What is a pot filler tap and why you should have one

Sometimes, the little things can make your life a bit easier. A pot filler tap feels like a life hack – a shortcut that totally elevates the way you cook. Need water for boiling pasta or potatoes? No problem, it’s right there above your hob. Soup too thick? Easy – drop in a bit of water directly into your pan to thin it out.

Is it a bit of a luxury to skim minutes off your day? Yes – but if it improves the quality of your life, why not? So, Kitchens Bedrooms & Bathrooms journo Charlotte Luxford investigates this new kitchen must-have and gives you all the details on why and how to actually have one. But first… what is a pot filler tap?

“Installed on the wall above the hob or cooker, its purpose is to be able to quickly and easily fill a large saucepan or pot with water due to the generous tap reach. It means the pot can sit directly underneath the water flow,” explains Jonathan Britton, brand manager at House of Rohl. “After use, they can be folded flat against the wall making them a great space-saver.”  

modern kitchen design with marble surfaces, blue cabinets and a pot filler tap
Pot filler with lever handles in aged brass, from £500, Perrin & Rowe.

Popular in traditional American kitchens, the pot filler has slowly migrated to the UK to become a must-have accessory that’s not only practical, but looks the part too.

“Anyone who’s ever staggered from sink to stove with a heavy pan full of liquid will appreciate the pleasures of the pot filler,” says Barbara Sallick, co-founder and senior vice president of design at Waterworks. “These can be discreet and simple or as elaborate and flashy as something out of a Victorian firehouse. Whatever the case, a pot filler is a wonderfully worthwhile amenity.”

Industrial-style kitchen with chrome pot filler tap
Chrome pot filler, from £3116.40, Waterworks.

How to include a pot filler tap in your home

From a safety point of view, pot fillers are ideal for families with young children or multi-generational homes, saving the cook from having to walk across the kitchen while carrying a heavy pot.

There’s less chance of any spillage and little ones won’t be at risk of getting under your feet. If you’ve got a large kitchen, it’s also worthwhile having a secondary source of water if your sink is further away from the hob for the same reason.

They’re not just for kitchens either – pot fillers are great for utility rooms or outbuildings. They are perfect for filling larger vessels such as watering cans and vases.

Green kitchen design with brass handles and marble surfaces
Aged brass pot filler tap, from £620, Devol.

While being a pretty and practical addition to your kitchen, pot fillers aren’t essential, so it’s worth considering if you really need one.

It also depends on whether you’re updating or completely renovating your kitchen. It’ll be harder to retrospectively install it if you’re just doing minor changes.

The cost of plumbing will also be affected by the proximity of your water source. The location of the pipe is critical, too. If it’s not right, the faucet could end up being too low or too high and may not sit right up against the wall. Consider the height of your cooktop and also your tallest pot when deciding on its position.

Another practical point is to ensure you install the pot filler tap to the left or right of the hob to prevent you having to reach across the stove, which is especially important if you’re filling up a pan while cooking. 

Lastly, it’s worth noting that pot fillers are usually fed by one water source – hot or cold, so consider which is best for you.

Black pot filler tap on dark wooden kitchen
Cold-valve pot filler, from £1062.50, Dornbracht.
sleek and modern kitchen with black pot filler tap
Veroni modern kitchen pot filler in matt black, £197, Lusso.

Need more advice on how to buy kitchen taps? Read our handy guide

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