Bathtub drains seem like they attract clogs. At some point you may require bathroom drain repair. And eventually you’ll find you will need to repair or replace one.
Bathroom drains tend to require maintenance or repair a little more often than those in the kitchen. The bath has no garbage disposal and the kitchen drain doesn’t get anywhere near as much hair. The sink drain is the most likely culprit. Hand soap, toothpaste, hair and other things tend to gum it up.
Bathtub Drain Repair – DIY Tips for Replacing Bathtub Drains
A mixture of a 1/4 cup of baking soda and a cup of vinegar is an inexpensive home remedy that will unclog many plugs. It has the added advantage of removing calcium carbonate (the white chalky deposits), which opens up the pipe and clears the space between the sink flange and the stopper. If that’s not strong enough, use a commercial drain opener chemical. They’re safe for the pipes and the environment. They degrade rapidly.
For more stubborn cases, just remove the U-shaped pipe under the sink (sometimes called a trap or trap bend). Ninety-percent of anything that fell down the drain or is gumming up the works will get trapped at the bottom of the ‘U’. Clear it out, apply Teflon plumber’s tape and replace the pipe. Be sure to wrap the tape in a direction that tightens it into the threads as you secure the nut, rather than unwinds it.
The bathtub drain represents a more difficult problem. Obviously so, since it’s harder to get at the hardware underneath the tub. They usually come with a screen to prevent problems, but as time goes on it often gets knocked out of the way or removed. Then hair, shampoo caps and a dozen other things end up in the drain.
A plumber’s snake (also called an ‘auger’) can help remove stubborn clogs. Some have small ‘fingers’ on the end that can be clamped together to retrieve a fallen object.
Many designs have a stopper that can be pushed down or pulled up to open or close the drain. This offers a solution to bathroom drain repair. They simply unscrew, giving some access to the drain. Others operate by a lever built in to the tub. Removing the overflow plate gives access to an assembly that can be removed. That will release the drain stopper.
In more extreme cases, it may be necessary to replace the drain. Below the stopper is a metal fitting (sometimes called a ‘drain basket’) with a pair of metal pieces in the shape of an X. A dumbbell wrench (sometimes called a ‘basket wrench’) is used to remove it.
If that doesn’t give enough access to remove anything inside, it will be necessary to remove a section of wall to get to the drain and overflow pipes. Consider having a professional do this. If you want to proceed, the replacement kits are not expensive, around £15.
Once you have access to the area, the assembly is relatively easy to remove with a standard pipe wrench or wide-jaw pliers to get loose the slip-joint nuts. Seat the new parts in place and adjust the rod to the correct length to open and close the stopper. Then use Teflon plumber’s tape on the pipes and plumber’s putty on the drain flange to seal the new parts properly.
We hope you have got some useful information about DIY bathroom drain repair from our Home Improvement Experts.
If you have any DIY tips you would like to share, visit our about us page and leave a comment.