If you have long hair or live with someone who does, we bet you’re all too familiar with clogged bathtub drains. We all shed strands of hair when we shower and over time, hair builds up in the bathtub drain. The result? A huge glob of wet, slimy hair, and a clogged shower drain preventing the tub water from draining properly.

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Hair isn’t the only culprit though. When shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and other products go down the drain, they can leave behind residue which builds up over time. Sometimes they build up on top of those hair globs we mentioned (glamorous right?). In any case, knowing how to unclog a bathtub drain is a simple skill that can save you time, energy, and money if you know how to do it effectively.

4 Ways to Unclog a Bathtub Drain

While a hair-clogged bathtub drain can be a nuisance, the problem can be easily fixed with a few simple steps. Each of the following methods is quick and easy. If one doesn’t work, try another.

1. The Drain Claw

Drain claws aren’t just for the sink. Because a drain claw has hundreds of tiny hooks, it can easily grab hair that’s stuck in the drain and pull it out to unclog a bathtub drain.

Materials

  • Drain Claw

Directions

  1. Remove the drain cover and tub stopper and clear the surface of the drain.
  2. Insert the drain claw into the drain. Be careful not to push the blockage in further which would clog the drain more. It helps to twist the drain claw into the drain.
  3. Pull the clog out.

2. Baking Soda + Vinegar Mixture

If you don’t have a drain claw lying around, you can utilize household products. Because of its simplicity, this technique is often described as the best way to unclog a bathtub drain. Here’s how to unclog drain with baking soda and vinegar:

Materials

  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Cup or bowl

Directions

  1. Combine ½ cup of baking soda with ½ cup of vinegar and mix.
  2. Remove the drain cap and pour the mixture quickly down the drain, then let it sit for five to ten minutes.
  3. As the mixture fizzes up, pour hot water down the drain. This should break up any residue in the drain and dislodge the clog.

3. Shop Vacuum

Who knew shop vacuums are a pretty great tool for unclogging shower drains?

Materials

  • Shop vacuum
  • Towel to clean up excess water

Directions

  1. Remove the stopper from the tub drain.
  2. Fill the tub with one to two inches of hot water.
  3. Place the cup plunger over the drain so the lip of the cup seals to the tub’s surface.
  4. Use quick, forceful strokes to push the plunger down and up. Repeat five times.
  5. Repeat the process until the drain starts to flow freely.

4. Plunger

A plunger isn’t just for the toilet! It can also help you unclog shower drains in a jiffy. Plus, it’s definitely

Materials

  • Plunger

Directions

  1. Remove the stopper from the tub drain.
  2. Fill the tub with one to two inches of hot water.
  3. Place the cup plunger over the drain so the lip of the cup seals to the tub’s surface.
  4. Use quick, forceful strokes to push the plunger down and up. Repeat five times.
  5. Repeat the process until the drain starts to flow freely.

Call Your Local Plumber from Performance to Unclog Your Bathtub Drain

While you may be able to fix some bathtub plumbing issues yourself, it’s important to know when to call a professional. If you’ve tried to fix that clogged shower drain yourself to no avail, contact Performance. One of our trained technicians will be able to quickly diagnose and assess the issue and clear the blockage.

Schedule an appointment today for all of your plumbing services needs.