How to Clear a Blocked Shower Drain

A blocked shower drain can quickly turn your refreshing morning routine into a frustrating ordeal. Water pooling around your feet is not only unpleasant and dangerous but can also lead to more serious issues if left unattended. In this guide, we’ll explore the reasons behind a blocked shower drain, signs that indicate a blockage, and effective methods to clear it. We’ll also discuss the advantages of seeking professional help for stubborn blockages. In this blog, we’ll take a look at the causes of a blocked shower drain, how to avoid thee blockages, and who to call if you experience blocked drains in London and beyond.

Why Is My Shower Not Draining?

Understanding the reasons behind a blocked shower drain is crucial for effective prevention. Several factors contribute to this common household issue:

Hair Accumulation:
One of the main culprits when it comes to blocked shower drains is the accumulation of hair. People frequently lose hair when showering and over time these strands of hair can weave together, forming a barrier that restricts water flow. It is important to regularly clean your plug hole and remove any excess hair to prevent this occurring.

Soap and Shampoo Residue
Soap and shampoo residues can combine with hair to create a sticky substance that adheres to the pipes. This buildup can lead to slow draining and, eventually, a complete blockage.

Mineral Deposits:
Hard water contains minerals like calcium and magnesium that can accumulate in pipes, reducing the diameter and impeding water flow. This is a common issue in areas with hard water.

Foreign Objects:
Sometimes, foreign objects like soap caps, small toys, or even jewellery can find their way into the drain, causing blockages.

If you would like complete peace of mind, why not book a CCTV drain survey in London or beyond with Drain 365 today.

How Do I Know If My Shower Is Blocked?

Recognising the signs of a blocked shower drain early on can help you address the issue before it escalates. Keep an eye out for the following indicators:

Slow Drainage:
If water takes longer than usual to drain from your shower, it may be a sign of a developing blockage.

Pooling Water:
Standing water in your shower is a clear indication of a blockage. If you notice water collecting around your feet during a shower, it’s time to investigate.

Unpleasant Odours:
A blocked drain can create unpleasant odours due to stagnant water and organic matter trapped in the pipes. If you notice foul smells in your bathroom, it’s likely related to drainage issues.

Gurgling Noises:
Strange gurgling or bubbling sounds when water drains could signal a blockage. These noises may indicate air trapped in the pipes.

How Can I Unblock a Shower Drain?

Now that you’ve identified a blocked shower drain, it’s time to address the issue. Here are some effective methods to clear a blockage:

Use a Plunger:Plungers aren’t just for toilets – they can be effective in clearing shower drain blockages too. Ensure there’s enough water to cover the plunger, create a seal, and then plunge vigorously.

Use Boiling Water:
Occasionally, pouring boiling hot water down the drain can help break down grease or soap contributing to the blockage.

Exercise caution when handling kettles or other appliances filled with boiling water, and if feasible, direct the water down the drain to avoid splashing around the bath or shower enclosure. It’s crucial to prevent any boiling water from splashing back onto yourself or expensive bathroom accessories.

It’s important to note that relying solely on boiling water might only partially clear a blockage, and you may need to complement this approach with another method from the options listed here.

Chemical Drain Cleaners:
Chemical drain cleaners can break down organic matter causing blockages. However, use them cautiously and follow the instructions on the product, as they can be harsh on pipes and the environment.

Homemade Drain Cleaners:
Mix equal parts baking soda and vinegar, pour the mixture down the drain, and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Follow this with hot water to help clear the blockage.

Remove Hair Manually:
For hair clogs, a simple solution is to manually remove the hair from the drain using a pair of gloves and a wire hanger. Be prepared for an unpleasant but effective task

Use a plumber’s snake:
Utilising a plumber’s snake, also referred to as a ‘Toilet Jack’ or an ‘Electric Eel,’ presents an affordable and efficient method for clearing a blocked shower drain.

To use this tool, insert the snake into the drain until you reach the obstruction. Rotate the snake’s handle and then retract it. Subsequently, turn on the water to confirm the complete clearance of the blockage, ensuring that your shower water now flows seamlessly down the drain once again.

If you already have a blocked shower drain, the safest option may be to call an expert. If you have a blocked shower drain, or suspect that you may have any other blockage in or around your property, contact Drain 365 today. Listed below are just some of the areas that we cover:

Blocked drains in Watford
Blocked drains in Hertfordshire
Blocked Drains in Welwyn Garden City
Blocked Drains Dunstable
Blocked Drains Chelmsford
Blocked Drains Hemel Hempstead
Blocked Drains Milton Keynes

Benefits of Using a Professional Drainage Company

While DIY methods can work for minor blockages, persistent or complex issues may require professional assistance. Here are the advantages of hiring a professional drainage company:

Advanced Equipment:
Professional drainage companies have access to advanced equipment, such as drain cameras and high-pressure water jets, which can efficiently identify and clear blockages.

Expertise and Experience:
Trained professionals possess the knowledge and experience to diagnose the root cause of the blockage. They can provide long-term solutions to prevent recurrence.

Handling certain chemical drain cleaners or disassembling pipes without proper knowledge can be hazardous. Professionals ensure the safety of your plumbing system and your home.

Preventive Maintenance:
Drainage experts can offer preventive maintenance services, including routine inspections and cleaning, to keep your drains in optimal condition and prevent future blockages.


A blocked shower drain is a common household issue, but with timely intervention and the right approach, you can keep your drains clear and water flowing smoothly. From understanding the causes of blockages to recognising the signs and employing effective DIY methods, this guide provides a comprehensive overview. For persistent issues, don’t hesitate to seek the expertise of a professional drainage company, ensuring a reliable and long-term solution for your blocked shower drain woes.

Here at Drain 365 we offer our customers quick and affordable drain unblocking solutions designed to get their drainage system flowing freely again. If you think you may have any type of blockage in your drainage system call our professional team immediately.

Get In Touch