Types of Bathroom Sink Stoppers

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When it comes to bathroom sink stoppers, there are a few different types that you can choose from. Each option has its pros and cons, so it’s important to understand what each one entails before making a decision. In this blog post, we will discuss the different types of bathroom sink stoppers and provide tips on how to remove them. Let’s get started!

What Is A Sink Stopper?

2PCS - Kitchen Sink Drain Strainer and Anti-Clogging Kitchen Sink Stopper

Whether you want to have a bath or fill your sink to wash some clothes, you will need something reliable to hold the water in. A sink stopper or a plug is a small device used to stop the water from draining from the sink or bathtub.

A cap can also be used and is similar in functionality; however, the difference between the two is a cap is placed over the drain while a stopper is pushed into the drain creating a seal.

Different Types Of Bathroom Sink Stoppers

Exact Replacement for InSinkErator STP-PL/STPPL Black Rubber Sink Stopper

Bathroom sink stoppers are important because they make sure the water drains correctly. There are different types of sink stoppers, but they all essentially work in the same way. When buying the sink stopper, it’s a good idea to match the faucet finish for aesthetic purposes.

1. Lift-and-Turn Bathtub Drain Stopper

PF WaterWorks PF0950-BN Universal n,

A lift-and-turn drain stopper is a very simple design. To operate this stopper, lift and turn the small lever on the cap, opening the drain and allowing the water to flow, and inversely screw the stopper down to close it and stop the flow.

2. Push-and-Pull Drain Stopper

PF WaterWorks PF0940-CH Lift Lock (Push Pull)

The push-and-pull drain stopper is identical in design and installation method to the lift-and-turn drain stopper. However, the functionality is completely different. Its open and closing mechanism is done by pushing and pulling.

3. Toe-Touch Bathtub Drain Stopper

PF WaterWorks PF0935-CH Universal Touch

The Toe-touch stopper resembles the push-and-pull stopper and is typically used in the bathtub. It has a similar installation method as both the push-and-pull and the lift-and-turn stopper but it uses a spring.

Simply step into the bathtub and push it down with your foot to close it. The spring will need replacing at some point due to wear and tear.

4. Flip-It Drain Stopper

Danco 88636 Flip-It Tub Drain Stopper, Chrome

The flip-it drain stopper is very simple to install and use. Just place it into the drain and the rings will create a seal preventing the water from draining while moving the lever left to right will open and close the drain.

5. Pop-Up Drain Stopper

Pop-Up Drain Stopper

The pop-up drain stopper has a simple design and is easy to use. To open the drain, push down on the lever and turn it to the left. To seal the drain, push down on the lever and turn it to the right. Unfortunately, hair and dirt get trapped quite easily and can only be removed by taking the overflow pipe and plate out.

How do Sink Stoppers actually work?

Conventional or Traditional Sink Stoppers

There are different types of sink stoppers. A conventional sink stopper is made of rubber and stops the water by creating a seal through suction and then pressure to hold that seal. 

To correctly utilize it, place the rubber stopper, which is generally bigger than the sinkhole, and push it down into the drain. The sink stopper comes with a small hook connected to a chain, making it relatively easy to pull the stopper from the sink once you are ready to drain the water.

Pop-Up Sink Stoppers

Most new sink stoppers come with a handle situated on the faucet employing a pop-up-style system. If, for some reason, your sink stopper isn’t working, the problem is usually with the pop-up device.

The sink stopper has a few moving parts within the device. We need to familiarize ourselves with these components and how they work in order to identify how the sink stopper works.

Lift Rod – Handle used to operate the stopper.

Clevis Screw – The screw is used to link the clevis strap to the lift rod.

Clevis Strap – The clevis strap is used to attach the lift rod to the pivot rod.

Spring Clip – The spring clip keeps the strap in place by connecting the clevis strap to the pivot rod.

Pivot Rod – The pivot rod is the long metal rod that moves the stopper vertically.

Stopper – The stopper is the final piece that seals the drain.

Push-Button Sink Stopper

A push-button sink stopper is a type of sink stopper that can be opened and closed by pressing a button. This type of sink stopper usually has a pop-up mechanism, which means that the stopper will rise up when the button is pressed.

A push-button sink stopper is built into a couple of separate parts. By pressing the stopper down, you click it closed, and pressing it down again will release the stopper and let the water flow.

Simple Pop-Up Stopper Repairs

When the bathroom sink’s stopper gets stuck in the open or closed position or the drain is clogged, the repair is simple – you don’t need to be a professional. Having a light or headlamp can be helpful as it can be quite dark under the sink.

But if the stopper gets stuck when trying to operate the lift rod, the set screw holding the clevis to the lift rod is most likely the cause. The easiest way to repair this is by lowering the pivot rod as far as possible, forcing the stopper to open, and then using a pair of pliers to tighten the screw onto the lift rod.

If there is hair and muck stuck in the stopper clogging the drain, simply remove the clevis by sliding the spring clip off the pivot rod. Remove the pivot rod by unscrewing the retaining screw and pull the stopper out for a good cleaning of the drain.

It’s important to remember when reconstructing the stopper to insert the pivot rod at the end of the drain before replacing the retaining nut and reattaching the clevis to the pivot rod and lift rod. Make sure to change the height of the clevis with the stopper in an open position.

How To Remove Drain Stoppers

Whether you want to upgrade your bathroom or just need to remove your stopper to clean or repair, we have easy steps on how to remove the different stoppers.

How Do You Remove A Push-Pull Drain Stopper?

  1. Using two sets of pliers, remove the stopper by turning the small lever anticlockwise. You can use your hands too, but it depends on how tight it is.
  1. Use counterclockwise movements to unscrew the mounting post. After unscrewing the stopper, clean the drain opening with your preferred cleaning solution and a hard brush or wire wool.
  1. Once clean, screw the stopper column back into the fitting on the bottom of the drain.
  1. Reconnect the lever that sits on top of the stopper. 
  1. Turn the lever returning the stopper to the surface.
  1. Check everything functions correctly.

How to Remove Flip-Lever Drain Stoppers

  1. Rotate the dial to the open position.
  1. Remove the stopper from the drain and then proceed to remove the whole arm linkage by gently moving it left and right.
  1. Clean the pop-up stopper and rocker arm using vinegar or any limescale-removing cleaners.
  1. Place the rocker arm into the drain until the stopper fits the opening. You can restore shine to the stopper by polishing it with chrome polish or using a homemade mixture of lemon and vinegar.
  1. Check to make sure the stopper works by moving the lever.

In Conclusion

The bathroom sink stopper may be one of the smallest items in your bathroom; however, it is possibly one of the most important ones as it will ensure that you can hold water in your bathtub or sink.

Make sure to check the diameter of the drain before buying, and as usual, if you are unsure, consult a local plumber.