When your bathtub drain is clogged, you don't necessarily need to call in an expensive plumber. A number of ways are available for you to deal with a clogged bathtub drain yourself. Don't pick up the phone to call a plumber without trying a couple different ways to fix the bathtub drain yourself.
Hot water is an effective way to clear a clogged bathtub drain. Heat up water on your stove until it comes to a rolling boil. Pour it into the bathtub at the end near the drain. This is also an effective way to keep your bathtub's drain flowing freely when performed on a weekly basis. Salt water is a preferred type of water, but ordinary tap water also works.
Vinegar and Baking Soda
You can increase the potency of your boiling water with a simple solution made of common kitchen objects. Pour 1/2 to 1 cup of baking soda down the drain first. Follow this with boiling water and then a cup of vinegar. Cover the drain, and let the solution stand overnight. Pour another bucket of boiling water down the drain in the morning if it has not unclogged.
Plungers aren't just for backed-up and clogged toilets. Plungers work to unclog any clogged and backed-up plumbing from sinks to bathtub drains. Place the plunger over the clogged bathtub drain. Pump the plunger 15 to 20 times or more. If progress is made, continue plunging until the drain is completely cleared.
One of the first solutions that a plumber attempts is to snake the drain. However, this is a relatively simple procedure and no special knowledge is needed. All you need is a drain snake, also known as a plumber's auger, which you can purchase at any hardware store. The best snake for a bathtub drain is 15 to 20 feet long and 3/8 inch in diameter. Drop the snake down the drain, and look for clogs in the line. When you find the clog, move the snake around and attempt to clear the clog with the snake.
After trying ecologically-friendly solutions, you may want to resort to something a little more heavy-duty. You can purchase a number of drain-clearing chemicals at any grocery or convenience store. Pour these into your tub, and let them stand for as long as necessary to clear the bathtub drain.
Nicholas Pell began writing professionally in 1995. His features on arts, culture, personal finance and technology have appeared in publications such as "LA Weekly," Salon and Business Insider. Pell holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.