Picking the right bathroom faucet is like choosing a piece of jewelry for your outfit—it can either complement or clash with the overall aesthetic.
But deciding on which faucet best suits your bathroom can be a challenge. Considering the type of sink and tub you have and your plumbing system can help you pick the right fixture that is both functional and stylish.
Bathroom faucets come in various types, from the classic bridge fixture to the more modern sprinkle, you’ll have a range of options.
In this post, we will explore the different types of bathroom faucets and the common features they share. We’ll also compare their installation method and the different materials and finishes available.
Different Types of Bathroom Faucets
First off, you need to consider what type of sink you have in your bathroom or the configuration of your bathtub. If you’re at the onset of building your bathroom, the faucet has to suit your bathroom’s decor. Luckily there are several options to choose from.
A bridge faucet is a single solid unit with two temperature knobs but it can also come with a side sprayer. It can be exactly what you need if you want to mix traditional design with modern technology.
This bathroom faucet is referred to as a bridge because the handles and the faucet itself are all integrated into one solid component. Its bridge-like design makes it so easily distinguishable from the rest. This type of faucet offers a classic yet sleek touch to any bathroom sink.
When it comes to installation, you’ll need only two holes that are installed on the countertop or under-mount sinks. And since they are installed underneath the counters, you have the opportunity to explore with them.
As the name suggests, single-handle or single-lever faucets have one handle that regulates both the water temperature and water flow. This type of vanity faucet is common in many bathrooms since they are easy to install, requiring only one or two holes. But if your sink has extra holes, the faucet may need a mounting plate.
Single-handle faucets typically have their levers on either the right or left side. However, more modern versions have their handles positioned right above the spout. And although they have only one handle, there are models with a motion sensor feature that automatically turns off/on and adjusts water temperature.
If you love to DIY, a single-handle faucet will be your option. Plus, they work well in smaller spaces.
Also known as a widespread faucet, a spread fit is the opposite of the bridge faucet. But, it’s similar to center set faucets but with a wider spacing. The mounting holes for each part are spaced up to 10 inches apart.
With spread-fit faucets, their knobs or handles are separated from each other and the spout. This style conceals the connection under the vanity sink or counter, all without needing a mounting plate.
While they might look like a hassle to install given their separated parts, a spread-fit faucet is the way to go for tight installations. Meaning, you can place the spout in the back corner while you can place the handles off to one side.
This type of bathroom faucet can be anything that sits on top of vessel sinks or counter as opposed to the typical drop-in or under-mount sink faucet. It’s another great option if you want something modern and unique.
Vessels often stand taller than a standard bathroom faucet to fit the height of the basin or sink. And since they sit on top of the counter, they have longer spouts to make sure that they reach the center of the bowl.
When it comes to installation, you need to drill holes into the counter to accommodate the faucet. Plus, they often have only one lever.
Wall-mounted faucets are the classic type, however, different brands now offer sleek and modern designs to add a touch of refinement to many bathrooms. They are mounted to the wall and float above the sink. The clean and uncluttered look that they offer is why they are still common in many bathrooms.
Another thing that makes wall-mounted bathroom faucets a popular choice is that they are easier to clean and maintain. Unlike deck-mounted fixtures that accumulate calcium deposits over time when not cleaned, wall–mounted faucets make it easy to clean the sink area since there’s nothing in the way.
One thing that you need to keep in mind before installing a wall-mounted faucet is measurement. You need to make sure that the faucet reaches your sink.
In addition, it makes replacing the sink easier. This is because you don’t have to remove both the faucet and the sink. It also gives you the freedom to install it anywhere there is a plumbing fixture.
A sprinkle faucet is basically anything with a unique spout that is typically rectangular in shape. It’s a wonderful addition to the bathroom if you want something modern and want to watch a wonderful pattern of water pouring into your sink or basin.
Unlike the traditional cylindrical faucets, these ones feature a grate at the mouth of the spout. This allows the water to also flow out in a rectangular form.
This type of bathroom sink faucet is mounted on the bathroom counter. Bridge, sprinkle, vessel, spread fit, and single-handle and center set faucets are actually considered deck mount fixtures. But like Roman tub faucets, deck-mount faucets are also commonly used for bathtubs.
Deck mount faucets are great for bathtubs that are positioned on the wall. And especially for tubs with wide rims, they help create a nice, contemporary look.
A center-set bathroom faucet looks identical to a bridge faucet, but it requires three pre-drilled faucet holes on the sink and comes with a 6-inch mounting plate. This faucet also comes with two handles or knobs on each side of the spout that allows you to control water flow and temperature. The handles are spaced four inches apart.
It’s commonplace in many bathrooms. Center-set bathroom sink faucets often have a short spout and are compact. They are installed directly on the sink and are a wonderful choice for small bathrooms. See our detailed comparison of widespread vs. centerset faucets for more information on the pros and cons of each.
When it comes to choosing a bathroom faucet, there are different materials you can choose from, each with its own pros and cons.
Brass faucets are one of the best options to consider due to their durability. These faucets resist rust and offer a timeless, stunning look. When you shop for a brass faucet, look for one with an all-brass body. The downside is that these faucets are often on the more expensive side.
Modern stainless steel faucets are another popular choice. They are durable and resist rust and corrosion and their silvery sheen works well with any bathroom decor. These faucets are also easy to clean. There are stainless steel faucets that leave fingerprints though so it’s always best to gather reviews from users.
But overall, a stainless steel faucet is easy to clean with the right cleaning product. Plus, they can come in various finishes, such as brushed stainless steel and polished stainless steel.
These faucets are great if you’re looking for something that is budget-friendly. They are a nice alternative to the more expensive brass and stainless steel materials. But of course, sometimes, you do get what you pay for so expect zinc faucets to be less durable. These faucets can also corrode over time.
Lightweight and inexpensive, plastic faucets are not the most ideal material but they are the easiest to install. Plastic faucets are typically crafted from polyethylene. The material uses cross-linked fibers to produce a durable shell. This makes the build less prone to chipping, but they are more fragile than metallic ones.
Plastic faucets aren’t the best out there but they are a decent and affordable option.
Choose From a Range of Finishes
Shopping for a new faucet is a great way to explore your options and be creative. Bathroom faucets come in different finishes which allow you to choose one that compliments the rest of your decor.
Classic, classy, and shiny. The chrome finish on faucets offers a simple yet elegant and easy-to-clean surface. It goes well with a range of colors as well as modern and contemporary bathrooms.
Brushed nickel bathroom faucets look similar to chrome but have a deeper and more dynamic look. It’s also shinier than chrome and more durable. That said, they are on the more expensive side. But with the look and sophistication it offers, it’s no wonder that many homes still go for the finish despite the high price.
Matte black faucets are one of the best to use in modern, minimalist, and industrial design bathrooms. They stand out in white backsplashes and basins and they are great as a statement piece.
Looking to bring some warmth into your bathroom? Copper finishes add a touch of elegance to rustic and vintage-inspired bathrooms. It’s not the most popular choice though, and it tends to be more expensive while being less sturdy.
Oil-rubbed bronze faucets also tend to be pricier. However, it offers a smooth finish that makes the bathing experience more luxurious. They are also great if you’re going for a vintage vibe due to their warm and slightly aged look.
How Much Do Bathroom Faucets Cost?
The price of a new faucet depends on its material, brand, style, and the features that come with it.
In general, you can budget between $60 and $200 for a more conventional faucet. For ones offered by higher-end brands with the extra frills, you’ll pay more. Higher-end faucets and those with more parts like spread fit and bridge faucets typically cost between $200 and $300 or even higher.
Whichever you choose, you should also factor in the cost of faucet installation. If you hire a professional plumber, you can expect the overall cost to add up.
Other Faucet Features You Need To Look For
Bathroom faucets offer more than just pouring water into the sink or tub. Looking into the features that these faucets offer will make your bathroom more functional. Of course, the added features should meet your needs as expensive fixtures with lots of bells and whistles can be pricey.
If budget is not an issue, you can look for touchless faucets. These faucets have low-flow aerators or a “touchless” option that turns the water off automatically when not in use. Waterfall faucets add a visual element to a functional task such as washing your hands.
Many faucets also have a sink stopper that you may pull out to seal the sink. This prevents water from draining while you use it.
A soap dispenser on the side can also come in handy. It makes washing hands quick and easy. There are also bathroom faucets with a flexible head that you can take out of the base. This feature can be useful if you need to clean the vanity sink or wash off your razors.
What Is a 4-Bathroom Faucet?
Designed for bathroom sinks with three pre-drilled holes, a 4-inch center-set faucet is a single-unit faucet that comes with a spout and a handle, which also sits 4 inches apart. On a 6-inch deck plate, some centerset faucets can come equipped with two handles.
What Is the Standard Bathroom Faucet?
It depends on the type of sink you have and the type of faucet. Most widespread faucets measure between 6 to 8 inches, while center sets are typically 4 inches. For sinks with only one pre-drilled faucet hole, it makes sense to use a single-hole faucet.
What Is a 3-Hole Faucet?
A 3-hole bathroom faucet, as the name suggests, requires three pre-drilled holes in the sink to be installed. Most 3-hole faucets also come with two handles, one for cold water control and the other for hot water. The handles can also come as separate pieces or as a single solid unit.
Bathroom faucets come in different types, sizes, finishes, and styles. Finding the right one will ultimately boil down to the type of tub, sink, or basin you have and where you want to install it.
Think about what features best suit your needs. And whether you go for a high-arc or low-arc spout, a brushed nickel or chrome finish, or a traditional or modern design, make sure to pick a bathroom sink faucet that matches the style of your bathroom and fulfills your everyday needs.
If you have any more questions about the different types of bathroom faucets, feel free to reach out and we’ll be glad to help. Good luck!