For years the lowly laundry room was banished to the basement and not, generally, held in high esteem. Today laundry rooms are moving upstairs to the main floor and often to the second floor. They are now rooms in their own right. Sometimes they are called the utility room, which means they serve more than one function.
Other than the washer and dryer the most important item in the laundry room is the utility sink sometimes known as a laundry sink. Like the utility room itself, the utility sink has more than one function. Its main functions are to pre-soak laundry and hand wash clothes but it excels at much more. The big old fashioned utility sink is probably the most versatile fixture in your house and will allow you to wash anything from muddy rain boots to a baby to the family dog. They make filling large cleaning buckets a snap and come in handy for washing trash buckets, laundry hampers and cat litter boxes. Pull out spray faucets are very useful. They can be used in a potting shed for washing pots, hands and vegetables and some have faucets that allow you to attach a hose for other garden jobs.
Utility sinks come in many sizes from rather small–just right for washing a sweater or other delicates– to 35 inches wide and they range from 9 to 14 inches deep. Some are freestanding; others mount to the wall or are installed into a cabinet.
Indoor and outdoor utility sinks are made from hard working materials that also look nice like fireclay, cast iron, stainless steel and composite materials. These sinks often look anything but utilitarian; today manufacturers are making them to blend in with any style from Farmhouse to Contemporary. Some country style kitchens are being seen with utility sinks instead of a kitchen sink. They range in price from a few hundred dollars to over $2,000.
The no-nonsense utility sinks are usually stainless steel and are very deep. Some of the best are the Whitehaus Noah utility sinks. These are available in wall-mount that save floor space or freestanding and come in single and double bowl styles. If you pre-soak a lot go for the double bowl, you can use one for hot water, one for cold or bleach and non-bleach.
The classic styles can be wall mount—with or without legs–or countertop. These are usually china, porcelain, or cast iron and are made to resist stains and bacteria. The Kohler Harborview Wall Mount Utility Sink has a wonderful farmhouse look and can be used as a kitchen sink. It’s available with or without legs. The Bayview Cast Iron Wall Mount Utility Sink, also by Kohler has an optional wooden stand. This is a great sink for a small laundry room. The Bayview sinks come in fashion colors like Cashmere and Mexican Sand. Elkay Pursuit 19-1/2″ Top Mount Single Bowl Stainless Steel Laundry Sink can be used indoors or out. The Pursuit line also includes double bowl models. The Foremost Berkshire Acrylic Laundry Sink comes complete with its own faucet and is a very elegant laundry sink that looks like it would cost more than its $342 price tag.
Is sleek and modern your style? Check out the Julien Utility Sinks, available in various sizes, these stainless steel sinks are made to fit any size laundry room and any size job. Choose from drop-in or the Julien 3865 UrbanEdge 34″ stand alone sink.
The newest breeds in utility sinks actually do the washing for you. The
Hydro Systems Delicate Acrylic Touch Laundry Sink sets the bar for laundry sinks with an optional forced-air aeration system which gently “bubbles” your fine washables (or the family poodle) clean. These are available in 16 colors including white. If you would rather not bath your best friend in the laundry sink there’s also a Hydro System Pet Spas.
A utility sink can be installed at a very reasonable price or can be done by an experienced do it yourselfer. Whether you use it for cleaner clothes, to save money in pet grooming, or for gardening chores, adding one of these workhorses is one of the smartest additions you can make to your laundry room, garage, outdoor space or utility room.