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Stainless steel kitchen sinks.
Scratch removal kit

- After each use clean up with a mild vinegar solution or warm soapy water, rinse and towel dry. Either of these two cleaning solutions work just as well as any cleaning solution for stainless steel sinks available from the retailer.
- Occasionally wipe the sink's surface with diluted household bleach (1 part water /1 part bleach). Rinse thoroughly after disinfecting.
- From time to time do a thorough cleaning by filling the sink one-quarter full with a 50/50 water/bleach solution. Let soak for 15 minutes, then wipe the sides and bottom as solution drains. Rinse thoroughly.
- Small scratches may be removed with a scratch removal kit.


Low quality stainless steel kitchen sinks can be purchased for as little as a hundred dollars or so. High quality sinks can sell for a few thousand.
A good quality stainless steel kitchen sink would be listed as 18/10 and/or the number 302 or 304 and be made of 18 gauge steel. Check the underside of the sink and look for soundproofing pads and/or spray. This will dampen some noises from handling pots and pans.

The food disposer, also known as garborator, can be installed in the smaller sink which is used for preparing vegetables.

This corner double stainless steel sink is ideal for smaller kitchen designs

Stainless Steel Kitchen Sinks

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Stainless steel kitchen sinks. Scratch removal kit
As is the case with just about anything you purchase, you get what you pay for and that certainly applies to stainless steel sinks. Did you know that stainless steel does not necessarily means that your sink will not stain? It all depends on the steel's composition.
There are basically two things that determine the price tag for a stainless steel sink; gauge (thickness) and chromium/nickel content. So let's have a quick look at what what you should know about stainless steel kitchen sinks.
(For information about non-stainless steel sinks click here)

Unfortunately "Stainless Steel" doesn't always means that the sink will not stain. Stainless steel comes in different grades of metal composition. Chromium provides strength to the steel while nickel makes it more durable. So, let us have a closer look at the numbers that are used in advertising or on store labeling.
To make steel into stainless steel a minimum of 12% chromium has to be added to the steel. The chromium in the steel combines with oxygen in the atmosphere to form a thin, invisible layer of chrome-containing oxide. The chromium will resist rust, or stain 'less' than other types of steel. If you want a stainless steel kitchen sink that not only looks good but also will last you should be looking for a sink with a high nickel content.
An 18/10 stainless steel sink would be a good choice (18% chromium for lustre and rust protection and 10% nickel for hardness and strength).
Sometimes the grade and quality of a stainless steel kitchen sink is indicated by a number. The most common grades are 201, 301, 302, 304 and 420.
A grade 201 sink is most often seen in the large home improvement stores on the lowest end of the price scale. As you progress into the higher grades, the steel becomes more corrosion, oxidation, and rust resistant. Choosing a kitchen sink made of 302 or 304 stainless steel would be a good choice.

Standard double stainless steel sink

The thickness, called "gauge", is indicated by a number. You need to understand that the thicker the steel, the stronger, heavier, more dent proof and quieter the sink will be.
Most kitchen manufacturers produce stainless steel kitchen sinks from 22 gauge to 16 gauge, the smaller the number the thicker the steel. So a 16 gauge sink is thicker than a 22 gauge stainless steel sink. An 18 gauge sink is more than adequate for residential use.


Basically there are two type of finishes available, polished with a mirror like finish or a satin/brushed finish. The latter type may be more practical as minor scratches are less noticeable. Small scratches may be removed with a scratch removal kit.

There are two things that will dampen the sound of things being moved around in the sink, undercoating and foam pads. Low-end sinks will only have a little foam pad stuck to the underside of the bowls instead of the coating or nothing at all. Better quality sinks have both. First the soundproofing pads are installed and then the entire underside of the sink is sprayed with a sound absorbing material.
TIP. If your existing stainless steel kitchen sink does not have a soundproofing undercoat you can apply one yourself. A spray-can of car undercoating will do the trick.

There is a vast array of stainless steel kitchen sinks available from single bowl, double bowl or 1 3/4 double bowls. The garbage disposer is usually installed in the smaller (3/4) bowl.
Whatever your choice is, make sure that your counter top fabricator can cut the shape of the sink and that your plumber knows about your choice so that he can install the proper rough-in plumbing.

- Do not use steel wool it could scratch the protecting chrome-containing oxide film which could lead to rust spots.
- Do not leave soaps, detergents, bleachers and most other household cleaners too long in the sink. These products contain chlorides which can cause surface pitting.
- Do not leave metal canned food containers on the sink surface.
- Do not use the sink as a cutting board to prevent deep scratches and, eventually, rust.
- Do not use rubber mats in the sink to protect the finish film. The constant wet or damp area under the mat can lead to surface rust or pitting.
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