6 February 2024

Undermount vs Overmount Sinks

What is an Undermount Sink?

An undermount sink, commonly known as a drop-in or inset sink, is mounted beneath the benchtop to provide an elegant finish. These sinks are universally admired for their clean lines and the ease with which they allow debris to be wiped directly into the basin without obstruction. Undermount sinks can also be referred to as ‘drop in’ or ‘inset’ sinks.

What is an Overmount Sink?

Overmount Sink

Overmount sinks, also known as top-mount or drop-in sinks, feature a distinctive lip that rests on top of the benchtop. They have a celebrated reputation for their ease of installation and versatility.

Aesthetic Considerations

A key feature of undermount sinks are their sleek and unobstructed look. They are made to blend effortlessly with your kitchen benchtop. Their design works perfectly in a modern kitchen, or a kitchen that is opting for a more refined look.

Overmount sinks, on the other hand, have a distinct edge resting on the benchtop. This style is more commonly seen in kitchens throughout Australia, but the design of an overmount sink can still offer a very modern look.

Installation and Ongoing Maintenance

The process of installing and maintaining your new sink can differ notably depending on which style you opt for. 

Overmount sinks are known for their simplicity of installation, sitting directly in a benchtop cutout. This simplicity extends to their maintenance, with accessible edges making cleaning them an exceptionally straightforward process. 

Conversely, undermount sinks can require precise installation beneath the benchtop, often necessitating the need for professional assistance. However, their streamlined integration with the benchtop offers an uncomplicated surface for wiping down, making day to day upkeep a breeze.

Durability and Longevity

Overmount sinks, with their visible edges, provide robust support and are less prone to accidental chipping of the benchtop. They stand up well to daily wear and tear. 

Undermount sinks, while requiring sturdier benchtop materials like stone, minimises the risk of water build up along the edges.

Functionality and Usability

Selecting the dream sink for your kitchen isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s form and function are also paramount. The needs of your kitchen are unique to you, whether you’re a passionate cook or a time pressed parent, the right sink can make a world of difference in your daily kitchen routine. Our range accommodates diverse lifestyles, ensuring both practicality and elegance in your kitchen space.

Space Utilisation and Kitchen Layout

The kitchen layout significantly influences sink selection. An overmount sink, known also as a top-mount, is superb for kitchens where counter space is at a premium. Its design allows for more surface area, ideal for compact areas. On the other hand, undermount sinks are seamlessly integrated into the benchtop, with the end result being a bench that is far easier to clean.
If your home has a large kitchen and there is a little more real estate on the kitchen bench, undermount sinks are a very compelling choice. When picking your dream sink, it’s important to keep your kitchen’s strengths and weaknesses front of mind.

Cleaning and Upkeep

As a central point of your kitchen, maintaining the cleanliness and appearance of your sink is vital. Furthermore, regular cleaning is essential not only for aesthetic appeal, but also to prevent build up and to ensure a hygienic cooking environment. For undermount sinks, pay attention to the sealant edges to prevent grime accumulation. Overmount sinks, while easier to clean around the rim, may require more frequent maintenance of the silicone seal.

Cost Considerations and Budgeting

Budgeting for a kitchen sink requires a balance between quality and affordability. Bella Vista’s range offers options for every budget without compromising on quality. When budgeting it’s important to consider some of the following factors:

  • Long Term Durability: Sometimes a higher upfront cost for your sink will result in it being less susceptible to chips and marks later down the line
  • Resale Value: Prospective buyers should consider whether or not this sink has an impact on the look of your kitchen in a way that can benefit you, should you look to sell your home down the line
  • Size and Design: The cost of your sink will be impacted by the sink’s size and design; including the raw materials with which its made

Remember, a well-chosen sink is an investment in your kitchen’s longevity and functionality.

Comparative Overview

  • Undermount Sinks: Ideal for a fluid, contemporary look. They enable easy cleaning of benchtop crumbs directly into the sink; but be mindful of the caulking maintenance. 
  • Overmount Sinks: Known for their straightforward installation and compatibility with various benchtop materials. They offer a traditional, practical design with their protective lip.


Feature Undermount Sink Overmount Sink
Aesthetic Appeal Seamless look blending with the benchtop Distinct edge resting on the benchtop, a more traditional style
Installation Requires precise installation, in most instances requiring professional assistance Simpler, DIY-friendly, sits in a benchtop cutout
Maintenance Simple integration aids in cleaning; attention needed for sealant edges Easier to clean around the rim; regular sealant checks needed
Durability Requires sturdier benchtop materials; less risk of water damage on edges Robust support from visible edges; less prone to chipping
Style Suitability Ideal for modern, contemporary kitchens Suits traditional kitchens; adds a defining feature
Cost May be higher due to installation and material requirements Typically more budget-friendly


Additional Resources 

For further insights on all things related to bathroom design, kitchen design, remodelling tips and a wealth of other relevant topics, explore the Bella Vista blog. Here, Bella Vista’s experienced staff share insights and guidance on how to make the most of your space.


Commonly Asked Questions


What are the biggest differences between undermount and overmount sinks?

Undermount sinks are mounted beneath the bench, offering a sleek look and ease of cleaning. Overmount sinks sit on top of the bench, easier to install, and compatible with a wider range of benchtop materials.

Which sink type is easier to maintain; undermount or overmount?

Both require maintenance, but undermount sinks offer simpler benchtop cleaning. Overmount sinks need regular sealant checks to prevent water damage.

Can I install either sink type with any benchtop material?

Overmount sinks are more versatile with benchtop materials. Undermount sinks suit sturdy materials like stone due to the exposed edges.

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