How To Remove a Tub Drain with Broken Crosshairs

It’s frustrating when the tub drain gets damaged. Most of the time, when you want to replace it with a new one, it won’t come out.

So, how to remove a tub drain with broken crosshairs?

First, take a tub drain extractor and put it inside the tub drain. Then strike the extractor with a hammer until it tightens. When it gets tight enough, insert a screw inside the crosshair of the extractor. Then use your ratchet to take it out smoothly.

Need to know more? Read along to find out all you need to know about removing a tub drain.

We will come back to this further down the article but here’s a link if you want to see more about the removed bathroom sink drain flange.

Why Does Tub Drain Get Damaged?

The bathtub is used to a great extent in our day-to-day life. But often, we don’t clean it properly. This results in a broken tub drain.

The reasons for the broken tub drain are not many. However, some are noteworthy. Read along to find out what they are.

Reason 1: Old Bathtub

The tub drain gets broken when the bathtub becomes old. Generally, if you clean the bathtub regularly, the lifespan of a tub drain is 20 years. But if you don’t, the lifespan lessens.

Cleaning the tub drain will help you to avoid the problem. Or, you can replace the tub drain after every ten years.

Reason 2: Dirty Tub Drain

Cleaning the tub drain is quite necessary. This is because all the dirt, germs, mud, etc., from your body, go through it. So, cleaning the tub drain is a must.

Not only for broken crosshairs but also for personal hygiene. Moreover, sometimes the dirt gets stuck in the tub drain and stays there. 

Sooner or later, the pile of dirt gets heavy, and the tub drain cannot take it anymore. Thus it breaks. Along with the tub drain, the crosshair also breaks.

Now, are you wondering how to fix your tub drain? Read along to know all about it.

You can read more about how to remove tub and replace with a tile shower.

Why Can’t I Remove Broken Tub Drain Easily?

Due to the reasons mentioned above, the tub drain breaks. Inside the tub drain, there’s a crosshair. The crosshair is there for fixing it in the spot. 

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Crosshair is also used for loosening or tightening the tub drain. So, when the tub drain breaks, the crosshair also breaks. Which makes it hard to take it out of the hole.

You should replace the tub drain as soon as possible. Because the water stopper is fixed with the crosshair. So with a broken crosshair, the water stopper is also lost.

You could’ve removed the tub drain easily if the crosshair was not broken. Due to the broken crosshair, you are unable to lock any screwdriver inside the tub drain. Even trying with the opposite end of pliers won’t work. 

How to Remove A Broken Tub Drain

How to Remove A Broken Tub Drain: 4 Easy Steps

How to Remove A Broken Tub Drain 4 Easy Steps

We know how hard it is to remove a broken tub drain without a crosshair. That’s why we have prepared an easy 4 step solution for you. 

Follow the steps and learn how do you remove a tub drain with a broken crosshair.

Tools Required

Before you jump right into the action, make sure you’ve got the necessary tools. With these, your work will get easier. Here’s what you need-

  • Tub Drain Extractor
  • Hammer
  • A screwdriver
  • Ratchet

Now that you know what you need, gather these and get to work. 

Step 1 of 4: Fixing the Tub Drain Extractor

Fixing the tub drain extractor is quite easy. You just take the tub drain extractor and place it in the tub drain.

We know tub drain extractors might be new to you. So, here are some top-picked tub drain extractors for you.

Product 1. Rectorseal 97258 Golden Extractor Tub Drain Tool. 
Product 2. Superior Tool 05255 1.5″ Tub Drain Extractor 

You’ll have to ensure every edge of the tub extractor touches the surface of the tub drain. It’ll help to remove the broken tub drain easily.

Step 2 of 4: Tightening the Tub Extractor

After you put the tub extractor inside the tub drain, you’ll notice it’s not tight enough. You’ll be able to take the tub extractor out with your hands.

So, tighten the extractor until you cannot pull it off with your hands. 

But how to do that?

Well, using a hammer would help. Strike the tub drain extractor with the hammer firmly. Strike until the extractor fits in perfectly inside the tub drain. You can strike around 8-10 times. 

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Step 3 of 4: Fixing the Screw Inside the Tub Drain Extractor

Now fix a screw inside the tub drain extractor. But the crosshair of the tub drain extractor is slightly bigger than standard crosshairs. 

So, you’ll be needing a thicker screwdriver in this case.

The thickness of the tub drain extractor will be around two inches. So, you’ll need a screwdriver with a thickness of around 1 inch. 

Now, take the screwdriver and fix it inside the crosshair.

Step 4 of 4:Remove the Broken Tub Drain

This is the final step. You’ve to take your ratchet and adjust it with the screwdriver you fixed with the extractor. 

There’s a lock button in your ratchet. First, unlock and fix the ratchet with the screw. Then tighten or loosen the head of the ratchet according to the need. 

After it’s adjusted perfectly, rotate the ratchet anti-clockwise. Apply a decent amount of force to the ratchet. Otherwise, it won’t work. Continue this until the tub drain comes out. 

Voila! You’re done. Hopefully, you removed the broken tub drain following the steps. Now, install a new tub drain

You might be needing help while fixing a new one. Don’t worry! We got it covered for you.

How to Install the New Tub Drain

After removing the broken tub drain, install a new one. Without a tub drain, you’ll not be having the water stopper. So, we recommend you fix the new tub drain as soon as possible.

You’ll need some tools for fixing the new tub drain. 

  • One plier
  • Plumbers putty

Now, let’s move on to fixing the new tub drain.

Step 1 of 2: Using a Plumber Putty

First, take the new tub drain and see if it perfectly fits the hole or not. If it doesn’t fit, change the tub drain.

Now, use a plumber putty under the tub drain or the surface of the bathtub. Using a plumber’s putty will help you create a watertight surface beneath the tub drain. 

We recommend you use putty on the surface of the bathtub. 

It’ll be easier to clean the putty as well as tightening the tub drain. Take plumber’s putty and make a ring-like structure. You’ll need around 3-4 grams of plumber’s putty. 

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Step 2 of 2: Inserting the New Tub Drain

Now, insert the new tub drain into the hole. Apply some force and let it sit tight. 

Then take your plier. Use the opposite side of the plier. This is the hack of screwing the tub drain. The crosshairs inside a tub drain are slightly bigger. The opposite end of the plier is flexible. So, you can increase the width of the plier accordingly. 

That’s why using the opposite end of the plier is better. Now, rotate the plier in a clockwise direction. Apply a decent amount of pressure to let it perfectly fit in the hole. 

You’ll notice the plumber’s putty is coming out. Clean the remaining putty after fixing the tub drain.

You might be asking yourself how to remove a tub drain with crosshairs. 

Well, as the new tub drain is not broken, it’s easy to remove. You just take a plier and use the back part of it. Fix two heads of the plier and rotate it anticlockwise to take the tub drain out.

That’s it! You’re done. You didn’t only remove the broken tub drain; you also fixed the new one.  

Related Questions

Question: Will the plumber’s putty stain my tub?

Answer: This depends on the finishing of the tub. The plumber’s putty makes the seal waterproof but leaves a yellowish mark around its surroundings.

Question: How do you remove rust from a bathtub drain?

Answer: Just make a thick paste of baking soda and water and apply it to the rusted area. Leave it for a day and then scrub it with a toothbrush.

Question: Why does a bathtub drain clot?

Answer: The most probable reason is hair. The hair we lose every day is drained through the tub. But time after time, they store and clot the drain. 

Parting Words

Congratulations! You fixed your tub drain. We hope our article helped you on how to remove a tub drain with broken crosshairs.

One last tip, while striking with the hammer, don’t strike too hard. It’ll break the inner parts of the hole. Thus you won’t be able to fix a new tub drain there. So strike 10-12 times with medium force. 

Let us know if you have any confusion in the comment section.

Till then, take care.

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