Best Utility & Laundry Room Sinks: Small, Stainless Steel & More

Here’s both a list of the best utility sinks, as well as what you should be looking for in the process. Are you excited to make your laundry room a lot more functionable place in your house?

What are they?

Utility, by definition, is used as an adjective to describe something that can perform several functions. Thus, a utility sink serves numerous purposes: soaking or rinsing laundry, bathing your pet, cleaning tools or big casseroles, and emptying buckets of water, among many others. Even if you’ve never encountered or used a utility sink in the past, I’m pretty sure you’ve already had a glimpse of such sinks in old movies where wall-mounted, vintage, concrete laundry sinks are used to soak fabrics instead of automated washing machines. Through time, the number of design and type of utility sinks have expanded alongside their uses.

Utility sink is also known as a laundry room sink, which sometimes misleads people into thinking that it can only be installed in laundry rooms; in truth, you can also have a utility sink in your kitchen, garage, backyard, and anywhere you need it. When you’re a homeowner, it’s always good to invest in things that have great value, and a utility sink is one of them.

Benefits of having a utility sink

With a utility sink, I can mostly do all the washing and sanitizing in one area with no fuss. It truly is the most versatile and useful sink that I know of, letting you keep the extra messy, greasy, and grimy items away from your kitchen and bathroom sinks. Unlike a heavy duty wire or a gasless MIG welder, these sinks really belong in all homes across the country!

What’s also great is that you can customize or buy the utility sink that would suit your needs perfectly. With its wide range of material type, size or capacity, and use, you’ll be able to do your day-to-day activities with ease, no matter what it is! Here are the top three things that I appreciate the most about utility sinks:


    • A utility sink must be durable, so it can serve its multi purposes. Whether it’s concrete, porcelain, stainless steel, or a blend of other materials, utility sinks are manufactured in such a way that it would be able to withstand damage caused by chemical or physical agents that the typical kitchen sink cannot handle. This feature comes in handy when you have to clean a tool or fabric that requires a strong cleaning agent!


    • There are different types of utility sinks, whether it’s based on how it is installed, or the type of material used. Added features like strainer baskets can also differentiate one utility sink from the rest. With the wide variety of styles and models available, you can surely pick one that will suit your needs and blend seamlessly in your laundry room.


    • From washing gardening tools or pets up to soaking huge fabrics or solid shoes, you’ll have little to no trouble when you use a utility sink. Unlike the typical sink which can be narrow and shallow, a utility sink generally has a deeper and wider working area, allowing you to handle larger items with minimized risk of splashing water outside of the sink. In addition, the wide variety of depth and/or dimension to choose from allows you to pick a model that will fit perfectly in your space!

With these helpful features of utility sinks, you’ll be able to reap a lot of benefits from having one installed in your home. To give you a better glimpse, I’ve listed some specific benefits of having a utility sink below:

  • Heavy-duty cleaning. Harsh chemicals may cause damage to usual sinks. And so, heavy-duty cleaning requires a specific type, the same way you’d get a heavy duty extension cord for certain tasks as well.

  • Avoids Clogging. Hair and lint from the washing machine usually clogs drainages. However, if you empty out your washer into the utility sink that has a strainer basket at the drainage hole, you can easily trap hair, lint, and other solids that may cause clogging.

  • Pre-soaking & Hand-Washing laundry. Taking off stains and soaking laundry is easier to do in the utility sink because you won’t have to fill up buckets of water to transfer into basins or bathtubs. Some soak their laundry in the bathtub, but this isn’t sanitary for soiled clothing or shoes. It’s better to do that in the sink!

  • Dyeing. When dealing with dyes, it’s better to do it in a utility sink so you can avoid unwanted staining in porcelain bathtubs or plastic containers. You can also easily drain it and use strong cleaning agents to remove the dye from the sink, thereby avoiding having to repeatedly rinse the bathtub before you can safely use it.

  • Watering Plants. Water reservoirs are a must-have for plant lovers, especially if you prefer bottom-watering your plants. It’s very unsanitary to do this in your bathtub and kitchen sink, even more so if you use real soil for your plants because soil may harbor potential pests and pathogens. A utility sink is a good place to let your plants be submerged for a while until it soaks up enough water, since you can easily clean and disinfect the area without any safety hazards.

    • And if you want a water reservoir on-the-go, you might want to check out these fuel transfer tanks that can hold a lot of liquids (water, oil, fuel, fertilizer, etc.) and can be easily transported anywhere.

  • Bathing Pets. Pets can get rowdy during bath time. Instead of washing them on the bathroom floor where they can easily run out, you might want to try bathing your pets in the utility sink wherein the added depth and enclosed space of the sink will help you in making your pets behave and stay in one place. Sure, you can also do this in the bathtub, but your pets may harbor dirt or pests that may cling to the tub, which will be tedious to clean up (plus the horrors of getting dog hair out of the tub without clogging!).


As mentioned, utility sinks come in various types and sizes; these sinks can be categorized based on the mounting type or style, sink material, and size. However, having too many options can pose as a problem—how would you know which sink is the best one? You can spend hours trying to pick the perfect utility sink and still end up buying the wrong one if you’re not familiar with the type of material that you need and the dimensions that your space can handle.

To help you choose the perfect utility sink for your home, I’ll discuss the different mounting styles, materials, styles, and sizes of utility sinks. I hope that by the end of this article, you’re already decided on what type of sink to get!

Whether you were buying a leaf mulcher, a hot water recirculating pump, a UV light sanitizer or an extension cord, you’d want to make sure you got the one that suits your needs.

Based on mounting/installation style

With varied purposes comes varied styles and mounting of utility sinks. Depending on the location of where you want to situate your utility sink, a certain type of mounting might be preferable over others. Read on to find the perfect match for you!

picture of drop-in, undermount, floor mount & wall mount utility sink

Image Source: Riverbend Home

Utility sinks with cabinets

This all-in-one utility sink comes with a storage cabinet, with the sink itself mounted into the base cabinet. It comes as a single unit and is comparable with freestanding utility sinks because it can stand on its own, no longer needing any special mounting like what wall-mounted utility sinks require. Some more advantages of this sink are the extra storage area it provides, and it usually comes with a faucet and plumbing supply line underneath the basin. This one would be a great addition to laundry rooms and kitchen, where you usually need extra storage space for laundry or cooking materials.

utility sink with a cabinet

Image Source: Costco

Wall-mount utility sinks

As suggested by its name, a wall-mount utility sink is installed as a standalone unit, mounted directly into the wall using support brackets. It needs no structural support underneath, and so it leaves an empty space below the sink. This is a wonderful choice if you don’t have a countertop and you want to keep the floor area spacious and clear. However, steer clear from loading heavy objects onto wall-mounted sinks.

Wall-mounted utility sinks are a great addition to basements where countertops are usually absent, and you need the extra floor space for storage. Most vintage utility sinks are either wall-mounted or freestanding, having double basins and resembling water troughs that you usually see in farmhouses.

Wall-mount utility sink

Image Source: Wayfair

Freestanding utility sink

Freestanding utility sinks, as the name suggests, are sinks that have structural support that lets the sinks stand on their own. Most models are portable, which is an advantage if you want to move the entire unit to a more suitable place. There are some models that can be bolted to the floor (floor-mounted), which offers extra support and stability but sacrifices portability.

Freestanding utility sink

Image Source: Lowe’s

However, there are portable sinks that are freestanding and generally mounted on wheeled carts, so you can move the whole unit without difficulty wherever you want. This type of utility sink usually has supply lines that you can connect to an existing plumbing line, which is a great addition for garages and outdoor sites.

portable utility sink with wheels on it

Image Source: PortableSinks4Less

Drop-in or self-rimming utility sink

Also called an overmount utility sink, this type of sink is mounted into a hollow space of a countertop or kitchen island. The sink basin is hidden from the view, sitting below the counter (thus the name “drop-in”), but the rim is visible on the counter (thus the names “self-rimming” & “overmount”). Drop-in sink is one of the most common sinks installed for kitchen countertops because it is very easy to install and you can choose one that will fit and blend well with the countertop’s material. The depth of the sink basin varies from model to model, while some models boast a built-in washboard.

Drop-in or self-rimming utility sink

Image Source: The Home Depot

Undermount utility sink

In contrast to overmount utility sinks, this type of utility sink is mounted underneath the surface or countertop (thus the name “undermount”), concealing the edges or rim. This is the perfect addition to your home if you want to retain the seamless appearance of your countertop since there’ll be no protruding rims. This also makes cleaning efficient since the absence of the rim makes it easy for you to maneuver spills from the countertop directly into the sink.

Undermount utility sink

Image Source: Zuhne

Based on style

Some utility sink models boast a feature that other models do not have. Depending on your needs, you might want to opt for a model that has an added feature that will be useful for you. Here are some examples:

Double basin

The benefits of having a single basin are doubled when you get a utility sink with two basins! This is a great option for people who need to work simultaneously on two tasks, such as soaking laundry on one side of the sink while rinsing other clothes on the other. Some double basin utility sinks have a rectangular-shaped basin that has a divider in between, while some models have fully separate basins (and some even have differently sized basins, too!). Here are some examples:

Basin shape & size

Size and dimension are pertinent factors when it comes to choosing a utility sink. Typical models are just wide and deep enough for rinsing small to mid-sized items without sloshing water. On the other hand, heavy-duty utility sinks have larger sink basins that have greater depth, offering a big working area so you can fit more (and bigger) items in it, while avoiding water spillage.

When choosing a basin shape & size, think about what feature will be more useful for you: depth or working area. Some sink models can be big in terms of width and length but are shallow, while some models have deep basins but are limited in terms of width. Here’s an example of a shallow but wide utility sink, which I think is perfect for soaking a few clothes or bathing small pets, offering you a good visual of what’s submerged in the sink.

Faucets and faucet holes

Not all utility sinks come fully equipped with faucets or faucet holes. Typically, a utility sink is literally just the basin (and the stand/legs, if it’s freestanding) with no faucet, as shown below.

Image Source: Wayfair

And so, if you need the whole setup, make sure to purchase a utility sink that has the appropriate accessories. It’d be a nightmare if you purchased a sink thinking that it already comes with a faucet! Faucets come in many sizes and styles, such as two- or single-handle models, centerset or widespread, and deck- or wall-mounted. Some models even have an extra feature like a side sprayer, as shown below.

Farmhouse sink or apron-front

Farmhouse sinks and apron-front sinks are commonly used interchangeably when referring to sinks with a large lip or front rim that sticks out from the counter, which is considered as the sink’s “apron.” The other rims or corners of the utility sink are hidden from view, and this sink can be installed via flush mount or slide-in, overmount, and undermount installations.

Farmhouse sinks generally have much deeper and wider basins compared to traditional ones, and the apron/front lip protects your counter from being wet (thereby saving it from unwanted wood rot) since the water drippings will drop from the apron straight to the floor where you can easily put a rag to catch it. Therefore, farmhouse sinks are a great addition to counters that need to be protected from getting wet, and a great choice for people who do a lot of dishwashing or laundry.

Extended washboards, soap dishes, basin dividers, etc.

Additional features such as washboards, soap holders, dish rack, bucket hooks, drainboards, and basin dividers, among many others, serve to make a certain task easier. Think about which task is the one you’ll primarily use your utility sink for, so you choose an additional feature that will help you complete your chores efficiently.

Based on material

The material influences the cost, appearance, and functionality of your utility sink, which is why it’s important to choose the one that’s within your budget and is best suited to your needs. Each type of material has their own pros and cons. For example, stainless steel may not blend well with your kitchen counter’s theme or style, but it is favourable to use for commercial uses. Here’s a quick list of great materials for utility sinks:

  • Stainless steel – This is mainly used in commercial environments because it has excellent corrosion and oxidation resistance. Although it does not have a very stylish appearance, it still looks sleek and boasts high durability and practicality, which is why it’s the perfect choice for garages, laundry rooms, restaurants, etc. Stainless steel is also very easy to maintain; it is sandable and can withstand steel wool, harsh cleaning agents, and heat.

    • PROS: corrosion, oxidation, heat, and stain resistant; highly durable, & easy to maintain

    • CONS: can dent upon sufficient force, deep scratches cannot be fixed, & pricey

  • Acrylic – This is a good choice if you want a low-cost, modern/aesthetically pleasing, and stain-resistant sink. Acrylic is a type of polycarbonate plastic that can be moulded into different shapes, so the variety of shapes and designs will be broad. Stains and scratches can be easily removed by buffing or polishing. However, if you’re a painter, steer clear from this sink because petroleum-based products will damage the acrylic. Furthermore, acrylic is not heat-resistant; a hot pan can easily burn and mark it permanently.

    • PROS: aesthetic designs and colors, affordable, stain-resistant, durable, lightweight, scratches can be buffed out, & easy to install

    • CONS: not as durable than stainless or cast-iron sinks, not recommended for petroleum-based products, & vulnerable to heat

  • Polypropylene – This is the most commonly used material for utility sinks; therefore, it is readily available and in-stock in many stores. Some models also boast mold/mildew and chemical resistant properties, making them preferable for laboratory applications. It’s also very lightweight, so it’s perfect for wall-mount installations.

    • PROS: durable, mold- and mildew-resistant, highly resistant to harsh and acidic/corrosive chemicals (if designed for lab), lightweight, affordable, & easy to maintain

    • CONS: staining and cracking may occur, may be reactive with some harsh chemicals, & vulnerable to heat (melts at 320°F and higher)

  • Enameled cast iron – To make an enameled cast iron, a porcelain enamel coating is added onto the durable iron alloy material of the sink. This coating gives the sink a smooth, glossy surface, and it makes the underlying iron more stable even at high temperatures. However, you should be careful with using abrasive tools because these may damage the porcelain enamel coating, leading to chipping. Also, the core of the sink is generally a galvanized steel, which adds to the durability of the utility sink, avoiding rusting and oxidation. An enameled cast iron sink is very sturdy and stain-resistant, but the added weight may pose a problem. Thus, it should be installed in an equally durable counter or must be supported by high-quality legs or cabinet.

    • PROS: highly durable, smooth and glossy appearance, stain and heat resistant, easy to clean, & can be reglazed

    • CONS: heavy, not as accessible as other materials, & expensive

  • Solid surfacing – Solid surface sinks are made by mixing a mineral compound with polyester or acrylic resins, offering a wide range of styles, colors, and designs. This is a perfect choice if you want a fully seamless look for your countertop since the sink can be molded from the same solid surface that makes up your countertop. There are a lot of new solid surfacing materials, innovated by companies to have a longer lifespan and withstand harsh environments. Examples are Formica Sinks and Corian Sinks that offer antibacterial properties, improved stain resistance & durability, and more.

    • PROS: can be customized to match your countertop, durable, stain resistant, & easy to clean/maintain

    • CONS: not as heat resistant as stainless steel (burn marks may appear), pricey, & may be reactive with some harsh chemicals

  • Concrete – This is one of the most affordable choices for utility sink material, albeit pricier than the usual porcelain ones. You also have the freedom to personalize the sink. It is very sturdy and durable and can give a streamlined finish to your countertop if it’s incorporated into the countertop’s design. However, concrete is porous so cracking may occur especially if it’s not properly sealed and maintained. When damaged, repairing and resealing is possible.

    • PROS: can be personalized, affordable, heat resistant, & can be resealed/patched up if damaged

    • CONS: porous, can get cracks, heavy, & can stain if not properly sealed

  • Soapstone – This wonderful metamorphic rock is a great choice if you want something that does not readily react with acids or harsh chemicals and can withstand high temperatures. Soapstone can actually be used to make waste oil heaters to generate heat in your home due to its non-reactive properties and heat-resistance. It’s also a favourite in the manufacture of laboratory sinks. Soapstone is very dense and impermeable; thus, it doesn’t require sealants as concrete does. Furthermore, it’s stain-resistant and prevents the growth of bacteria and mold. This material also ages with grace, developing a vintage look throughout the years while retaining its functionality and durability if maintained properly. However, if you want to keep the vibrancy of soapstone, the application of mineral oil is a must.

    • PROS: durable, highly heat-resistant, non-reactive/can withstand corrosive and acidic chemicals, stain resistant, dense and non-porous, & easy to clean and maintain

    • CONS: expensive, not scratch-resistant, can be damaged and cracked by blunt force/heavy objects, & needs mineral oil for upkeep

Cast iron, metal, plastic, fiberglass or something else?

Some materials resemble each other and might confuse you, especially if these materials are coated with something that has a smooth, glossy white finish. For example, fiberglass closely resembles enameled cast iron and porcelain basins. Some coatings on metals can also mimic the appearance of stainless steel. Thus, don’t rely on visuals; read the description if you’re online shopping or better yet, shop personally in stores to get a better feel on the materials. These materials may look the same, but their properties are completely different from each other, as discussed in the previous section. For example, fiberglass on its own is not a really great material for utility sinks since it’s very brittle and porous, but acrylic sinks that are reinforced with fiberglass become non-porous and much more durable.

Outdoor utility sink

When it comes to outdoor sinks, you should opt for one that can withstand the harsh and ever-changing weather. Some materials that would suit an outdoor environment are stainless steel, soapstone, and concrete. If you live in an area that experiences winter, you can opt for a water-free sink, so you won’t have to worry about winterizing the water lines.

If you’re up for some DIY activities, you can totally make your own outdoor sink! For this, you’ll probably need quality tools like these engine-driven welders or tig welders and plasma cutters, so you can go through any type of material with no fuss. And if you plan to just do a makeover on vintage steel or cast iron sink that’s wasting away in your garage, you might want to check out these mini metal lathes for easy metalwork, and these wide belt sanders to polish that sink to give it a brand new look! You should also check out this guide on gauge wires, so you can safely operate your electrical tools anytime, anywhere.

Large or small? How to choose for the right size

Once you’re set with the installation type and material of your utility sink, it’s time to pick the right size. Here’s a quick guide on how to gauge the sink size based on the area where you’ll be putting your sink in.

  • For wall-mounted, floor-mounted, and utility sinks with cabinets:
    • The allotted space must equal the actual dimension of the sink or base cabinet of the utility sink. Thus, you should get the actual dimension of the allotted space and give it to the manufacturer or shop owner to help you pick the perfectly sized sink for your space. Bear in mind that the faucet and plumbing line placement must also be taken into account when choosing the right space to put your sink in.
  • For overmount, undermount, and slide-in utility sinks:
    • This is a bit trickier than wall- or floor-mounted sinks. First, choose which base cabinet or countertop is going to house your sink. Make sure that the available countertop or cabinet allows at least 1” of countertop overhang. Also, take into account the working area that you’ll be left with after the installation of the sink. For example, if the available space that you have in your garage is around 50”, pick a 40” base cabinet and match it with a 35-37” utility sink. This will leave you 10” of space to freely move.

If you were welding, you’d both want the right glasses as well as the right gas for the purpose, however, if you’re cleaning something at home, you would want to make sure you’re getting the right sink for the purpose!

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