If the tub is filling with water, a blockage is likely the cause of the problem. Hair, remnants of soap and dirt accumulate in the bathtub drain and prevent water from flowing properly. You can call a plumber or a commercial drain cleaner, but the former are expensive and the latter do not use green elements. The best way to uncover a tub drain is with natural and inexpensive products.
- Remove the drain cap. Depending on the type of drain you have, you may need a screwdriver to loosen the screws that hold it in place. Other drain covers are simply rotated or removed by hand as they are placed under pressure.
- Straighten a wire hanger. Place it into the drain hole and slowly move it. Remove as much dirt as possible. This may be the only thing necessary to get rid of the obstruction. Have a plastic bag handy to discard what you have removed.
- Remove as much water as possible from the tub, if the drain remains clogged, then pour 3/4 cup of baking soda into the hole, immediately followed by 1/2 cup of white vinegar. Quickly cover the drain hole with a plug or with a rag. Vinegar and baking soda will make bubbles and it is important to keep the mixture trapped inside the drain to loosen the clog. Let the vinegar and baking soda work inside the drain for at least 30 minutes.
- Fill a large pot with 1 gallon (3.78 l) of water and let it boil while you wait.
- Remove the plug and slowly pour hot water into the hole. Be very careful not to splash hot water on your skin.
Tips & Warnings
- It may require more than one try with vinegar and baking soda to completely clear the drain.
- If after several attempts, the tub is still full, the obstruction may be further in the pipes and require professional attention.