How much are average Plumber prices/rates in South Africa?

Looking for a cost estimation for fixing a plumbing issue? Learn more about the hourly rates, fees and typical costs associated with hiring a professional plumber in South Africa

National Average rate (per hour)
High-End Rate (per hour)
Typical Home+ Rate (Per hour)*
Low-End Rate (Per hour)
Average Callout Fee
Average Emergency Callout Fee
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Plumber Prices
A snapshot by numbers:

For those residing in South Africa and in need of plumbing services, finding a reliable and reasonably priced plumber is essential. The cost of hiring a plumber can fluctuate based on several variables, including the plumber's level of experience, the nature of the plumbing issue, and the location of the service. In this post, we will delve into the typical rates and prices associated with securing the services of a plumber in South Africa (as informed by IOPSA (The Institute of Plumbing South Africa).

National Average Rates (ZAR per Hour)

Breakdown of national average rates

Rates by province

Breakdown of rates per province

Example costing of a typical job

Example costing breakdown

Labour vs. materials

Breakdown of labour vs. materials

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What is the Average Hourly Rate for a Plumber in South Africa?

Understanding the average hourly rates for plumbing services in South Africa is crucial for budgeting and comparison. These rates generally encompass a range of plumbing-related tasks, from simple repairs to complex installations. Factors influencing the hourly rate include the nature of the job (e.g., a straightforward leak fix vs. a complex pipe installation), accessibility of the site (ease of reaching and working on the problem area), and geographical location (rates can vary significantly between urban and rural areas). On average, hiring a plumber costs about R650 per hour. However, this can range from R300 to R750 per hour. Keep in mind that these rates might not include extra charges for materials, travel time, or emergency call-outs.

South African National Average Cost of Plumbing Services

The Institute of Plumbing South Africa (IOPSA) provides recommended service rates which serve as a benchmark for the industry. For 2023, IOPSA suggests:

  • Hourly Rate: Ranging from R450 to R850, with an average of R650 per hour across various provinces. This rate can fluctuate based on the complexity of the plumbing work, the plumber's experience, and the region.
  • Call Out Fee: Typically between R450 to R650, this fee covers the cost of the plumber traveling to and from the job location and is usually separate from the hourly labor charge.

Average Emergency Plumbing Call-Out Fees

Emergency plumbing services, which often require immediate response outside of standard working hours, tend to be more expensive. These rates vary depending on the severity of the issue, time of the call (night, weekend, or holiday), and the plumber's availability. The fee usually ranges from R500 to R1000 per hour and can include the first hour of labor. The average emergency call out fee is around R750 per hour.

High-End Plumbing Cost

High-end plumbing services involve more specialized and complex tasks. Costs for such services typically range from R800 to R1200 per hour. This category includes:

  • Geyser Installation and Repair: Handling high-pressure systems and ensuring safety standards.
  • Drain Cleaning and Repair: Involves sophisticated equipment for blockage removal and drain repair.
  • Leak Detection and Repair: Requires specialized tools for non-invasive detection and precise repair.
  • Pipe Replacement: Involves complex work, often in challenging locations.
  • Water Heater Installation and Repair: Requires understanding of electrical and plumbing systems.
  • Water Filtration System Installation and Repair: Involves intricate knowledge of water quality and filtration technology.
  • Backflow Prevention System Installation and Repair: Critical for ensuring water safety and requires specialized knowledge.

Low-End Plumbing Cost

For more basic plumbing services, the rates start at around R450 per hour. Common low-end services include:

  • Fixing Leaky Faucets: A routine task requiring basic plumbing skills.
  • Unclogging Drains: Often simple, but can become complex if blockages are severe.
  • Basic Toilet Installations: Involves standard plumbing without complex system integration.
  • Water Heater Installations: Basic models without sophisticated features or complex installation requirements.
  • Sewer Line Repairs: Can be straightforward if damage is minimal and easily accessible.

Regional Plumber Costs in South Africa

  • Western Cape: Rates typically fall between R450 and R850 per hour. Call out fees are generally in the range of R450 to R650.
  • Johannesburg: Average hourly rates are around R575, but can vary from R400 to R750.
  • Pretoria: Hourly rates typically range from R400 to R800.
  • Kwa-Zulu Natal: General residential plumbing services average at R650 per hour with a standard call-out fee around R500.

Factors Influencing Plumbing Cost

  • Job Complexity: More complex jobs require advanced skills and longer time, increasing costs.
  • Plumber Experience: More experienced plumbers usually charge higher rates.
  • Job duration: Labour cost will be dependent on the duration and skill level required for the job.
  • Emergency Services: Higher rates due to urgency and non-standard working hours.
  • Time of Day: After-hours, weekend, or holiday services often incur additional charges.
  • Location: Geographic area can significantly affect costs due to factors like living expenses and travel time.
  • Materials Used: Quality and type of materials used can vary, affecting the overall cost. Visit Builders Warehouse Online to check prices of plumbing parts and materials
  • Travelling Distance: Longer distances can add to the travel costs included in the service fee.

Task difficulty influences plumbing cost:

Easy Jobs

  • Task: Such as fixing a minor leak.
  • Duration and Cost: Typically completed within 1-2 hours. Labour costs range from R450-R800, with minimal material expenses.

Difficult Jobs

  • Task: For example, pipe installation.
  • Duration and Cost: Can extend to several hours or a full day. Labour costs might range from R1,500 to R3,000, with additional costs for materials.

Common Plumbing Jobs and Their Estimated Costs

  • Minor Leak Repair: R450-R800, depending on the location and complexity of the leak.
  • Pipe Installation: R1,500-R3,000, varying based on pipe material and installation difficulty.
  • Toilet Installation: R2,000-R6,000, influenced by the type of toilet and installation complexity.
  • Sink Installation: R1,500-R3,000, depending on the sink type and associated plumbing work.
  • Shower Installation: R3,000-R6,000, can vary with shower system complexity and additional features.

Example Costing of a Typical Plumbing Job

  • Task: New Toilet Installation.
  • Materials: Cost varies (approx. R1,000 - R2,000) depending on the toilet model and features.
  • Labour: Around 3-4 hours at R650 per hour.
  • Call Out Fee: Typically about R500.
  • Additional Fees: May include charges for travel or emergency services.
  • Estimated Total Cost: +/- R4000

When to Hire a Professional Plumber?

Consider hiring a professional plumber:

  1. When lacking necessary skills or tools.
  2. For complex or risky tasks.
  3. For multiple plumbing needs.
  4. To save time on extensive projects.
  5. To ensure professional, quality work.
  6. For safety concerns in tasks involving risks.

Tips to Save Money on Plumbing Services in South Africa

  • Bundle Jobs: Grouping small tasks can minimize the number of service calls.
  • Buy Parts Yourself: Purchasing parts can reduce costs, but ensure compatibility. Visit Builders Warehouse Online for an accurate overview of plumbing materials and their costs.
  • Regular Maintenance: Prevents extensive repairs and maintains system efficiency.

How to Hire a Great Plumber?

The Home+ app simplifies finding reliable, skilled plumbers in South Africa. It connects users with vetted professionals, ensuring quality and reliability. Our app's user-friendly interface allows quick booking and access to local plumbing services, providing convenience and peace of mind at the tap of a button.

Find a plumber near you

If you're ready to perform plumbing maintenance and repairs around your home, take the next steps and get connected with an expert plumber near you. Download the Home+ App or simply book your job online to get connected with a vetted and affordable plumber near you.

Frequently Asked Questions about getting a plumber in South Africa

How do I verify the qualifications of a plumber in South Africa?

It's important to ensure that the plumber you hire is registered with the Plumbing Industry Registration Board (PIRB). You can verify their qualifications by asking for their PIRB registration number and checking it on the PIRB's official website. This ensures they have met the required standards and are legally authorized to perform plumbing work.

Luckily with Home+ you don't need to worry about your plumber's qualifications - we do the vetting for you. Home+ only uses plumbers who's been vetted for their professional qualification, criminal background check as well as valid work permits.

What kind of plumbing work requires a certified plumber in South Africa?

Any plumbing work that involves the installation, maintenance, or repair of hot water systems, water supply, drainage systems, and sanitary fixtures typically requires a certified plumber. This includes tasks like fixing burst pipes, installing geysers, unblocking drains, and repairing leaks. For basic tasks like changing a tap washer, a certified plumber may not be necessary.

How do I handle a plumbing emergency in South Africa?

In the case of a plumbing emergency, such as a major leak or burst pipe, it's important to first shut off the main water supply to minimize damage. Then, immediately contact a qualified emergency plumber. Many plumbing services offer 24/7 emergency call-outs. Download the Home+ app or book your job online to get connected with a skilled plumber in your time of need.

Are there any specific plumbing regulations in South Africa I should be aware of when doing home renovations?

Yes, South Africa has specific plumbing regulations that must be followed, especially during home renovations. These include regulations related to water efficiency, installation of sanitary ware, and waste disposal systems. It's important to consult with a certified plumber who is up-to-date with the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act to ensure compliance.

Can I request a plumbing compliance certificate in South Africa, and when is it necessary?

A plumbing compliance certificate, issued by a qualified plumber, is necessary whenever a property is sold or when a new installation, such as a geyser, is done. This certificate ensures that the plumbing work complies with statutory regulations. It's a legal requirement in property transactions and for insurance purposes in case of water damage. Always request this from your plumber after any significant plumbing work.


The information provided in this Plumbing Cost Guide is intended for general informational purposes only. While we strive to keep the information up-to-date and accurate, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability, or availability with respect to the guide or the information, products, services, or related graphics contained in the guide for any purpose.

The costs and estimates mentioned in this guide are based on averages and typical scenarios in South Africa and should not be taken as exact figures or quotations. Prices and rates can vary significantly based on specific circumstances, locations, and changes in market conditions.

This guide is not intended to substitute for professional advice. Always seek the expertise of a qualified and licensed plumber for any plumbing needs. The user's reliance on any information in this guide is strictly at their own risk. Click here to get a free and accurate quote on your plumbing related needs today.

In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damage whatsoever arising from loss of data or profits arising out of, or in connection with, the use of this plumbing cost guide.

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