Bathtubs that don't drain quickly enough can buildup a layer of soap scum around the floor and walls of the tub. When wet, this scummy layer can be a slipping hazard. In other words, poor bathtub drainage is more than a nuisance: it can also be dangerous. Improving your tub's drainage is important for the health and safety of your family. There are a variety of ways that you can maintain good drainage in your bathtub.

Clean Your Drains Regularly

Chemical drain cleaners are toxic, bad for the environment, and can lead a variety of plumbing problems--especially for homes with older pipes. However, there are many natural, gentle products that you can flush down your pipes to help remove and prevent clogs. 

  • Vinegar. This acidic household product is a natural cleaner that can clear away organic material.
  • Baking soda. Baking soda deodorizes and helps wash away caked on grease and debris.
  • Lemon juice. Lemon juice has the power to eat away at organic debris and also leaves your drains smelling fresh and clean. 

Use a Bathtub Drain Protector

Bathtub drain protectors can prevent hair and even soap scum from being flushed down the drain. Drain protectors are available for sale at home improvement centers and hardware stores. These products are so effective that they often need to be cleaned after every use to prevent the water from standing in the tub without draining. 

Comb Your Hair Before Bathing or Showering

Combing your hair before using the bathtub may reduce the amount of hair you shed while bathing. People who shave should avoid shaving longer hair in the bathtub, as this can also clog the drains.

Monitor Children Who Use the Bathtub

You should be monitoring your children in the bathtub anyway, but this is especially true of any adventurous children who are prone to mischief. Items like toys and washcloths that end up down the drain will quickly clog the entire system. 

Soften Your Water

Water scale, which can build up in homes with very hard water, will do more than stain your dishes and plumbing fixtures. Scale can also clog your pipes. If your plumbing fixtures and glassware are stained with mineral deposits, this is a sign that your home needs a water softener. Softening the water will eliminate the minerals that flow through your pipes, and that will prevent clogs over time. 

If all of these methods aren't working, it may be time to call in some help. If this is the case, contact a reputable, certified professional plumber in your area.