Choosing the right taps for your kitchen or bathroom
Taps not only come in a wide range of materials these days, but have many different styles as well.
This makes it easier for homeowners to find taps that will suit their home’s décor.
Choosing the right taps for your kitchen or bathroom can complete a beautiful interior design.
Traditionally, people have used separate hot and cold taps. Nowadays, it is more common to use mixer taps, where hot and cold water mix together before reaching the outlet so that water emerges at a more pleasant temperature. Mixer taps are often controlled by a single handle which moves up and down and side to side, controlling the amount of water flow and its temperature. In bathrooms, mixer taps often incorporate a pressure balancing feature so that the water’s temperature is not affected by the use of other utilities, e.g. the washing machine.
Nowadays, there is a wide range of taps available which vary in size, shape, style, material, finish and price range. Taps have become more elegant and are able to match a consumer’s style, whether it is modern, contemporary or traditional. You can find taps with styles that are classic, Victorian or rustic, among many others.
To decide what taps you want, first decide on its use, as this will affect the kind you will buy. Do you want a shower over the bath or you want to wash vegetables in the kitchen sink? Next think about who will be using them. If it’s the whole family, buy taps that are hard wearing, such as chrome taps with large heads that are easy to turn on and off. Then think about how the taps will suit your bathroom or kitchen design. For eco-friendly homeowners, you can buy smaller taps that will reduce the flow of water. You can find taps that are better for the environment which will also reduce utility bills.
Taps and the kitchen
Taps are just as important as any other accessory in the kitchen. The kitchen sink is one of its focal points and can help to highlight a kitchen’s design. Improving a kitchen’s taps can give it a whole new feel. The ideal tap should complement the style of the kitchen while providing functionality and being easy to use.
Kitchen taps come in many different materials. Stainless steel is commonly used as it is durable, easy to clean, easy to install and has a value for money. Acrylic sinks come in many different patterns and colours.
Sinks can have a number of holes for adding taps, sprayers, soap dispensers, water purifier taps and other features. They can have a single handle which allows for quick and easy water control using just one lever or dual handles which have separate controls for hot and cold water. These are still being sold but are not as sought after as taps with a single handle. High-rise taps are popular as water emerges from high above the sink, ensuring there is plenty of room to get pans and large pots beneath them. Also popular are taps with pull-out spray heads. These are handy for washing vegetables and cleaning the sink. Older spray models have been criticised for being too heavy and “drooping” out of their sockets over time but newer models have largely solved this problem. Pull-out spray heads can also be found mounted to one side although this usually means a reduced spray volume. Simply adding another hole in the sink allows for its installation.
When buying kitchen taps, think about how far you want them to reach, how high you want the spout to be (there are many styles of spouts, from low-end spouts which are nearly horizontal to arched spouts that can rise high above the countertop), what kind of style will suit your kitchen, what kind of finish you want and any convenience features you might like to add. The number of holes you will need will depend on the kind of taps you buy. Monobloc taps need only one hole while standard taps need two separate holes.
Taps and the bathroom
Like the kitchen, there is a large variety of taps that can be used in the bathroom. Hundreds of different styles come in various types of material.
A bathroom’s fittings and accessories can greatly improve its functionality. Choosing the right style of taps can complete a well-decorated bathroom. To decide on bathroom taps, consider functionality, the size of your bathroom and the theme of your décor.
Again, stainless steel is a popular material as it doesn’t corrode or tarnish and blends well with most bathroom décor. Brass is also popular but is susceptible to rust if it isn’t sealed properly and can tarnish over time. Other popular materials include chrome, nickel-plated and other plated-metals. You can also find taps in different materials or variations in material.
There are different styles of taps, such as the bath deck filler which uses a mixer for hot and cold water on a “deck” and has a single spout framed by two handles that control the hot and cold water function. Monobloc basin taps also use a mixer for hot and cold water and a single spout framed by two handles but they are attached to the base of the spout itself. A three-hole basin mixer uses a mixer but separates the spout and two handles. Two separate handles control the hot and cold water function through a single spout. A three-hole bath filler has similar characteristics but is mounted onto the bathtub.
Taps can either be wall mounted or mounted from the floor on standpipes. For wall mounted basin taps or wall mounted bath taps, you can have taps that fit into one hole, which forms a minimalist, elegant look, or taps can be fitted into two holes, which is suitable for large, wall-mounted basins. In traditional style roll top baths, taps that are mounted from the floor on standpipes generally need a cranked leg tap which has an additional piece fitted at the bottom of each leg with an extra wiggle in it that pushes the tap upwards and forwards, giving that extra reach to get it over the edge of the bath.
These different styles of taps are then further categorised into various design styles. You can have contemporary, modern or traditional taps. You can have taps with long spouts or with short spouts. The choices are never-ending.
pair of hot and cold or mixers
pair of hot and cold or mixers
pair of hot and cold
Professional kitchen taps
Floor mount bath and shower mixer tap
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