When you're designing or renovating your dream home, choosing a sink for the laundry room might not be at the top of your to-do list. But really, what's more important than making sure a task you do every day goes as smoothly (and, dare we say, as enjoyably) as possible? The right laundry room sink can streamline your daily routine, helping you clean everything from stains to delicate items (including your pets) in a dedicated space that won't make a mess of the rest of your home.
If you have a layout with enough room for a true laundry room, a utility sink should one of your top priorities for the space. Next to your washer and dryer, it's the most important thing you can add to your work zone. Before the advent of modern appliances, sinks were the way to get your laundry done, period, and they can still be an important tool in maintaining the quality of your clothes and reducing your carbon footprint by lowering your energy costs. But it's not just as easy as picking out the first design you see at the hardware store. Sinks for laundry rooms can be totally utilitarian or things of beauty, depending on how much you want to invest. Our guide will help you navigate the ins and outs of choosing a sink for a laundry room, from the materials you can spec to the best size and shape for your space.
What Is a Laundry Room Sink?
Think of a sink for your laundry room as the more rugged, industrial version of your kitchen sink. Laundry room sinks are often larger and deeper than their culinary counterparts to ensure they can accommodate a pile of clothes, a muddy dog, or even washing machine parts. Laundry room sinks are often referred to as utility sinks, nodding to their ability to flex between laundry tasks and everyday messes you may not want to put in your kitchen sink or bathtub, like washing mud from your boots or paint from a tray. If you have a basement boiler, you can empty it into your utility sink in the winter too. They come in a variety of materials and even more shapes and sizes, so you can choose one that will suit your home and your cleaning routine.
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What Is the Best Sink for a Laundry Room?
Like many fixtures and finishes you outfit your home with, laundry room sinks come in a variety of shapes and materials, and each has its own benefits. When choosing a sink for your laundry room, it's important to consider what you'll be using it for. If you have a family with a wardrobe full of delicates or a few especially messy kiddos, you may want to opt for a larger sink than you would need if you're just spot-treating clothing occasionally. Below, we break down common shapes and materials you may run into when choosing a laundry room sink.
Types of Laundry Room Sinks
Sinks for laundry rooms range in installation and appearance, and you can absolutely find one that fills your desire for both functionality and style. If you're working with an existing laundry room and don't want to do much in the way of renovations, you'll likely want to opt for a freestanding or wall-mounted laundry room sink. A freestanding style comes equipped with its own basin and legs and is essentially an "unbox and go" version of a laundry room sink. It can be easily hooked up to the existing water supply and doesn't require any additional cabinetry. A wall-mounted laundry room sink allows you to achieve a similar effect while maintaining as much free floor space as possible.
If you're undertaking a renovation, you have many more laundry room sink options. You can shop for a sink that comes in a base cabinet, similar to what you would purchase for a bathroom vanity, or opt for an undermount design, meaning it can be installed in a run of cabinetry or "dropped in" to a countertop for a seamless, modern look. These options give you counter space, which is great if you plan to use the laundry room sink often and could use a nearby spot to scrub, stain stick, and dry.
Laundry Room Sink Materials
When it comes to choosing a laundry room sink that's right for your space, the material you opt for is just as important as the size and style. Common options for a laundry room sink include:
Stainless steel sinks are lightweight, durable, inexpensive, and easy to clean, making them an obvious choice for a utilitarian space like a laundry room. They'll remain resistant to bleach or any other chemicals you use on your clothes and are very heat resistant. However, they do lend an obviously industrial edge to a space, which may not jive with your decor if you tend to lean towards more traditional design.
If you've ever set foot in a farmhouse-inspired space, you've probably seen a cast iron sink (or two!). This perennial classic is the perfect combination of form and function, with an enamel coating that helps the sink hold its own against daily wear and tear. Cast-iron utility sinks are a great option for a workhorse space like a laundry room—just keep in mind that they do occasionally chip, which can be repaired by reglazing.
Typically seen in free-standing sink setups, acrylic laundry sinks are great if you want a more inexpensive option for your space. While acrylic sinks are somewhat durable, you should keep in mind that they can react to certain chemicals and are not as heat resistant as other options.
Calling all stain-prone households! Whether you're a klutz with pasta sauce or have kids who get their berry smoothies everywhere, you're going to want to choose a laundry room sink that can stand up to your messes. Enter ceramic, the most nonporous (and therefore stain resistant) option on this list. Ceramic vessels are fired at high temperatures, resulting in a sink that is durable, heat resistant, and shiny. They're a great option for family homes and anyone who wants a timeless laundry room.
What Is the Best Size for a Laundry Room Sink?
The ideal size for a laundry room sink ranges from 25 to 35 inches wide, depending on how much available space you have to work with. Sinks larger than 35 inches wide tend to come in double-basin styles rather than a single basin, though the latter is certainly possible to find, especially if you're going custom. The right laundry room sink depth really depends on the style of sink you select. Freestanding sinks tend to be deeper (up to 25 inches or more), while undermount sinks typically range from 10 to 12 inches in depth.