Serving 15 counties in VA and WV since 1989


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At Powell’s Plumbing, we love helping our customers with all their plumbing needs. But we also love saving them money, so we are all about providing DIY tips for common plumbing ailments. Provided you have the time and the will, you can get back to normal functionality yourself, without having to pay for a service. It helps to know when to call and when to try things on your own.

With that, here are some common problems that occur with bathtubs and how to fix them. We know that having an out-of-commission bathtub isn’t really an option for most people, so hopefully these tips will come in handy.

1) Leaking tub faucet – This is one of the most common problems with bathtubs, especially in older tub assemblies that haven’t seen maintenance in a while. The rubber washers begin to degrade, allowing water to seep around them and leak out the faucet. This fix can be as simple as replacing those washers, or you may need to replace the whole assembly behind the faucet. This sounds daunting, but is actually fairly straightforward in most tubs and costs less than having a professional come to replace it.

2) Clogged tub drain – Over time, most tub drains will collect a bunch of hair that will slow drainage or may clog the drain altogether. This is not something you should call a plumber right away for, as a stiff wire or coat hanger bent into a hook usually is enough to rip out the gunky hair mass right beneath the stopper. You should also try to manually remove the clog before pouring chemicals down the drain—it’s cheaper and more environmentally friendly.

3) Low water pressure – To diagnose this problem, turn the faucet from hot to cold. If there is more water pressure from the showerhead on one of the settings, then there is likely some buildup in the showerhead aerator that is causing a water backup on the other side. Vinegar comes in handy here: If your aerator can be removed, you can soak it in vinegar overnight; if it cannot be removed, you can tape a bag of vinegar over the shower head and let it soak overnight. If this doesn’t do the trick, it’s probably time to call Powell’s Plumbing.

4) Bathtub drain leaks – While this is usually something to call a professional for, some tub drain leaks can be identified and fixed relatively easily. First, see if you can determine where the leak is coming from. If it’s coming from the drain itself, simply removing the drain, adding more plumber’s putty to the seal, and replacing it can do the trick. But if the leak is coming from plumbing below the drain, calling a professional like Powell’s Plumbing might be the safest bet. 

If you have a bathtub plumbing issue you’re not sure about, or want to schedule an appointment, call Powell’s Plumbing today!

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