As with all things in the bathroom, there’s a surprising amount of choice available when looking at the waste (plug hole) in your basin/sink. Some of the choices available are dictated by the type of basin you’ve chosen, but there’s also different functions to consider.
Slotted and Unslotted
The first thing you need to ascertain is whether you need a slotted or unslotted waste. Luckily this is quite a simple thing to figure out!
Slotted wastes have a slot that lets water in from the overflow in your basin.
So if you have an overflow hole in your basin, you need a slotted waste, if not you need an unslotted waste.
Click-clack wastes are probably the most popular type of modern basin waste.
They have a sprung component under the cap so that when you push them in, they click and then clack open on a spring, hence the name! You just press them down until they click to close the waste again.
Pop-up wastes are a more traditional style of waste but are still quite popular, particularly with more traditionally styled taps.
They normally come bundled with a matching basin tap/mixer and are operated by a rod in the tap that you pull up/push down and this raises/lowers the waste cap.
Plug & Chain
Most people will be familiar with the traditional plug and chain style waste.
You can fit these to almost any basin but with the caveat that they may or may not have a hole for the chain stay (the piece that fixes the chain to the basin). Typically you’ll find these on more traditionally styled basins
This style of waste is relatively uncommon but can be fitted to most basins. The cap that holds out the water is hinged in the centre or just fitted in such a way that you simply push it to rotate and let water through or push it flat to seal it.
Freeflow wastes are always open. They come in various styles but essentially they can’t be plugged. This is very useful in a basin without an overflow and in small cloakroom style basins that never need to be filled so the water can just exit immediately.
They will often just be a grated waste but there are some very stylish options available that have caps over the top that let them blend in with the basin whilst allowing water through the edges.