A clear sign that your shower pipework may be blocked is that the shower tray is filling up but not draining away correctly. There are many reasons as to why your shower may not be draining properly, including hair, hair bands, disposable razor heads, dead skin cells, scale from hard water and more.
When you have a shower, and you find that your shower tray is slightly filling or not draining away properly, this is a good sign that there is a problem with the pipework and it is more than likely to be blocked.
There are lots of reasons why your shower may not be draining away, so we are going to take you through some simple tips on how to solve it yourself and what to look out for.
What would cause my shower to block?
- Hair clogs
- Hard soap
- Disposable razor heads & coverings
- Dead skin cells
- False nails
- Hair clips
- Plastic wrapping from soap & shampoo
- A general build-up of washing products
- A build-up of scale from hard water
- Toothpaste caps
This is just a small list of the most common things that can cause blockages. Most of these items find themselves lodged inside the pipework allowing other debris to build up and blocking the pipe.
Now we have educated ourselves on what could be causing a blockage, let’s look at what we can do to get your shower draining properly again. We have lots of remedies you can try yourself before making that call to a plumber or a drainage company.
Using A Plunger To Unblock A Shower
We recommend ensuring there is water at the bottom of your shower tray before you use a plunger. Then, place the plunger over the plughole and push down gently. Pull back up on the plunger, maintaining a suction whilst moving back and forward to remove the blockage successfully.
Using Boiling Water To Unblock A Shower
Boil a kettle of water then pour the water down the plughole incrementally, pausing for a few seconds between each pour. The boiling water will travel through the pipework helping to disperse any blockages in its way. Adding dishwashing soap between pours can aid the breakdown of grease which has been built up the blockage.
Using Salt And Baking Soda To Unblock A Shower
Firstly, mix 200ml of table salt with 200ml of baking soda. Pour the mixture into your plughole in the shower tray and leave for fifteen minutes. Then, pour boiling water down the plughole helping to disperse of any blockages.
Using Chemical Products To Unblock A Shower
In-store drain cleaners are another way to remove shower blockages. Pour the correct and instructed amount (found on the back of the packaging) down the plughole of your shower and leave it to sit for several hours. Later, run hot water from your shower for ten minutes to disperse the blockage. For safety reasons, we recommend not staying in your bathroom during this process as the fumes can be harmful.
Shower Waste: Hair Clogs And Shower Tray Waste
To remove unwanted hair from your shower, bend a wire coat hanger into a hook shape (this will need to be small enough to fit through your plughole). Push the hook through the plughole, ensuring to twist clockwise. This process will wind up the clogged hair which can be pulled out by hand. Repeat this process until your pipes are clear.
Alongside hair, over time, your shower tray will also collect soap and grime. However, most modern shower trays come fitted with a removeable waste trap. You can clean this by removing the shower waste cover (the big round disc where the plughole would be). Underneath the disc is a removable bowl which can be lifted out to clean. Use the showerhead to rinse out this trap whilst the bowl is out. Once clear, replace both the bowl and disc. We recommend repeating this process at least once every two months for correct maintenance.