How to Take a Drain Cover Off a Tub


There are pop-up drain covers that pop-up when opened, as well as screw-on drain covers held in place with screws. Screw-on drain covers usually sit on top of the drain rather than inside it. You may need to remove the drain cover when a clog develops and requires you to clean the pipes inside the drain, or when you want to replace the tub itself during a bathroom remodel.

Things You'll Need

  • Slip-joint pliers
  • Screwdriver

Pop-Up Cover Removal

  • Open the drain cover so that the cover pops upward. Slip the screwdriver under the drain cover. If it has holes, place the screwdriver in the holes. If not, place the pliers down the drain, under the cover.

  • Pry the cover up or wiggle it loose. Use a screwdriver to pull the cover up through the holes. If there are no holes, use the screwdriver as leverage so you can wiggle the pliers under the cover. Watch for a gap beneath the cover and the drain.

  • Slip the screwdriver between the drain cover and the drain. Lever the drain cover out until it pops free. Lift it up to remove.

Screw-On Cover Removal

  • Unscrew the screws, usually located in the middle of the drain cover. Using a screwdriver, turn each screw to the left to remove it. Turning to the right will screw it in tighter.

  • Place the screws in a safe location to avoid losing them. Avoid placing them on a sink counter, where they might fall in the sink and down the drain.

  • Slip the screwdriver into the drain cover holes and pull upward. The drain should pull up without difficulty.

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  • Photo Credit Duck in the bath tub image by phillips4 from
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