Our team of new home designers in Newcastle explain the advantages and disadvantages of the different sink type materials.
Granite composite sinks are made typically of 80% crushed granite and 20% resin. Once processed the result is a uniformly coloured, matte and slightly textured product. They are extremely durable, easy to clean and scratch resistant. Noise absorption is good. Price is more expensive than stainless steel but not excessive.
Stainless steel sinks are the cheapest sink option and come in the widest range of options. Because of their light weight they are suitable for any countertop. They are easy to clean and durable, however do scratch easier than granite composite. Noise absorption is poor.
Enamelled Cast Iron
Enamelled cast iron sinks have a more traditional look. The sink is made of a cast iron and coated with a glossy porcelain like shell. Consequently, they are extremely heavy and not suitable for all mounting types or countertops. Correct cleaning agents must be used to prevent dissolving the enamel. Staining of the sink can occur. Otherwise they have good noise absorption and durability. They are the most expensive form of sink.
Fireclay / Solid Ceramic
Fireclay is cheaper than enamelled cast iron and offers a similar look and properties. It is slightly more durable and chip resistant. It is most common in Belfast sinks.
Confusingly this material is called solid surface when in countertop form, and acrylic when referring to sink. Corian is probably the most recognisable brand in Australia of this type of material. It can be formed into any desired shape and therefore is used in integrated sinks.