|Source • Brands||
Price • Origin
Assembled In Canada
Rubinet Faucet Company Limited
10 Corstate Ave.
Concord, ON L4K 4X2
(Exceeds North American Standard)
This Company In Brief
The Rubinet Faucet Company is a Canadian corporation that designs and produces distinctive up-scale sink faucets, tub fillers, shower assemblies and coordinating accessories that are sold in Canada and parts of the U.S. as well as exported to other countries. The brass faucets are the company's proprietary designs assembled in Canada by Rubinet from components supplied by outside manufacturers. Faucets are supported after the sale by a strong warranty and excellent customer service.
The Rubinet Faucet Company, Limited was formed in 1981 in Ontario. It designs, assembles and finishes striking and unique sink faucets, shower assemblies and coordinating accessories that are sold in Canada and parts of the U.S. as well as overseas. its faucets are its own creations assembled in Canada from components manufactured by overseas suppliers, including:
•Camel Products, Inc. of Taiwan,
•Byson International Co., Ltd. also of Taiwan,
•Docol Metais Sanitários Ltda. in Brazil and
•Zhejiang Jinyuan Copper Manufacturing Company Ltd. from China,all first class manufacturers, preeminent in their respective fields.
Rubinet faucets are arrayed in 11 collections. The R10, Ice, Matthew Quinn, H2O and LaSalle collections are starkly contemporary. Jasmin, Lexis, Raven and Romanesque are more traditional while the Etruscan and Flemish collections re somewhere between the two, or what faucet designers call "transitional" faucets. All but Jasmin collection include kitchen and bath faucets, tub fillers, shower assemblies and coordinating accessories. The Jasmin collection does not include kitchen faucets.
A final "collection", the Essentials, is a grab-bag of accessories that do not usually require stylistic coordination, such as grab bars, curtain rods, shower seats, floor drains and the like.
Our designers' favorite collection is a toss up between the R10 and the Ice, both of which are "wow". The R10 (one model of which, the 8LRTL in chrome/red is pictured above) is a contemporary styling adventure unlike any we have seen elsewhere. It may be a little too "out there" for some buyers, but the design community is definitely going to fall in love with it. The Ice is similarly angular and industrial, but is softened by inlays of clear Swarovski Crystals — the "ice" in the faucet.
The company web site is dated but well designed with simple, menu-driven navigation. But, it lacks an adequate search feature and is missing what we view as essential information about the company and its products.
The "search catalog" feature is some sort of variation on an old Google search algorithm, and while it works, it throws up all sort of advertisements, which are given prominence over the actual search results. In a search for "cartridges", for example, we garnered a lot of information about printers, toners and toner cartridges from the internet that we really did not want to see.
There is a three-sentence description of the company, but no history or background to speak of — hardly adequate. Product images are small, often in black and white, and provide only a single 3/4 view. Multiple images in color, or, better yet, a 360° viewing feature such as is used by In2aqua and MR Direct for its Sir faucets, that allows the mouse to rotate the faucet to any viewing angle, are invaluable in fully visualizing the faucet.
Below the small faucet image are links labeled "print", "download", "specs" and "install". The print link is to a print-ready faucet page that contains the model name, a very brief description and an enlarged 3/4 image of the faucet. The "download" link displays the 3/4 faucet image full-page and should be labeled "enlarge". The "install" link displays the .pdf installation instructions, which includes an exploded parts diagram. Some faucet pages do not have this link. There does not seem to be any rhyme or season for the omission.
The "spec" link downloads a .pdf specification page that contains a dimensioned drawing of the faucet — very useful in determining whether a faucet will fit your sink. Specifications list the faucet's certifications, an excellent feature that we wish more faucet companies would provide. The cartridge used in the faucet is described only in the most general terms (i.e. "Quarter turn ceramic disk cartridge."). The company has indicated to us that in the future it will provide more detail about each faucet's cartridge, including the manufacturer. Since the company uses only top-quality cartridges, the precise identity of each cartridge should be a strong selling point.
Each spec sheet mentions the company's available 21 finishes, but fails to note the availability of split and custom finishes. The R10/8LRTL faucet pictured above, for example, is available in an astounding variety of finishes, over 400 finish combinations. Not a word of this appears on the specification sheet. We had to go to showroom web sites and quiz showroom personnel to find out about Rubinet's many split finish combinations. Evidently just about any available finish can be combined with an other available finish as an accent.
Finishing is done in Canada to order so the company has a great deal of flexibility in its finishes which makes its stunning variety of finishes possible. This flexibility is something you usually cannot get from faucets assembled and finished overseas. However, since the faucets are assembled and finished only when ordered, there is a lead time of six to eight weeks between order and delivery.
Metallic finishes are electro-plated and non-metallic finishes are powder coatings. Rubinet does not offer the more durable Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) finishes. We thought about taking a powder coated finish out to the shop to see how much abuse the finish could take, but since we had borrowed the faucet for examination, destructive testing was not an option. The Rubinet lifetime warranty covers metallic and non-metallic finishes equally, so these "painted" finishes must be very robust.
A few finishes (Oil Rubbed Bronze, Tuscan Brass and incoated Brass) are what are known in the industry as "living" or "architectural" finishes. They are expected to show tarnish, stains and fingerprints, and develop a patina of age through regular use by reacting with the oils in our skin as well as to chamicals in the natural environment. The longer the use, the more patina you get. Obviously, blemishes or discoloration that appear in these finishes are not considered defects, so even though Rubinet's warranty is silent about its coverage of , it is clear that the company's lifetime guarantee does not apply.
Rubinet sells primarily through physical, brick and mortar showrooms. A showroom locator is provided on the Rubinet website under the "Where to Buy" tab. If you are going to order an exotic or split finish, we suggest you work with a showroom designer. Even if you are buying on line, you may want to buy through a showroom rather than an internet-only site like DecorPlanet to ensure that all of your selections coordinate for finish and style. On the other hand, if it's just a faucet and a few accessories you are after, an on-line only site may work for you.
Rubinet Faucet Warranty
Lifetime Warranty:is applicable to the original purchaser with a bill of sale.
Warranty not valid if:
Do not expect substantial discounts, however, no matter where you buy. Rubinet enforces a minimum price policy that prohibits authorized retailers from advertising or selling at a price more than 25% below Rubinet's list price.
Cartridges are the heart of a faucet. Without a working cartridge a faucet is no longer a faucet. So, it is important that this component be of the best quality to ensure a long service life. Rubinet uses top tier ceramic disc cartridges in its faucets. These are robust, lifetime products, tested to 500,000 nine-motion cycles and unlikely to fail in ordinary household use.
The company's two-handle faucets include stem cartridges manufactured by Flühs Drehtechnik, GmbH in Lüdenscheid, Germany, (often spelled "Fluehs" for English speakers), considered by most in the faucet business to be one of the best, if not the best, European faucet cartridge made for two-handle faucets.
Mixing cartridges for Rubinet single handle faucets are made by Kerox, Kft. of Hungary and CeramTec of Luft, Germany, both world leaders in high performance technical ceramics. Kerox mixing cartridges the preferred brand of many European manufacturers of premium faucets. CeramTec's Triduon® performance cartridges are instantly recognizable by the black color of their high-density EMS-Grivory plastic cases, originally developed for aerospace applications.
For more in-depth information on faucet valves and cartridges, visit Faucet Basics: Faucet Valves and Cartridges.
The company's written "lifetime" guarantee promises to replace any defective part and refinish or repair any defective finish as long as the faucet is owned by the original buyer. This is a "full" or "unlimited" warranty as those terms are used in the U.S. Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act (15 U.S.C. § 2301 et seq — Canada has no equivalent law). The warranty languange implies that the warranty is limited to the original purchaser only, but does not actually say so. Our volunteer lawyers think it could be better written for improved clarity. Many parts are ambiguous at best, and a good case could b made in U.S. courts for continuing warranty coverage even after transfer to a subsequent owner.
Customer service is excellent. Agents are knowledgeable about their products, and eager to help solve problems. Rubinet appears to be more interested in taking care of customer problems than with minor niceties of who is or is not covered by its warranty. Our judgment is borne out by the Better Business Bureau which rated Rubinet A+ on a scale of A+ to F for its handling of customer issues. Rubinet is a BBB accredited business and pledged to abide by the high standards required by the BBB for accreditation.
Rubinet faucets are about as Canadian as faucets get. They are designed, assembled, polished and finished in Canada — a fact that the company does not seem to actively promote. We don't understand why.
We expect a great many Canadian buyers would be interested in the fact that most of the labor of producing Rubinet faucets is by Canadian workers in a Canadian factory in Canada. With all of the manufacturing that has fled Canada in recent years — including a faucet assembly plant in Mississauga that was moved by Grohe's new Japanese owners to Mexico in 2016 — eliminating 300 Ontario factory jobs, Canadian homeowners might find it encouraging that there is still one luxury faucet line designed and produced in Canada by and for Canadians. Yet Rubinet does very little to highlight its Canadian origin and strong Canadian ties.
It should take a lesson from two American companies with links to the U.S. that are no stronger than Rubinet's ties to Canada, yet these companies never seem to miss an opportunity to highlight the fact that their faucets are, to some degree, produced in the U.S. of A. Rubinet's facets, according to the very restrictive (and perhaps overly limiting) "made in Canada" laws may not be legally "made in Canada", but they are designed, assembled and finished in Canada — technically demanding processes that provide good-paying factory jobs for highly skilled Canadian workers.
Also deserving of recognition are Rubinet's distinctive faucet designs. They are fresh, exciting and certainly worth a mention or two, yet Rubinet does not seem do do anything to draw attention to its design accomplishments. There is next to nothing about its designers or design process on its website or in any company literature. Nor can we find any instance in which a Rubinet design has been submitted to a major international design competition anywhere — not even in Canada.
Competition in international events is how faucet companies make their design bones, earning mearly instantaneous worldwide recognition for originality and design excellence. Companies like routinely win design contests with faucets that are no more creative or original than many of Rubinet's models. Why Rubinet is reluctant to showcase its design acumen is something that mystifies us, especially as at least one collection was designed with the help of noted kitchen and bath designer: Atlanta-based Michael Quinn.
We are aware of the widely accepted profile of Canadians as being modest about their many accomplishments and reticent about tooting their own horn. Nonetheless, some horns deserve tooting, and Rubinet's design originality, obsessive attention to quality and strong ties to Canada are certainly some of them. So, let's hear a little tootin', guys. It's OK, really!
Comparable North American-made or -assembled faucets include
If you are Canadian and in the market for a premium, luxury faucet for your new bathroom or kitchen, especially one produced largely in Canada, give Rubinet a good, hard look. The quality and style of its faucets rivals that of many other better known upscale faucet companies, and its prices are competitive — in fact, often considerably lower than competing brands. (Be aware, however, that split and exotic finishes can add considerably to the final price.) You can buy a more expensive faucet. But, we doubt you will find very many better faucets at any price.
If you are a citizen or resident of the U.S., then ditto, except you may not care that the faucet is designed and largely produced in Canada. But, even if you don't give a hoot about the origin of Rubinet faucets, you should be impressed with their quality. We consider them a good value in a luxury faucet. For an upscale bath, or as that one touch of immodest luxury in a more modest bath, consider Rubinet. It would be hard to go wrong.
We are continuing to research the company. If you have experience with Rubinet faucets, good, bad or indifferent, we would like to hear about it, so please contact us or post a comment below.