How To Make Your Bath Hold More Water for Deeper Soak

updated Oct 13, 2022
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After a really hectic week, we always look forward to taking the stress off with a long soak in the tub. Our bathtub is clawfoot and charming, but here’s the challenge. The overflow valve is placed so low that the water starts to drain out before the bathtub is anywhere near full. We scoured the web for solutions to this that we’ll share, as well as our own happy solution. Hint: you can make your tub “deeper” without renovating.

So most baths have some sort of overflow “safety” drain or hole that is located (depending on your tub) somewhere under or near the faucet. While this IS good for safety, it is horrible for getting the water level of your bathtub very full. Our tub also loses so much hot water that it’s hard to keep the water warm.

How to Make Your Tub “Deeper”

In my old apartment, I once caulked the hole shut but for the life of me can’t find that product that worked pretty well (but was permanent and couldn’t be removed). After Googling pretty much every word combination I could think of, I found a few other options that will make your tub “deeper,” aka ways to keep the water from draining out.

  1. Porcelain or chrome plates
    You can screw over the overflow drain (if you have one that fits exactly). Not ideal if you aren’t handy or sure whether it will fit. But if you own your place, these look nice. They are also permanent, so if you have kids I would not recommend them, but there are some good examples at Vintage Tub and Amazon.

2. Sugru
Sugru is really cool — it’s not made for this purpose exactly and we’re not sure if it will work, but we’re intrigued with this stuff and would have tried it if we didn’t find the next solution. It’s also more colorful than we wanted in the tub.

3. Overflow Drain Cover
This is the product we ended up buying. It’s just a piece of 4″ diameter vinyl with suction cups that fits over the drain hole. It’s perfect because it’s a temporary fix and you can remove it — and it also does still have a drain hole which you can rotate to the top.

So if you absolutely had to leave the room and then forgot you were running a bath, it would still drain the water out (just at a much higher level). It looks like it will fit just about any drain because it isn’t snug, although it works great.

Images: Jeanine Brennan