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Thread: Bath Tub Drain Removal

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  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member Carob's Avatar
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    Default Bath Tub Drain Removal

    Hello.

    I'm hoping someone might have an idea or two for me on this subject.

    I have two bath tubs that have drains that need to be replaced. The problem is that I can't get them out. They are in such bad shape that the crossmembers are all busted off that the tub drain removal tool is supposed to use to unscrew and remove.

    The suggestion that was given to me by Home Depot and Ace Hardware is to hammer a screwdriver (or something) into the side of the drain to use for leverage. I can't even manage to do that. (I can barely put a dent into it.) I thought about trying to drill a hole into the side of it but I'm scared to do that because I don't want to go through and damage the threads preventing putting a new one in.

    Does anyone have any advice on how I can get these drains out and still be able to screw in new one?

    Thanks very much!!!

  2. #2
    Plumber RioHyde's Avatar
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    You could use a reciprocating saw with a bimetal blade. Stick the blade into the drain and cut a wedge out of the drain collar then pry it out. The trick here is to not cut the threads in the drain shoe which would present an entirely new set of problems. If you're not comfortable doing that you can also use a hacksaw blade instead of the recip. saw. It will take alot longer and you'll expend more energy, but sometimes "slow and steady wins the race".

  3. #3
    DIY Junior Member Carob's Avatar
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    If I were to do that and "pry" it out wouldn't that damage the threads that the new drain would need to screw onto?

  4. #4
    Plumber RioHyde's Avatar
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    not if you cut a wedge out of the drain collar itself by sticking the blade into the drain AND keep the blade away from the female threads of the drain shoe.

  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member Carob's Avatar
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    Pardon my ignorance but I guess I'm confused.

    But what is the purpose of cutting the wedge? For being able to pull the drain straight out or for giving a lip of some sort to put a screwdriver against to bang on to hopefully loosen it up? If it's the latter, okay I can see that. If it's the former I don't get it because how would it lift out if the threads from both pieces are holding it in?

  6. #6
    Plumber RioHyde's Avatar
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    you'd be cutting the wedge out of the drain collar where the threads are (vertical area that penetrates the bathtub drain hole). The purpose would be to loosen the male threads of the drain collar from the female threads of the drain shoe. After that, you should be able to get a screwdriver or chisel in there to pry the male threads out of the female threads of the drain shoe.

  7. #7
    DIY Junior Member jimhls's Avatar
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    Wink Jim H

    I used the saw blade to cut the notch in my drain then the tapping with a hammer and screwdriver and it worked.
    THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU. This site and you guys were a big help.

    Jim

    Quote Originally Posted by Carob View Post
    Hello.

    I'm hoping someone might have an idea or two for me on this subject.

    I have two bath tubs that have drains that need to be replaced. The problem is that I can't get them out. They are in such bad shape that the crossmembers are all busted off that the tub drain removal tool is supposed to use to unscrew and remove.

    The suggestion that was given to me by Home Depot and Ace Hardware is to hammer a screwdriver (or something) into the side of the drain to use for leverage. I can't even manage to do that. (I can barely put a dent into it.) I thought about trying to drill a hole into the side of it but I'm scared to do that because I don't want to go through and damage the threads preventing putting a new one in.

    Does anyone have any advice on how I can get these drains out and still be able to screw in new one?

    Thanks very much!!!

  8. #8

    Default

    Well, now that it's done, I'll tell you how I do it. (Sorry, I didn't notice this sooner.)

    I use a Dremel tool with a carbide blade. (Wear goggles!) I cut a ring at the same level as the tub, below the flange of the strainer, and the top of it pops right out. Then, if I need to get the rest out of the strainer, I use a small screwdriver and hammer to pop the brass threads away from the shoe. This can be a problem if the tub drain isn't accessible, in case the old rubber joints get messed up. But usually, I'm replacing the entire drain so getting the strainer loose from the tub is all I'm interested in.

  9. #9
    DIY Junior Member ed31's Avatar
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    Default can someone tell me if this will work

    I am having the same problem. . except i think my drain wasnt made with the cross pieces. . instead it has a small ridge that is about 1/16th of an inch wide and the same deep. . on each side going from the top of the drain where the flange is to the bottom of the drain piece.. . .this looks like it would work. . .can someone tell me what they think. .



    The Drain Key™


    Expands with a crescent type wrench to unlock or install:

    Bathtub drains
    1-1/4" or 1-1/2" closet spuds
    Jr. basket strainers, Jr. Duo strainers
    Tray plug drains and duplex strainers

    Removes 1-1/4" or 1-1/2" trap (dirty arm) nipples.

    It's unique expanding design allows The Drain Key
    to internally grip in a 360° pattern.

    Name:  drain_key.jpg
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    Last edited by Terry; 04-13-2011 at 12:19 AM.

  10. #10
    DIY Junior Member lswote's Avatar
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    Default replacing bathtub drain basket

    The cross-posts in my bathtub drain basket corroded and broke off so there is nothing for a drain basket removal tool to grab and I don't think that the tool would work (am I wrong?). My bathtub is only 11 years old, but it is on a concrete slab so I don't have access to anything under or behind the tub and the tub has ceramic tile all around it so taking it out would be a big deal. Is there anything i can do to get the drain basket out so I can replace it?

  11. #11
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Default

    If you do get it out, the shoe it screws into may move, and it may be a big bear to replace. The techniques to remove it have already been described...there are tools that grab the crossbars (won't work in your situation), there's one that expands to grab the thing from the inside, and then there's the brute force method that essentially cuts a notch, then you use that to unscrew it or pry it away from the edge of the tub. The last can damage the tub if you don't take care.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  12. #12
    DIY Junior Member debc's Avatar
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    Unhappy Desperate!!! Jacuzzi Tub Center Drain Removal?

    I've got a major problem with trying to remove my tub drain. First of all it seems like the plumber's putty has turned to epoxy! I have no access to the plumbing since the tub is a center drain and the drain is on located on the exterior wall. So no way to cut a hole. The plumbing is PVC pipe.

    I have tried a Smart Dumbell wrench, the Tub Drain Key wrench, a hairdryer to soften the putty and cut a wedge into the lip to try and drive the drain out of the pvc pipe but none of the above methods have worked!

    Half of the drain lip has broken away but the interior threaded portion of the drain has remained solid in the PVC pipe!

    So this is my question .... Is there a way to tap the old drain to receive a new drain?
    Or ... is there a way to ream out the old drain and re-thread the PVC pipe?

    I should mention .... the PVC pipe does not seem to be anchored, it moves around when trying to work on the drain. I really do not want to damage the pipe because the tub is a Jacuzzi Tub and removing it is financially out of the question at this time. I do try to stabilize the PVC pipe by holding a screwdriver behind it while I work on it.

    I really need help with this one! Thanks!

  13. #13
    DIY Junior Member debc's Avatar
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    Default Jacuzzi Tub Drain Removal Success!

    I'm glad to report that I was able to solve my jacuzzi tub center drain removal problem. I thought I'd post my solution so that it might help others with the same issue.

    What I finally did was to borrow a Dremel tool and bought a tungsten carbide cutting bit for stainless steel. I then used the bit to cut a ridge into the side of the drain interior, being careful not to go too deep into the PVC pipe. Once that was completed I was able to get a small screw driver into the ridge, pry the drain towards the center and Voila! the entire drain was then very easily removed.

    Installed the new drain, using teflon tape on the threads and plumber's putty. What a beautiful thing!

    I had been fighting with this for 3 days! Hope this helps others.

  14. #14
    DIY Junior Member NYC-DIY's Avatar
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    Default remove overflow cover and drain

    I am having my tub reglazed in a few days. Figured it was a good time to remove and replace the drain which is rusty looking, and simlar for hte overflow which is broken and looks like it was glazed but should by chrome colored.

    Question: Can I easily remove these myself just before or while the glaze guy is here? Is it just a matter of unscrewing them both? I think that is standard for a drain, but is it similar for the overflow? (the tub glaze guy said he can sometimes do the overflow, but can't do the drain and those sometimes pose problems) From what I've read online, the drain should be easy (with specialized tool or even just with something to get torque like inserting handles of pliers and then using screw driver as a handle), but can't find much on the overflow. Any advice on one or both is greatly appreciated!

    Picture attached.

    Thanks,
    Mark
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  15. #15
    DIY Junior Member NYC-DIY's Avatar
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    Default

    BTW- On first inspection I did NOT notice a bolt or screw in the overflow drain. I can look closer if someone thinks its there, or is it possible this thing is screwed directly onto the tub, or just attached with sort of epoxy or something?

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