Buying a new kitchen sink: Advice | Consumer Reports

Even something as mundane as a kitchen sink looks glamorous when it's on display at the store.

And the choices are endless.

There's stainless steel and Corian

And styles like this above the counter basin

to apron front sinks.

Gorgeous showrooms aside, you need a sink that can handle daily wear and tear.

That's where Consumer Reports comes in.

Testers put 18 kitchen sinks through some tough tests

They stain sinks soaking cotton balls with foods like KoolAid, pasta sauce, and coffee.

They scrubbed with scouring pads

And they dropped hard objects, up to 5 pounds from different heights.

They even checked how well the sinks could handle a hot pot of 400 degree oil.

All of the materials had a weakness, some worse than others.

Our acrylic sinks actually melted in our heat-resistance tests

Our fire-glazed sinks cracked during our impact tests.

And while nearly all of the stainless-steel sinks scratched they proved to be the most durable type of sink.

And, among the least expensive.

But avoid high-polished stainless steel.

The brushed and the matte finish will hide stains, scratches a lot better than your high-polished surface

You'll also want to get a stainless steel sink with sound absorbing pans on the under side.

They're quieter than ones with a spray-on coating.

So while a sink isn't the most glamorous purchase, choosing the right one can make kitchen jobs easier.