How to Get a Drain Plug Out of a Bathroom Sink

Written by debbie tolle
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How to Get a Drain Plug Out of a Bathroom Sink
Drain plug removal (old ugly sink image by Tomasz Stelmach from

Taking out your drain plug, also known as your stopper, is just a matter of loosening a screw and removing a clip. Drain plugs are hair catchers, and sometimes it is better to just pull the drain plug out and clean it than to pour drain cleaners down your drain. Certain drain cleaners are so strong that they can damage the finish on your drain plug. To remove your drain plug, you need to be able to get underneath your sink.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Pliers
  • Putty knife

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  1. 1

    Look on the back of the drainpipe directly underneath your sink. There will be a metal pivot rod protruding out of the back of your pipe.

  2. 2

    Remove the metal clip at the end of the pivot rod that is the farthest away from your drainpipe.

  3. 3

    Slide the flat metal linkage off of the end of your pivot rod after you remove the retaining clip. The flat metal linkage connects your pivot rod to your stopper rod on the top of your sink.

  4. 4

    Use your pliers to loosen the pivot nut and remove it. The pivot nut holds your pivot rod in place in the back of your drainpipe. Slide the pivot nut over your pivot rod when it is free from the threads.

  5. 5

    Pull your pivot rod out of your drainpipe and set it aside.

  6. 6

    Slide the thin blade of your putty knife underneath the edge of your drain plug and lift up. Grab hold of your plug and pull it out of your sink.

Tips and warnings

  • Do not turn on your water until you have reinstalled your pivot rod or you will have a flood underneath your sink.

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