Q. My wife and I can't decide on what type of kitchen sink to get for our new stone countertops. We're down to choosing an under-mount or a drop-in. The big advantage so far is that our contractor told us a drop-in will cost less to install. But the under-mount looks cool. Other than price, are there advantages if we install a drop-in style sink instead of an under-mount?
A. Let's start with some basic information about under-mounts. They are usually installed on solid-surface or stone countertops because the counter edges of the sink opening are exposed. On top of looking "cool," under-mount sinks have no raised sink edges, so crumbs can be wiped directly into the sink bowl.
But a drop-in sink does have some advantages as well. As you mentioned, installation can cost less because it's a less complicated process. Usually, all you need is the correct size of hole cut into the countertop, and then you drop in the new sink. Also, because drop-ins are considered the standard type of sink, you may have more colors and styles to choose from. Finally, and this is a big one if you ever want to change your sink, a drop-in sink can usually be easily removed and a new one installed in its place without disturbing the countertop.
The choice will be yours, but here's one more "under and over" bit of advice: Come in "under budget" and be "overjoyed" with your new kitchen sink!
• Master plumber Ed Del Grande is the author of "Ed Del Grande's House Call" and hosts TV and Internet shows. Visit eddelgrande.com or write firstname.lastname@example.org.
Scripps Howard News Service