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Building & Renovating

Which Sink is Better: Single-Bowl or Double-Bowl?

Interior designer Vera Villarosa-Orila helps us weigh the pros and cons of each

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Photography: Kurt Alvarez/ACME Visual Productions (Main Photo)

Choosing a kitchen sink goes beyond the material and how your chosen piece can add pizzazz to your cooking area. You need to consider a number of factors to make sure you get the best value for your money while meeting your needs. If you've been to your friends' houses, have you noticed the type of sink they have? Some prefer a single-bowl and there are those who invest in double-bowl sinks. Deciding between the two involves taking into consideration the size of your kitchen and how you move around the space, to name a few. Pick the best sink for your home with the help of this guide:

Single-Bowl: Great for small kitchens


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Pros:

As the name suggests, a single-bowl sink has one large bowl or washbasin. This occupies less space, making it the perfect choice for smaller homes and condo kitchens. Some single-bowl sinks don’t even eat up the whole width of your counter, leaving room for dishwashing tools.

The bigger sink space is favorable when it comes to washing larger pots and pans, while the absence of a divider makes it easier to maneuver around the sink. Also, there's a wider range of sizes you can check—from square to rectangular with the option for removable dish basins, drying racks, strainers or chopping boards that can serve the purpose of an extra bowl.


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Cons:

Single-bowl sinks can get crowded—there’s not enough room to separate dirty and soaped-up dishes. You can’t isolate food preparation (such as thawing or washing meat and vegetables) if you have a pile of dirty dishes stacked on your sink. Larger bowls may use more water and dishwashing liquid when soaking dishes.

Double-Bowl: Ideal for multitasking


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Pros:

A double-bowl sink has two basins that are separated by a divider. This sink is available in a variety of sizes, and is usually a combination of equal-size bowls, or a main sink with one smaller bowl (60/40 proportion) making the use of your sink more versatile. Because you are able to set aside items in the sink, you can keep more counter space free (and dry). With a double-bowl, you can divide dishes for washing and rinsing, or separate them for washing and food preparation—keeping contamination at bay.


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Cons:

Conversely, the sink itself occupies more space, but having a double basin can also mean less room for soaking and washing larger pots and pans or bakeware. Sometimes, the smaller second sink is rarely used. It is not an ideal option for smaller kitchens, and double-bowl sinks are more expensive than their single-bowl counterpart.

With these points to consider, also keep in mind your kitchen preparation and cleanup routine. In the end, it’s all a matter of what works best for you, what you need and what you prefer.

Interior designer Vera Villarosa-Orila is an alumna of the University of the Philippines and is one of the go-to designers for the Real Living Makeovers. You can get in touch with her through e-mail: vera.villarosa[at]gmail.com.

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Do you have questions or concerns about your home's layout, furniture, and color scheme? Send your questions to reallivingonline[at]gmail.com with the subject: Expert Advice. We might answer and feature your queries online.

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