DIY Bathtub Plug: Easy Solutions to Block a Bathtub Drain Without a Plug

DIY Bathtub Plug

One of the best ways to relax after a difficult day is to take a soak in the tub. Lighting a candle, reading a book, and soaking in the warm water is always the best part of the day. However, the experience is heavily reliant on the amount of water in the bath. Baths are no fun when the water continually drains out. Bath plugs solve this issue, and you can easily make your own.

This article offers a list of affordable and effective alternative bath plugs. You may be surprised at some of our ideas, but we guarantee each one works. In addition, some of them are simple and may be accomplished using items already in your home, while others might cost a bit of money.

Bath plugs are useful tools for tubs because, without them, the water wouldn’t stay in. If you’re a person who loves a relaxing bath, read on for information about how bathtub plugs work and which alternative solutions to use.


How does a Bathtub Plug Work?

There are many types of bathtub plugs, and each one works slightly differently. The main benefit of a plug is keeping the water in the tub; without it, you wouldn’t be able to bathe. They are meant to be easy to rotate or move so that you can simply open the plug when you’re ready to empty the bath. A well-made plug will fit tight enough so that no water leaks as you take your bath. Below are some of the common bathtub drain stopper types.


Round Stoppers with Rings

An old-fashioned drain stopper that is still in use is a circular bathtub stopper with rings. They are manually installed into the drain, and a chain connecting them to your tub is also available. Then, when you wish to drain your tub, you can lift out a round stopper by hanging on to the ring. Round stoppers function by simply covering the bathtub’s drain hole.


Toe-Touch Drain Stopper

Another alternative is toe-touch bathtub drain stoppers, which are a little more difficult to use. They are a particular style of spring-loaded bathtub drain stopper. Simply pushing it down with your foot eliminates the need to stoop, making them a convenient addition to your bathtub.

To stop the tub drain from flowing, push the toe-touch stopper into position. Then, you only need to push them one more to make them rise back up. The rubber seal, which keeps the water in the tub, is the most crucial component of this kind of stopper. Although it is simple to replace, the seal might deteriorate with time.


Lift-and-Turn Drain Stopper

Lift-and-turn stoppers can be opened and closed by twisting them with your hand. When the stopper closes, a pin lines up with a notch in the drain. After that, the stopper is placed in the drain. The stopper is held in place when it locks after turning a little bit more.

When twisted by hand in the other direction, these stoppers are freed. In addition, they frequently have spring-loaded stoppers that automatically return to the open position whenever the stopper’s pin is misaligned with the drain’s notch.


Flip-It Stoppers

Flip-it drain stoppers are inserted into the drain opening, and a little lever is then rotated 180 degrees on top of the stopper. As a result, no water can pass the rubber seal pressed against the drain’s borders. Next, lift the drain stopper out of the drain to reopen it by simply flipping the lever back the opposite way.

A flip-it stopper’s rubber seal may eventually become worn out. However, they can be easily changed, and a fresh one should bring your stopper back to full functionality.


Pop-Up Stopper

Pop-up drain stoppers are one type of bathtub drain stopper that can be actuated by levers or knobs. The rocker arm that operates the stopper is connected to the lever or knob by a rod. Simply pull down on the lever or turn the knob to lower the stopper and lift it or turn the knob in the other direction to raise it.


Trip Lever Stoppers

Another lever-operated bathtub stopper choice is trip-lever drain stopper. They function by connecting a lever to a drain stopper through a rod mechanism tucked below the bathtub. Your tub’s water level is maintained when the lever is raised because the stopper is retained firmly in place. The stopper lifts, and the tub drains when the lever is lowered. Trip levers are frequently attached to plunger-style stoppers, which are hidden from view inside the tub and sit farther down your drain. In most cases, a strainer covers the drain in its place.


5 Best Ways to Block a Bathtub Drain Without a Plug

To effectively block a drain without a plug, we’ve provided five easy tips to follow and alternatives to bath plugs. By following what’s provided in this list, you can enjoy baths again and not have to worry about the water draining out before you’re finished.


Use a Small Plastic Cup

This solution may sound like it doesn’t work, but we guarantee it does if you find the right cup. You can test the cup by putting it in the drain and running the water. If the water fills up around the cup without draining, you’re good to go!

It’s a good idea for a quick and doable plug that you expect to be temporary. For example, you can use a small plastic medicine cup or an empty coffee pod. Either of these options may be effective depending on the size of your drain. If you don’t want to worry about a cup at the end of your tub because of its size, you may consider some other options.


Use Plumber’s Putty

Plumber’s putty is a great temporary solution for plugging a drain. Many people don’t have putty just lying around, but if you do, it may be the solution to your draining issues.

It also works best on hardware, but if you roll the putty into a wormlike shape and then line it around the hole. Then, you can add the plug, and the water won’t drain out due to the putty stopping it.

Plumber’s putty can be bought at any hardware store or on Amazon for an affordable price. Before you buy, remember that this is only a quick fix, as you’ll need to remove the putty when you want to drain the tub. It can only stay for so long before needing to be removed.


Use a Jar Lid

This may be a more difficult alternative due to the need for the right size, but if you can find a jar lid that matches your drain hole, it may just work. Place the lid upside down on the drain hole. Be sure to hold down the lid as the tub begins to fill to ensure it stays in place. The drain suction and the water’s weight will create an effect that keeps the lid pinned down.

This technique may even work with larger lids than your drain hole or even a flat jam jar lid, but you’d need to test it to find out. Jar lids are easy to find online or at local stores. We recommend this alternative only if you already have lids in the house, though, as lids may add up to the same price as a bath plug. At that point, the bath plug is the better option.


Use a Toilet Plunger

I know what some of you may be thinking right now. However, a toilet plunger can be a good solution for when you don’t have a plug. This makeshift plug is easy to set and lift off when you’re ready to drain the water. Simply remove the wooden handle after it’s sealed the drain.

If you’re going to go with this option, don’t forget to thoroughly clean the rubber end of the plunger with soap and hot water. There shouldn’t be an issue with cleanliness if you follow this process. Though this solution sounds odd, it works. That’s what matters.


Tape the Drain Hole

If you use waterproof duct tape, you can easily and affordably cover the drain hole of your bathtub. Apply the duct tape before starting the water and create a double layer on top of the hole to withstand the water long enough for your bath.

You’ll want to firmly press the tape to ensure it binds tightly to the tub. You’re welcome to add an extra layer or two if you feel that it needs more. This solution isn’t as bulky as some of the others, and a roll of waterproof duct tape will last you many baths.


Wrapping It Up

While we’ve provided just some options here, there are plenty of items in your home for a DIY Bath plug to stop or slow down the water draining. This could include a small sponge, shampoo bottle caps, plastic bag, plastic lid and even a rubber band ball. These options will all depend on the type of tub drain you have. Just make sure that these items don’t get stuck in the drain. Ultimately, you’ll want to purchase a proper bathtub plug for a permanent solution.

When taking a bath, you shouldn’t worry about draining water. The point of a bath is to relax and feel refreshed. If you’re in need of a quick, draining solution, try one of the options on this list. Whether you’re looking for affordability, accessibility, effectiveness, or low maintenance, there’s something on here for everyone. Take us up on our solutions so that you can enjoy your baths again.




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