Shower Waste and Shower Trap Buying Guide

When installing a shower, shower and floor waste is often at the back of people’s minds. While not as glamorous as other aspects of a bathroom renovation, without the shower trap, issues soon arise. 

Showering is an everyday task performed to maintain personal hygiene. The process isn’t given much thought. We turn on the system and watch the shower water waste drain away. However, an essential element is located in a confined space to keep the experience running smoothly.

If you’re getting involved with a plumbing project, you need to know the basics. From repair jobs to brand new bathroom fittings, a quality waste seal is a key component in any shower drainage system. So, what does it do? In this guide, we discuss what shower waste is, what it does, and why you need to shop for the right product. 

What is a Shower Waste and Shower Trap?

A shower waste and shower trap ultimately refer to the same thing in Australia. This purposeful device is designed to manage the water flow of the shower. It makes up the draining system and is found under the shower waste grate, beneath the shower tray, connecting to the piping on the floor. 

As the water hits the tray, the trap allows it to flush through as waste, draining the water through to the sewage lines. It also catches debris, hair and soap to stop such products from entering and clogging the shower waste drain.

Without the right system in place, the water is unable to exit and instead fills up like a pool at your feet. Simultaneously, it prevents foul sewer smells from rising back up the pipe and into the bathroom and surrounding space. 

Many notice this problem when the trap becomes blocked. If left unresolved, blockages can end in serious property damage.

How Does it Work?

This powerful invention is connected to the underfloor piping, and installed in a watertight location. For an insight into how it works, you can look under the kitchen sink to view a similar system. 

In Australia, the devices for showers are often built in an S-shape. This tends to be the most efficient, as it allows the water from the shower head to drain vertically. You’ll notice the shower tray itself is slightly sloped. This ensures the water and soap flow in the right direction toward the drain. 

Within the drain is a vacuum, where some water is retained in the trap to block the drain from releasing sewer gases into your bathroom. The water goes through and leads out to an external wastage system.

In a nutshell, it filters out the shower floor waste, while stopping gases from coming back up the pipe.

Any waste device is developed with certain requirements, depending on the blockages it must handle, and the objects likely to pass through, such as food and hair. 

How to Choose Shower Wastes and Traps

In the search for the best drainage installation whether putting in a new shower or fixing a damaged waste, there are many products to choose from. The styles differ in accordance to the plumbing where it is to be installed, like the bath, toilet, or bathroom basins. 

Floor wastes are available in different materials, and you can even shop for a colour to match your bathroom interiors. Just like you’d take the time to choose tiling, you can match shower grates and floor wastes too. Drains don’t have to be ugly!

So, when shopping in the store or online for a shower waste, think of both the practicalities and the visuals. 

Shower Waste Size

These essential tools come in different widths to match the size of the tray, and the power of the outlet. The power of the flow rate must be inline with the drain to avoid overflow. 

For instance, the 90mm shower waste trap is designed to handle a fast flow rate. A turbo shower waste will bring more rapid drainage, ensuring the water is moving quickly enough. 

The flow rate varies between products, but the size must be suitable for your particular system. Otherwise, it will not match the shower waste connector. 

Shower Waste Style

The waste doesn’t have to be boring, or generic. Many brands offer styles suitable for different interiors. Find them in stainless steel, chrome, and gold, as well as colours like matt black and white. 

A shower waste tile insert is one of the most aesthetically pleasing. It blends in with the floor tiles and is almost undetectable, making a great option for a smooth and sleek finish in modern homes. A black shower waste trap also works well for a contemporary look.

Keeping a Shower Waste Clean 

Failure to maintain the trap can lead to different problems, particularly leaking shower tray waste. Although the waste system can produce damage before you realise it, the most obvious sign of a problem is when the water isn’t draining, and instead begins to fill the tray. Fortunately, it’s quite easy to restore. 

How to Unblock Shower Waste

In doing its job, the trap can become blocked over time. The main culprit is hair, but soap and other waste products are also collected and gradually build up.

To unblock, you need to remove the device and de-clog it. Many waste covers can be unscrewed by hand, while others require a screwdriver. Once open, you can carefully remove the seal and rinse it under the tap. 

A plastic, cup-like component can then be pulled out. This is usually the piece clogged with hair. Remove the hair and wash the plastic clean. In some cases, you may need to use a shower waste flange spanner. 

Both pieces can be returned to the drain and secured back into place. Run the shower and you should instantly see the drainage is functioning properly again.

There are special drain cleaning products available to buy too, that work effectively without damaging piping. For regular cleaning, you could compile a shower waste kit. 


Now that you know what a waste/trap is and how it functions, you can sort between the many floor wastes available to you. When on the right page in terms of what you need, shopping for the right stock will be a lot easier to navigate. Whether you want to price high or price low, you can often find some of the best quality products when you view the featured best-selling products online. 

Shower installation is an exciting project, from shower grates, to hand showers, and mixers. There’s a solution suitable for all kinds of homes, appliances, and drains. Choose the perfect one for you, while ensuring your water waste is drained as hygienically as possible. 

If a bathroom renovation is on your wishlist and you’ve got a new date to start, don’t forget this vital piece of equipment. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is shower waste?

A shower waste is also known as a shower trap and serves as a crucial part of the drainage system of showers. The device connects the shower grate with the pipes underneath the shower tray. The water filters through the enclosure and out to the external sewage system.

How does a shower trap work? 

A shower trap works by allowing the running water to pass through to the external sewage system. As well as directing the water, the device is also designed to stop things like hair and other debris from passing through and blocking the drain. 

Do you need a trap in a shower drain? 

Yes, shower waste or trap is essential in maintaining a functional shower. The trap ensures that used water is transferred from your property to external drains. Without a trap, water is unable to evacuate the shower tray, and sewage gases can travel up through the pipe and into your bathroom.