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Single vs double kitchen sink - no dishwasher at home - ?

April 25, 2013

we have 2 options for our new kitchen -

get a single sink with 28" width

get a double sink with two bowls - big bowl is 16" and smaller one will be 12"

*the depth stays the same approx 16" for both options.

other facts-
(a) although we have a dishwasher we dont use dishwashers much in asia as pots & pans are big in size and too many people live in one house so there's always help around.
(b) there's 24" counter space on both sides of the sink.
(c) any sink bigger than 30" is not possible due to planning constraints
(d) this big sink will be for the dishes - there will also be small "prep sink"

Comments (16)

  • eleena

    IMHO, a single-bowl sink beats a double-bowl one of the same size hands down and 28" is a good size. Are you sure you want it to be 16" deep? It might be too deep from ergonomic point of view.

    Having a DW is a convenience, not a requirement. :-) l personally cannot imagine my life without one though it might be because of not having enough help around. :-(

  • buildinva

    I hand wash a lot--mainly plastic as I don't like what the DW does to it. I cannot imagine hand washing without a double sink. I need space for things to soak while I still access the sink for other tasks. I also like one side for washing, 1 for rinsing. Just my preference!

  • benlinus

    I'd say go for a double sink, they're a bit pricier, but they do come in handy a LOT. From washing dishes in one, to preparing a meal in another, it makes it a lot easier to multitask. An equal-sized double sink is good enough, but if you want to splurge you could do the one bigger/small.

  • PRO

    I can't imagine having a DW and not using it. I use it for everything but knives. A single sink is easily turned into a double with the addition of a pan insert, but you can never turn a double sink into a large single in order to be able to wash oven racks, grill pans, and other oversized items needing washed.

  • liriodendron

    I prefer a large single bowl sink. And I NEVER use the DW in my kitchen, everything is hand washed.

    A large single bowl can always be made smaller by using a dish pan (or any large vessel in the process of being washed) for smaller items. And it is always at the ready when washing large items.

    Cramming, or angling, or washing a large thing in sections is a colossal PITA.


  • itsallaboutthefood

    I have a 30" sink and I keep a dish pan in it for hand washing. It's great if I need to wash something very large...I just take the dish pan out. I used to have a double sink and hated it because it was impossible to wash cookie sheets or large pots and pans.

  • eleena

    The OP has a prep sink, so preparing a meal while soaking dishes shouldn't be an issue. I had a 32" double sink and hated it for reasons listed by PPs. We'll have two single sinks after the remodel but I'll still keep a dish pan handy. :-)

  • Suzi AKA DesertDance So CA Zone 9b

    I love my dishwasher, in fact it's running now! We are out of clean spoons! :-) If you have family that wears baseball caps, there is a plastic hat form you can buy and those caps get really nice and clean on the top shelf of the dishwasher. Dishwasher soap is strong!

    When I do hand wash, I wash in one of my sinks and rinse in the other. So I recommend the double sink.


  • suzanne_sl

    I would do the single large sink. Years ago we lived in an apartment that had a big farmhouse-type sink and no DW. That sink was great! In our current house pre-reno we had a double sink and no (functioning) DW for a couple of years. Although it was nice to have a place to put the dish rack, I didn't love it. Having done it both ways, I have to say the large single sink works better for us. We rarely, if ever, fill the entire sink for dish washing. We use the largest pot/bowl for soapy water and wash it out last.

    16" deep? That seems like a lot, deeper than I've ever even heard about.

  • sail_away

    I'm assuming the 16" is front-to-back measurement.

    I would definitely go with the single sink, and I have only one sink in my kitchen. My last sink was double and I hated it. I absolutely love being able to lay bigger pans flat to wash, being able to wash cookie sheets without tippping them back and forth. I love that I don't have to try to move soggy plates that have been placed in the side WITHOUT the garbage disposal over to the other side, without spilling the food scraps in the side without the garbage disposal. There are also fewer surfaces to clean---just all 4 sides and the bottom. I love, love, love my single sink.

    However, you will hear from many others who love their double sinks. So you just have to think about how you use your sink.

  • melle_sacto is hot and dry in CA Zone 9/

    Single bowl undoubtedly. It offers more flexibility because you can always use a dish pan if you need smaller.

  • andreak100

    I really don't like large single sinks and am unlikely to ever have another one. We have one in the current kitchen right now and I hate that when I am cooking, if I have a pan in the sink that I haven't cleaned out yet because I'm busy cooking and need to use the sink for cleaning something or need to use the garbage disposal or drain pasta, it's a mess to do it. The only way that I think I would consider a single is if I were to also have a separate prep sink.

    It's so true that different people will have different opinions on which sink set up is the best. I think you just need to think about how you use your kitchen and which things will irritate you more about each option and pick the one that seems to work better for you.

  • jellytoast

    I have a 28 inch single bowl sink and use the accessory utility bowl when I'm doing dishes by hand. It fits over the granite and hangs suspended over one side of the sink. When I'm done, it stores under the sink.

  • texasgal47

    I've had a double bowel sink all of my life until two years ago, and I'm retirement age now. That single bowel Franke Orca sink in my new kitchen is the best thing since sliced bread. This is coming from someone who hand washes everything. I either use a already rinsed out large pan to wash dishes or have a large plastic bowel which colapses so it can be easily stored. Dishes drain on the right side of the sink rather than make a drippy mess on the counter.

  • ci_lantro

    ...we dont use dishwashers much in asia as pots & pans are big in size...

    Big pots & pans, you say? That's a no brainer. Get the single bowl sink.

  • jansin62

    Here's how I manage it. I have a dishwasher, but still hand wash all pots and pans. I have a single sink. I wash all the dishes, putting them on the counter as I go. When I am ready to rinse, I put a dish drainer in the sink, rinse, and place the dishes in the dish drainer.

    Picture is kind of bad, but it gives you the idea. This really works for me - I just couldn't figure out how to give up the double sink, and this is what I came up with . Love this solution - it works for me.

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