I Can't Unscrew a Pop-up Bathtub Drain Stopper

A bathtub pop-up drain stopper may have to be removed to clear a clog or snake the drain. Many people try to twist the stopper, thinking that it screws into a mechanism inside the drain. The stopper is actually attached to linkage that connects to the stopper control. The linkage is accessed through the overflow cover, and once it is removed, the stopper lifts out of the drain. Removing the linkage for a bathtub stopper only takes a few minutes.

Drain stoppers are often connected to linkage.

Step 1

Locate the two screws securing the overflow plate to the side of the bathtub. The overflow plate should be just under the tub spout.

Step 2

Remove the two screws using a flat-head screwdriver. Use a towel or other covering to prevent the screws from falling into the drain.

Step 3

Pull the overflow plate off the side of the bathtub. The linkage for the stopper is attached to the back of the overflow plate and will pull out with the removal of the plate.

Step 4

Pull the stopper out of the drain. The linkage slips through the bottom of the stopper and, with it removed, the stopper will pull out of the drain.