7 Truths About Copper Sinks & Bath Tubs
The 'Right' Copper Sink
There's a lot more to selecting a copper sink and copper bath tub then
meets the eye. The reason is... not all copper sinks and
copper bath tubs are created equal!
Knowing what to look for when
purchasing a copper sink or bathtub will help you avoid the
disappointment of ending up with one that ages poorly... looses
it's shape... turns rusty... or worse yet, starts to leak or becomes
so unsightly, it has
to be replaced.
Here are 7 truths about copper that will assist in your search for
the perfect copper sink and copper bathtub.
After reading this, you'll know
exactly how to select the 'right' copper kitchen
sink, bathroom sink, vessel sink or bath tub. One that will meet the
demands of your busy family... be easy to care for... last for
lifetimes... and, become even more beautiful with each passing
Truth #1... Copper Sinks &
Copper Bath Tubs Are Easy To Care For
First, let's dispel a common, long held belief... a myth, if
you will... about
Most of us grew up in an age of shiny copper bottomed pots and pans
that had to be scrubbed and polished on a regular basis. As a
result, we're conditioned to believe that copper is a high
maintenance, pain in the you know what, item!
But actually, quite the opposite is true... Unless you're
dealing with highly polished copper pots, pans or decorative items,
it's simply a myth that copper requires a lot of care.
If you love the look of a warm, natural, golden brown patina,
you'll be delighted to know that pure copper kitchen sinks, bathroom
sinks, vessel sinks and bath tubs don't require any maintenance!
Yes, you read that right... NO maintenance!
The truth is... pure copper pretty much takes care of itself!
Click here to find out just how easy
it is to care for your copper sink or bathtub.
Truth #2... High Quality Copper Sinks & Bathtubs Become
More Beautiful As They Age
Mother Nature has given copper a seemingly magical quality known as a 'living
finish'. This very unique characteristic sets copper apart from
other metals and is the primary reason why a pure copper sink or
bath tub becomes more
beautiful with age!
When left untreated, copper interacts with its environment and
naturally deepens in color and tone over time. It begins its
journey with a pinkish, salmon-like hue and very gradually darkens in
color as it passes through a progression of russet browns until it finally
stabilizes to a deep, rich tone.
The speed at which it changes color and the final depth of tone
for each copper sink or bathtub will differ and is
greatly influenced by the amount and type of use it receives and by the prevailing
weather patterns in your particular geographical location.
The truth is... pure copper sinks and bath tubs age gracefully
and become even more beautiful with every passing day!
Truth #3... Copper Sinks & Bath Tubs 'Heal' Themselves!
Your copper sink or bath tub will not scratch any more easily than
any other fixture made for kitchen and bath.
However, should you happen to scratch the surface and end up with a
bright, shiny, streak somewhere on your sink or tub,
you won't need to take any
steps to 'fix' it.
Because of copper's 'living finish' properties, your copper kitchen
sink, bathroom sink or bathtub will quite literally 'heal' itself!
Simply go about your normal daily
routine and within a very short period of time you'll notice the scratch
begin to darken and slowly blend back in with the original patina!
Here's A True Story!
Shortly after installing her gorgeous,
sink, a customer called to ask what she could do
about a problem with the sink.
She told me that within a week
of installing the sink, her 5 year old son left a fully
'drenched' glass of lemonade sitting in it. By the time
she discovered it, the lemonade had left a bright,
shiny ring on the bottom of her brand new, dark
patina, copper kitchen sink!
Fearing the sink's finish was ruined, she wanted to know if there
was anything she could do to restore the patina and eliminate
the shiny ring.
You can imagine her dismay, when I responded that the best
thing to do was to... do nothing! At this point,
doing nothing was really the only option.
I then reminded her about the 'living finish'
properties of copper and suggested she be patient and let nature
take its course.
I assured her that her copper sink would eventually 'recover'
and that the shiny ring would soon begin to darken and blend in
with the rest of the sink's
Although I'm sure she only half believed me, she resigned
herself to leaving the sink alone and agreed to allow her copper kitchen
sink to 'heal' itself!
After about 3 or 4 weeks she called to
let me know that the shiny ring in her sink had almost
immediately begun to change color and was indeed on it's way to
blending in with the original patina!
About a year later, she called
to inquire about purchasing a copper bath tub. When I
asked about the ring in her copper kitchen sink, she told me
that it was now barely noticeable and that she had completely
forgotten about it!
~ ~ ~
* ~ ~ ~
I have a confession to make. Although I knew
the sink would 'recover',
even I was totally amazed at the speed at which it did so. Why?
Here's a photo of her copper kitchen
sink before it was shipped As you can see, it
has a very dark patina finish! For the ring to
darken so quickly to the point of being barely visible is truly amazing!
What a great testament to copper's natural
ability to right, or 'heal' itself! You've got to admit,
that's pretty cool!
So, the 3rd truth about copper is... pure copper will naturally 'heal' itself!
Copper Sinks &
Copper Bath Tubs Are Hygienic
Another of copper's amazing properties supports the fact that
copper kitchen sinks, bathroom sinks, vessel sinks and bath tubs don't
require any maintenance. And, that is...
Copper is naturally
have shown that bacteria only lives for hours on copper,
as compared to living for days on stainless steel and longer
still on all other types of kitchen and bath surfaces!
You can toss out all those
disinfectants and antibacterial products you've got stashed under
your kitchen sink! Bacteria will simply not live on copper!
For more info, you may want to read these online articles about copper's antibacterial
properties. (To read
the articles, click on the links then use your browser's
back button to return to this page).
Answer to Food Poisoning" - BBC Online ~ Health Article, 20
Alloys May Be Allies in Fight Against Germs" - Copper
Development Association, 15 November 2004
Also, copper was recently registered with the
US EPA as an antimicrobial material that kills
certain types of bacteria. Typically, this
type of registration has been granted to liquids
(or aerosols) and gases under the categories of
sanitizers and disinfectants. See 'Antimicrobial
Copper Surfaces' to learn more.
The 4th truth is... pure copper is naturally hygienic,
making it ideal for
your kitchen and bathroom.
Truth #5... A Copper Sink &
Bathtub Is Not Always A 'Copper' Sink & Bath Tub!
Not all copper sinks and bath tubs are equal. The components
that go in to producing a copper kitchen sink, bathroom sink, vessel
sink or bathtub are critical to its quality, appearance, ease of use
and longevity. They account for the difference between you
loving your kitchen or bathroom sink or bath tub and... well... not loving it!
Here are some basic elements to look for...
Copper vs. Recycled Copper
Although copper has been
used for nearly
10,000 years, only about 12% of the known worldwide copper
resources have been mined throughout
history. And, because copper is indestructible, nearly all of
it is still in circulation... but mostly in 'recycled' form.
When an item made of copper is discarded, it is melted down, combined
with other alloys, then re-marketed in the form of recycled copper.
As a result, the majority of
copper on the market today is no longer pure copper.
It's an 80/20 or 90/10 copper/alloy mix. And, the 'mix' portion
comprised of unknown alloys... as there is no industry standard.
The vast majority of copper products in use today...
copper wiring, copper tubing, copper plumbing, copper valves, copper
fittings, the copper in your home appliances, in your heating and
cooling system... etc, are (with the exception of copper wiring), made
of recycled copper.
Recycled copper contains a high enough percentage of copper for the
above products to
perform their primary function. And, although the
alloy 'mix' in recycled copper compromises copper's luxurious look, most of
these products are hidden or 'out-of-sight', so aesthetics is not an
On the other hand, a kitchen sink, bathroom sink or bath tub made of
plays a dual role in your home. It obviously must be functional,
because it is in full view at all times, it is
equally important that it be aesthetically pleasing as well!
Many of the copper sinks and bath tubs on the market today are made of recycled copper
which is really not well suited to handle the dual role of function
and beauty... the primary duties of sinks and bathtubs. Only a copper kitchen sink, bathroom sink, vessel sink or bath
tub made of pure copper will truly satisfy both of these needs.
Kitchen sinks, bathroom sinks and bathtubs are the absolute 'work
horses' of your home. They not only
have to be
strong enough to
withstand the demands of your busy family, they must also be easy to
care for and remain beautiful in the face of constant daily
While copper sinks and bathtubs
made of recycled copper may look beautiful when they're first
installed, they usually
become a huge disappointment... sometimes, very quickly and often
times even before they are put to use!
The reason for this is the 'alloy
mix'... that 10% or 20% mix of 'unknown' alloys that are a part of
In it's pure, natural state, copper
has an entire menu of incredibly beneficial features... many of which
are discussed here. These features are exactly what makes
pure copper the ideal choice for your kitchen and bath!
When 'unknown' alloys enter the
picture however, they, in essence, contaminate the copper. The
alloy mix compromises the integrity of copper's pure natural state
and dilutes or inhibits copper's very unique characteristics that make it
such a beautiful and ideal metal in the first place.
The result? You end up with a copper kitchen sink, bathroom sink, vessel sink
or bath tub that just doesn't quite do the job it was intended too!
The 'alloy mix' in recycled copper can
have one or all of the following effects on your copper sink or bath
tub. To a lesser or greater degree, it can...
- compromise the natural beauty of copper
- interfere with copper's natural 'living finish'
- prevent the sink or bath tub from 'aging' well
- cause the sink or bath tub to require extra care
- lessen copper's
- weaken copper's natural durability
- not stand up well
to everyday use
- cause the sink or bath tub to 'pit', rust and/or turn green
- cost you more money in the long run because the sink or
bathtub has to be prematurely replaced
- or, worse yet... contain an alloy that may be hazardous to
To illustrate this point, here's an example of a bathroom sink that
is made of recycled copper. The owners had to replace this sink
after only 3 short months!
|Although a bit difficult to see in these photos, this sink has
some obvious indications that it's made of recycled copper, such
- 'wearing' badly - discolorations
- signs of 'pitting' and corrosion
- rust at the drain hole opening and side
It was so unsightly after just 3 months of use, the owner's
opted to replace it. Fortunately it was a drop-in sink and
could be replaced without the added expense of removing the
By the way, the sink was purchased at a reputable home
improvement center. Oh... did we mention the sink was
installed in an extra bath off the laundry room and received
very little daily use?
Here's another example of a copper sink made of recycled copper.
This case is even more interesting because the sink is still sitting in a
showroom and hasn't even been used yet! One can only imagine
what this kitchen sink will look like once it's actually installed and put to
Again, it's a bit difficult to see in the photos, but this sink
also has clear indications of being constructed of recycled
copper. They include:
- premature oxidation (see the green markings on the top side
the sink in the 2nd photo and on the bottom of the sink in
the 3rd photo)
- pitting and the beginnings of corrosion in the interior of
the sink. (1st photo)
- the sink is aging poorly and quickly taking on a 'grayish'
appearance rather than a warm, antique-like look. (1st
and 2nd photos)
This sink is also from a reputable US Dealer, but the sink
was made in the Orient... a region well known for its use of recycled copper! How
do we know?
US Trade Law requires all imported items to be clearly
their country of origin. This sink has a 'Made In XXX'
stamp on it!
Now... contrast the condition of these two sinks with our customer's
experience in the 'lemonade story' above and you'll have a good
understanding of why it's wise to insist that your copper
kitchen sink, bathroom sink, vessel sink or bath tub be made of
*note: the term pure copper refers to copper as
mother nature created it... 99.9% copper!
*Weight (Gauge) Matters
Although copper is extremely durable, it's also a very soft and
malleable material. For this reason, it's crucial that your
copper kitchen sink, bathroom sink, vessel sink or bath tub be
constructed of the proper weight (gauge) material.
48 ounce (the equivalent of 16 gauge) copper is the minimum
weight that copper sinks or bath tubs should be made of. Kitchen
sinks, bathroom sinks and bath tubs made of 48 ounce copper will not
dent easily, will be strong enough to meet the demands everyday
use and will last for decades.
Even an oversized copper kitchen sink with the added weight of a
garbage disposal, or a copper bath tub with the added weight of an
extra person will not require additional support when made of 48
ounce, pure copper!
How will you know what weight of copper the sink or bath tub is
made of? Simply make it a point to ask!
If you have the advantage of physically seeing and touching the
copper sink before you purchase it, here are some things to look
First, pick up the sink and see how it feels. You will
if you have a quality sink in your hands or not! Trust your
A 48 ounce (16 gauge) pure copper sink, no matter how small
it is, will have a 'solid' feel to it and will be heavy.
It won't feel 'light as a feather'!
Next, visually check the thickness of the copper. If the sink
is made of copper that is paper thin, it's clearly not made of the proper
weight/gauge. It will not hold up well to normal everyday use and will
most likely be
a huge disappointment.
*Copper Weld vs. Solder
Joints and seams of copper sinks and bath tubs are typically
joined together by using one of two different processes... welding
Of the two, soldering is a much weaker process. Joints and
seams joined together in this manner have a tendency to split or break
apart after a certain period of time.
On the other hand, copper welding provides much greater strength.
A properly welded copper kitchen sink, bathroom sink or bath tub will
not experience any weakening at joints or seams, nor will joints or
seams break apart even after years of constant daily use.
Choose a copper sink or bath tub that has been copper-welded.
Aside from the added strength a copper weld provides, welded areas are
less easy to detect when the sink or bath tub is new and even much
less so after the sink or bath tub has aged.
You can usually tell if a copper sink or bath tub has been
soldered. Soldering typically uses an alloy to join the copper
seams together making the seams more visible to the eye. Also,
rather than blend in with the sink over time, solder turns black as it
ages, making it even more noticeable.
Notes: About Finishing Touches
There are a few more things to take note of when
choosing a copper sink or bath tub. These items don't
the performance of your kitchen sink, bathroom sink or bath tub, but
they do have a direct impact on overall appearance.
And, they're further indications of quality.
First, notice the hammered detailing. Is it perfectly uniform
or more irregular? If it's uniform, it was most likely made by
a machine. Hand hammered patterns are irregular in depth, size
and texture. They add more character to a copper sink or
bathtub and are a part of what gives it a distinctly original look.
Next, notice the edges around the rims of sinks and bath tubs and along the bottom of the
apron on the front of a farmhouse kitchen sink. Are they sharp,
and uneven? Or are they smooth to the touch, even in size and adequately
curved under for
a more finished, 'polished' look?
note about the apron...
Aside from checking the rim along the bottom of the apron on a
copper farmhouse kitchen sink,
be sure to note whether or not the apron itself has adequate support.
If it's not properly supported, the apron front could eventually loose
its shape and become somewhat curved or rippled due to the weight of
your body leaning up against it many times a day when doing the dishes
and preparing a meal.
And, finally... what about the
patina finish? Granted, it will
sometimes be uneven... that's the
nature of the process. But, does it appear to have been applied
as expertly and evenly as possible? Or does it look as if it was
painted on or sloppily wiped over the surface of the sink or bath tub?
blotchy or streaked? Does it rub off easily?
These are just a few of the
many elements involved in the production of copper sinks and bath
tubs. Working in unison, they play a big role in determining the
appearance and longevity of a copper kitchen sink, copper bathroom sink and
Know the type and weight of the copper that's
used in the sink or bath tub you purchase. And notice how the
sink or bath tub is constructed and completed. Your level of
satisfaction with your copper sink or copper bath tub will most certainly be
dependent on it!
Above all else, remember
this most important truth... not all copper sinks and copper bath tubs are created equal!
Truth #6... A Copper Sink & Bathtub Will Last for
occasion, we have playfully stated that our copper sinks and bath tubs
could very well be the archeological treasures of some future
you consider that a museum at the University of Pennsylvania displays
a (pure) copper frying pan that has been dated to be more than
50 centuries old, our playful statement may not be too far from the truth!
just a minimum of care and assuming
it's made of high grade materials, your copper kitchen sink,
bathroom sink or bath tub could very well last for centuries too, and be used
and enjoyed by your grandchildren's, children's, children... and
truth is... copper sinks and bath tubs are more than just
beautiful and practical. They're extremely resilient, cannot be
destroyed and will last for generations!
Truth #7... You Will Love
Your Copper Sink & Bath Tub!
You will be absolutely thrilled with a high quality copper kitchen
sink, bathroom sink, vessel sink or bath tub. It will fill your
home with love, beauty and joy... make you the envy of your friends
and neighbors... and dramatically set you, and your home, apart from
Copper sinks and bathtubs that meet or exceed the above
recommendations will always be attractive, durable, hygienic
(antibacterial), resistant and easy to care for. What's more,
they will age gracefully, last for lifetimes and become even more
beautiful through the years!
Nothing feels more wonderful than to be surrounded by beauty!
Especially in your very own home! Your copper sink and copper bath tub will
give you this experience every single day of the year!
This 7th truth about copper is much more personal than all of the
others. And, the truth is...
LOVE living with copper!
Now you have some guidelines, 'truths' if you will, to choosing
the perfect copper sink and copper bathtub. Keep these in mind when purchasing your copper sink
and you will have a beautiful kitchen or bathroom fixture that will give you years of
Experience the Difference!
Our copper kitchen sinks, bar sinks, bathroom sinks, vessel sinks and bath
tubs strictly conform to the highest standards and are built to last!
They even come with a
For more detailed information about how our copper sinks and
bathtubs 'measure up', be sure to view our
copper product specifications.
And, welcome to the magical world of copper!