How to Remove a Bathtub Drain Cover

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It's simple to remove a bathtub drain cover once you figure out how it's attached.

Whether you're checking for the source of a clog or just want to remove any built-up hairs or residue from the strainer, removing a bathtub drain cover is simple and quick. The most difficult part of the process, if you can call it difficult, is figuring out how the drain cover is attached so that you know how to remove it. Most covers are attached with either a screw in the center or by two screws along the edge. Some styles, however, aren't really attached by anything other than a couple of metal flanges that allow the drain cover to pop in and out of place. Before beginning, examine your drain cover to see how it is attached. If you don't see any screws, it's safe to say it's designed to pop on and off.

Step 1

Turn the screw or screws counterclockwise, using the screwdriver. If the screws are stuck or difficult to turn, try applying pressure with the palm of one hand on the end of the handle of the screwdriver while turning it with the other hand.

Step 2

Set the screw or screws aside in a safe place, like a small cup.

Step 3

Pry the drain cover loose by gently inserting the screw driver between the tub and the edge of the drain.

Step 4

Lift the drain cover straight up and out of the drain.

Step 5

Place the end of the screwdriver into one of the holes in the drain.

Step 6

Gently pull or pry the drain cover until it lifts slightly.

Step 7

Pull the screwdriver out of the hole without pushing the drain back down.

Step 8

Pry the drain cover up by placing the screwdriver between the tub and the edge of the drain. The drain cover should pop up out of place.

Step 9

Lift the cover straight up out of the drain.


Use pliers to help lift the drain if it is adhered to the tub or difficult to pry away.


Be careful not to scratch the tub when inserting the screwdriver under the edge of the drain cover.

Carlye Jones

Carlye Jones is a journalist, writer, photographer, novelist and artisan jeweler with more than 20 years of experience. She enjoys sharing her expertise on home improvements, photography, crafting, business and travel. Her work has appeared both in print and on numerous websites.