Review & Rating
26790 Madison Ave.
Murrieta, CA 92562
Footnotes:1. The term "lifetime" is not defined, so it generally reverts to is default meaning: the actual lifetime of the buyer.2. Does not include which are not guaranteed at all.
This Company In Brief
For those who think European styling, old-world craftsmanship, flawless finishing and unsurpassed quality are not available from U.S. faucet manufacturers, we have just one word for you — Waterstone.
Waterstone LLC, founded in 1999 by Chris Kuran, custom manufactures all brass and stainless steel faucets in southern California that have every bit of the design pizazz and hand-made finesse of the finest European craft shops.
Kuran stated in an interview with our researcher that his goal is to manufacture the finest faucet in the world, one at a time, with painstaking attention to detail. We cannot say with certainty that Waterstone makes the world's best faucet — there are a lot of truly excellent faucets in the world — but we can say for certain that Waterstone is getting very close.
How to Get a Sample Waterstone Faucet
Contact Dino Rachiele at Rachiele Sinks.
Dino and his guys make some absolutely fabulous handcrafted custom sinks in copper, stainless and a handful of other metals (if you ask nicely).
He is also an authorized Waterstone retailer.
He keeps a few Waterstone faucets around which he will lend you for a few days, free of charge, so you can see (and feel — they weigh 12 lbs. or more) for yourself the impressive quality and craftsmanship of these American-made premium faucets.
And, while you're poking around Rachiele's web site, take a look at the fabulous Rachiele custom sinks. One of the few lines of sinks that equal the quality of Waterstone faucets.
A little extravagant? Absolutely! But, hey, every new kitchen needs a splurge for that one sinfully luxurious item that makes it truly special.
Contact Dino at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800-881-9044 or text him at 407-396-3596, his cell phone, which he will actually answer. How rare is that?
Unfortunately, the company's offerings include only kitchen, bar faucets and filter taps — nothing for the bath. And, company spokespersons stressed that Waterstone is not contemplating any future expansion into bath faucets, despite persistent industry rumors to the contrary.
The company started out as a manufacturer of components for filtration systems and integrated water filtration is still an optional part of its faucet systems. In fact, if you are considering a filtered water option, we recommend that you look at an integrated Waterstone under-sink filtration package to go along with your Waterstone faucet. Waterstone designs, engineers and prototypes its own faucets in suites of matching styles, that now include cabinet hardware, just to round out the look. Some of the designs are truly unique, for example the gantry pull-down faucet shown above — nothing like it is available elsewhere in the faucet universe.
We had heard about Waterstone faucets for years, but it took a while before we were able to get our hands on a couple that we could take apart and look at. These products are heavy, all brass, and truly impressive. They included machining on the inside that looks like it ought to be on the outside. That's pretty rare and indicative of a company determined to make a quality product. We wanted to keep one just to show people what a quality faucet looks like inside and out, but our customer, rather irascibly, insisted that we install it in her kitchen. No spirit of public service, that woman!
Not long ago Waterstone used the quarter turn ceramic valve from Flühs Drehtechnik, GmbH of Lüdenscheid, Germany, considered by most to be some of the best in the world. But, the company has recently replaced the Flühs with cartridges made by Geann Industrial Co., Ltd., a Taiwanese company. Geann has been manufacturing cartridges for over 35 years. Its cartridges sold in the U.S. and Canada are certified lead free. Other faucets known to use Geann cartridges are
We do not believe the Geann cartridge has yet been shown to be the equal of the Flühs cartridge, so we are adopting a wait-and-see position until Geann quality is shown one way or another. Bob Santella, spokesman for Waterstone, told us that the reason for the switch was not just its lower cost, but also the superior quality of the Geann cartridge as shown by independent studies. We asked Bob for a copy of the studies, which have so far not been provided.
Other than cartridges, Waterstone faucets are entirely made in the U.S.A. By entirely, we mean casting, machining, assembly, finishing and polishing in California. The company offers 31 plated or powder coat finishes. It does not offer the more durable PVD finishes.
Waterstone's faucet warranty is transferable — a rarity in the faucet industry. The company warrants its mechanical and functional parts, including its cartridges for the lifetime of the faucet. It also warrants its chrome finishes and stainless steel faucets for the lifetime of the faucet. All other of its finishes, except its are warranted for seven years. Living finishes, as is normally the case, are not warranted at all.
Waterstone customer service is, like the products it services, exceptional. Unfortunately, it's getting harder to test the company's customer service using our usual test protocols, because Waterstone customer service agents are catching on to our tricks. The company does not have a Better Business Bureau file. This usually means that the BBB has never gotten a complaint about Waterstone, which is very good. But, it also means that Waterstone is not a business accredited by the BBB, which is not so good. Waterstone qualifies for and should apply for accreditation.
For comparable American-made faucets, look at
We give Waterstone a big thumbs us for its quality, design and the fact that its faucets are still made in the U.S.A. If they were not made in the U.S., the company would still get a big thumbs up.
The design of the faucets is imaginative and creative, the quality unmatched and finishes superb. Throw in a first class customer service organization and you have an unquestioned winner.
During the annual run up to Best Value faucet, Waterstone has always been a strong finalist in the luxury faucet division. It has yet to take first position for two reasons: Its 7-year warranty on its finishes is, in the opinion of our panel, too weak and needs improvement; and its Geann mixing cartridges do not have enough history behind them to generate a sufficient degree of confidence among our panel members in their long term leak-free reliability. Maybe in a few more years....
However, there is no one here that would hesitate to buy one for his or her own busy kitchen.
We are continuing to research the company. If you have experience with Waterstone faucets, good, bad or indifferent, we would like to hear about it, so please contact us or post a comment below.