Ancona Faucets Review & Rating Updated: 12/27/22
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. 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.
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
- AMS, Inc.;
- Asia Manufacturing Service;
- Asia Solution;
- Solution, Inc.
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 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.
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 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
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
- Five years on ceramic cartridges and finishes, and
- Two years on all other parts of the faucet, provided
- the buyer continues to own the home in which the faucet was originally installed.
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.
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.
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:
- Consequential and incidental damages: The warranty's attempted exclusion of consequential and incidental damages from warranty coverage is invalid. Magnuson-Moss permits Ancona to exclude these types of damages only if it follows the prescribed rules. These include the following disclaimer which must be "conspicuous" so it will be noticed:
"Some States do not allow the exclusion or limitation of incidental or consequential damages, so the above limitation or exclusion may not apply to you."
- The Ancona warranty does not have this disclaimer and without it, the attempt to exclude or limit its responsibility for consequential and incidental damages is simply void. (16 CFR § 701.3(8))
Consequential and incidental damages are those other than the defect in the faucet itself. For example, your Ancona faucet leaks and damages your cabinets. The leak is a "direct damage" to the faucet. The damage to the cabinets is "consequential damage." Your expenses incurred in proving your warranty claim are "incidental damages" and include the attorney's fees required to prove your case in court.
- How to Make a Claim: Magnuson-Moss requires a "step-by-step explanation of the procedure which the consumer should follow" to make a warranty claim, including the mailing address or telephone number to use. (16 CFR § 701.3(5).
- The Ancona warranty does not provide any direction for making a warranty claim.
- Exclusion of Implied Warranties: The general schema underlying Magnuson-Moss is that written seller warranties supplement state law implied warranties rather than replace them. Consequently, the Act specifically prohibits any attempt to exclude implied warranties, and Ancona's attempted exclusion is void and without effect (15 U.S.C. § 2308).
- Missing Required Provision: A consumer product warranty must include this warning language: (16 CFR § 701.3(9)):
"This warranty gives you specific legal rights, and you may also have other rights which vary from State to State."
- The Ancona warranty does not contain this language.
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.
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
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.