The kitchen sink strainer is a critical line of defense for your plumbing. It stops debris like food scraps from causing a clog while still allowing water and other liquids to flow through. Although you probably use this handy helper every day, you might not give much thought to the different types of kitchen sink strainers and which one is best for your needs. This guide can help you find the perfect option so you don’t have to deal with inconvenient and messy plumbing problems.
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Top Types of Sink Strainers and Ways to Choose
When you shop for sink accessories, the number of styles, types, sizes, and options can feel overwhelming. While they all serve the same purpose, different types of sink strainers have unique features that could make one option a better choice for your home than others:
- Double Cup Strainer: These economical and easy-to-install strainers have two cups, one that remains attached to the drain and another you can remove to dispose of debris. This style makes it easy to clean the sink after food preparation or washing dishes.
- Flange Strainer: This kitchen sink strainer has a rubber flange or rim around the sink connection point that blocks leaks. It has a removable stainless steel basket to collect debris.
- Back Nut Strainer: These are also exceptionally good at stopping leaks. The strainer connects to the drain with a back nut, and a rubber seal fills the space between the sink and strainer to block water.
- Stopper Strainer: This type of sink strainer can be used as a stopper by simply adjusting the switch in the basket.
- Drain Strainer: This is a simple option that involves mounting the strainer over the drain with three screws and using a basic stainless steel basket to catch debris.
Main Factors To Consider When Choosing a Sink Strainer
When you need to replace a sink strainer, you have options. You could choose the first or least expensive option you find. However, for the best results and to keep your plumbing in tip-top shape, you need to consider a few factors before deciding. Knowing what to look for ensures you solve the problem on the first try and don’t need to make multiple trips to the store or inadvertently make the problem worse.
Size of Your Kitchen Sink
You need to know the size of the drain opening and depth to select the best sink strainer. Otherwise, it won’t fit or work as intended. Most are between 3.5 and 4.5 inches in diameter, so measure before shopping.
The drain depth is also crucial to consider when evaluating sink strainer sizes. Most stainless steel sinks are between 1/8 and 3/8 of an inch deep, but cast iron sinks are more substantial and need a thicker device to accommodate the extra space.
The connection refers to how the strainer attaches to the drain tailpiece, the section of pipe at the bottom of the sink drain fitting. The tailpiece is usually either flanged or threaded, and the sink strainer must match so it will fit and create a tight seal.
Flanged connections are the most common. They connect with nuts and have a flanged washer in between the sections to block leaks. The threaded tailpieces and sink drains screw together and don’t require any additional fasteners.
Different kitchen sink strainer basket types can influence their look and function.
- Stainless steel: This is the most common material, as it’s durable and resists corrosion.
- Brass: This metal offers a high-end look with extra durability and corrosion resistance.
- ABS plastic: This thermoplastic is ideal in extreme temperatures and strong enough to withstand high water pressure.
Mesh or Porous Strainer
You have two types of kitchen sink strainers to choose from depending on your preference: mesh strainers with many tiny holes or porous ones with larger openings. Mesh strainers catch even the tiniest food particles to keep them out of the pipes but are harder to clean. Porous strainers are easy to clean but can allow more debris to flow down the drain.
Ease of Cleaning
An easy-to-clean kitchen sink basket makes life easier and reduces the likelihood of a drain clog. In general, baskets with larger openings are easier to clean than those with smaller ones. Consider a dishwasher-safe strainer basket for even easier kitchen cleanup.
Some types of kitchen sink strainers have a stopper function to block the drain when you want to fill the sink with water or prevent an object from going down the pipes. This is a convenient feature when you prefer to soak dirty dishes.
Installing a new kitchen sink strainer doesn’t need to be challenging. Compare different models to find the one that is easiest to install to save yourself time, money, and headaches.
Professional Drain Clearing Services
Even with a functioning kitchen sink strainer, bad plumbing can clog and cause a backup. Remember to use your sink strainer every time you wash dishes or do anything in the sink that could cause debris to end up in the pipes.
If you need help with a clogged pipe in your kitchen, give our professionals a call at 1-800-642-4419 to book an appointment. Our team of reputable plumbers in Columbia, MD offer extensive drain clearing and emergency drain repair services for homeowners.
Call us whenever you are dealing with slow or inefficient drainage, unusual gurgling noises from the drain, severe backups, or unpleasant odors in your sink. The team of experienced technicians at our plumbing company will quickly identify the source of the problem and use advanced methods, including power rodding and hydro-jetting, to eliminate the clog and get the water flowing again.
The team at our plumbing company will also provide expert advice and insights into avoiding future plumbing issues, including help evaluating the different types of kitchen sink strainers and which is best for your home. We even offer emergency drain repair services and same-day drain cleaning at no extra charge, so call today and let us solve your plumbing problems.