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Plumbing - Bath Faucets

Considerations:Bath Faucet 1

  • Special needs
    • If children or elderly persons will be using the faucet, consider using a faucet with lever handles because they are easier to operate. Even in a household with no special needs, levers are easier to operate with wet and soapy hands.
  • Parts included
    • Different manufacturers include different parts when selling faucets. Some manufacturers like to give the customer the freedom to mix and match options for a custom look. When price shopping, be sure to know what’s included before thinking you are getting a special deal only to find out that you have to purchase the handles and the drain in addition to the spout.
  • High arched spouts
    • Higher arched spouts give you the ability to wash you hair in the sink, give you more room to wash your hands and more room to use a glass to get a drink of water.
  • Sink Compatibility
    • Changing your bathroom faucets is a simple way to update the look of your bathroom. If you are replacing a faucet or have already chosen a sink that has predetermined holes, be sure the number of holes in the sink matches the number of holes required for your faucet.
  • Warranty
    • Some warranties include that the original receipt must be presented. Keep as much information as you can in case parts need to be replaced

Options:

  • Spread type – If you have not chosen a sink and can choose any type of faucet, here are the types you can choose from:
    • Single hole – Faucets that have a single hole have the spout and the handle in one piece. Typically, the faucet has one handle, but some can be found with two. If you already have a sink that is pre-drilled for 4” holes, you may be able to mount the faucet with a plate called an escutcheon plate that covers the extra holes.
    • Centerset or centerspread – These faucets fit 3 hole sink drillings that measure 4” from one side to the other side and are typically found on smaller sinks. The handle and the spout are part of one unit rather than separated.
    • Wall mount – These faucets are used for vessel sinks, wall mounted sinks and undercounter sinks that do not have holes pre-drilled. The advantage of these faucets is the freedom to place the spout at any height, depending on the dramatic effect desired.  Another advantage of this type is that the counter stays clearer because the faucet is mounted on the wall rather than the counter. When planning where to place the faucet, make sure that the water will reach the center of the sink basin above the drain.Bath Faucet 2
    • Widespread – These faucets have separate hot and cold handles from the spout. Sinks are required to have holes drilled between 8 and 16 inches apart or they can be mounted on the countertop behind the sink. When installing a widespread faucet on the countertop, the height of the spout needs to be high enough to reach up and over the side of the sink leaving enough room to wash your hands under the spout.
  • Installation type
    • Mounted on the sink – also called “deck mounted” faucets are mounted at the same level as the sink with 1, 3 or no holes. Typically, faucets that are deck mounted are centerset or widespread faucets.
    • Mounted on the counter – rather than being mounted on the sink, this installation method allows you to mount freely on the countertop
    • Mounted on the wall – this installation also gives you the freedom to place the faucet at any desired height.
  • Handle Type Bath Faucet3
    • Common handle types are single levers, single knobs, separate levers, separate knobs, cross handles, two levers attached to the spout and bridge style faucets. Many different variations of these styles are available from manufacturer to manufacturer.
    • You may prefer no handle at all! One company has a faucet that is motion censored and turns on with no handles!

Design Options:

  • Style
    • The style of your faucet needs to compliment the style of your bath. Faucets are available in sleek, clean lined styles as well as traditional styles and even rustic styles.
    • Single handle faucets tend to be more practical, but two handle faucets give you more options for handle design.
  • Accessories           
    • Often, companies will offer accessories in matching finishes. Check with your manufacturer to see if towel bars, towel rings, toilet paper holders, etc are available in a matching or coordinating finish.
  • Finishes
    • Faucets are available in more finishes than ever now. Look around the room and make sure the color of the faucet compliments the other finishes in the room such as cabinet hardware, lighting or decorative tile accents.Bath Faucet 4
    • Common finishes are polished chrome, satin or brushed chrome, polished nickel, brushed nickel, polished brass, antique brass, polished gold, oil rubbed bronze, copper, white, black and almond. Many companies have custom finish options available to coordinate with other finishes in the room that may not be the same brand.

Maintenance:

  • Material Types
    • Some material types are more difficult to maintain than others! Polished faucets are beautiful, but require cleaning more often because of their sheen. Water spots tend to show up more on polished finishes.
    • Units with 2 handles are more difficult to clean because you have to clean in between the handles.
    • Most faucets can be cleaned with mild soap and water.
    • Gold plated faucets should only be cleaned with warm water and wiped dry with a soft cloth to avoid constantly seeing water deposits.
    • After each use, it’s best to wipe down the faucet with a dry cloth to remove minerals and water spots.
    • Do not use harsh chemicals or cleaners that contain ammonia or bleach because they can damage the finish of the faucet.
    • To remove hard water deposits and soap scum, use a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water