Cost of fixing a blocked shower

Looking for a cost estimation for fixing your blocked shower? Learn more about the hourly rates, fees and typical costs associated with hiring a professional plumber to fix your blocked shower in South Africa

National Average rate
High-End Rate
Low-End Rate

*The rates above are estimates based on national averages.  Rates and prices can vary greatly based on specific circumstances, location, severity of your problem, etc.

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Comprehensive cost guide on fixing a blocked shower

In South Africa, addressing household maintenance issues like a blocked shower is a common predicament for homeowners and tenants alike. Given the country's unique plumbing systems, water composition, and environmental considerations, a blocked shower can be caused by a variety of factors including the buildup of soap scum, hair, and minerals from hard water. Remedying this problem promptly is essential to prevent water damage and maintain hygiene within the home.

Average blocked shower Repair Costs

On average, the cost of unblocking a shower in South Africa can vary widely based on the severity of the blockage and the chosen solution. Minor blockages can often be resolved for as little as ZAR 200 to ZAR 500 when tackled by the homeowner. However, for more significant blockages that require professional intervention, prices can range from ZAR 500 to ZAR 1500 or more, including call-out fees, labour, and materials.

Estimated Costs Associated with fixing a blocked shower

  • Plunger: ZAR 50 - ZAR 100
  • Chemical Drain Cleaner: ZAR 80 - ZAR 200
  • Manual Drain Snake: ZAR 100 - ZAR 300
  • Professional Drain Snake: ZAR 600 - ZAR 1000 (rental)
  • CCTV Drain Inspection: ZAR 900 - ZAR 2500
  • Labour: ZAR 450 - ZAR 850 per hour
  • Call-out Fee: ZAR 250 - ZAR 500
  • Additional Fees (e.g., after-hours service): ZAR 400 - ZAR 800

Note: Prices may fluctuate based on the region and availability of services.

How is a blocked shower fixed?

The professional unblocking of a shower drain typically involves the following steps:a. Assessment of the blockageb. Attempting manual dislodging with a plungerc. Application of chemical drain cleaners if appropriated. Mechanical removal of blockage using a drain snakee. High-pressure water jetting to clear residual debrisf. CCTV inspection if the blockage is recurrent or difficult to identify

How Long Does It Typically Take to fix a blocked shower?

Fixing a blocked shower typically involves clearing a clog from the drain. The time it can take varies widely depending on the severity and nature of the blockage. Here are some general estimates:

  1. Minor Clogs (e.g., hair, soap buildup):
  2. DIY Effort (e.g., using a plunger or a drain snake): 15 minutes to 1 hour.
  3. Chemical Drain Cleaners: 15 minutes to 30 minutes for the chemical to sit, followed by flushing with hot water.
  4. Moderate Clogs:
  5. Professional Assistance: 1 to 2 hours, depending on the complexity.
  6. Major Clogs (deep within pipes or multiple blockages):
  7. Extensive Professional Plumbing Work: This can take several hours and, in some cases, may require part of the plumbing to be disassembled or the shower unit to be partially deconstructed.

These times are just estimates, and actual times can vary based on the specific circumstances of the blockage.

DIY - How can I fix my blocked shower?

Many minor shower blockages in South Africa can be addressed without professional help. A plunger or a baking soda and vinegar solution can be used to clear minor blockages. For persistent issues, a drain snake (available at local hardware stores) can be maneuvered into the drain to remove blockages. Always wear protective gloves and goggles, especially when using chemical cleaners.

When Should You Get Professional Help?

If the DIY approach fails to resolve the issue, or if the blockage recurs frequently, it’s time to call in a professional. Additionally, if you notice water backing up into other fixtures, or a pervasive bad odour, these are signs of a more serious blockage that requires professional expertise.

How to Save Money when fixing a blocked shower?

To save money on unblocking a shower in South Africa, consider the following tips:

  • Regularly clean your drain to prevent blockages from occurring.
  • Compare quotes from different plumbers or maintenance services.
  • Schedule the repair during regular hours to avoid after-hour surcharges.
  • Avoid using caustic chemical cleaners which can exacerbate the problem.


For South African homeowners grappling with a blocked shower, Home+ offers a streamlined solution. Rather than navigating the stress of sourcing a reputable tradesperson, Home+ connects homeowners with a network of professional, vetted, and affordable tradespeople. With a simple booking online, you can effortlessly arrange for a skilled professional to resolve your plumbing issues, allowing you to relax and avoid the hassle and uncertainty that often accompanies such household repairs.

Frequently Asked Questions about fixing a blocked shower

Q: How often should I clean my shower drain to prevent blockages?

A: Regular cleaning should be done weekly to prevent buildup. Monthly maintenance with baking soda and vinegar can help keep it clear.

Q: Are chemical drain cleaners safe to use in my shower?

A: While they can be effective, they should be used sparingly as they can damage pipes over time. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.

Q: What should I avoid putting down my shower drain?

A: Avoid washing down large particles, hair without a catcher, oils, and non-biodegradable products that can cause blockages.

Q: Can a blocked shower cause damage to my bathroom?

A: Yes, if left unaddressed, a blocked shower can lead to water overflow, which can damage floors, walls, and even cause mold growth.

Q: Will my home insurance cover the cost of fixing a blocked shower?

A: It depends on your policy. Generally, insurance may cover damages if the blockage is sudden and accidental, but not if it's due to lack of maintenance.


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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