How to fix a leaking shower

How to Fix a Leaking Shower

As a homeowner, water damage from a leaking shower can be one of the most costly and daunting issues you can face. How to fix a leaking shower or even know where the leak is coming from, is not as simple as it sounds. A leaking shower often starts with something small, you notice a little crack in a tile or your shower head is starting to drip. Maybe you detect some peeling or grimy grout and a kind of musty smell is prevalent? You don’t pay too much attention to it and the next thing you know, there is a pool of water on the floor and now you know you have a serious problem.

Now comes the fun part. Finding the culprit of your leaking shower!

In many cases, when it comes to fixing a leaking shower you will need the assistance of a professional plumber. Especially if the leak is coming from taps, pipes or the shower base itself. The good news is, to save yourself some time and money, there are some easy ‘DIY tests’ you can do to discover the cause of this common pain point before the professionals arrive. This includes a test to make sure it is actually your shower that is leaking in the first place. 

How do I know if my shower is leaking? 

A common way to find out if you have a leaking shower, is by carrying out a flood test. 

What is a flood test, I hear you say? A flood test is where you block the drain in the shower and fill up the base of the shower with water from another source. Get some waterproof tape and mark the height you have filled to. If it doesn’t start gushing out noticeable water immediately, it is time to play the waiting game. Wait approximately 12 to 24 hours and if the water is lower than your fill mark, then you definitely have a leaking shower. Now you need to find out where the leak is coming from. 

Common causes of shower leaks

Some of the most common causes of a leaking shower include the following: 

Leaking Shower Area Most Common Issues
Shower Pan or Tub
  • Poor workmanship 
  • Leaking taps
  • Failure in waterproofing
  • Blockage or obstruction
  • Worn rubbers / silicone seal 
  • Old age 
  • Excessive usage / wear and tear
Shower Drain
  • Cracks or wear and tear around the drain
  • Waterproofing
  • Blockage or obstruction
Shower Doors or Screen
  • Damaged seals
  • Silicone worn / perished 
  • Cracks or gaps in the glass 
  • Poor workmanship
Cracked Tiles, Grout or Perimeter Joints
  • Cracks in the tiles or grout
  • Failure in waterproofing / no waterproofing
  • Old age 
  • General wear and tear 
Dripping Taps or Shower Rose
  • Tap washer
  • Cracked / worn seat 
  • Failed cartridge / Mixer tap
  • Old age 
  • General wear and tear
  • Burst or leaking pipe/ water
  • Failure is shower / bath breach 
  • Blockage or Obstruction 
  • General wear and tear

Check the tiles and joints in your shower

Look closely at the tiles, grout, silicone and any perimeter joints and see if you notice any cracks or damage. If your shower leak is coming through on adjoining walls or leaking onto the floor, this is quite often the cause.

Inspect Shower Screens and Doors

Leaking Shower Screens and Doors

If you have a leak that is outside of the shower, this is most likely coming from an issue with your shower screens or doors. Examine the seals closely. Look for excessive mould, cracks or missing pieces of your seal.

The good news is, if you do find an obvious problem with your door or shower screen seals, this is usually a relatively quick and easy fix. 

Dripping or leaking taps or shower heads

For the most part, a leaking tap or shower head is easy to identify. You will either notice the drip or that annoying drip, drip, drip, sound will be driving you crazy! 

Taps are made up of small intricate parts that wear out over time with the continual repetition of turning the taps on and off. If you think your leak is coming from the taps or shower head, fixing your leaking shower may be as simple as a replacement part. It can however be a more deep-seated issue so it is best to seek the advice of a professional. If a leaking tap or shower head is left unattended, it can result in much more serious damage over time.

Leaking Drain

Another cause of a leaking shower can be when water is escaping through the hole that is cut for the drain, but not actually going down the drain. One way to check for this is to do this quick and easy test. 

  1. Don’t use your shower for 24 hours and make sure the area around the drain is entirely dry 
  2. Remove the metal drain cover (if this is stuck down you may need a razor blade to loosen the adhesive) 
  3. Get a glass of water from another source and carefully pour it around the drain. Note: make sure you don’t get any in the actual drain itself.  If the water level is decreasing, this means the water is somehow escaping. 

Common causes for this are gaps between the fibreglass base of the shower and the drain piping or a crack in the piping that surrounds the drain.

I have a leaking shower, now what?

If you know you have a leaking shower, the next step is repair. This is where the professionals come in. 

Fixing a leaking shower by attempting to do repairs yourself may seem like the cheaper option. Unfortunately, this is more often than not a total farce. Water damage is no joke and a leaking shower, or any water leak for that matter, deserves the attention of a skilled plumber or technician. 

Contact your local plumber and if you know the cause of the leak, give them as much information as possible. This knowledge can save time so they can come to your job with the necessary tools and technology to fix your leaking shower quickly and efficiently.  

How much will a leaking shower cost? 

One of the most common questions asked after how to fix a leaking shower, is how much will this cost me? Unfortunately, without knowing the cause of the leak, this is almost impossible to predict. Before you start going through imaginary numbers in your head and confusing yourself with a thousand different Google searches on price, there is a solution to this common question. Get a same day quote from the best in the business! 

Next steps

Call the Service Today team now and arrange a service call-out. Before you know it our experienced plumbers will arrive on your door-step. Ready with a fully stocked vehicle ready to give you an on the spot price. Better still, if you are ready to proceed, we can most often fix your leaking shower that very day!