What to Do When Your Tub Won’t Drain

A bathtub that doesn't drain? Standing water in your shower drain? Don't know how to unclog a bathtub full of water? Getting your bathtub or shower drain working again is important not only for your mental health, but also for the health of your home.

Over time, clogged pipes can lead to mold growth and pipe flooding, bursting, or leaks. Not to mention the raw standing water. Fortunately, there are several ways to unclog a shower drain. And if that doesn't work, the professionals at Bannister Plumbing & Air are always ready to step in.

How to Unclog a Tub Drain or Shower Drain

Here are four simple steps you can take if your bathtub or shower won't drain:

Pour boiling water down the drain.

Heat a pot of water on the stove. Make sure it is easy to handle as you will be carrying it from the stove to the bathroom with boiling water. Slowly pour the water down the drain. Use a funnel so the hot water doesn't damage anything else in the tub.

Wait fifteen minutes and try running tap water. If there is grease or soap built up in the clog, the heat should melt it. If this method doesn't work, move on to the next option.

Use a plunger.

If the hot water isn't flowing and your tub won't drain, try unclogging the clog with a plunger. For bathtub or shower drain clogs, you will need to use a regular cup plunger. Add enough water to the tub or shower so that the cup end of the plunger is submerged. This helps with suction.

Squeeze the plunger cup to seal it and begin plunging vigorously. Dipping creates suction in the drain, which helps loosen stubborn blockages. Unfortunately, this doesn't work with all clogs. If the plug is very deep or rooted, the dive may not work. Consider diving as a good first step, but not a last resort. After diving, turn on the faucet to see if any standing water accumulates. If this still happens, move on to the next method.

Try an at-home drain cleaner.

We never recommend using chemical drain cleaners. They always cause more damage to pipes and hardware than they are worth. However, you can try a safe, homemade mixture to unclog a drain. You just need to follow the correct steps:

Start by pouring a cup of baking soda down your drain. Wait a few minutes and then add a cup of vinegar. Give the two time to mix - ideally an hour or two. Then add more boiling water to remove any residue. The two combine to create a bubbly reaction that can clear clogs.

Call the Plumbing professionals.

If your shower or bathtub isn't draining and you've tried all of the things listed here, it might be time to call the professionals. If your shower is clogged or your bathtub is filled with water that won't drain, it can be difficult to get things going again. Some clogs are just too durable for DIY methods and that’s okay! Professional drain cleaning services can make all the difference. Bannister Plumbing & Air plumbers have powerful tools like mechanical snakes, hydro jets, and camera inspections to clear stubborn clogs and get your pipes running again. These will not only help you clear an existing blockage, but also diagnose its cause so that you can prevent blockages from occurring again.

Tub Not Draining? Shower got Standing Water?

If you need professional cleaning of your clogged bathroom, give us a call. Bannister Plumbing & Air’s team has the expertise and experience to clean your pipes quickly and efficiently. We have proudly served Jacksonville and Tyler, Texas since 2007. Entrust your pipes to our technicians.