How Not to Sink When Purchaing One

By: Michael Jones

Introduction

A sink is not especially attractive but is one of the most important tools of the kitchen. Cleanliness and hygiene are essential for a restaurant to be successful. One way to keep your customers and staff satisfied is to have appropriate sinks as well as diligent hand washing. Most regulations require cooks, food preparation workers, and servers to wash their hand for 20 seconds with soap and warm water. In order for a retailer to be successful the products must be handled safely and prepared in a sterile way. In setting up and maintain a restaurant there are many sinks that one could obtain. Being in aware consumer and knowing what sink you need can save your business money and at the same time assuring your patrons a safe food and clean working environment.


Before you Purchase

One of the most important factors in determining what sink you need at your business or home is the exact size. Sinks can come in a variety of widths from 12’’-124’’. The most effective way of not buying a sink this is the wrong size is to measure the height width and depth accurately. One tip is to have multiple employees check these measurements to make sure they are correct. Another factor in terms of size which is extremely important to considering before purchasing a sink is how many compartments the sink needs. Sinks vary from one to three compartments. Traditionally in a three compartment sink the first compartment is for soaking the second is for rinsing and the third is for sanitizing. Before purchasing a sink make sure you are aware of exactly how many compartments you need as that can help narrow the selection down significantly. Also before your purchase a sink make sure you are aware of what material you want the sink to be made of. Stainless steel is very common. It is a durable material and is not easily chipped or dented. There are also units that are Nationally Sanitation Foundation certified which also some consumers may require.


Determining What Sink Fits Your Needs

There are several different types of sinks each with a unique design and for a unique use. Bar sinks are traditionally narrower than some of its counterparts ranging in widths from 36’’-60’’. These sinks usually contain two or three compartments and have a drain board on either side to help dry out washed items. Bar sinks are an essential piece of any bar as it gives the staff the ability to wash and dry glasses easily.

Cleanliness of a retail environment can dramatically affect the amount of sales as well as the number of customer who wish to return. In order to keep these numbers up mopping can be a useful way of keeping the environment clean and sterile. Ideally a mop sink is usually mounted on the floor for the convenience of cleaning up used buckets. There are three types of mop sinks mobile which can be moved around, traditional, and as aforementioned floor. Mop sinks come in a variety of widths ranging anywhere between 24''-33''.

One compartment sinks as aforementioned are sinks with just one compartment. Some of these sinks are corner sinks and some are meant for regular areas. One compartment sinks are available in a variety of sizes ranging from 12''-72''. There are sinks that contain either one or two drain boards to help you dry out inventory, and can be located on the left of the sink, right, or located conveniently on both sides. Do your research as some of these units may include a faucet within the price and some you may have to purchase them separately.

Two compartment sinks are sinks that contain just that, two compartments. The sinks compartments are often divided up by having one to soak the dishes, and another to rinse them. This helps utilize efficiency and save water. Like their one compartment counterparts, these sinks can contain one or two drainboards and they could be located on the left, right, or both sides. Again some units may come with faucets so please be aware of that before you finalize your decision. Two compartment sinks have a larger range of widths than one compartment ones varying from 24''-98''.

Three compartment sinks can be an essential part of a kitchen if utilized correctly. As stated previously, in a three compartment sink traditionally the first compartment is for soaking the second is for rinsing and the third is for sanitizing. These three compartment sinks can also be ordered in a corner shape if necessary. The drainboard may be located on either the left, right, or both sides of the sink. Some of these units may include a faucet as well. Being larger than a two compartment sinks is more common. The widths vary from 35''-124''.

One unique aspect about sinks is that just because there is a large variety doesn’t necessarily mean that the sink is the exact fit that your business or home desires. Distributors such as Elite Restaurant Equipment can build you custom sized units. These can come in hand to compliment any kitchen and are not often more expensive than their counterparts that are mostly advertised.

Wall hung hand sinks are useful sink not only in a retail or commercial sense but is also very practical for the home and office. A wall hung sink is just that a sink mounted on a wall. This can be utilized in a doctors office or even in the home. Many of these units contain splash guards located on the side or a back splash which prevents water from getting onto surrounding equipment or the floors. Such simple things like that can prevent your business from unnecessary slip and fall law suits as well. All these units include a faucet where the brackets are the standard 8'' apart from each other. The sinks are between 5'' and 7'' high. They are available in a variety of widths as well ranging from 12''-16.75''.

Drop in sinks are vital for meeting health code requirements for proper dish cleaning and sanitation. These drop in sinks have one to four compartments, with three-compartment sinks being the most common for washing, and sanitizing dishes. These sinks are available in a variety of heights ranging from 5''-7''. The lengths of these sinks vary greatly so please measure accurately to save yourself the headaches. Lengths vary from 14''-22''. Widths also vary a great deal from 12''-33''.

Corner sinks can be a very crucial item in maintaining proper hygiene. A corner is an ideal place for a sink as often the space is left in the corner is small. These sinks are standard with three compartments. They have drainboards located conveniently on both side of the sink. Some may include a faucet so read up. They vary in length from 25''-31''. They are extremely wide ranging from 46''-79''.

Although some sinks may not see so appealing to the eyes, luxury sinks contradict that theory. Luxury sinks bring a unique design and appealing look to even the darkest of kitchens. These sinks are available with both two and three compartments. Some of these may include a drainboard for added convenience to dry wet items. These a larger sized sinks and are available in widths ranging from 55''-124''.

The final type of sink available is a utility sink. Utility sinks are available in one, two, and three compartments. These sinks do not contain drainboards or faucets usually. They are available in a variety of widths ranging from 15''-75''.


Commercial Faucets

Any sink needs to be paired with an appropriate faucet. Faucets come in a variety of types. There are pre rinse, mop sinks, and kitchen faucets are available. One thing to consider before purchasing a commercial faucet is not only the type but also whether the faucet needs to be mounted on the wall or on the deck of the sink. Pre rinse faucets are hand held faucets that are incredibly mobile. Often before washing thoroughly fruits and vegetables are cleaned with a pre rinse faucet. Mop sink faucets are also unique. Rather than their faucet counterparts which stream hot and cold water separately, mop sink faucets combine both temperature of water into one constant stream. This is ideal for washing floors and cleaning the overall appearance of your retail establishments. Kitchen sink faucets are used traditionally in the kitchen and are the all purpose go to faucet in usual circumstances. Faucets come in a variety of different lengths from 4''-44'. One major factor to consider after determining the appropriate faucet to purchase is what kind of spout you need. There are several different types of spouts. The three major types of spouts are gooseneck, hook, and standard. A gooseneck is a cane shape spout in winch water flows out narrowly. A hook spout streams an even more narrow blast of water ideal for pressure washing hard to get off dirt and grime. A standard spout usually is more elongated than it spout counterparts, and is the usually standard when it comes to faucets.


Sinks Bowls

Sink bowls are a must for most commercial restaurant establishments. Sink bowls can be customizable in size and are generally welded inside a stainless steel table. Sink bowls are best when made of stainless steel which will outlast most materials. This sink bowl is a one-piece, seamless sink unit with weld that blends into the surrounding surface for a clean look and easier cleaning. Sink bowl come in many sizes. They vary in length from 9''-25''. The width of them are between 12''-36''. The depth of these bowls start at 5'' and can be as deep as 14''.


Sink Covers

Sink covers are an essential part of all commercial restaurant food service business. When you are finished at the end of the day using your commercial restaurant sink put the cover on to keep a clean and friendly environment in your establishment. When purchasing a sink cover, stainless steel materialized models will prove to be a better investment. Stainless steel sink covers tend to last longer and be more durable. Sink covers come in a variety of measurements varying anywhere from 12''-75''.


Putting it All Together

Cleanliness and freshness are one of the most important factors in owning and operating a successful retail establishment and is a part of life. The better your sanitary methods are the less of a chance you have of getting a customer sick, or even worse get closed down by your local department. Before purchasing a sick there are several things you should remember. First take accurate measurements. Secondly make sure you pick out exactly what type of sink you need with the corresponding number of compartments desired. Lastly make sure to obtain a sink cover to help protect it at night from any invading pests that may arise in a kitchen. If you follow these simple steps your guaranteed to swim and not sink during your purchase.