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Old 09-18-2010, 07:19 PM   #1
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


I just had a new kitchen cabinet and counter top installed. I supervised the project but this is my first house and I'm pretty new to these kinds of things.

When the counter top was built, the sink was lined up with the center of the cabinets below instead of with the window above it. There was room for the sink to be moved a few inches in either direction in order to be lined up with the window and still have functioning drawers within the cabinets below. I did not notice that the sink was out of alignment with the window until the counter top was already finished.

It was a very sad and shocking thing to realize after the fact.

I am wondering just how awful it is . . . or is this sometimes actually normal - that a kitchen sink under a kitchen window would be several inches too far to one side.

It doesn't look too terrible to me unless I focus a lot of attention on it . . . which I can't help but do. Also, I had this little shelf stand that went over my sink before the remodel which provided some extra space to store soap and other kitchen sink things. When I placed this stand back over the sink, the off-centeredness of the window and the sink became even more obvious. I decided not to use the shelf stand anymore in order to reduce the obviousness of the situation.

Needless to say, but I will say it still, is that I will be supervising much more closely projects that I outsource the labor for in the future. Incidentally, the counter top (which is tile) does look really good.


Feedback, please?

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Old 09-18-2010, 07:38 PM   #2
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


it is merely a matter of aesthetics. If it doesn't bother you, it won't bother me.



whose error caused this?

Whoever designed the kitchen should have taken care of this and spec'd the proper cabinets to the sink, cabinet, and window would all line up properly.

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Old 09-18-2010, 08:32 PM   #3
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


Well, yes, it is only about aesthetics. The counter top and sink function perfectly and the couter top looks really nice.


It was actually a whole mishmosh of work people that did this job. The original scenario was this: I bought the house in late 2009. About a month ago, I discovered a pipe that was leaking and smelling really moldy. The plumbers that came out concluded that the pipe had been leaking for years (during each AC season, because it was the AC drainage pipe, leaking in the wall) due to the fact that the cement in the wall was literally like sand from all the years of water damage. So, I filed a claim with my homeowners to take care of the mold and water damage and hired a plumber to come in and repair the pipe).

The restoration company hired by the insurance installed new cabinetry to replace the water-damaged stuff there beforehand. Their job, as they put it, was to "put everything back exactly as it was previously". I took the opportunity to go ahead and update the kitchen counter which I'd wanted to do anyway.

So the restoration company installed the cabinetry and then my independent workers came in to do the couter top. Really, I believe that it was my fault for not specifying my wishes with the counter top guys. They DID line the sink up with the cabinets symmetrically . . . but my preference would have been for it to be lined up with the window above and crooked with the cabinets, instead (since that would be far less noticeable). This being my first dig at home ownership as well as remodeling, I completely didn't realize what was happening until it was too late. I did make other requests and express preferences related to the tile job, but I just didn't think to mention the symmetry issues with the cabinets, sink and window. Didn't even realize it was an issue, either, until the end.


Anyway, the arrangement does look strange to me but I am just wondering if my house is the only one like this or is this sometimes just how it is? I actually cried when I realized what had happened and that it was too late to do anything about it.

Thank you for the feedback.
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Old 09-18-2010, 08:49 PM   #4
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


so, originally the sink lined up with the windows and not the cabinets, right?


was the original counter already gone when your guys came in to scope out the job? If not, was it still in place?
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Old 09-19-2010, 01:22 AM   #5
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


I would guess a kitchen sink off center with the window above it is not 'normal' in any sense, but I can assure you that nearly all homes have similar idiosyncrasies. You may be focused on it now - in two weeks, you won't even notice it -- in two months you won't even care.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:08 AM   #6
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


I have had customers that did not care, and I have had customers that would call out the lawyers if it was 1/8" off center. Planning is everything, but sometimes the best plans go awry. If it is a picky customer, I would bite the bullet and do it over.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:01 AM   #7
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


Thank you for the feedback.


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Originally Posted by nap View Post
so, originally the sink lined up with the windows and not the cabinets, right?
It did. It was ever so slightly off but the difference was barely noticeable. The previous off-ness was so that the drawers in the cabinet could still be functional while allowing the sink to be aligned with the window. These guys that did the counter top didn't really take the time to look up and see that the sink placement would conflict with the window and they placed it right in the center of the cabinet. Either that or they thought they were doing the right thing to align the sink with the center of the cabinet.


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was the original counter already gone when your guys came in to scope out the job? If not, was it still in place?

No, it was there. Again, I think the guys I hired just aren't used to putting that level of attention into the whole picture, you know? Like I called them in to install a counter top and that's what they did. They did a great job on the counter top but, looking back, I wish I'd been more present during the process in order to catch it before it was done (even though I don't even know at what point I would have intervened, never having participated in this kind of thing before) or even specifically request it in the first place. Guess I didn't realize that there was an issue surrounding it at all - I think I just assumed they'd know to align the sink with the window instead of the cabinet.


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Originally Posted by Windows View Post
I would guess a kitchen sink off center with the window above it is not 'normal' in any sense, but I can assure you that nearly all homes have similar idiosyncrasies. You may be focused on it now - in two weeks, you won't even notice it -- in two months you won't even care.
That is good to know and I really, really hope I feel better about it soon. Right now I am still feeling very tense about it.


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I have had customers that did not care, and I have had customers that would call out the lawyers if it was 1/8" off center. Planning is everything, but sometimes the best plans go awry. If it is a picky customer, I would bite the bullet and do it over.
Gosh, I wish I'd worked with someone like you. I don't think these guys are those kind of people. Also, the whole materials factor . . . who would be responsible for replacing all those materials? Some of it was special ordered and all of it would need to be replaced - don't think any of it would be reusable. The only way I could see that happening is if the entire cabinet could be removed from the wall, with the counter top attached and just parted from the grout up against the wall where the backsplash tiles are. Then the length of the counter would need to be shortened (can tile be sawed into without destruction to them??) and then reattached to the wall. I don't even know if that's realistically possible . . . and it'd be a heck of a lot of work and expense either way.
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Old 09-19-2010, 12:53 PM   #8
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


If the counter was in place when your guys scoped out the job, if you want to argue the point with them, I would say you have a reasonable argument for them to replace it at their cost.

Maybe you can negotiate a repair with you paying materials and they not charging for the labor.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:04 AM   #9
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


Our kitchen sink is like yours, centered to cabinet, not the window. It is off by several inches.

Replacing our kitchen counter / sink is on my to-do list. I have not decided what to do about it, but unless I can talk DH into new cabinets, I am seriously thinking about leaving the situation as-is and replacing everything in the same position.

IMHO, having the sink off center of the cabinet would look just as odd as having the sink off center of the window.

BTW, we had been here a couple of months before I even noticed it. It is really a non-issue for me.

Last edited by Blondesense; 09-20-2010 at 11:06 AM.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:21 AM   #10
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


Quote:
Originally Posted by nap View Post
If the counter was in place when your guys scoped out the job, if you want to argue the point with them, I would say you have a reasonable argument for them to replace it at their cost.

Maybe you can negotiate a repair with you paying materials and they not charging for the labor.
Yeah, I suppose this is one realistic solution, but I really don't have the funds to replace the materials - it was already a job I wasn't financially prepared for but decided to do because the kitchen was already being completely disassembled in order to do the mold and water damage remediation.


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Originally Posted by Blondesense View Post
Our kitchen sink is like yours, centered to cabinet, not the window. It is off by several inches.

Replacing our kitchen counter / sink is on my to-do list. I have not decided what to do about it, but unless I can talk DH into new cabinets, I am seriously thinking about leaving the situation as-is and replacing everything in the same position.

IMHO, having the sink off center of the cabinet would look just as odd as having the sink off center of the window.

BTW, we had been here a couple of months before I even noticed it. It is really a non-issue for me.
I really appreciate your response. It helps to know that it's not so weird, you know? I can't help but notice it right away when I walk in the room but my guess is that it would be less-obvious to others.

I do disagree, though, about alignment with the cabinets vs. the window. The cabinets are down low and not in the line of vision as much as the window. Plus, they're dark wood and the window brings in light so I think it attracts attention much more.


I really hope I can just get used to this because I don't see another remodel happening for a very, very long time . . . if ever.


Thank you all so much for the feedback.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:33 AM   #11
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


for some reason, I cannot figure out how the cabinets and the sink and the window cannot be lined up properly. (in the general installation, not what was required in this particular situation) While both people (with misalignment problems) speak of being able to use drawers etc, it doesn't really make any sense to me.

You design your cabinets to fit the space on hand. For a sink, you generally use a double door base cabinet. Then, with the remaining space on either side you use drawer units that fit within that space. Sometimes you might end up using a drawer base cabinet that is not as wide as one would like but it is what it is. The remaining space (after inserting the smaller drawer unit) would be filled either with a filler strip or some other form of cabinet that fits the opening.

Quote:
I really hope I can just get used to this because I don't see another remodel happening for a very, very long time . . . if ever.
you do have the option of seeking to have the counter installers fixing this at their cost. If it was their mistake, they should take care of the problem. I don't know what any contract you made included and if you have signed off on the job but that is your only remaining option, short of living with it.
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:47 AM   #12
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


FWIW.

sink not lined up with base cabinet in kitchen
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Old 09-20-2010, 11:58 AM   #13
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


There isn't enough info there to figure out their problem or solution.

What you have to do is start with knowns. Total available space and then where any specific placement of anything has to be. Since we are dealing with a sink placement, you start with placing the sink base cabinet. (of course, figuring the sink is going to be lcentered on the window) Then you determine what space you have remaining on the sides. Knowing that, you then use cabinets as needed and available to fill that space. Sometimes you will end up with a filler larger than preferred but unless you are willing to purchase custom made cabinets, you decide which you prefer; a larger filler or a misaligned sink.

so, that is how you have a perfectly lined up window, sink, and base cabinet. You put them in first and fill up what is left with whatever.
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:17 PM   #14
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


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Like Nap said there the person didn't tell us which way the sink was off set. That may not seem to make a difference but it does when trying to tell the person what cabinet combination to use to correct the problem.
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Old 09-21-2010, 10:58 AM   #15
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How bad/unusual is it for a kitchen sink under window to be off-center?


Quote:
Originally Posted by nap View Post
There isn't enough info there to figure out their problem or solution.

What you have to do is start with knowns. Total available space and then where any specific placement of anything has to be. Since we are dealing with a sink placement, you start with placing the sink base cabinet. (of course, figuring the sink is going to be lcentered on the window) Then you determine what space you have remaining on the sides. Knowing that, you then use cabinets as needed and available to fill that space. Sometimes you will end up with a filler larger than preferred but unless you are willing to purchase custom made cabinets, you decide which you prefer; a larger filler or a misaligned sink.

so, that is how you have a perfectly lined up window, sink, and base cabinet. You put them in first and fill up what is left with whatever.


Yeah, this would definitely have been the ideal (and sensible) way to go about it. I have certainly gotten an expensive education.



Thank you all again so much for the feedback.

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