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We are in the process of remodeling our kitchen and are trying to narrow in on our sink for our new granite counters. We like the Kohler Staccato with unequal bowls and would like to have it undermount. However, there is a HUGE difference in price: drop-in is $250 vs. undercounter is $630. I know that there are some differences between the two, but not $380 worth, and if anything, the undercounter probably has less metal. I'm sure it is a premium tax for the undercounter option.

I ran across this post that mentions that they used converted a drop-in to undermount.

Does anyone know what is involved with that type of change? What are the things I need to be aware of?

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While looking for my new sink I noticed some that said they can be mounted either way, maybe looking at a different brand/model would be a better option. –  Tester101 Mar 24 '11 at 15:20
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what kind of counters are you going to use? –  shirlock homes Mar 24 '11 at 22:38
    
@shirlock homes - granite, and I added the clarification to the original question. –  mattsmith321 Mar 25 '11 at 4:10
    
@Tester101 - I've seen that on some sinks as well. Unfortunately not on this sink. If I could find a different one I liked, I would switch, but so far this one has what I want: two bowls, unequal bowl sizes, smaller on left, faucets in middle to accommodate 8" bridge faucet. –  mattsmith321 Mar 25 '11 at 4:12
    
Seems like folks are saying "you can't or shouldn't". Has anyone here done this successfully? –  user13721 Jun 28 '13 at 15:46

3 Answers 3

Matt, there is a huge difference between an under mount and a drop in fixture. The first concern is the counter itself. what kind are you using? Some counter tops cannot be used with an under mount sink. The support and sealing of an under mount sink is completely different than a drop in. The holes for the faucet need to be in the counter, not the sink unit, and the edges of the sink unit have to be flat and are usually epoxied and clamped in place while the counter is upside down. If you are very clever, you probably can fit the drop in under the counter, but how are you going to finish the counter edges and drill your fixture holes? They will need to be polished. This is usually a production job, not a DIY unless you give the counter maker an exact template, not something you can simply cut out and do yourself.

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Thanks for the info. We are installing granite. I realize under/drop-in are completely different in the way they are mounted and how things are cut but was looking to see if anyone knew some tips on avoiding the undermount tax. The link I mentioned in the original question had a drop-in converted to undermount, but that guy is also a plumber. I was hoping to vet the question here before I posed it to my counter guy. –  mattsmith321 Mar 25 '11 at 4:21

I think it would be hard to use a drop-in in an undermount installation. There are come sinks that can be used for both, we just got one for our bar sink. You just have to knock out a few holes for the undermount. I don't know why that sink cost so much more however, they are the same depth and the same steel gague. That exact undermount sink is considerably cheaper on build.com however ($536 with free shipping).

Typically with a granite install, the installers will handle the sink for you, so I would talk to them before they come. They may even be able to take the sink back with then after they come out to measure, and before the cut the granite to see if it would work.

You also may want to consider using a Silgranite sink instead of a stainless steel one. This is becoming more and more popular per our granite installer. They are made from a composite granite and polymer mix, and do not scratch like stainless steel, and can match your counter in color. They also do not stain like granite can as they are not porous. The one I mentioned that we just bought for the bar that was over / under mount was a Blanco Silgranite. Looking at the collection, they are cheaper than stanless and have some designes that may match the style you want.

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You also need to consider depth -- undermounting your sink may place it a 1-2+ inches lower than it was, and can alter your ability to drain properly (need to have room for things like venting, trap, etc.)

This could be further complicated by whether you will have a garbage-disposal unit mounted below the sink.

How about water filtration? Will you have room for any water filtration systems under the sink? Pre-heating hot-water heaters? Reverse-Osmosis?

Will the extra 1-2+ inches put more strain on your back when you have to lift something out of the bottom of the sink?

I hope these ideas helped...

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