Solid wood kitchen cabinets are a fantastic investment to make for your home, and will look fantastic in your kitchen for years to come. Paired with either laminate surfaces or wooden worktops, they are a stylish and durable option and can be designed to suit a variety of styles and décor schemes. Choosing the right accessories to compliment your kitchen can be as difficult as choosing the kitchen itself – last week our information guide discussed kitchen sinks and this week for part 2 we are looking at taps.
Not only are there a huge range of taps available, but there are also many different finishes. Ordinarily taps are made of stainless steel or nickel, and chrome plated, but brass taps are also having a revival in popularity. Traditionally taps were separated into hot and cold taps, but by far the most popular type these days is a mixer tap that allows the hot and cold water to come through one spout.
Chrome – A favourite in kitchens for a long time, chrome fixtures look fantastic, but can look dirty quite quickly, so require regular cleaning to stay at their best. Chrome often suits classic kitchen designs, and mixer types often comes with two separate knobs.
Brass – The oldest style of tap still in use today, brass taps provide a unique charm that is particularly suiting in country and farmhouse kitchens. Brass can tarnish over time, so will require polishing with a suitable polish and a scourer if the taps are badly stained.
Stainless Steel – Fast becoming the most popular style of tap, stainless steel taps come in a variety of finishes, including brushed, matt and satin. They are considerably easier to keep clean than chrome or brass, and come in a variety of modern designs to suit any new kitchens.
Dual knob – The oldest design of taps would see two separate taps – one for hot, and another for cold water. This design has had a slight resurgence recently, but is not considered the best for easy mixing of water to achieve the right temperature.
Mixer – Available with a variety of tap heads and handles: choose from single lever, crosshead, dual lever or simple ‘knob’ designs. On modern mixer taps, there is also the option of adjustable spouts that can vary the size and direction of the jet of water. Some even have pull-out sprays, but these and other mixers are often only usable on high-pressure supplies..
Dual Flow – This type of tap provides a single stream of water through one spout, but hot and cold water is delivered through separate pipes within the body of the tap to prevent unequal water pressure.
Monobloc – On this style of tap, a single lever controls the flow of hot and cold water through a single mixer tap. They’re very neat and perfect for minimalist modern kitchens, but will only work if the pressure from hot and cold supplies are almost equal.
Pull-Out Spray Mixer – Similar in style to the kind of showerhead fitting you’ll find in a bathroom, pull-out spray mixer taps can extend out of the body of the tap to provide much greater versatility when rinsing dishes or vegetables.
Water Filter Taps – If you live in an area where water is high in lime, chlorine or other unpleasant additions, then a filter tap may be just what you need. They’re available in a wide variety of styles, but most importantly will provide you with great-tasting water that is more hygienic.
There is clearly plenty to consider when choosing your type and style of sink and taps. If you’re struggling to envisage how they will look in your kitchen, then why not take a trip to our Gloucester showroom? We’ve got nine different kitchen sets on display, as well as a selection of tap designs on show that are not included in any of the kitchens. One of our kitchen specialists can happily talk through the options available, and other alternatives not on display.