How to Fix a Sink Drain Plug


A sink stopper keeps water in the sink and allows it to escape down the drain when necessary. A sink stopper consists of a plug and an assembly system that lifts and lowers the stopper. If the stopper mechanism malfunctions, it is possible to repair it yourself with a few basic tools.

Things You'll Need

  • Wrench
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Look under the sink and locate the pivot nut beneath the drain pipe if the plug will not close. This usually is a result of a loose pivot nut. Tighten the nut by turning it counter-clockwise with a wrench. Avoid over-tightening or the stopper could become stuck in place.

  • Locate the metal bar that extends beyond the pivot nut and is attached to the lift handle. Adjust the screw that is connected to the metal bar and the lift handle. Loosen or tighten the screw with a flathead screwdriver. If the stopper does not move, then loosen the screw by turning the screwdriver counter-clockwise. Turn the screwdriver clockwise to tighten if the stopper will not stay up. Attempt to lift the stopper up and down and re-adjust if necessary.

  • Re-attach the metal bar if the pop-stopper is not moving because it fell off. Partially remove the pivot nut behind the pipe with a wrench.

  • Align the metal bar with the hole in the base of the pop-up stopper, then re-tighten the pivot nut with a wrench.

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  • Photo Credit sink and faucet image by MAXFX from
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