Bathtub Overflow of my dreams
November 7, 2016 5:37 PM   Subscribe

We just installed an new freestanding clawfoot tub and just installed all the waste lines and faucet - however I'm finding that while it's deep enough for my wife, the location of the overflow is a little too low for my tastes, and I'd like to cover the overflow so I can get a couple more inches of water in the tub.

I've already found products like the plastic suction cup overflow cover that I can stick over the overflow temporarily, but I don't think it'll work in my situation because of how close the faucets are located to the waste overflow: see picture here

My ideal overflow cover would:
* Easily replace the current overflow without having to replace the waste line.
* Ideally have a "on and off" feature that would let me have an option of when I'd like a the overflow to be open or closed.
* Failing that, a cover that seals the line entirely.
* Failing THAT, an overflow cover that can be turned so the opening of the overflow cover is upwards and gets me an extra couple of inches of water (rather than from facing down).

Does such a thing exist? Direct links to products I can look at would be appreciated and much more helpful than "go to home depot and look" type answers.

If it's helpful, the waste line is this model
posted by Karaage to Home & Garden (12 answers total)
I came in to say that I bought one of those suction cup things and it doesn't work, so don't bother with that solution. What did work for me was taking a bunch of plastic bags (I used doggy bags) and securing them around the thingie with elastics. This will not work in your case because your thing does not stick out.

So there's two bits of info useful to future people reading this question, though not necessarily to you, sorry.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 6:02 PM on November 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

Duct tape has worked for me.
posted by fshgrl at 6:56 PM on November 7, 2016 [3 favorites]

It looks like the current overflow cover (that flower-shaped chrome thing) is very much like a regular rubber stopper...if the cover comes off/out, perhaps you can put a solid rubber plug in the hole when you want to fill up all the way?
posted by spacewrench at 6:58 PM on November 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

I used to have a solar installation business, my ex husband said, "In plumbing, if you can think of it, it exists." So go to a real plumbing shop that takes care of contractors, tell them what you need, they will have it.
posted by Oyéah at 6:58 PM on November 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

Tape, yes, but not duct tape; it leaves behind a horrible sticky residue. Packing tape better. Over time it'll stiffen up & come loose but easy to replace.
posted by Rash at 9:11 PM on November 7, 2016

I achieve this well enough when I'm in the tub with by holding a washcloth there with my foot - but on a recent visit to my parents' home, I realized a rubber jar opener might work better.
posted by peagood at 10:57 PM on November 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

Thanks for the responses so far! As a point of clarification - I'm looking for a solution that's more permanent - i.e. a screw on chrome cover plate that seals the overflow.

@Spacewrench's idea might work - it'd be a matter of locating the right rubber plug, however.
posted by Karaage at 4:53 AM on November 8, 2016

Seconding duct tape, used on my old tub for years.
posted by mareli at 5:56 AM on November 8, 2016

I think if this were my tub I'd be taking that overflow thing off and just putting a rubber seal behind it, either one that covered the entire thing or one that just had a notch in the very top as peagood mentions (just put it behind the current plate). However the googleable term is "overflow extension plate" and you should just be able to replace that one since they are fairly standard if not in size at least in function.
posted by jessamyn at 5:58 AM on November 8, 2016

The other day I had a plumber come who needed to plug that up, I forget why. Anyway, he just removed the plate and stuffed a plastic bag in there... I know you are looking for a permanent solution but my point is it can't be that hard. Remove the plate, measure the opening and go look for a rubber sink stopper in that size. You can always shave one down to size with an exacto knife if you have to.
posted by fingersandtoes at 6:41 AM on November 8, 2016

Those overflow extension plates that jessamyn linked to are what my tub has. So if you get one of those, you can seal it up completely with some doggy bags and elastics. The key is to use the elastics to get the plastic crammed between the plate and the tub. That's where the water flows in, so that's what you need to stop up.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 8:08 AM on November 8, 2016

Just wanted to follow up - I ended up finding exactly what I needed by searching "rubber pipe plug" and found this, which fits perfectly into the overflow hole.

Apparently they're normally used for winterizing pool pipes and come in various sizes, the #12 size worked perfectly in my case.
posted by Karaage at 6:51 PM on December 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

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