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How to Replace a Bath Tub Drain & Plug

Updated February 21, 2017

The bath tub drain and plug or stopper may need replacing from wear and tear after time. The stopper tends to cease closing properly and may not fit flush with the drain. Replacement drains and stoppers are stocked in most hardware and home improvement stores. They are relatively inexpensive and straightforward to install without the need for the services of a plumber or specialist tools. Ensure the new drain is the same size as the old one when you make your purchase.

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  1. Lift the old stopper or plug and turn it counterclockwise until it is free from the drain.

  2. Open the thin nosed pliers and insert it between the spokes of the drain cover. Twist counterclockwise and continue until the drain cover is removed.

  3. Insert the screwdriver into the screw in the middle of the drain, back it out counterclockwise to remove.

  4. Look under the bath tub and locate the nylon nut attaching the drain to the waste pipe. Unscrew the nylon nut by turning it counterclockwise. You may need an adjustable wrench if the nut will not turn by hand.

  5. Remove the old drain attachment and discard.

  6. Attach the new drain to the waste pipe. Hand tighten the nylon nut and secure with the adjustable wrench. Insert the screw through the tub hole and tighten with the screwdriver.

  7. Install the new drain cover. Turn the drain cover using the thin nosed pliers in a clockwise direction. Ensure the rubber seal sits between the drain cover and the bottom of the tub, around the hole.

  8. Insert the new stopper into the drain and turn it clockwise to secure.

  9. Tip

    Test the new drain and plug stopper for leaks after installation. Run the faucet on a low flow and check under the bath tub for any water seepage.


    Do not cross-thread the nylon pipe nut. Cross-threading will not form a waterproof seal for the waste pipe.

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Things You'll Need

  • Thin nosed pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Adjustable wrench

About the Author

Chris Simon began writing articles and fiction in 1988. His work has appeared in Science Fiction and Fantasy World Horror Writers U.K and "Flashlight."

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