The 4 Step Fix for a Slow Bathtub Drain

Is the bathtub drain in your home a little slow? A slow drain is often caused by a hair clog somewhere in the drain usually just below the stopper. Removing a hair clog is an easy DIY task that can be accomplished in 4 easy steps using supplies found in your home. Here is how it’s done:

Remove the drain stopper. Most drain stoppers can be removed by merely grabbing the top and twisting to the right. If yours won’t twist off, you can refer to the tutorial How to remove a drain stopper found at This DIY tutorial covers the 5 basic styles of drain stoppers with clear instructions for removing each one.

Pull out the hair. After removing the drain stopper, reach into the drain to grab hold of the hair clog with your fingers or a pair of tweezers. If the clog can’t be reached, use a wire coat hanger to pull up the clog through the drain opening. What works for me is clip off about a foot of wire and bend the end with a pliers to form a tight hook. The hook is then pressed into the drain to catch the hair so it can be pulled up.

Flush with hot water. Once the hair has been removed, flush out the drain with a half gallon of boiling water. The hot water will dissolve the soap scum and should clear out anything left in the line.

Plunge if necessary. If the water is still slow to drain, it may have to be plunged using a standard toilet plunger. This is done by plugging the overflow with a damp washcloth, then placing the plunger over the drain opening. Rapidly plunge and release several times until the hot water drains away. Follow with another half gallon of boiling water to test.

These four steps is usually all it takes to remove a clog in your bathtub drain and get it draining again. This maintenance task should be done at least once a season to keep your bathroom drains working smoothly.

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