How to Unclog a Nasty Tub Drain
- 1). Clean out any visible particles. First, remove the stopper and try to remove as much blockage as possible using your fingers. Reach down the drain as deep as you can and continue to pull out as much blockage as possible. This ensures that the drain is as clean as possible before employing other methods.
- 2). Use a snake or hanger to push clogs through. Use the curved end of a hanger to try and push a large amount of the blockage through. If the hanger doesn't work, try a plumber's snake--it is a large, metal, spring-like tube that either pushes the blockage though or hooks onto it, allowing you to pull it out. This is the first thing plumbers usually try when they are sent to unclog a drain.
- 3). Use boiling water. This is an easy way to clear out some clogs. It won't work for major buildup in tub drains, but it is definitely worth a try. Use a kettle or container with a pouring end so the boiling water can go directly into the tub drain. It may take two pots of boiling water before you notice any difference. If you do notice a difference after trying it for the first time, boil a few more pots of water and see if that continues to clear up the blockage.
- 4). Use a plunger. Just like with a toilet, try to bring the blockage up to the opening of the drain by using a plunger. If the blockage is far down into the piping, it may take a while for the blockage to come up to the entrance of the drain. If you hear a gurgling sound, that usually means that the blockage is slowly coming up to the surface.
- 5). Use a drain cleaner. This needs to be your last resort, as some drain cleaners are very harsh and can erode your plumbing if they are used too much. Be sure to choose a cleaner specifically for clogged tub or bathroom drains, as these clogs are usually a mixture of hair and styling products. The chemical drain cleaner will break down and dissolve any hair or blockage, but it may take a few hours.