How To Fix A Bathroom Sink Stopper That Is Stuck Shut

Are you tired of trying to unclog your bathroom sink with no success? You might be dealing with a sink stopper that is stuck shut. Don’t worry, fixing your bathroom sink stopper is easier than you think – it’s almost as easy as taking a breath of fresh air!

In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps of how to fix a bathroom sink stopper that is stuck shut. We’ll go over:

  • Assessing the situation
  • Clearing the drain
  • Removing the stopper
  • Disassembling the stopper
  • Cleaning and greasing the parts
  • Reassembling the stopper
  • Testing the stopper

So let’s get started!

Assessing the Situation

If you’re dealing with a conundrum in the lavatory, it’s time to take a closer look and assess the situation.

Before you attempt to fix the sink stopper that’s stuck shut, you should ensure that the plumbing pipes aren’t clogged.

Check the sink bowl, and any other pipes connected to the sink, for any blockage.

If you find a clog, unclogging the pipes should resolve the issue.

If the pipes are clear, inspect the hardware of the sink to determine the cause of the issue.

Check the stopper and rod for any visible damage, rust, or corrosion.

If you can see any damage, you may need to replace the hardware.

If the hardware appears to be in good condition, check for any loose connections or screws.

Tighten any loose connections or screws, and then test the sink to see if the issue has been resolved.

Clearing the Drain

You’ve come this far, so let’s take the next step to get your drain cleared!

First, you’ll need to inspect the pipes under the sink and look for any clogs or corrosion. You can use a flashlight to help you get a better view of the pipes and their connections. If you find any clogged pipes, try to clear them out with a plunger or a snake. If the pipes are corroded, you may need to replace them to ensure that your sink is working properly.

Next, you’ll need to remove the stopper from the sink drain. Start by unscrewing the nut at the bottom of the sink and then pull the stopper out of the drain.

You’ll need to clean the stopper and the drain opening, both inside and out, to remove any debris that may be causing the stopper to stick shut. Once you’ve completed these steps, you can put the stopper back in the drain and tighten the nut at the bottom of the sink. Now your bathroom sink stopper should be fixed and ready to use!

Removing the Stopper

Let’s tackle removing the stopper now so we can get your drain flowing again! To begin, you’ll need to determine the cause of the problem. If you’ve already done this, skip to the next step.

If not, you’ll need to investigate a bit. Check the stopper, see if it’s stuck in the open or closed position, and check the sink drain for any clogs or debris that may be blocking the stopper.

Once you’ve determined the cause, it’s time to remove the stopper. If your sink has a pop-up stopper, you’ll need to find the stopper control located beneath the sink. Press the control down to disengage the stopper, then lift the stopper up and out of the drain.

If you have a lever stopper, you’ll need to locate the lever handle, usually located on the side of the sink. Push the lever handle to the opposite side of the sink to release the stopper, then lift the stopper out of the drain.

As a preventative measure, you should clean the stopper and drain regularly to avoid future blockages.

Disassembling the Stopper

Once you’ve removed the stopper, you may need to disassemble it to further investigate the cause of the blockage.

For example, if a coin has become lodged in the drain, disassembling the stopper will allow you to access and remove the coin.

To begin, unscrew the screws that are holding the top portion of the stopper in place. This will give you access to the inside of the stopper, where you can determine the cause of the blockage and check the seals.

You may need to use a pair of pliers to loosen the screws, depending on how tight they are. Once the screws are removed, carefully separate the two pieces of the stopper and assess the issue.

If a foreign object, such as a coin, is causing the blockage, you can remove it with a pair of tweezers.

If the issue is more complex, such as a worn seal, you will need to take the stopper to a plumber for further assessment and repair.

Cleaning and Greasing the Parts

Now that the stopper has been disassembled, it’s time to clean off any debris and grime and lubricate the parts to ensure they move freely.

Begin by dealing with any rust buildup, as this can prevent the stopper from working properly. You can do this by using a wire brush or steel wool to scrub away at the rust, or using a rust-removal product. Once the rust is gone, use a damp cloth to wipe away any remaining dirt and grime.

Next, it’s time to lubricate the parts. Apply a few drops of lubricant to the rubber gasket and other surfaces that need to move freely. You can use a silicone-based lubricant, as this won’t damage the rubber. Make sure to get into all of the nooks and crannies, so that the stopper can move freely when it’s reassembled.

Once you have finished, the stopper should be ready to be put back together.

Reassembling the Stopper

With all the parts clean and lubricated, it’s time to reassemble the stopper, so it can get back to its job of keeping the drain open or closed.

To do this, you’ll need to:

  • Put the stopper back in the drain hole
  • Reattach the trip lever
  • Reconnect the linkage

Before you begin, make sure you’ve examined the cause of the problem and inspected the pipes for any signs of wear or damage. If you find any, the parts may need to be replaced.

Begin by carefully placing the stopper in the drain hole. Then, reattach the trip lever and reconnect the linkage, making sure all connections are secure and the linkage moves freely.

Once you have everything connected correctly, test the stopper to make sure it works properly.

Testing the Stopper

To ensure the stopper is functioning correctly, you’ll want to test it out.

Before doing so, make sure the drain is completely dry to avoid flooding. You may want to use some troubleshooting tips or unclogging solutions to make sure the drain is completely clear.

Once you have done this, turn on the faucet to start the water flow and test the stopper. If it’s functioning properly, the stopper should be able to stop the water from flowing and switch between open and closed.

If it’s not working, it may need to be adjusted and tested again. Make sure to keep trying until the stopper is functioning correctly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What tools do I need to fix my bathroom sink stopper?

Are you having trouble with a stuck bathroom sink stopper? Not to worry – with a few simple cleaning tips and DIY solutions, you can easily fix your own bathroom sink.

You’ll need a few basic tools, such as a screwdriver, a pair of pliers, and a wrench. Start by unscrewing the stopper from the sink, then use a cleaning solution to remove any build-up on the stopper.

Once it’s clean, reattach the stopper to the sink and use pliers to tighten the connection. Finally, use the wrench to ensure the stopper is secured.

With these easy steps, you’ll have your bathroom sink working properly in no time.

What type of stopper do I have?

Figuring out what type of bathroom sink stopper you have is the first step in fixing it. There are two main types: pop up stoppers and lift and turn stoppers.

A pop up stopper is typically found on basin sinks and is a plug connected to a rod that pops up and down when you press on it.

A lift and turn stopper is usually attached to a rod that is installed in a hole in the center of the sink. To identify which type you have, take a look at the underside of the sink.

If you see a rod coming out of the center, you have a lift and turn stopper. If you see a hole with no rod, you have a pop up stopper.

How can I prevent my bathroom sink stopper from getting stuck again?

Stopping your bathroom sink stopper from getting stuck again is easy with a few easy steps.

For preventative maintenance, check the stopper regularly for build up and debris that may cause it to jam.

To clean, use a soft cloth to wipe off any dirt or grime that may have accumulated on the stopper.

You can also use a mild detergent and warm water to remove any soap scum or residue.

Finally, lubricate the stopper with a light oil to ensure it moves smoothly and freely.

Taking these steps will help keep your bathroom sink stopper from ever getting stuck again.

What should I do if I cannot get the stopper out of the drain?

If you can’t get the stopper out of the drain, it could be due to clogged pipes or debris build-up. In this case, you should use a plunger to try and unclog the pipes.

Put the plunger over the opening of the drain and push up and down vigorously several times. This should help to loosen and dislodge any clogs, allowing you to remove the stopper.

If that doesn’t work, you may need to call in a professional plumber to help.

What should I do if the stopper does not stay open after reassembling it?

If the stopper doesn’t stay open after reassembling it, the first thing to do is to check and make sure all the seals are in place and secure.

It may also be useful to test the tension of the stopper, as if it’s too tight it won’t stay open.

If the issue persists, it may be necessary to replace the parts of the stopper.

If you’re not sure how to do this, it’s best to seek out a professional plumber who can help you resolve the problem.


You’ve done it! Your bathroom sink stopper is unstuck and working like new.

Just think of the satisfaction you feel knowing that you were able to repair it yourself. You have the know-how to tackle any home improvement project, big or small.

Now, you can go back to enjoying long, luxurious baths with the peace of mind that your sink stopper is in working order.

You should be proud of yourself; the satisfaction of a job well done is like no other.

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