-er (you know you you are A) also told me that water that hits the Silgranit isn't as loud as water that hits SS.

SS is not exactly difficult to maintain, however it does scratch/patina over time. I found that frustrating that i could not keep it looking new. Reading over and over on GW that their Silgranit sinks look new after years is what sold me.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 2:59PM
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Fori is not pleased

I've had cast iron and stainless. No problem with either. I'll probably end up with Silgranit this time for one reason: I need a faucet deck and you can knock out the holes you want with the Silgranit. I don't want to have to fill in holes on a new sink. (I'm undermounting and tiling it in, so I want a deck.)

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 4:51PM
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I detest stainless sinks; they look great up until the first time you run water in them. scpalmetto makes a good point about the apron front; it will probably get scratched up in no time. My all-time favorite is Kohler cast iron, but I'm really enamored of the Silgranit Blanco sink now. Hope to find one for my current kitchen reno.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 10:58PM
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These are before and after pictures of a recent stainless steel sink refinish I did before I had my new Festool sander. 10 minutes tops, the customers didnâÂÂt want to get too fussy. Any homeowner with a $29.00 palm sander, a 120, 240, 400 grit paper, and a red Scotch Brite pad could do the same or better in 20 minutes. Throw a gray Scotch Brite on if you want it to scream.

Say what you want about stainless, but I love renewable surfaces. Chip that Fireclay or cast iron and youâÂÂll stare at it until the day you replace the sink.

I had to trim a flange of Silegranite and kept the piece to scratch to see if I can get it out. IâÂÂll keep you posted.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 11:05AM
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Hmmm. Well I have had my blanco cinder sink for about a month (new build) after previously only having stainless. I would be worried about scratching a SS apron sink front too so I see why you are concerned (although it does look sharp).

What I enjoy about it:
We are on a well and have slightly hard water also (as someone else mentioned above), not enough for a softener and NO water spots. Not.ONE. :)

It doesn't scratch as far as I can tell.

It is quiet (Hello "I"). I wasn't necessarily expecting that but it is. It's not a hollow or 'tinny' sound, it's solid. Unexpected joyful discovery there as that always drove me nuts.

It's not shiny. I kind of like matte though so that is a personal thing.

I haven't found anything that I'd say is a 'hmm, oh well it's alright' type of thing.

I DID have to fight for it as dh thought it was an unnecessary expense (he is of the mind a sink is a sink is a sink) but I am very glad I did!

Good luck!

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 12:38PM
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Fori is not pleased

Treb, do report back on the Silgranit. It seems sort of rough and weird for a sink. I have a sample--haven't tried scratching it yet and honestly I don't think a scratch would bother me if it's the same color. (Blanco sends free sink samples fast.)

That said, the scratched up stainless steel sink had a lovely patina and I would be happy with it. I've had brushed SS counters with integrated sinks and big scratches can just be blended in pretty well with a scotchbrite pad. I wouldn't bother with a sink, but would occasionally spruce up the counters.

The KD dissing apron fronts clearly has no experience with them. Why would an apron front sink take more abuse from people brushing against it than cabinet material? Whether it's SS, fireclay, or cast iron, it'll be a more scratch-resistant material than stained or painted wood.

You should see how the front of my wall mount (and therefore apron-front-ish) porcelain utility/powder room sink looks. Unlike the cabinetry under the sinks in my 60+ year old house, it looks perfect, and it's seen the hardest use.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 1:36PM
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"Treb, do report back on the Silegranit."


Click the link:

Here is a link that might be useful: Silegranite Scratch Experiment

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 3:00PM
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I have a Swanstone granite sink in Nero, their name for black and like it a lot .

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 3:11PM
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Thanks for everyone's input ! Although it didn't make my decision any easier. :) @illinigirl I would of never thought about the water noise, that is a major pro for the Silgranit. @trebruchet I didn't realize how you could easily repair the scratches on a ss.

If I didn't already buy the kraus ss apron, I would probably get the Silgranit. Hopefully the water spots dont drive me nuts!!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2014 at 4:20PM
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