Tub overflow stopper fell down pipe. Options.

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by pman6, Sep 1, 2019.

  1. pman6

    pman6 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Are there any special tools plumbers can use to extract the stopper?

    The water is completely blocked. Tried a wire coat hanger, and could not fish it out. The wire bottomed out, the wire length seemed to reach the p-trap. so I'm concerned the stopper is further down, hopefully not through the p-trap.

    Running a small amount of water, the drain quickly gets backed up, so hopefully it's in the straight part.


    I called 2 plumbers. One guy said he could use a camera and see down the pipe and maybe fish it out. Sounded reasonable.

    The other plumber was suggesting something more invasive- digging in the dirt and cutting out the p-trap, and changing the cast iron to ABS. That doesn't sound right.
    I just want the plug fished out, not a whole replumb.

    Here's the access panel next to the tub showing the overflow and drain.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. WorthFlorida

    WorthFlorida The wife is still training me.

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2009
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Location:
    Orlando, Florida
    This might work for you. It saved me a few times and you may find this at your Home Depot. Of you cannot reach to stopper, though these are 24" long, you remove the one or two screws at the overflow on the tub side, if possible with a wrench undo the the first fitting below it. It does look tight but it is all brass and usually there is no corrosion. If you can loosen it, you just lift the overflow off. The stopper is most likely in the same location when used, right at the tee for the tub drain.

    https://www.harborfreight.com/hand-...l-tools/24-inch-2-in-1-pickup-tool-94162.html

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
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  4. pman6

    pman6 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    IMG_20190830_103007.jpg

    this house was built in 1966.

    Does that bottom corroded part look like a p trap? Anyone know?
     
  5. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    [​IMG]

    The stopper can't fall further than the tee. That's it's final resting place. The stopper has a bar across the top and I have fished them out with wire before.
    Or the tub drain you have is installed with slip joint nuts and washers. It's possible to install a new drain there too.
     
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    IF those plumbers think the plug is in the P-trap, then they are either NOT plumbers or trying to "gouge" you because it CANNOT drop farther than the tee, which is why the water does not drain. IF it could drop further the the water would flow through it and you would not have a problem.
     
  7. pman6

    pman6 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2012
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    I was the one who thought it might have fallen past the tee.

    I disassembled the whole drain overflow today, and there is no stopper.

    I remember I removed it a couple years ago because tenants' hair was getting clogged in it.


    So, whatever is clogging the drain must be a hair ball or something.
     
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