Ancona Faucets Review & Rating Updated: 12/27/22

Summary
Imported
China Flag
China
Asia Manufacturing Solutions, Inc.
Trading as
AMS, Inc.
and
Home Product America, Inc.
Trading as
Ancona

170 Chemin de la
Grande-Côte
Rosemère, QC J7A 1H4
(800) 350-4562
(888) 686-0778
service@anconahome.com
Business Model
Product Range
Kitchen and Bath Faucets
Certifications
Brands
Ancona
Street Price
$43-$813 (CAD)
$32-$600 (USD)
Warranty Score
Cartridge
5 Years1
Finishes
5 Years1
Mechanical Parts
2 Years1
Proof of Purchase
Required
Transferable
No
Meets U.S. Warranty
Law Requirements
No
Footnotes:
1. The warranty is offered to the original purchaser oonly and is for 5 years on ceramic cartridges and finisshes and 2 years on mechanical components (other than cartridges), hoses and hand sprays.

The "warranty DOES NOT include shipping costs, labour costs or any other cost associated with the installation, repair or replacement of the product/parts …"

Download the AMS/Ancona warranty.

Learn more about faucet warranties.

This Company In Brief

Home Product America, Inc. and Asia Manufacturing Solutions, Inc. two Canadian corporations under common ownership, import and distribute An­co­na-brand products that include kitchen and bath faucets, sanitary wares and accessories as well as patio furniture, range hoods, cooktops, freestanding ranges, towel warmers, mirrors, lighting fixtures, bathroom furniture, kitchen sinks, and door hardware – all from China.
Ancona products are sold primarily over the internet. The faucets are not available at regular plumbing supply sources nor retail from the An­co­na website.
The fau­cets are, for the most part, nondescript Chinese fau­cets, indistinguishable in design, quality, or price from the hordes of largely unexceptional sink faucets made in China and Taiwan.

The Company

Home Product America, Inc. is a Quebec corporation organized and owned by Yves Bourret. Its official address on file with the Quebec Registraire des Enterprises is a private residence. Its actual operating address is 2013 Rue Cunard, Laval, Quebec H7S 2N1, which is also the address of Asia Manufacturing Solutions, Inc. founded in 2006.

Ancona Faucets Sold by Other Companies

The Kingjoy KJ8070­P004 pre-rinse fau­cet (below) is sold by An­co­na as the AN-4120 Synchro kitchen fau­cet in polished chrome and brushed nickel.

The same fau­cet is sold by as the Levi kitchen fau­cet in the same finishes.

They are exactly the same fau­cet, but the An­co­na fau­cet has a 5-year cartridge warranty, the Signature Hardware fau­cet a 25-year cartridge warranty.

The King­joy K1815P0000 pre-rinse kitchen fau­cet (below) is sold by An­cona as the AN-4102 Le Bistro kitchen fau­cet. The same fau­cet is also sold in the U.S. and Canada by North­ern Cen­tral Dist­rib­ut­ing, Inc. as the "YP2814A kitchen fau­cet and by Fer­gu­son Ent­er­prises in the U.S. as the MK281A Mila kitchen fau­cet.

The An­cona fau­cet has a five-year warranty on cartridges and finishes, two years on all other parts. The Mis­eno fau­cet is protected by a lifetime warranty.

Both are owned by the Bourret Family Trust and managed by Mr. Bourret who is identified in official documents as the president of both entities. The two companies operate as a single enterprise under common management from the same address, sharing warehousing and customer service.

Asia Manufacturing Solutions, Inc. regularly trades as

Some of these aliases have been recorded with the Regis­trar of Ent­er­prises as required by Que­bec law, others have not.

There does not appear to be a clear differentiation of responsibilities between the two companies.

Home Product has registered the name An­cona in the U.S. and Can­a­da and the Anc­ona logo in the U.S. AMS appears to handle the importation of its As­i­an products while Home Prod­uct takes care of distribution.

There is, however, considerable overlap. For example, AMS and not Home Product is the named warrantor that guarantees An­co­na products in the An­cona warranty.

AMS also identified itself as the actual importer of An­cona products into the U.S. in an administrative action before the Cal­i­­fornia En­er­gy Com­mis­sion.

Home Product describes itself on the "About Us" page of its website as having

"… over 30 years of experience in the manufacturing … of home hardware and accessories".

However, as the business has existed only since 2009 and as it is identified to the Quebec Registrar of Companies as being in the "wholesale trade", specifically in "import/export", we doubt the claim of manufacturing.

Likewise, AMS customer service rather insistently characterizes Asia Manu­fact­ur­ing Sol­u­tions as a manufacturer, and specifically as the manufacturer of An­cona faucets. But, it is identified in its incorporation documents as being organized for the "importation, exportation and distribution of manufactured products".

A Que­bec corporation is generally not permitted to conduct business outside of the scope of its specified purposes. So, most likely AMS is not a manufacturer of anything and definitely not of faucets.

We have found no evidence that either company has ever operated a manufacturing facility of any kind and certainly not one with the means to manufacture fau­cets.

Faucet manufacturing involves the use of hazardous materials and processes that requires a slew of environmental permits. We have found no indication that either company has received any such permits or even applied for them.

Shipping and customs records provide additional confirmation that the companies are importers, not manufacturers, of a wide variety of home products manufactured by a diverse collection of suppliers, mostly in China, including kitchen and bath sink fau­cets.

The Manufacturers

The principal manufacturer of An­co­na fau­cets is (Yu­huan) King­joy Met­al Prod­ucts Co., Ltd., a well-established manufacturer of sink fau­cets, shower components, and bathroom accessories.

It manufactures primarily for China's export market, distributing its products to the UK, Canada, the U.S., and Australia.

Chin­ese fau­cets are often close copies of European and North American designs that have a good sales record in the West.

An example is the Hao­ju San­it­ary K902OB1 fau­cet sold by An­cona as the Pal­er­mo kitchen fau­cet (right).

It is a knockoff of the now discontinued Ycon ART.65215 fau­cet (left), originally designed and manufactured for the North American market by New­Form S.p.A., an Ital­ian designer and manufacturer of cutting-edge fau­cet designs.

Copycat fau­cets usually adopt the overall form of the original fau­cet, changing just enough detail to avoid a patent infringement lawsuit by the original designer.

AMS also imports fau­cets through (Shen­zhen) Hai­fa (or Hai Fa) Im­port & Export Co., Ltd., a broker that acts as a middle-man between Chin­ese factories and foreign buyers.

Our research indicates that the actual manufacturer is most likely (Kaiping) Haoju San­it­ary Ware In­dus­tri­al Co., Ltd. also trading as (Ji­ang­men) Lux­ury Met­al Co.

Haoju is an manufacturer of fau­cets and other decorative plumb­ing fittings (showers, tub fillers, bidet fau­cets) in China. Its Gubid brand is sold throughout Asia.

There may well be other sources of An­co­na fau­cets that we have not yet identified but we do not believe that these suppliers make a significant contribution to the An­co­na line of fau­cets.

The Faucets

The fau­cets are, for the most part, nondescript Chin­ese fau­cets, indistinguishable in design, quality, or price from the hordes of largely unexceptional sink fau­cets made in China.

Home Product describes itself as

"responsible for the entire process from initial product design to after-sales service …"

There is no indication, however, that An­co­na fau­cets are designed by Home Product or AMS. They are designed, engineered, and prototyped by An­cona's Chinese suppliers.

Nor have they been created exclusively for the An­cona brand. The fau­cets are purchased right out of the of the Chinese factories.

Many similar, if not identical Chinese fau­cets are available from other North American importers.

For example, King­joy Met­al Prod­ucts also manufactures some of the fau­cets sold by Ferguson Enterprises, LLC (trading as Wolseley in Canada) which sells the fau­cets under its

Ceramic Cartridges

Its ceramic cartridge is the heart of a modern fau­cet. The cartridge controls water flow and water temperature. With a working cartridge, a fau­cet is a fau­cet doing what fau­cets do: metering water in a safe and controlled manner.

With a working cartridge, a fau­cet is a fau­cet doing what fau­cets do: metering water in a safe and controlled manner. Without a working cartridge, a fau­cet is just a strange-looking paperweight. So, it is important that the ceramic cartridge be tough, durable, and long-lived.

Faucet Buying Rule: Never buy a fau­cet unless you know who made the cartridge. Since AMS does not identify the cartridge on its website or in its catalogs, you will need to get this information from AMS customer service. If customer service professes not to know or declines to provide the information, don't buy the fau­cet.

For more information or to determine whether a cartridge has a reputation for quality visit Fau­cet Basics, Part 2: Fau­cet Valves & Car­tridges.

Hao­ju San­i­tary Ware produces sink fau­cets for Cos­mo Products LLC that are sold under the

Ancona fau­cets exhibit no particular design originality. Chin­ese designs rarely do. They tend to be middle-of-the-road and to follow the pack rather than lead it.

The goal of Asian fau­cet manufacturers is to sell as many fau­cets as possible, which means keeping their designs well within the design mainstream to appeal to as many potential buyers as possible.

Few design adventures take place in China. Although some Chin­ese fau­cet manufacturers have ventured into producing their own designs, these are still fairly rare.

Designs are normally adopted from Eur­ope and North Am­eri­ca (with just enough variation to avoid patent infringement lawsuits).

A design that sells well in these major markets will often be imitated by Chinese factories. The lag time is usually 3 to 5 years, so by the time a design appears in a Chinese fau­cet it is no longer new.

The Faucet Valves

The quality of An­cona fau­cets is about average. Com­pon­ents used in the fau­cets are not the best but they are reasonably adequate.

Mixing valve cartridges used in single-handle fau­cets are from Sedal S.L.U. Sedal is chartered in Spain but manufactures in China at Sed­al Tech­nical Cer­amics in Jiang­men and Sed­al Kaip­ing.

Sedal is not considered the best of the world's ceramic cartridges, but it is a reliable performer that should give leak-free service for several years.

Sedal is a favored cartridge among Chinese companies manufacturing fau­cets destined for North Amer­ican buyers in no small part because the cartridges have been extensively tested and repeatedly certified to U.S. and Canadian standards, making it unnecessary for fau­cet manufacturers to test and certify the cartridges at their own expense.

The stem cartridges used in two-handle fau­cets are not as easy to identify. These are usually made without maker's marks, making identification by visual inspection very difficult.

That being said, however, we are pretty sure the cartridges are made by (Guang­dong) Hent Tech­nolo­gy Co., Ltd., one of the oldest of China's technical ceramics companies. Hent makes a good cartridge, but not of the same high quality as the best European cartridges such as those made by Flühs Drehtechnik, GmbH in Germany.

The Faucet Finishes

Ancona fau­cets are available in four finishes: polished chrome, brushed nickel, matte black, and brushed gold. Chrome and brushed nickel are electroplated while the other finishes are most likely powder coatings. An­co­na does not appear to use the very durable (physical vapor deposition) finishes.

involves immersing the fau­cet and the metal to be used as plating in an acid bath, then applying an electrical charge to both objects so metallic ions are drawn from the plating metal to the fau­cet.

Usually, multiple coats are applied, one or more undercoats and then two or more coats of the finish metal.

The process is potentially hazardous to the operator and the environment. It involves toxic and corrosive chemicals that must be disposed of safely. No other coating technology even comes close to the dangers involved in electroplating.

The top coat may be polished or brushed. Chrome, a relatively hard metal, is usually polished to a high shine. Nick­el, a softer metal, is usually brushed to help hide the inevitable minor scratches that will accrue with use.

Although Chinese electroplated finishes often get a bum rap, it has been many years since "China chrome" could be scraped off with a fingernail. Chinese electroplating is now as robust as the finishes produced in any other country.

is usually described as semi-durable, not as robust as electroplated finishes, about as durable as the finish on your car, and requiring more care to maintain a like-new appearance.

It is essentially a dry paint in powder form applied using a special low-velocity spray gun that disperses the powder while giving it a positive electrical charge. The particles are drawn to the item to be finished which has been given a negative charge.

Once the powder is applied, the item being coated is baked in an oven which melts and bonds the powder and changes the structure of the coating into long, cross-linked molecular chains.

These chains are what give the coating its durability, reducing the risk of scratches, chipping, abrasions, corrosion, fading, and other wear issues.

Finish Care Instructions: Always read and follow the fau­cet seller's care instructions. Careful cleaning and maintenance not only preserve the good looks of your fau­cet but also your finish warranty.

The Faucet Warranty

The Ancona fau­cet warranty is very substandard for the North American market.

The standard is a lifetime warranty on all parts and components to the original buyer for as long as the buyer owns the fau­cet and resides in the dwelling in which the fau­cet is first installed.

The An­co­na warranty is much shorter than a lifetime. The company promises to "replace or repair any defective part" for

If the buyer ceases to own the home, the warranty ends immediately.

This wording excludes renters from any warranty. A renter does not own the home, and owning the home is a condition of having a warranty.

The warranty is also "null and void" if the fau­cet is damaged by

"…accident, fire, lightning, brown-out, leaking, superior force, improper installation, handling or operation, error, use for non-domestic purposes, shipping damage, negligence, abuse, misuse, unauthorized repair, … or improper care or maintenace."

It's not just that damage by these events is not covered, the mere occurrence of these events renders the warranty void. So, if you accidentally damage an An­co­na fau­cet, not only is the accidental damage not covered but the warranty ends. All future damage from any cause is not covered since the warranty no longer exists.

The Man­u­fact­ur­ing in Asia Man­u­fact­ur­ing Sol­u­tions

The use of the word "Man­u­fact­ur­ing" in the corporate name "Asia Man­u­fact­ur­ing Sol­u­tions" is almost certainly a violation of Section 5 of the Fed­er­al Trade Com­mis­sion Act that prohibits unfair and deceptive practices.

Over sixty years ago, the Fed­er­al Trade Com­mis­sion in the Matter of Laf­ay­ette Brass Man­u­fact­ur­ing Comp­any, Inc., et al., 57 F.T.C. 704 (1960) determined that the use of the word "Man­u­fact­ur­ing" by a company that distributes but does not manufacture plumbing products is misleading and deceptive, and ordered Layfayette Brass to

"… cease and desist from uing the word "manufacturing" or any other word of the same or similar import or meaning as part of their corporaate or trade name or … representing in any manner or by any means that they manufacture any article or produt that is not manufactured in a factory owned, operated, or controlled by them."

This ruling is still very much the law. The only question is whether the ruling applies to a corporation chartered in Canada but conducting business inside the U.S.

Statements like this make us wonder whether any of the principals at AMS have ever actually read the company's warranty.

Another problem provision is the requirement that the customer pay shipping in order to get replacement parts under warranty.

This provision does not save the company any significant amounts of money, further aggravates an already annoyed customer (decreasing the likelihood that the customer will ever again buy another An­co­na product), and paints the company as pinchpenny and petty.

The lack of a strong warranty suggests that management has less than complete confidence in the durability or longevity of its An­co­na fau­cets, or only a limited ability to provide parts and warranty support for a longer-term warranty, or both.

If the company believes that its cartridges and finishes will last just five years in ordinary use and the rest of its fau­cets for just two years, it should be considering the purchase of better fau­cets.

Some of Ancona's competitors that also sell Kingjoy and Haoju fau­cets offer much stronger warranties.

fau­cets – many times longer than the An­co­na warranty.

The warranty does not comply with the Mag­nu­son-Moss Warranty Act. This Act prescribes the minimum content and form of any product warranty offered in the United States.

As a result of non-compliance with U.S. warranty law, many of the limitations and restrictions contained in the warranty would most likely be found invalid in any challenge in an American court, leaving An­co­na to pay the plaintiff's attorney fees as well as any actual damages. The actual damages may be a few dollars, but the attorney fees could reach many thousands.

Faucet Warranties

An­cona Warranty: Download and read or print the AMS/An­cona warranty.

Fau­cet War­ranties: For more information on how to read and interpret a fau­cet warranty, see Understanding Fau­cet War­rant­ies. For information on how to pursue a warranty claim, see The War­ranty Game: En­forc­ing Your Pro­duct War­ranty.

Mod­el War­ranty: For an example of a lifetime limited warranty that meets all of the requirements of Mag­nu­son-Moss, see our Model Limited Lifetime Residential Warranty.

Among its legal defects are:

Customer Service

Ancona customer service is hard to reach. You can't just call the toll-free number and get a question answered.

The call is routed to an answering service that identifies itself as "An­co­na Verification" which will take your name and number and promise a call back from the company within a day.

You will usually get a call back within 24 hours (weekends and Canadian holidays excepted) but 24 hours is a long time to wait if your fau­cet is leaking and you need to get the parts to fix the leak.

We have found it quicker to call one of the direct AMS numbers published above. You will get a live person to talk to who can usually help with your question or problem. Once you get a live person on the line, the service is quick, courteous, and Canadian-friendly from agents who seem to know quite a lot about their fau­cets. We rate the service "very good".

The Ancona Website

The An­cona website, based on a Shopify template, is colorful, well-organized, and simple to navigate but does not provide the information about its fau­cets needed to make an informed buying decision.

Links are provided to a fau­cet installation manual, in English and French, and a dimension drawing – maybe – sometimes this is missing and the requested page "cannot be found". Other than the dimensioned drawing and the brief description of the features of the fau­cet on the web page, there are no detailed fau­cet specifications.

At one time there was a link to the company's fau­cet warranty, but that was missing from the site on the date of this report.

The installation manual link displays a .pdf set of installation instructions in French and English that is usually easy to follow. Our plumbers had no problems installing our test fau­cets, rating installation Easy on a four-point scale from Very Easy to Very Hard.

The site displays a "Checkout" link. But it does not apply to fau­cets.

Faucets cannot be purchased directly from An­co­na. Faucet prices are not even listed. The only items that can be purchased are replacement parts and most of these are for ranges, ovens, and range vents.

We found a fau­cet mixing cartridge (sold out), a deck plate in several finishes, and a spray head for a kitchen fau­cet (also sold out). That is the extent of the replacement parts for fau­cets available for purchase from Ancona.

The "Buy Online" link takes you to one of the retail sites that actually sell the fau­cet – primarily a general merchandising venue that hosts small businesses such as Amazon, Houz, Overstock, Wayfair, Houzz, and Costco as well as Home Depot (Canada), and Lowe's lumber stores.

All of these are online sales. We have found no brick-and-mortar store that sells An­co­na fau­cets and no availability through dedicated plumbing supply outlets. The fau­cets for sale at big box lumber stores like Home Depot and Lowes are available only online.

There are serious problems with online hosting sites. All of them sell fau­cets that have not been certified safe, reliable, and lead-free to North American standards. Such fau­cets are usually illegal to sell in the U.S. and most of Canada. Despite the promises made by these sites not to sell contraband products, they do not do much to investigate the legality of fau­cets and protect customers against the sale of potentially dangerous illegal fau­cets.

This lack of vigilance makes these sites attractive to black market sellers. Well over 70% of the fau­cets offered for sale on Amazon are uncertified and, therefore, illegal to sell or install in North America.

The fact that most of these illegal fau­cets are Chinese in origin makes them of heightened concern because China has very loose standards in general and no lead standards at all. Lead poisoning is epidemic in China (see sidebar), in part because the government denies that lead poisoning is a problem. Uncertified fau­cets have not been tested for lead, so the likelihood that these black market fau­cets contain dangerous levels of lead is very high.

Testing and Certification

Home Product states in some of its installation manuals and on the retail websites at which it sells its fau­cets that An­co­na fau­cets are certified to comply with the joint U.S./Canadian safety and reliability standards (ASME A112.18.1/CSA125.1) and the North American lead-free standard (ANSI/NSF 372 and ANSI/NSF 61) by the CSA Group (formerly the Canadian Standards Association).

However, CSA states that as of the date of this report it has not certified An­cona fau­cets. Neither have any of the other six laboratories authorized to test and certify fau­cets for the North Amer­i­can market.

When asked for a certificate, AMS customer service was unable to provide one or even the file identification number of a valid certificate.

Ancona's Certification Violations: In November 2020, as Asia Manufacturing Solutions, Inc. the company entered into a consent decree with the California Energy Commission by which it agreed to pay $90,000 in penalties for selling showers and residential exhaust fans in California without certification that the products met California standards. It also agreed to certify the products in the future.

The company's resolve to certify its products, however, did not extend to the other certifications required for its fau­cets to be legally sold in Canada or the U.S.

Comparable Facets

There is no reason to buy An­co­na fau­cets. They are off-the-shelf Chinese fau­cets of not better than average quality, lacking any unique characteristics, and supported by a very weak warranty. Similar, if not identical fau­cets in similar if not identical finishes are imported by any number of companies, including

Conclusions

There is absolutely no reason to buy An­co­na fau­cets. They are much too risky for use in a home kitchen or bath. If you are in the market for an inexpensive Asian-made fau­cet, one of these suppliers would probably be a better choice than An­co­na.

1. Price is not enough. The prices on An­co­na fau­cets make them attractive, but, as the list above demonstrates, a great many other companies sell good quality Chin­ese-made fau­cets for about the same price that are fully certified, legal to use in a drinking water system, and backed by a much stronger warranty. Many are guaranteed for the lifetime of the buyer.

2. They have not been certified so the presence of toxic substances like lead, arsenic, cadmium, and mercury in the fau­cet has not been excluded. Because these are Chin­ese-made products, lead is a substantial risk due to the lack of lead regulation in China.

4. Ancona's warranty on its fau­cets is far below the North American standard lifetime warranty, suggesting that even An­co­na does not have enough confidence in their durability to provide a long-term warranty.

4. The fau­cets cannot be legally installed in a drinking water system anywhere in the U.S. or Canada. A plumber probably will not install one for you, and if you do it yourself you risk, at the very least, having to replace the fau­cet with a legal product and the possibility in some jurisdictions of a fine and a little jail time.

We are continuing to research the company. If you have experience with An­co­na fau­cets, good, bad, or indifferent, we would like to hear about it, so please contact us or post a comment below.