|Source • Brands||
Price • Origin
Blanco America, Inc.
110 Mount Holly By-Pass
Lumberton, NJ 08048
Blanco Canada, Inc
737 Jutland Road
Etobiocoke, Ontario MBZ 2G6
Blanco GmbH + Co KG
Flehinger Straße 59
Tel: +49 7045 4481100
(Meets North American Standard)
This Company In Brief
If you buy a Blanco faucet, you are not buying a German faucet. You are buying a German-designed faucet that was neither manufactured in Germany nor by Blanco. Nevertheless, these are good to excellent faucets built with good quality components throughout, backed by a strong warranty and superior customer service from a well-established company. Blanco sells only kitchen, prep and bar faucets, nothing for the bathroom. The faucets are intended as accessories to its principal product, kitchen sinks. Many can be finished to exactly match a Blanco sink.
The faucets are priced comparable to similar European-made faucets sold by other importers. Blanco faucets are certified to meet or exceed all North American reliability, safety and lead-free standards, but the statements required by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act certifying that the faucets comply with U.S. water conservation standards is not on file with the Department of Energy. In consequence, most Blanco faucets are not legal for sale in the United States. Canadian sales are not affected.
Blanco America, Inc. is the U.S. division of Blanco GmbH + Co KG. The company's authorized Canadian distributor is Blanco Canada.
Founded in 1925 as Blanc & Co. by Heinrich Blanc in Oberderdingen, Germany, its main business is the manufacture of kitchen sinks. It is the largest sink manufacturer in Germany, and one of the largest in the world. Starting with stainless steel sinks in 1951, the company has since added granite composite (Silgranit®) sinks, and porcelain ceramic sinks to its lineup. Today the company is wholly owned by E.G.O. Elektro-Garate GmbH & Co. Holding KG of Oberderdingen, Germany; a manufacturer of mostly high-tech components for home and industrial appliances. Its U.S. subsidiary, Blanco America, Inc., was formed in 1987 and Blanco Canada, Inc. commenced business in 1995.
Blanco sells only kitchen, prep and bar faucets, nothing for the bathroom. The faucets are intended as accessories to its principal product, kitchen sinks. Many can be finished to exactly match a Blanco sink.
The faucets emphasize style, and, in fact, Blanco frequently refers to itself as a "design" company. Blanco design is the province of chief designer Claudia Simone Hoff whose team of four in-house designers are responsible for Blanco's well-defined "look", which Ms. Hoff characterizes as "modern, but not faddish." Blanco faucets have won numerous awards in international design competitions, including the coveted Red Dot award, the German IF award, the Designpreis Deutschland (German Design Prize) and the Good Design Award sponsored by the Chicago Athenaeum Museum of Architecture and Design, the oldest and most prestigious of the international design awards.
Blanco is less and less a manufacturer in its own right, and more a designer and specifier of products manufactured by others. Very few Blanco products are made by Blanco, and even fewer are made in Germany.
Blanco manufactures its porcelain and engineered composite (Silgranit®, PuraDur®) sinks in Sinsheim, Germany; Toronto, Canada and Istanbul, Turkey. Its Steelart® stainless steel sinks are, however, another story. Some are still manufactured in in Suizfeld, Germany. But, most of the stainless sinks sold by Blanco in North America are made in China by
Blanco also does not manufacture any of its own faucets. They are manufactured for Blanco by:
• Solex High-Tech Industries Co., Ltd., a Chinese "one-stop-shop" sanitary wares manufacturer that also makes faucets for American Standard Brands. It provides the majority of the faucets sold by Blanco in North America.
• Hamat Sanitary Fittings & Castings is a faucet manufacturer located in Israel that formerly sold its faucets in the U.S. and Canada under the Hamat name, but has since withdrawn from the North American retail market. It still makes faucets for other companies, including as well as Blanco.So, if you buy a Blanco faucet, you are not buying a German faucet. You are buying a German-designed faucet that was neither manufactured in Germany nor by Blanco. For a designer faucet manufactured in Germany from parts and components made almost entirely in Germany, try
At one time Blanco purchased faucets from Gruppo Nobili S.p.A. a well-regarded and innovative Italian faucet manufacturer of designer faucets, but this relationship appears to have ended in 2013.
A designer faucet company like Blanco has to keep producing new designs at a fairly steady pace to keep ahead of copy-cats and outright counterfeiters.
Protecting a design is very difficult. Most countries allow only very limited copyright or patent protection for the design elements of a faucet. It is not hard to reverse engineer a successful faucet design, make subtle changes to avoid patent infringement, and then manufacture knock-offs in great quantities for a much lower price than the original designer company can possibly afford.
As a consequence, the life span of a successful faucet design is about five years, after which time it has been so widely copied that the design is no longer fresh or new.
Many original Blanco designs have reached this stage, and have been widely copied. But while the design might be available as a knock-off for a lower price, what is not available is the wide range of unique Blanco faucet finishes.
Blanco is well-known for its adventures in sink and faucet finishes. In addition to finishing faucets to exactly match the colors of its sinks, it offers a number of in which one part of the faucet, usually the body, is finished to match the sink, and the rest of the faucet is finished in one of several metallic coatings, the most common being polished chrome. Blanco offers some looks rarely available elsewhere, including Anthracite, its not-quite-black finish. However, not every Blanco faucet is available with every Blanco finish. The finish selection for a faucet often depends a great deal on which outside manufacturer makes the faucet and the finishes available from that particular manufacturer.
Blanco's warranty is about average for faucet warranties in North America. All parts and finishes except the Cafe Brown finish are warranted for as long as the original purchaser owns the home in which the faucet is installed.
The warranty has a few odd provisions, however. Replacement or repair parts are, according to the warranty language, not shipped directly to the customer's home, but to the store where the faucet was purchased, which could be a little awkward if the consumer purchased it mail order from Denver but lives in Baltimore. In actual practice, however, it appears that Blanco usually ships to the customer's home. The warranty places the burden of shipping charges on the customer, but, again, the company almost always ships parts pre-paid. The warranty language, obviously, needs amending to reflect the company's actual practices.
Blanco's complaint resolution and warranty services are exceptional, earning the Company a coveted A+ grade from the Better Business Bureau as a result of the complete absence of consumer complaints over the last three years. In our customer service tests, Blanco representatives handled our purely imaginary installation problems well, and in our general product knowledge tests scored 4.3 out of a possible 5.0. Any score above a 3.5 is acceptable. and above 4.0 is excellent.
One benefit of having an exceptional after-sale service program is that it generates a lot of brand loyalty. In our experience, a Blanco customer tends to remain a Blanco customer. We have even had our clients ask us to take Blanco faucets out of their old house and move them to their new house. And, at least one homeowner insisted that her new kitchen coordinate with the color of her old Blanco faucet and sink, neither of which she was willing to part with.
More than most main-stream faucet companies, Blanco seems to have a lot of trouble with counterfeiters and infringers. It's name is a large part of the problem. It means "white" in any number of Romance languages, so any faucet manufacturer who uses "blanco" in a model name has to be careful of Blanco's ownership of that name. In 2013 Blanco sued Vlanco Industries, LLC and others in federal court for trademark infringement. The case settled in 2013, but Vlanco was subsequently docked $600,000 and attorney' fees for breaching that agreement.
If you find an exceptional value on a Blanco faucet (or sink) at a non-traditional source such as an on-line auction site, there is a strong likelihood that it is a counterfeit Blanco faucet. For a genuine Blanco faucet, stick to known suppliers.
Imported designer faucets comparable to Blanco include
Comparable American-made or -assembled faucets include
Not all of these companies offer a lifetime warranty or the exceptional post-sale customer service provided by Blanco, so read the review for any company with which you intend to do business.
If you have experience with Blanco faucets, good, bad or indifferent, we would like to hear about it, so please contact us or post a comment below.