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Can You Use Drano in a Bathtub? (If Yes, How Much)

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If you’ve ever found yourself standing ankle-deep in murky water while showering, you know the frustration of a clogged bathtub drain. Nobody likes dealing with a clogged tub drain, but before you reach for that bottle of Drano, it’s important to understand what you’re getting into. While it can be a convenient solution for some clogs, it’s not always the best choice.

Can Drano be used in bathtubs?

Yes, you can use Drano to unclog a bathtub drain, but you have to be careful about the quantity. The powerful cleaner helps unclog the drain within minutes, so there is no need to snake the drain or use a plunger. 

Drano Bathtub

This article explores how much Drano to use in a bathtub and some tips for using it effectively.

Take a spray and fill it with lukewarm water. Add 2 tablespoons of baking soda and an equal amount of ammonia. (Baking soda cleans stains effectively, and ammonia offers grease to prevent stains)

What is Drano: Is it Safe for Your Bathtub?

Drano is a powerful drain cleaner that dissolves hair, soap scum, and other clog-causing materials in pipes. It is a popular choice for unclogging bathtub drains due to its effectiveness and ease of use.

However, the use of Drano in bathtubs can be controversial, as the chemicals in the product can potentially damage the bathtub or harm the user if used improperly. When used correctly or in limited quantity, Drano is safe for your bathtub and drainpipes. 

How Much Drano Do I Put in My Bathtub for Effective Cleaning?

Pour around 16oz Drano for slow-running and partially clogged drains. For extremely slow-running drains, you should increase the quantity to 32oz (source). Let the gel-based clog cleaner sit for at least 15 minutes to dissolve the clog, then rinse it with hot water. 

The amount of Drano you should use typically depends on the stubbornness of the clog and the reason behind the blockage. To dissolve a hair clog, you’ll need less quantity, and to dissolve soap scum, you’ll need slightly more Drano.

How to use Drano in Bathtub: Explained in Steps 

Drano is a powerful drain cleaner that contains harsh chemicals, and it’s essential to use it properly. I’ve been using it for quite some time to unclog my bathtub and other drains. Here’re the steps you must follow when using it to ensure safety and get the job done right:

Prepare for Safety

Before using Drano, it’s important to take safety precautions. Wear safety glasses and gloves to protect your eyes and skin from potential chemical burns. Additionally, make sure the bathroom is well-ventilated to avoid inhaling any fumes.

Remove Standing Water

If there is standing water in the bathtub, use a cup or bucket to remove as much as possible. Drano works best in empty tubs, so it’s important to remove as much water as possible before applying the product.

Pour Drano Down the Drain

Carefully pour the recommended amount of Drano into the bathtub drain. Be sure to follow the instructions on the bottle, as using too much or too little Drano can be ineffective or even dangerous.

Let It Work 

Let the solution sit in the drain for the recommended amount of time (usually 15-30 minutes). Avoid using the bathtub or running any water down the drain during this time.

Rinse the Drain with Hot Water 

After the recommended waiting time, flush the drain with hot water for several minutes. This will help to wash away any remaining debris and Drano from the pipes.

Repeat If Required 

You can repeat the process if the bathtub drain is still clogged after the first application. However, it’s important to wait at least 24 hours between applications.

Clean Up the Tub 

Once you’re finished using Drano, clean up any spills or residue with a paper towel or cloth. Dispose of the used gloves and any remaining Drano according to the instructions on the bottle.

Make sure to review the instructions on the bottle to avoid skin allergies and irritations. Also, if you are in doubt about whether to use Drano or not, consult a plumber.

Mistakes to Avoid while Using Drano in a Bathtub

Drano contains chemicals that can dissolve any type of clog and if used incorrectly; it can also dissolve the pipe’s materials affecting the plumbing. I spoke to several plumbers about mistakes people make when using this drain cleaner, and I’ve compiled them in a list below.

Using Too Much Drano

Using more Drano than recommended won’t necessarily make the product more effective. In fact, using too much can be dangerous and cause the chemicals to splash back onto your skin or eyes.

Mixing It with other Cleaners

Mixing different drain cleaners, even if they are both from the same brand, can be dangerous and cause a chemical reaction that can damage your pipes or cause harmful fumes.

Flushing the Drain Too Soon

After using Drano, it’s important to flush the drain with hot water for several minutes to wash away any remaining debris and chemicals. Flushing the drain too soon or not using enough water can result in leftover chemicals that can harm your pipes.

Using Drano Very Frequently

Drano is a powerful drain cleaner that should only be used as a last resort. Overusing the product can damage your pipes and create a reliance on chemical solutions.

Overlooking the Warning Signs 

If you notice any unusual reactions or smells while using Drano, or if the clog doesn’t clear after multiple attempts, stop using the product and call a professional plumber.

What to Use Instead of Drano in Your Bathtub?

Do you think using Drano in your bathtub is not a good idea? Well, there are many other products you can use to get rid of clogs quickly and effectively. Here are the top 4 products I’ve used to fix blocked drains.

1) Green Gobbler Liquid Hair Drain Clog Remover

This drain clog remover from Green Gobbler addresses the primary cause while freshening up your bathroom. The concentrated formula acts quickly and clears the clog within minutes. Unlike Drano, it’s formulated to be safe on drain pipes, including PVC, so you can consider using it frequently.

Green Gobbler Liquid Hair Drain Clog Remover | For Toilets, Sinks, Tubs & Fresh Scent Drain Sticks | 12 Pack | Drain Cleaner & Deodorizer - Packaging May Vary
  • EASY TO USE PACKAGING, POWERFUL AND EFFECTIVE FORMULA: This drain and pipe cleaner is a simple and...

The best thing about Green Gobbler Liquid Hair Drain Clog Remover is that it comes pre-measured. Pour one chamber over the tub’s drain, wait for 15-30 minutes, and rinse with hot water.

2) Artic Eagle Drain Clog Remover

You can snake the drain using this clog remover if you prefer a chemical-free approach. It quickly traps hair, soap scum, and other clog-causing agents, making the drain flow smoothly. 

ARCTIC EAGLE Drain Snake Hair Drain Clog Remover - 3 Pack Shower Snake Sink Unclogger Tool with Exquisite Packaging
  • Package Includes: 3 pack of 20" drain clog remover cleaning tools. The width of the hair cleaner is...
  • Soft & Flexible Barbed Wand:Plastic drain clog remover is designed with Multi-tooth and the...

In one pack, you get three snakes, and you can expect them to last several months. Additionally, using a snake is easy, and you can use it to remove clogs from all drains in your bathroom.

3) CLR Clear Pipes & Drains Clog Remover and Cleaner

If your plumber has recommended an EPA-certified drain cleaner, you can use the CLR Clear Pipes & Drains Clog Remover and Cleaner. It is a fragrance-free clog remover and gets the job done quickly. 

CLR Brands Clog Preventer Monthly Drain Build Up Remover, Helps Degrade Sources of Clogs to Keep Drains Flowing Smoothly, Safe on All Pipes and Drains - 42 Ounce Bottle
5,189 Reviews
CLR Brands Clog Preventer Monthly Drain Build Up Remover, Helps Degrade Sources of Clogs to Keep Drains Flowing Smoothly, Safe on All Pipes and Drains - 42 Ounce Bottle
  • Prevents Build Up: CLR Brands Clog Preventer is a preventative maintenance product. It degrades...
  • Drain Care: Removes pipe buildup from daily household use. Use monthly in sinks, toilets, showers,...

The formulation can dissolve multiple crud-building materials, including soap scum, oil, shampoo, shaving cream, conditioner, toothpaste, and kitchen waste. Pour around 2oz. of solution over the clogged drain and rinse it after 15 minutes.

4) Liquid-Plumr Pro-Strength Full Clog Destroyer Plus PipeGuard

The Liquid-Plumr Pro-Strength is a clog destroyer that protects your pipes as well. It has a low chemical concentration compared to most drain cleaners but still gets the job done efficiently. The big handle lets you pour it over the drain conveniently, and you can rinse the clog after 15-20 minutes for effective cleaning.


Q: Can you put Drano in a Tub with Standing Water?

Pouring Drano into a tub with standing water won’t help, as the solution will get diluted. You must empty the tub before pouring it over the clogged drain. 

Q: Does Drano Damage PVC Pipes?

Drano or any other chemical-based drain cleaner can damage the PVC pipes if you use it too frequently and in uncontrolled quantities. Since the pipes are concealed inside the floor, you might not see any signs, but dampness on walls may indicate a leaky pipe.

Q: Why do plumbers say no to Drano?

Most plumbers hate Drano for its extremely corrosive nature. If you have iron plumbing, your plumber will never recommend using Drano or similar chemicals. 

Q: Which Drano is best for a bathtub?

According to plumbing experts and homeowners, Drano Max Gel is the best overall drain cleaner for bathtubs and sinks.

Drano Max Gel Drain Clog Remover and Cleaner for Shower or Sink Drains, Unclogs and Removes Hair, Soap Scum and Blockages, 80 Oz
  • TRUSTED BRAND: Drano Max Gel Drain Clog Remover is the #1 Selling Gel Drain Cleaner*. Avoid spending...
  • FAST-ACTING: Starts working in 7 minutes. For best results, pour 16 oz slowly over drain. For...

Q: Why can’t you use Drano in a Toilet?

Drano is a strong chemical drain cleaner that is designed to dissolve clogs in pipes. While it can be effective for unclogging drains, it should not be used in a toilet for below reasons:

  • Drano can cause a dangerous reaction when mixed with other cleaners or chemicals, which can release toxic gases that can be harmful to your health. Also, Drano can damage porcelain and other materials in the toilet, leading to costly repairs or replacement.
  • When Drano is poured into a toilet, it can create a blockage that is even harder to remove. The chemicals in Drano can solidify and harden, which can cause a blockage that is difficult to clear with a plunger or other means.

Final Thoughts 

Whether using Drano in a bathtub or not is a personal preference. Some people pour it every month to keep the drains flowing smoothly, while some homeowners refrain from using it. If you have decided to use it, make sure to follow the method explained in this post and keep the mistakes in mind.

Lastly, use Drano as a last resort, when all other natural drain cleaning methods fail to work.


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