How to Unclog a Tub Drain

We all have out tub clog horror stories when the water wouldn’t drain forcing us to stand in inches of blocked water. Tub clog occurs due to the blockage of the drain by materials like hair and soap scum. Most people call in the plumber in panic whenever they find a clog.  However, most clogs can be opened with little effort using the right tools and you do not have to throw money to solve them. There are some basic techniques that you should know for such a situation and they are discussed below for a better understanding.

Things required:

– Screwdriver
– Wire coat hanger
– Plunger
– Damp cloth
– 1 cup baking soda
– 1 cup vinegar
– Rag
– Boiling water
– Commercial drain cleaner
– 25-ft. plumber’s snake


  • 1

    Drain stopper:

    At times hair and wrapper packages accumulate over the drain and stop water from entering it. Wear gloves and clear away the top of your drain. Now open up the tub stopper. Hair usually gets wrapped around its screws underneath. Remove these along with any soap deposits or debris.

  • 2

    Coat wire hanger:

    Straighten up a coat wire hanger. Make a hook at one end. Insert it into the drain and turn it around to collect the hair. Draw it out to pull out the hair and other particles with it.

  • 3

    Drain claw:

    A drain claw is another tool available in home store that uses the same technique. It has hooks on its one end which you insert inside the drain. These hooks trap the hair and other particles and draw them out when you take out the claw.

  • 4

    Hot water:

    Boil water in a kettle. Pour it over the drain. This method works best if you have a partial clog because it melts the grease and soap. However, some experts believe it also melts the essential wax and sealants inside.

  • 5

    Soda-vinegar solution:

    This is an age old solution used by home owners. Add 1/3 cup baking soda to 1/3 cup vinegar in a container. Pour it down the drain quickly. The fizzing action helps in unclogging the drain.

  • 6


    A plunger is a famous plumbing tool, available at home improvement stores. Fill up your tub with water, enough to cover the bottom of the plunger. Cover the overflow outlet with a rag. Put the plunger on the drain and start plunging with quick downward thrusts. This act will send a force of air through your drain which will break any clog free.

  • 7

    Plumbing snake:

    A famous tool with plumbers, the snake is long flexible steel cable with a handle. You insert it in the drain and turn it around inside. This motion will either break the clog and pushing it through or will wound it around the steel, enabling you to pull it out. Insert the snake, turn around well and pull it out. Do it for a few time and you will send the clog packing back home.

  • 8


    Chemical mixtures are available in the market that corrode the clog inside. However, they are known to corrode the metal pipes and fixtures inside as well so their use should be minimal.

  • 9


    Remove the inside filters and bag of your vacuum and set the setting on liquid. Put the hose on the drain and than turn on the vacuum. It will draw in the clog from inside.

  • 10

    Call the plumber:

    If all these methods do not work, this hints that your clog is of a stubborn nature and it is better to call the plumber who will have the expertise in such matters. Sit back and relax on the couch while he deals with it because you have given your best shot with all available methods.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

seven + 8 =