Before you use a plunger, make sure you remove the trip lever and push a wet piece of cloth in the trip lever opening to create more suction. The problem is, the heads of the screws holding the trip lever drain to the tub are totally corroded away. In your case, the diverter needs to be replaced. Push up and down with the plunger and it should be able to clear the obstruction quite easily. The tub portion doesn't get used much, but over time, the drain has slowed down significantly. How to Replace a Bathtub Stopper. Remove the two screws that fasten the trip lever to the tub. My bathtub drain trip lever mechanism has failed, and my bathtub won't drain. Just rubbing the head with my finger took off a bunch of rust and the heads are now stripped. Now that you've replaced the trip lever on your tub drain, you notice it isn't properly stopping the water. These little stoppers are quite inexpensive to purchase from Amazon or any home improvement store, costing in the region of $20. When you flip the overflow lever up, it pushes the rod down on the stopper’s rocker arm, which raises the stopper. The stopper can then be cleaned, or replaced with a new one. The lever seems to be stuck in the down position. Go fishing. Prevention When a tub won’t hold water, the two potential causes are easily repaired. Since you have a plunger style, the linkage bars have likely dropped down out of view. Straighten out a wire hanger; or some excess solid strand electrical wire, and put a small hook in one end. Step 2 Remove the Trip, and Look for Debris. The assemblies are adjustable to fit a wide range of tubs. A bathtub pop-up is a two-part mechanism: first, the stopper, which has a rocker arm that extends back toward the drain, and second, the overflow assembly, a lever that lifts or lowers a rod with a spring-like end. The trip lever is the lever that makes the tub drain go up and down. I have unscrewed the overflow hood and tried to pull out the linkage and plunger, but it seems to be stuck and will only move up about an inch or two and will not come out of the overflow drain. I actually just replaced this in my bathtub as it was getting stuck and not draining well. Steps for fixing a tub that won’t hold water: Bathtub drains consist of a visible trip lever, a plunger that seats in the drain to stop water, and two pieces of threaded rod which connect the lever and plunger. The stopper will not work and the trip lever will not go up. Most people only use plungers on toilets but they can work wonders on clogged bathtub drains too. Remove the two screw on the trip lever cover, and have a look inside. Look for hair or debris that can be removed. Lift and Turn Stoppers and Roller Ball stoppers are very simple to replace; just unscrew counter-clockwise until the stopper is removed from the drain. The tub spout you have with the knob on the end of it is a shower diverter. 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