Every shower has to have a drain and drain cover in order to really function properly. As the water runs, it streams down to the floor of the shower and then passes to and down the drain. The drain is what allows the water to run down.

A drain cover is what stops other debris, such as hair, from running down the drain and causing clogs in the shower line. The shower drain cover acts as a barrier between the drain and the pipes themselves and anything else that might be present in the shower, allowing only water and minuscule things to travel down the drain pipe.

What are the different types of shower drain covers? There are several different types of drains as well as drain covers. You want to choose carefully to be sure the drain cover is compatible with the drain in your tub. You also need to be sure it is properly installed to work correctly.

A drain cover is important for a tub or a shower. Finding the right size and fit is not overly challenging if you know how to do so and what to look for. Take a look at these different types of drain covers to better understand your options.

Different Types of Shower Drain Covers

  1. Simple Screw-On Drain Covers
  2. Three Piece Shower Drain and Cover
  3. Snap-In Drain Cover
  4. Removable Shower Drain Covers
Types of Drain CoversMaterialDimensionsFinished Type
Simple Screw-On Drain CoversStainless Steel10.2 x 10.2 x 0.2 centimetersBrushed Stainless
Three Piece Shower Drain and CoverPVC15.4 x 17 x 8.9 centimetersStainless Steel
Snap-In Drain CoverBrass12.7 x 12.7 x 0.6 centimetersMatte
Removable Shower Drain CoverStainless Steel, Silicone11.4 x 11.4 x 3.8 centimetersStainless Steel

Simple Screw-On Drain Covers

The first option is a simple drain cover. This is a round piece that is covered in holes. The majority of holes in the surface will be similar sizes. They will be large enough for water, soap, and dirt to drain through but they typically will stop things like hair and other large debris.

This type of drain cover simply sits over the drain and then screws into place by a screw placed at both the top and bottom of the cover. Most of the time the screws needed will come with the drain cover that you purchase.

The biggest thing you need to know before you purchase one of these is the size of your drain so you can make sure you have the appropriate size of the drain cover. Most drains are built to a similar standard but it’s still a good idea to make sure before you buy.

These drain covers also come in different finishes. Stainless steel is probably the most common but you can find other finishes as well, just like in the example product we’ve shared here from Amazon. Finishes like chrome, polished brass, bronze, antique brass, and more can be found.

Typically, the screw holes measure 2 7/8 just in case you need a correlation for that detail.

Three Piece Shower Drain and Cover

The three-piece shower drain is a little bit more complex than just putting a cover on your drain and screwing it in place. It’s a floor drain and it has sound construction that is just like any traditional floor drain.

These can be used for tiled showers or can be used when you need a barrier to protect the subflooring beneath the shower as well. Basically,d the extra pieces give you an additional barrier or an extension of the drain cover in a sense.

The three parts give you the ability to adjust how thick the drain cover is within the shower floor. One piece lowers down into the lower part of the drain. Another piece (the middle piece) goes through the shower pan and down into the floor area. The top piece screws into those via the middle piece.

This drain cover and type can sometimes be challenging to install and they have to be sealed properly to prevent leakage. It is often recommended that you hire a professional to help with installation.

These drains have a built-in drain cover that connects to the middle piece. It is typically a slotted drain cover with holes that are just screwed in like a plate. You can find them in different color options as well.

Snap-In Drain Cover

Another type of shower drain cover is one that you can just snap into place on your drain. These are simple and do not require screws of any kind. Much like the screw-in options, they have holes over the surface to allow water to drain through.

The unique thing you will find about these is that you can find them not only in a variety of colors but also in a variety of patterns. You will notice the example we’ve shared here has square cutouts on the surface.

However, you can find circles but you can also find other unique designs. Here is an example of a unique design from Uni-Green on Amazon.

The snap-in drain cover has prongs underneath so you place the prongs into the drain and surrounding area and snap them into place. The prongs will secure and hold tightly to the drain piece and that is what holds them there.

These are supposed to be simple to install and yet secure enough to do the job. You also can remove them easily but it may take some prying. It is recommended that you don’t use plumber’s putty when you install them as it isn’t necessary for this piece.

Once again, you will find a variety of finishes from antique, chrome, brass, gold, nickel, and more.

Removable Shower Drain Covers

There are tons of different options when it comes to a removable shower drain cover. There are different designs and styles but they all have one thing in common. They are designed to allow water through but stop things like hair that can lead to clogging.

We’ve shared three examples here but there are many other options out there as well. These are all placed over the drain and can be easily picked up and removed to be cleaned off or whatever else you need to do with them.

Some of them simply just set over your drain with slots while others might actually snap into place on the drain instead. The one that works best for you might also depend on the type of drain that you have and how it is designed.

How to Choose a Shower Drain Cover?

When you’re looking at the shower drain cover options, you will want to keep a few things in mind. You need something that will be compatible with your drain.

Start by measuring your drain so you can make sure the sizes will match up. You should measure the size from side to side as well as top to bottom.

It might also be a good idea to draw a basic sketch that you can take to the store with you. A professional or an attendant in a hardware store might be able to help you pinpoint just what you need.

From there, you will simply work to choose the color and the design that works best for your space.

It’s pretty simple but if you aren’t sure about installation, you can always bring someone in!

How to Remove a Drain Cover?

Apart from some of the more complicated systems, like the 3-piece drain system, you can typically remove a drain cover on your own with the help of some household tools. Even though these drains are made to stop clogs, it’s still a good idea to clean them out occasionally.

If you use a removable drain cover, you should be able to pull that right off the drain. If you use a pop-in drain cover, you may need a flat tool to get under it to wiggle it loose. Once you get it loose, it should come right off.

Finally, if you use a screw-in drain cover, you will need first to unscrew those screws and then pry up the piece.

You should be able to reattach any of these pieces when you are ready as well.


We hope that you find this guide to understanding your drain cover options to be a valuable resource. You can choose whatever will work best for your needs and your setup. You can even add your own flair by choosing a style or color that stands apart.