Undermount Kitchen Sinks
A 3-Minute Guide

Undermount kitchen sinks are positioned below the surface of the countertop so that the edge of the counter drops directly into the sink.

This is different from a drop-in (top mount) kitchen sink, where the sink has a lip that extends over the top of the sink cutout.

Ruvati RVH7350 undermount sink and Kohler K-3821-1-NA drop-in sink.
Undermount kitchen sinks are sometimes referred to as undercounter sinks.

Advantages of Undermount Kitchen Sinks

Undermount sinks are gaining in popularity. Here’s why:

Modern Style

Undermount kitchen sinks provide a clean, minimal, contemporary look that works well with nearly any decor theme and can serve as a subtle centerpiece for your kitchen.

Undermount sinks are available in a wide variety of styles including stainless steel, granite, and cast iron.

Blanco Silgranit Double Bowl Undermount Sink
Undermount sinks are also available in farmhouse (apron front) styles.

Cleanliness

Since undermount sinks don’t have a lip that extends over the counter, there’s no crevice between sink and counter to catch dirt, crumbs, and liquids.

Instead, food particles simply fall into the sink, making it much easier to keep your counters and sink clean.

Counter Space

Eliminating the sink’s rim reduces the sink’s “footprint” on the countertop and helps maximize usable counter space.

It may not seem like a lot, but that extra inch of counter space can provide enough room for dishwashing liquid, hand soaps, etc.

Undermount Kitchen Sink Cost

The cost of an undermount sink is largely determined by the material. Basic stainless steel undermount sinks can start at less than $200, while materials like cast iron or fireclay can cost $500 to $1000 (or more).

Undermount Sink Installation

While undermount sinks offer a number of advantages, there are a few things to consider when it comes to the installation process.

Solid surface countertops are ideal

Undermount sinks are typically used with solid surface countertops such as wood, stone, or composite. Tile, laminate, and other materials with joints or seams can have weak spots that may separate or have trouble supporting the hanging weight of an undermount sink.

Structural support is needed

Undermount sinks require support from inside the counter. Without mechanical support, the adhesive could give out and cause a messy problem when the sink drops into the counter while full of water or dishes.

Undermount sink installation failure. Image courtesy of Houzz.com.

There are a number of ways to support an undermount sink ranging from custom wooden braces to specialty solutions like the Hercules sink harness.

Extra finish work needed for cutout

Since the edge of the sink cutout will be visible, additional work is needed to ensure a smooth, nice-looking finish. Top mount sinks simply drop in over the cutout, covering any imperfections from the cutting process.

Faucet and hardware holes

Most undermount sinks aren’t designed with a hole for faucets and hardware attachments, so you’ll need to have appropriate holes cut into your countertop for these components.

The tools and skills needed for an undermount sink installation mean that most homeowners should consider hiring a professional to avoid costly problems later on.

Dual Mount Sinks

Some kitchen sinks are designed for both both an undermount or drop-in installation. These dual mount sinks have a lip that is cosmetically attractive but can also function as a glue surface.

Kraus KGD-410B Dual Mount Kitchen Sink (Granite)

Pros

  • Minimal, modern appearance
  • Countertops easier to clean
  • Extra counter space

Cons

  • Good support required
  • More difficult installation


Ideas & Inspiration

Below you’ll find a gallery of undermount kitchen sinks. Clicking any image will take you Amazon, where you’ll find more information about specs and pricing.

Kohler K-5840-5U-0 Anthem Sink
Kohler K-5840-5U-0 Anthem
KOHLER K-3183-NA Undertone
StarStar Single Bowl Undermount Sink
StarStar Single Bowl Undermount
Ruvati RVM4250
VIGO 30-Inch Undermount Single Bowl Sink
VIGO 30-Inch Undermount Single Bowl
VIGO 32-Inch Undermount Double Basin Stainless Steel Sink
Winpro New Black Granite Kitchen Sink
Winpro New Black Granite/Quartz Composite Sink
Blanco Silgranit Double Bowl
Franke undermount granite kitchen sink
Franke DIG61091-GRA in Graphite
Kraus KHU32 Pax Single Bowl Stainless Steel Kitchen Sink
Kraus KHU32 Pax Single Bowl Stainless Steel Kitchen Sink
MR Direct 848 Single Bowl Quartz Kitchen Sink
MR Direct 848 Quartz Single Bowl Kitchen Sink