How to get my tub to stop draining?
June 25, 2010 6:49 PM   Subscribe

Hey! I filled that bathtub for a reason - so why is it draining without my permission?

There can't be too many more disappointing things than preparing the salts, bubble bath, book and glass of wine, and filling the bathtub.....only to have it drain of its own accord! It seems to over compensate, draining the water down to, even when I'm reclining, my mid to lower abdomen. How is it doing this? WHY is it doing this? And is there some sort of hack I can do to stop it?

If it matters, I'm on a Navy base, but asking the military this question of "why" only brings up "because! *shrug* "
posted by DisreputableDog to Home & Garden (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The plug leaks. Get a better plug - maybe a standard rubber one of approximate size from Home Depot or your nearest equivalent.
posted by Brockles at 6:54 PM on June 25, 2010

I've had the flange? around the drain leak when the stopper was ok.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 6:56 PM on June 25, 2010

Somewhere deep, there's a plug -somewhere-. One of those "flick the knob and have a shower or tub option". My problem is: it stays filled up to a certain point and THEN it drains.

So it's not a "leaky" drain problem. It just starts sucking water when it gets to a certain fullness, which isn't even that full.
posted by DisreputableDog at 6:59 PM on June 25, 2010

You can also get universal stoppers (picture here) that are basically a flat piece of bendable plastic/rubber. The weight of the water holds them in place. I don't know what your access to stores is like, but Walgreen's has them in my neighborhood, and you might even be able to make one out of any flexible but firm (not like a bag) plastic or rubber you have around.
posted by needs more cowbell at 7:01 PM on June 25, 2010

Yeah they make large scale stoppers (like this) that you can cover the entire drain area with to prevent leaky flanges or stoppers. Also if you really want to fill it up deep check into one of these overflow covers.
posted by msbutah at 7:01 PM on June 25, 2010

Also, I need a way to stop the water WITHOUT installing something. It needs to be....removed after each bath somehow? Obviously, I don't own the tub and the military are loathe to want to fix such things if indeed they even think it needs fixing.
posted by DisreputableDog at 7:02 PM on June 25, 2010

If it's draining after a full point then you have an overflow hole somewhere in the faucet area that's intended to keep it from getting too full. Just find a way to plug/cover that and you can fill it up more.
posted by msbutah at 7:02 PM on June 25, 2010 [4 favorites]

I hate when tubs do this! I feel your damp and bathbubble-wasting pain.

Get yourself a rubber sink or bathtub plug. You can find one in any number of stores or online. The most secure ones are the type that have a plug into the hole of the drain itself, but if that doesn't work there are ones that seal around the edge on top of the drain, too. They often have a little metal ring attached at the top, for easier removal.
posted by Mizu at 7:04 PM on June 25, 2010

msbutah, now that I think about it, the sound WAS coming from the faucet area...I also like the suction cup option you gave

Also, thanks Mizu - It might help to have both a drain plug and something to plug the above mentioned "thing".

What is that.....thing called then, that's sucking out the extra water? Overflow cover?
posted by DisreputableDog at 7:07 PM on June 25, 2010

That thing is just an overflow. Basically that's made so if you have a leak or leave the tub running or whatever it won't fill up and go over the top of the tub. Instead it runs into what is basically a higher up drain hole. I don't know why all tubs have them and it always pisses me off that they make them so low, so that you can't ever enjoy a deep bath.
posted by msbutah at 7:12 PM on June 25, 2010

I'm a marathon bather, so the overflow drain is my great nemesis. I blocked mine with some silicone sealant. Works like a charm, and if you're careful and use a thick enough layer, you can peel it off again when you move.
posted by mostlymartha at 7:21 PM on June 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

I got an overflow cover like the one msbutah mentioned at Bed Bath & Beyond a while back. Haven't tried it yet 'cause I just found where I'd lost stored it. It stays on with suction, so it can be removed after each use. The Amazon link shows it in action.
posted by bentley at 7:48 PM on June 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

I MacGuyvered a plug to a tub whose self-contained plug was leaky. I used a pint glass and plastic wrap. You basically need something heavier then water and something else flexible enough to make a seal. It was the least pretty thing every, but it got me through many long baths.
posted by Dmenet at 12:33 AM on June 26, 2010

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