Single or double bowl sink

mtdeniseAugust 8, 2012

My husband and I are in the begininng phases of having our kitchen remodeled. The sink is the one item we can't seem to agree on (so far). I've always had a double bowl sink. I use one side for washing dishes and in the other I have a rack for drying. I do have a dishwasher but wash pots and pans and anything that can't go in the dishwasher. This rack seems to always have something in it. Even if I put everything away at night, in the morning my daughter will wash her coffee pot and put it in there and other things will be washed and put in there during the day.

My husband wants to get a single bowl sink and buy a collapsable rack that will sit on the counter. I know this rack will always be out as we use it for air drying so much. I've been looking online at various pros and cons but no one seems to address this particular use of the double bowl. I'm trying to find people who used the double bowl like me who have switched to a single and see whether they love or hate it.

Thanks for any input. Boy this remodeling stuff is stressful! Glad I found this board.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am in the process of building, and have chosen a Kohler Whitehaven farmhouse sink, after living a lifetime (25 years, haha) with double bowl sinks...but for me, I don't mind drying the few things that might be out drying to keep the clutter down. I have a lot of Le Creuset enamel cast iron pans, and definitely have the need for a very large sink, your situation may be different. To me, I would rather have one really big sink that I can do whatever I want with, than have a drying rack. It may even be possible for you to find a sink that is so large, that is one bowl, but you could place a drying rack in one side? Seems like it could be awkward, or it could work. Not sure, but that's what I think! :)

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 8:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I happen to agree with your DH. But here is yet another idea. We have a grid that covers about half of our single-bowl sink. It sits up at the level of the sink rim. We air-dry things like your DD's coffeepot, small pots, etc, on it all the time. But, unlike a double-bowl, I can take the grid away if I want to wash a cookie sheet or roasting pan. I really like having a nice, big, single-bowl sink!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 8:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

looks like Angie and I think alike! ;)

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 8:07PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh, I like the grid idea. Is that something you purchase with the sink or buy at Ikea or someplace? Have to admit, I'm lazy and will leave things in the rack a while...maybe a single bowl will make me a little neater! LOL!!

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 8:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well, drying grids are available for many sinks. Franke (and some others) have a line of sinks that have a ledge near the rim that is specifically meant for a grid (or cutting board) to rest on. I instead used a sink with a positive reveal, so that the grid or cutting board could rest on the top of the sink rim. Other grids have feet that lift them up off the bottom of the sink.

I bought a Franke grid and used it with my Elkay sink. You can also get generic ones at, say, Bed Bath and Beyond.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 8:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We went from a 60/40 Blanco to a 33" single farm sink. I do miss the side part because it continually held drying dishes. I'm not a big fan of countertop racks and we would just use a towel and put the drying dishes on it. Having a single bowl cuts down for us on leaving dishes in the drying area - they get put away a lot quicker now.
I found this collapsible drying pan in Bed and Bath. It collapses flat, and stores easily under the sink. It doesn't hold nearly as much as a side sink does, but I love my big sink - I can fit anything in it and wouldn't go back to a double.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 9:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


When you have a large single with a grid, it's big enough that you can have stuff drying and still use the sink. I had my doubts, but now that I've gone single there is no looking back. Get a drain that is toward the back so you can use more of the sink.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 10:14PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm a double bowl girl, but if the only reason you want a separate side is for draining/drying, then I'd have to agree with the single bowl crew.

Think, though, about how you use the double sink. If drying is the only issue, then you have some good answers. I think there's a video - maybe by Kohler - where you consider how you like to use a sink and it helps guide you to the style that's best for you. I have a low divide sink, and it works for me. My friend loves the sink that has a little shallow area with a cutting board and the disposal and a big deeper sink for washing. Other people on GW have said how much they hate that kind of sink. It's very personal.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 10:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ahhh . . . takes me back. This is pretty much reads like my first post on GW. Ended up going with a 36" single and am so glad I did! I used to leave drying dishes out for longer than I'd care to admit. I purchased a drying rack but find I don't use it. Easier to just put down towel and set things down there. Encourages me to put things away a lot quicker. LOVE my big single.

If I ever leave this house and move somewhere with a double bowl, I might accidentally drop a sledge hammer in the sink and damage it. Ooops! That would be a shame. If the sledge hammer didn't damage it, I'd keep upping the ante until something else accidentally damaged it. I'm sure my hubby wouldn't suspect a thing. :)

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 11:06PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks everyone. My husband is pretty set that he wants the single bowl so I'll let him have this. Glad to hear that others who used the double for drying LOVE their single. I'm sure I'll be back with other questions as we progress forward.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 7:25AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'll be another dissenting voice here.

I don't wash dishes by hand other than pans. Currently, we have a medium-large single bowl and I don't like it. At all. REALLY don't like it. I hate washing my hands in there when I have a pan that is soaking. I hate that it makes it harder for me to use the garbage disposal because pans are always soaking in there when I'm cleaning up.

That being said, if I also had a prep sink in the kitchen, my dislike would decrease exponentially. But, I don't. And I won't for my new kitchen. So, a large divided bowl for me again. I'm planning on going with a 1 3/4 bowl sink and hopefully that will work well for us.

It depends on how you use your sink and sometimes if you will have a secondary sink. If I had two separate sinks in the kitchen, I would go with a large single bowl and prep sink, no problem.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 8:01AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

because pans are always soaking in there when I'm cleaning up.

"Pans," as in plural? With my old double-bowl sink, there was not room for more than one pan to soak. (And, of course, one side was always full of pots and utensils that had been "drying" for several days. ;-)

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 9:33AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I did a google search on single vs double drying

and it came up with a lot of threads. Here are some of them:

and there are more.

I hope that is helpful!

Here is a link that might be useful: google search

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 5:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Angie, yup, "pans" as in plural - well, usually a pot and a pan, to be more accurate. Exactly as I did when I had a smaller double in my old house. My 1 3/4 sink will actually be larger than my old double so it's going to be easier to have more than one soaking if need be. That being said, I am usually cooking for just the two of us, so I'm not using jumbo pots or pans in many cases.

Luckily, when I hand wash a pot or pan, I wash and dry them straight away, so they don't sit around in the sink "drying". Although right now, their "put away" spot is on the countertop because our current kitchen cabinet space is woefully inadequate...but that's about to change soon, we hope! :)

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 6:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 7:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I really hate single bowl sinks, although I will probably have to get one due to my short sink wall. When I'm prepping, fishing chicken bits out of dirty dishes doesn't rock my world like it should, I guess. But I think the right/wrong answer depends on the specific kitchen. If I bump out I'll have a prep sink, so somebody else can fight with the single bowl.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 8:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I love my single bowl. It's a 30 inch Kraus zero radius and it fits in a 30 inch sink base.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 9:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm definitely a double bowl sink person. I got a taste of a single bowl when I was helping my mother-in-law, and I hated it. But for those of you who love them my question is, how do you wash the dishes? Do you fill that whole big sink up? Or do you use one of those plastic dishpans? Or do you do what my son does and just put the soap on the sponge and wash them under the running faucet?

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 9:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

@mtdenise - we have a 43" Kohler top-mount double bowl sink that will go when we remodel. Our current sink model is no longer made and the almond color won't work with the new kitchen cabs & counter. I will miss having the second sink bowl for our dish-drying rack. Everything sits down in there, you can't see it from across the room, etc.

The 33" double-sink bowls are too small for our large pans. (been there, done that in a different house) and I cannot warm up to stainless steel, so that is not on the options list.

I could have written your OP .... but hubby and I have resigned ourselves to getting a 33 - 36" single bowl porcelain type sink. We have no clue how we'll handle the dish drying rack for pots, pans, especially and rinsed out recyclables (like soda cans) that need to dry before getting tossed into their respective bins.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 10:39PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am fascinated with the obsession of being able to wash cookie sheets in a single bowl sink. How many cookies do you people bake?

This exact line comes up in Appliances when discussing ranges. "I love that the Bluestar can fit a full commercial sheet pan." It's hilarious when some of the people who write that later admit, "I've never baked cookies."

I'd rather have something that works better every day than once upon a fairy tale.

And yes, tripletmom, I think most people with single bowls wipe soap on dishes with a sponge. Unless they have a pretty big single sink, and then those can actually fit a dishpan.

Sadly, after all this, my own sink run is so short I'm doomed to single bowldom.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 11:41PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

triplemom, I do what your son does. But wait, why so much hand washing? Use your DW to its full capabilities! If I do have to wash something by hand I dry it immediately. Why wait? Get it done and put it away.

Grew up with double sinks. My first house immediately got rid of the double for a single to have a few more inches of counter. Now can't wait for my new bigger single to be installed.

When this topic comes up I always want to start a new thread...why so much hand washing? Use your DW.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 12:08AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"How many cookies do you people bake?"

I use my "cookie sheets" ("sheet pans" to me) very often for following types of activities. (I have three, but have been begging DH to bring home a fourth from work.)

-oven roast veggies like parnsips, potatoes, sweet potatoes, turnips, carrots, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, etc.

-under a gratin of chard or potatoes, etc. on to prevent a spillover mess in the bottom of the oven

-set out a whole fish or fillet for prepping and transport for the grill

-bake herb biscuits

-oven cook bacon

-use with a drying rack on top to store French toast or pancakes in the warming drawer

-oven toast a load of crostini for tapenade, semi-soft or triple creme cheese, fava bean spread

-oven toast nuts and seeds for snacking, salads, and cooking/baking

-oven toast pita for pita chips

-kids crafts

-cookies!!! (really!!)

And many other uses of which I'm too tired to think. I can fit only one sheet pan per DW load and very often have one in the DW and one soaking.

**on topic** I love my single bowl. I'm surprised that no one has mentioned the fact that DW get dishes cleaner using less water. Those facts are usually brought up when this issue is discussed. Something about how when DW came into common use, the spread of a common disease decreased dramatically.

I use the DW for 99.23% of everything except knives. Anything I handwash gets washed, set on a washcloth next to the sink, dried, and put away. I use commercial quality pots and pans, teflon and no, that go in the DW. I HATE hand washing. Why spend your time standing at the sink when you have a DW installed right next to you? Isn't that why you bought it? I run my full DW at least once a day. *rant off*

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 12:15AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I basically NEVER bake cookies. However, "cookie sheets" are often (for me at least) used for lots of stuff other than cookies. During the winter, I roast veggies a lot. So a lot of roasting pans and cookie sheets. And I hated balancing the sheet/pan on the center divider of the double-bowl sink, while trying to keep a little water in the sheet while I scrubbed the bejeezus out of it with a a scrubbie. And then spilling the brown water behind the faucet. Again.

I generally use a dishpan, or, better, one of the pots or large bowls that i used to make that night's meal. I then wash the knives and other hand-washables there. Even when I had a double-bowl sink I rarely filled one side, just used the dishpan method with a pot.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 12:47AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Where are all you folks finding the dishwashers that clean better than hand washing? And I have NEVER heard that dishwasher prevent the spread of common diseases. Washing dishes by hand is not rocket science, it is MUCH faster than running the machine, and is way more energy efficient if you have more dirty dishes than can fit in one load. I will agree that it is not a favourite activity of mine - I can always find something else I'd rather do.

My current Meile Optima is the best of a bunch of sorry performers I've had in the past 20+ yrs. But it won't clean baking dishes, and it certainly wouldn't remove anything from a cookie sheet. And I have lots of stuff that cannot withstand the DW enviroment - cast iron, wood, pewter, fine knives, and hand painted china.

I'm definitely a double-bowl gal. Besides the dish-washing issues, it provides two work spaces, which get used daily in my average sized kitchen.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 10:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
mama goose_gw zn6OH

I love my 33" single bowl farm sink (even with the water-spots-on-stainless issue.) As Angie does, I wash in the largest dirty pot or bowl of the moment, or use a large mixing bowl.

Disclosure: I have an smaller single bowl sink that I usually use for thawing/cutting up meat--less surface area to disinfect, and I don't have to worry about dirty dishes in that sink.

Large sink:

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 11:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Washing in a single bowl sink:

- Empty food scraps into trash or down disposal

- Plug sink drain

- Put in dirty dishes

- Squirt in soap

- Fill with hot water

- Let soak

- Pull the plug on the drain and let the soapy water drain out

- Either one rinses and the other dries, or we rinse and put on countertop dish rack.

Now that I've typed it out, it does look like a lot of steps!

When I was single, I didn't bother drying most things, just stuck them in the countertop dish rack.

And I haven't baked cookies in years, but I DO do roasts all the time, so it's nice to fit the roasting pan in a single bowl sink! I have definitely survived without a single sink or a huge sink.


    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 11:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I hand wash the various sizes of baking sheets and pans, at least one of which is used most days. In my low divide double sink, I just lay a large pan at an angle, wash one end, then flip it around. When things need to be scrubbed off, the end I'm working on is usually the end out of the water, so I don't think I would prefer a large sink for this task. Because the divide is low, when I run water on the pan, it stays in the sink. I agree, with the full divide I used to get water running off the pan back to the counter or onto my shirt. If I want to soak a big pan, I put it on the counter and use the pull out nozzle to put water in it.

I used to have a dish drainer full-time on my old counter and often left things to air dry (per labor-saving tip from Heloise). Now that I have my pretty new granitized counters, I stack things on a dishtowel or microfiber pad, dry them and put them and the drying pad away. I like to see my counter.

Like I said, how you use a sink is very personal, so you have to think what will work for you regardless of what others have chosen. I do wonder how many people who love single sinks actually have two sinks in the kitchen, effectively giving them a double sink.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 11:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

And then there's me playing devils advocate and thinking I've got it all....

In our new build, I'll be putting in the Kohler ProTaskcenter which is a mind boggling 60"....

Triple bowl with two sinks measuring 18x21 (interior measure) and a center 18x11 disposal/prep area.

Sliding strainer and cutting board make it as useful as the Stages but will allow me to drain yucky stuff, wash my hands and prep in the center section even when there are dishes drying to the right and soaking to the left.

I do a lot of handwashing. No way I could put everything in the dw even if I had two of them. This morning after breakfast I remember washing my two wooden cutting boards, the Aerrocino coffeefrother, a wooden spoon, a large stainless bowl, a huge skillet that had some stuck on bits and would have taken up most of the dishwasher (even if it would have come clean), a plastic placemat that goes under the cat bowls, my wooden reamer and one of my good knives.

Isn't it great that we have so many choices? :)

And no the price isn't 2K as said on the Kohler website.... I got mine for around 800.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kohler Pro Taskcenter

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 2:39PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Can you look at my kitchen layout and tell me what I'm missing?
Sorry I posted this once previously, but I wanted to...
Need advice on how to remodel this corner of kitchen
Hi all Just purchased a home and does not have budget...
Any reason a DW couldn't go next to a fridge?
We need to pull the trigger on our cabinets next week,...
Baker Cherry Shaker doors vs IKEA Laxarby doors
Please advise on Baker doors. I am going to get IKEA...
Norcraft vs. Marsh cabinets - is one better?
We have been working with a large local cabinet company....
Sponsored Products
Alessi | "Sugar Jar" Sugar Castor
$104.00 | YLighting
Fima Frattini by Nameeks S5581 Single Hole Bathroom Faucet - S5581CR
Eggplant Metallic Double Gourd Table Lamp
$99.99 | Lamps Plus
Emma Pointelle Throw 50" x 70" - LAVENDER
$184.90 | Horchow
Bean Drop Latch Set
Signature Hardware
Regal Black 66 to 120-Inch Double Curtain Track
$49.95 | Bellacor
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™