Plumbing mixers are quite complex devices that have significant differences in the design, appearance of models and purpose. How to choose a kitchen faucet, what to look for to get a reliable, durable, convenient and beautiful device? We will tell all about this in this article.
First of all, you need to determine the type of construction. At first glance it may seem that everything is very difficult, but now we’ll sort it all out.
Externally, this mixer is a traditional device with two valves for mixing hot and cold water.
Tap-box mixer for kitchen sink.
But according to the design of the locking mechanism, there are two types of crane boxes - worm and ceramic. When they are mounted in the mixer, it is not possible to distinguish them among themselves, but the difference in their design is still significant.
The principle of operation of such devices is quite simple. Turning the rod 3-4 turns, the user presses the locking gasket to the valve seat, inside the body of the mixer, blocking the flow of water. The main advantage of this type of crankcase is its exceptionally high maintainability. In the overwhelming majority of breakdowns, repair is limited to replacing the locking gasket, which can be cut out of a piece of rubber on its own or purchased at the store.
Two ceramic discs inside the faucet are slotted. One of them (adjusting) rotates relative to the other (input), fixed in the housing. The intensity of the water supply depends on the size of the hole. The operation of such a crane is more convenient, since the rotation of the valve should be carried out only 180º (half-turn) or 90º (quarter-turn). However, such mechanisms, although reliable, are considerably less durable. If you fail, you will have to change the entire karan-buksu.
+ Pros tap-box mixers
- Minuses of the crane-box mixers
They are also called single-lever or joystick mixers. Having entered the market not so long ago, single-lever mixers quickly gained popularity. A huge number of single-lever kitchen faucet models are produced, how to choose a reliable product mechanism?
Single-lever kitchen faucet.
There are two types of single-lever mixing mechanisms - ball and cartridge mechanism.
The ball has several holes. turning it can regulate the amount of incoming hot and cold water, temperature and pressure of the outflow.
The main drawback is the excessive complexity of the design. The main breakdown is the rapid abrasion of the cuffs and gaskets and the weakening of the spring support of the adjusting cuff, which is why the valve starts to leak.
The cartridge mechanism
It has the same principle of operation and principal design as the ceramic crane box.
Consists of two ceramic plates with holes. The lower stationary (A) through which comes hot and cold water and there is a drain hole and the upper movable (B).
The temperature of the water and its pressure depend on the area where the holes on the two plates coincide.
According to the design of the body, such mixers can be divided into fixed and rotary.
1. Fixed (cast) body .
The mixing mechanism is not in the molded case. The control lever is located at the side at an angle of 45 - 90º from the body. To adjust the direction of the jet is used movable outflow. The advantages of such a body is its high reliability and maintainability. Disadvantages - less convenient handling and greater jet power, which can be sprayed. The main types of breakdowns are spout loosening, the need to periodically replace gaskets on it, and tightening the fastening ring.
2. Rotary body .
The main advantages are convenient operation and significant water savings, since the joystick is initially in the position of uniform flow of flows for mixing. Spout moves smoothly has a secure fit and a small height.
The main drawback is the need to periodically replace the gaskets of the rotary body.
+ The advantages of single-lever kitchen mixers
- Disadvantages of single-lever mixers
IMPORTANT! Regardless of the type of mixing mechanism, single-lever mixers are very sensitive to solids in the water. In order to significantly extend their service life on the water supply pipes it is strongly recommended to install a coarse filter.
This is the latest product on the plumbing market. Such devices have significant functional differences from simple mechanical devices. There are volatile models that require connecting to a 220 V network via a 12V adapter and stand-alone, which work for several months on batteries, the functionality of these devices is rather limited. Their main disadvantage is the cost of such mixers is too high.
The main functions of electronic mixers are, first of all, the adjustment of water temperature. Regardless of the temperature change of the incoming streams, water from the mixer will flow to a given temperature.
Contactless switching, provides an infrared sensor. It is only necessary to bring the hands to the mixer and the water of the set temperature will turn on itself.
The advantages of such devices are obvious - this is a significant saving of water and ease of operation. However, when choosing them, it is advisable to give preference to devices with a system for duplicating water supply by manual control.
The budget option for upgrading an existing mixer can be a special nozzle attached to the spout spout instead of the aerator mesh.
Manufacturers claim that using it will save up to 20% of water. Such a device works from an ordinary battery, which must be replaced every six months.
What kind of kitchen faucet is better to choose, you decide, based on the above features, advantages and disadvantages. As a rule, housewives prefer to have a single-lever mixer in the kitchen, but if they need a budget option, the crane-box mixers will help you.
Depending on the location above the sink, they are distinguished:
The size of the outflow depends on the depth of the wash; the greater the depth, the higher the allowed spout bend. When a jet falls from a great height, water will spray out, respectively, for not deep sinks, which theoretically designed taps of great height, they will not fit at all. When using devices with low spout, there is a problem when filling with water a large amount of dishes.
This problem was tried to be solved by developing several versions of spouts with variable geometry. The most popular are telescopic.
They consist of several tubes connected by permeable joints. Their main drawback is the unreliability of the design, a large number of hinges and gaskets. The more connections there are, the greater the likelihood that a leak will form somewhere.
The next type is retractable. They resemble a shower handle in the bathroom. A flexible hose with a depth of 1-1.5 m is hidden inside a decorative short tap.
This type of mixer is almost universal.Some models have an additional control, which is equipped with a sliding element, it provides additional savings of water. When choosing such devices, it is necessary to pay attention to the material of the decorative faucet, in particular to the place of fastening the sliding head in the socket of the decorative spout. Many cheap models are made of plastic, which quickly fails.
A low-cost but quality option may be a crane with a flexible spout on an elastic holder.
They are very functional and reliable, but their design does not suit every kitchen interior.
Despite its small size, this is a very important part of the mixer. The most popular retractable watering cans and small aerators. These devices operate on the principle of cavitation, mixing water with air. This provides significant savings, as water consumption is reduced to 8 l / min.
There are devices with a static arrangement of the grids, and there are devices with an adjustable one, in which the density of the air-water mixture can be changed. Many models of mixers are equipped with nozzles with a changeable direction of water flow. This idea turned out to be so successful that special nozzles were developed with wide ranges of saturation adjustment and jet shape that fit most kitchen faucets.
However, progress in the development and modernization of kitchen plumbing does not stand still. Many ideas are just beautiful decorations, some can bring undoubted benefits.
Simple or LED lights on the faucet. It will allow not only to decorate the kitchen, but also to wash dishes better.
Electronic thermometer and water temperature meter. It will help not burn yourself and significantly save water. A feature of this device "FaucetBuddy" is that it is absolutely independent. All the necessary energy nozzle receives from a jet of water.
Most kitchen faucets are installed either on the sink or on the countertop. Fastening can be done using a mounting nut or one, two studs with shaped half washers.
Crane-box mixers have a collet for fixing - split sleeve with thread. The nut is screwed on it, which attaches the mixer to the surface.
The threaded holes (one or two) are located in the base of the lever mixer. The studs are screwed into them, then the puck put on the floor is pulled by a nut.
Usually, vertical connection is made using flexible hoses. But if it is necessary to connect the mixer directly to the pipes coming out of the wall, then eccentrics are used for correct positioning, and in order to hide the fasteners, tapered trim plates are used which should be included in the mixer kit.
The mixer has many parts and various materials are used for their production. Various alloys are used as the body material. The most common brass and steel. Mixers of them are among the highest quality. Mixers made of copper and bronze are not inferior to them, but their cost is very high.
Low-cost models make zinc-aluminum-copper (TsAM) and silumin alloys; the resulting products do not differ in strength and durability.
Many modern manufacturers are experimenting with high-strength and heat-resistant plastic and metal-ceramic. The performance of these products is very high, but compared with metal mixers, their impact strength is much lower.
The same problems arise when choosing the coating of a metal mixer. Chrome plated more durable, but the dirt on them is more noticeable, and the color scheme is very limited. Enameled have a wide palette of shades, but the coating is less reliable, can peel off or change color from the effects of cleaning products.
How to choose a faucet in the kitchen, among many models, the best in price and, most importantly, quality. The answer is the weight of the product. Reliable product is not easy. You should also pay attention to the brand. This is the option when the name of the manufacturer's company is not a tribute to fashion, but a guarantee of a quality mixer.