how to stop bathtub overflow drain

How To Stop Bathtub Overflow Drain? Here are the Facts!

Bathtub overflow drains are, as the name suggests, a drain that is used to collect all the overflowed water in the tub. Most bathtubs come with an overflow drain, although it is not needed. 

To stop the bathtub overflow drain, choose a bathtub overflow drain cover that is easily rotatable. Place the hole in the position of 12:00 in a clock to maximize the water quantity. 

The prime reason people stop their overflow drain is to enjoy a deeper soak. Soaking into hot water is something everyone wants on a very cold day, but your overflow drain prevents the tub from getting full and doesn’t allow that to happen. To solve this problem, many people use drain covers, and some use different methods. 

We will come back to this further down the article but here’s a link if you want to see more about the special support a fiberglass bathtub.

In this write-up, you will find out how to stop bathtub overflow drain by yourself.

How To Stop Bathtub Overflow Drain?

There are many ways to seal off bathtub overflow drains, both permanently or temporarily. Here is how to stop bathtub overflow drain at home by yourself:

1. Use A Bathtub Overflow Drain Cover

Bathtub Overflow Drain Cover

Using a bathtub overflow drain cover to restrain your tub water from seeping through is quick, easy, and hassle-free. Most overflow drain covers have a hole on top that reduces the potential safety hazard while adding some extra precious inches of water level in your tub. Placing the hole at 12:00 allows you to increase the tub water capacity and raises the water level.

Sticking the cover right before hopping to the shower will get the job done for you. 

One of the most used overflow drain covers is the slipX solutions bottomless overflow drain cover. It is built with suction cups and has a hole in it. Check it out here

2. Seal In The Overflow Drain Area With Chrome Plates

Chrome Plate

There are many chrome plate overflow drain covers available on amazon. Installing these right on top of the drain can be a good solution as these need screws to stay attached. Unfastening the screws will allow you to get rid of the cover plate anytime you want.

The only problem with these plates is, it is quite hard to get one that will fit your overflow drain. If you can find one, these can prove to be a very good fix.

3. Use Plumber’s Putty

Plumber Putty

If you are wondering how to seal off a bathtub overflow drain, the plumber’s putty can be a very good option. It is a soft and moldable sealant. Please be aware that it is not recommended to use underwater.

It is mainly used to stop water from seeping through when installing a drain in the house. Simply apply an ample amount of putty on top of the existing overflow drain. Do not apply the putty while the tub surface is wet. Let it sit for a couple of hours. Once it is dry, use the tub again.

Here I’ve talked about the plumber’s putty in details.

Do Bathtubs Have Overflow Drain?

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Bathtubs come with overflow drains. Not all of them, but most of them. An overflow drain usually sits right under the faucet to prevent the tub from getting full. Most overflow drains are placed at a very good height, but sometimes tubs can have a very low overflow drain. This can cause quite a problem if you want to enjoy a deep soak in the tub.

Why Do Bathtubs Have An Overflow Drain?

Bathtub overflow drains are not a very pleasant thing to have when all you wanted to do was take a relaxing shower after a very hectic day. But, just like almost everything else in your house, this too has a purpose.

Overflow drains are used to stop water from getting on the floor. When placed in the right area, a bathtub overflow drain can actually help you from ruining your floor, your carpets, etc. Forgetting to turn the faucet off is a very common scenario if you have a busy life. Without an overflow drain, your house will be flooded within minutes.

Another reason your bathtub has an overflow drain is due to safety issues. If you have toddlers or kids around the house, permanently covering the overflow drain can cause quite a problem. Kids, tubs, and no safety precautions make the worst combination ever. This is why it is recommended that you do not get your overflow drain permanently sealed off. 

Here is the list of the best bathtub drain stoppers (link to Amazon)

How Does A Bathtub Overflow Drain Work?

There are multiple types of overflow drains used in tubs, and each works in a different way. The most common types are a traditional overflow and the integral overflow. If your home is a bit on the older side, chances are you have a conventional overflow drain in your bathtub. 

Integral overflow drains are built inside the tub’s inner wall so it does not stay exposed.

 According to Badeloft, whether it is a traditional overflow drain or an integral one, it should have two parts: a trap and an overflow drain. This is how an overflow drain works:

  1. Upon starting the faucet, water flows through the primary drain at the bottom of the tub. When the main drain is closed with a stopper, the water level starts to rise. 
  2. Once the water level rises enough to touch the overflow drain, the trap unlocks and allows water to run through the overflow drain instead of the main drain. 

Check our latest guide about: How To Install Green Board Around Bathtub?

Conclusion

If you have been paying attention till now, all your queries regarding how to stop bathtub overflow drain should be answered. Bathtub overflow drains can be quite annoying. Many people do not like it at all. But it is an integral part of a safe bathing environment.

Instead of stopping the drain permanently, using an instant fix for the days, you want a deeper soak can be a great solution to this problem. If you do not have kids around the house, temporarily sealing off the drain is a good solution too. Whatever you do, you should always put your safety first. 

If you still find the process complex, do not hesitate to contact a professional. 

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