Bathtub drains can be blocked with hair, soap residue, dirt and other debris, which usually occurs while taking a shower or after taking a shower. When that happens, the drain will become slower or even completely plugged. The owner of the house can uncover a slow or stuck bathtub drain without calling a plumber.
- Take out as much water as you can with a plastic cup or other container and put it in the bucket. Empty the bucket into a working drain.
- Remove the plug, if there is one, or examine the drain holes. Unscrew a plug that is placed directly on the drain. For the handle plugs, raise the handle to the open position, then grasp the plug and pull it out of the drain. Remove any hair or debris you find there. Throw what you find in the trash can. Do not throw it on the toilet or you’ll have a covered toilet.
- Wash the plug in a hot soapy water bucket.
- Insert the plug again into the drain, and test the drain of the bath by letting some water run. If the water does not go away, remove the plug and proceed to the next step.
- Spread Vaseline over the edge of the plunger. Place the plunger over the drain hole to cover it completely. Vaseline helps to form a seal around.
- Cover the air hole in the bathtub with a wet cloth or a strip of leaking tape.
- Fill the tub with hot water until it covers the rubber part of the plunger, which will seal its edges.
- Pump with the plunger in quick up and down movements, but do not remove the edge that touches the bath. You need that part to be sealed. Keep pumping for 2 more minutes.
- Lift the plunger and test the drain. If the water drains, let warm water flow through the drain for 10 minutes. If the water does not go away, take the water out of the tub and proceed to the next step.
- Remove the overflow plate. This process depends on the type of plate you have, but most are removed by loosening the screws.
- Insert the snake head into the drain about 3 to 4 inches (7.7 to 10 cm) and then turn the wheel clockwise until it stops with the obstruction.
- Reverse the direction by turning the handle to the left one or two inches (2.5 to 5 cm). This will bring the bit to you.
- Reverse the direction again to bump into the obstruction. Repeat the movement back and forth until you no longer feel the obstruction. Do not try to force the auger through the obstruction at once
- Remove the bit by turning the handle to the left.
- Clean the cable with an old cloth as you wind it up to keep clutter to a minimum. Remove the dirt from the auger head and throw it in a bucket. You may have to repeat this action several times until the water flows easily through the drain.
- Replace the overflow plate.
- Turn on the hot water and run it through the drain for about 10 minutes. This will clean any debris left in the drain.