How to Retrieve a Ring Lost Down the Bathtub Drain

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Things You'll Need

  • Wet/dry vacuum cleaner

  • Screwdriver


To prevent this from happening again, don't wear your ring while showering or using your tub. Install a drain guard, which is a plastic cover with small holes to allow water to pass through but not larger objects.

Watching a valuable ring go down your tub drain can be devastating.

The moment in which you see your ring slip into your bathtub drain can be devastating. Calling a plumber could take time and hundreds of dollars, especially if it's an emergency situation or during non-business hours, like at night or on the weekend. Try to retrieve your lost ring yourself before you call in a professional. The most important thing to remember is to try not to panic.

Step 1

Turn the water off if it is on to prevent it from pushing your ring further down the drain. Don't use your tub until you've retrieved your ring. You may want to shut off the water to your bathroom to prevent yourself from accidentally turning it on.

Step 2

Remove the stopper from the drain. If your stopper is a small piece of rubber attached to a chain, simply remove it. If it's a piece of metal, you may be able to simply pop or twist it out of place. If it's screwed down, use a screwdriver to remove it.

Step 3

Use your wet/dry vacuum cleaner, such as a Shop Vac, to remove your ring from the drain. Set the vacuum cleaner for "wet" use to avoid the risk or electrocution. Empty the tank of the vacuum cleaner of any dust or debris. Plug it in and uncoil the hose attachment. Place the hose's opening directly over the bathroom drain to create a seal. Turn the vacuum cleaner on and wait until you hear your ring get sucked up.

Step 4

Turn the vacuum cleaner off and unplug it. Remove the cover of its tank or reservoir to locate your ring.

Talia Kennedy

Talia Kennedy has been writing professionally since 2005. Her work has been published in "The New York Times," "San Francisco Chronicle" and "The Sacramento Bee," among others. Kennedy has a master's degree from the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.