Giovanni Valle is a licensed architect and LEED-accredited professional and is certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB). He is the author and managing editor of various digital publications, including BuilderSpace, Your Own Architect, and Interiors Place.
If you think about every house you’ve ever visited or lived in, can you remember where the sink is placed in the kitchen? More than likely, the sink was located underneath the kitchen window. Even though this seems to be the norm, there’s no law that says a kitchen sink must be placed under a window, but more often than not, you’ll find that sink right below a sun-filled window.
A kitchen sink is always under a window, so you don’t need to worry about using a cabinet space for a sink, and it’s easier to access the plumbing. Windows also lets in natural sunlight, which allows hand-washed dishes to dry quickly and allows you to enjoy a scenic view while working.
For the general population, people prefer a kitchen sink under a window for these reasons. Again, there are no rules or guidelines from the Official Council of Kitchen Sinks (which isn’t a thing) that says sinks must be under a kitchen window in the kitchen. Let’s take a look further at why these reasons have made this tradition so popular when designing a kitchen.
A Space Saver–You Don’t Have To Worry About Using Potential Counter or Cabinet Space for the Sink
Imagine playing a game of Tetris where you have to make all the pieces fit together. Now imagine your kitchen as a Tetris game. The cabinets fit in like puzzle pieces, and so do the countertops. The window, which is always an excellent addition to a room, fits in too, and the sink tends to fit pretty well right below it.
When designing your kitchen layout, make sure your plans fit your everyday needs. Do you like to cook? You’ll need all the counter space you can get for your culinary masterpieces. Do you want a lot of storage space? If you’ve got the room, fit as many cabinets as you can on the walls of your kitchen.
Now, where are you going to put the sink?
You don’t want to take up valuable counter space, and you won’t want to place it under your cabinets. When working in the kitchen, we tend to spend more of our time at the kitchen sink performing various tasks.
When standing at a sink, the body tends to lean forward, and if a cabinet is right above, you’ll bump your head on the cabinet, especially when leaning over and focusing on a large pan that requires some extra elbow grease to clean.
So, doesn’t below the window seem like a great choice? There’s an open space above the sink now so that no head bumping will take place. It’s not taking up a cabinet wall, and you’ll still have all the counter space under all those cabinets.
If you have a small kitchen in an apartment or other small home with limited counter space, placing your kitchen sink under the window can be a great space saver and will help your kitchen to have an aesthetically pleasing look.
Placing the kitchen sink under the window helps to make it look like it belongs there (back to the game of Tetris) and helps other fixtures in the kitchen to fall in line as well.
Natural Sunlight Allows for a Quick-Dry of Dishes in the Sink
If you’re a fan of hand-washing dishes, which some people can find stress-relieving, then you’ll be spending a lot of time at the kitchen sink. It’s an excellent time to relax and unwind, and the best thing is you can do it all by yourself.
If the spouse or the kids or the roommates or the dog is annoying you, you can just let everyone know that they can give you their dirty dishes, and then they can leave you alone. It can be almost meditative and can provide you with time to think about whatever you’d like.
A great part about hand washing your dishes is you’re in control of just how clean they’re going to get and also in control of drying times. If you’re in a hurry, you can dry your dishes off with a towel, but if you don’t need to put them away immediately, then you can just let them dry off in a drying rack in your sink.
What really helps this process is that bright, warm sunlight filtering through your kitchen window located directly above where the dishes are located; they’ll be dry in no time!
You can even speed the drying process by opening your window and letting the breeze blow over your dishes and into your kitchen. And as an added bonus, you can reach over and open the window to let out smoke if you’ve accidentally burned something on the stove.
Scenic View While Working at the Sink
While you’re washing those dishes and unwinding, it’ll help if you have something nice to look at, possibly your pretty little backyard garden you’ve spent so much time tending, or maybe your kitchen window overlooks the street so you can see all the goings-on with your neighbors.
If you’ve got kids or pets, a kitchen window can help you keep an eye on them to make sure they’re not doing something they shouldn’t be doing while also getting your household chores finished.
Looking out your kitchen window can also help you keep an eye on the weather in case you plan on going outside, and if you like having the window open, you can also let in some fresh air while you work in your kitchen.
You may also think about placing small plants on the kitchen windowsill to add an extra aesthetically pleasing touch that will also have the convenience of being right next to a water source for easy care.
Sinks Are Placed on an Outdoor Wall for Easier Access to Plumbing
When designing your kitchen layout, budget and costs are probably the most significant factor in determining what you want and what you can afford. Most kitchen sinks are placed on an outdoor wall so that the plumbing can be accessed easily and pipes don’t have to reach longer.
Plumbing can raise costs considerably, especially if you have to place pipes under the floor, and don’t you want to use that money you save to go toward that trendy backsplash you’ve been eyeing?
It helps to keep the plumbing to the outside wall for an outdoor faucet as well. On the other side of the wall from the kitchen, you can place an outdoor fixture for your backyard that runs off the same plumbing as your kitchen sink, helping to simplify the work and helping to make it convenient to repair in case of any future plumbing problems arising.
Will you be spending time at the sink doing dishes? Why not look out onto your backyard or street. Do you plan on hand-washing a lot? Maybe you want the sunlight to help dry your dishes.
Perhaps it’s a good idea to keep that sink on an exterior wall. And by putting that sink under the window, you’ll have extra room under your cabinets on the countertops.
Kitchen sinks are under a window simply for the convenience they bring to your kitchen design. Ultimately, you decide where your kitchen sink is going since you’re the one using it.
- Met Plumbing: Why Is the Kitchen Sink Commonly Placed Under a Window?
- Time: Washing Dishes Is a Really Great Stress Reliever, Science Says
- Dean Cabinetry: WHERE TO PLACE YOUR KITCHEN SINK
- Should The Kitchen Sink Be Centered Under The Kitchen Window?
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