Average Plumber Salary in South Africa (2024)

The average Plumber Salary in South Africa is R16,608 per month. An entry-level Plumber earns a salary range of R10,143, a Mid-career level earns about R13,350, and a senior/experienced level earns R15,567 per month.

Average Plumber Salary in South Africa

Job Title Approximate Monthly Salary (ZAR)
Entry-Level Plumber 10,143
Mid-Career Plumber 13,350
Experienced Plumber 15,567

Types of Plumbers and Their Functions in South Africa

In South Africa, plumbing is a crucial profession encompassing various specialized roles to address diverse plumbing needs. Here are some key types of plumbers and their functions in the South African context:

1. Domestic Plumbers

Domestic plumbers focus on residential plumbing needs. They install, repair, and maintain plumbing systems in homes, dealing with issues such as leaking pipes, blocked drains, and fixture installations.

2. Commercial Plumbers

Commercial plumbers specialize in larger-scale plumbing projects for businesses, offices, and industrial spaces. Their responsibilities may include installing complex water supply systems, maintaining large-scale fixtures, and addressing commercial plumbing emergencies.

3. Maintenance Plumbers

Maintenance plumbers are tasked with routine checks and preventive measures to ensure the proper functioning of plumbing systems. They conduct inspections, identify potential issues, and perform necessary repairs or replacements to prevent major problems.

4. Construction Plumbers

Construction plumbers work on new building projects. They collaborate with construction teams to install plumbing systems from scratch, ensuring proper integration with the overall building structure. This involves laying pipes, installing fixtures, and connecting appliances.

5. Gas Plumbers

Gas plumbers specialize in the installation and maintenance of gas lines and appliances. They ensure the safe and efficient functioning of gas systems, conduct inspections for leaks, and repair or replace gas-related components.

6. Drainage Plumbers

Focusing on drainage systems, these plumbers deal with issues like blocked drains, sewer line problems, and stormwater drainage. They employ specialized equipment to identify blockages and carry out necessary repairs.

7. Emergency Plumbers

Emergency plumbers provide 24/7 services to address urgent plumbing issues. They respond to situations such as burst pipes, severe leaks, or sudden malfunctions, offering quick solutions to minimize damage.

8. Green Plumbers

With a focus on sustainability, green plumbers implement eco-friendly practices and technologies. They install water-saving fixtures, promote water recycling systems, and advise on energy-efficient plumbing solutions.

9. Pipefitters

Pipefitters work on installing and maintaining pipes used for various purposes, including heating, cooling, and industrial processes. They ensure proper alignment and connection of pipes within a system.

Understanding the diverse roles of plumbers in South Africa highlights the importance of this profession in maintaining the functionality and safety of both residential and commercial spaces. Plumbers play a crucial role in ensuring the efficient flow of water, gas, and waste, contributing significantly to the overall infrastructure and well-being of the community.

Factors Affecting Plumber Salaries in South Africa

Plumbers play a crucial role in maintaining and ensuring the functionality of water and sanitation systems. In South Africa, the salaries of plumbers are influenced by various factors that reflect the complex interplay of economic, educational, and industry-specific elements. Understanding these factors is essential for both aspiring plumbers and employers seeking to attract and retain skilled professionals in the field.

1. Experience and Expertise

Plumbers with more years of experience generally command higher salaries. Expertise in specialized areas, such as industrial plumbing or advanced technologies, can also contribute to increased earning potential.

2. Geographical Location

Salaries for plumbers can vary significantly based on the region. Urban areas with higher living costs tend to offer higher wages to compensate for the increased expenses.

3. Education and Certification

Plumbers with formal education, apprenticeships, or relevant certifications often receive higher salaries. Continuous learning and staying updated on industry standards can enhance a plumber’s market value.

4. Industry and Sector

Plumbers working in different industries may experience variations in salary. For instance, those involved in commercial or industrial projects might earn more than those primarily working on residential projects.

5. Market Demand

Fluctuations in the demand for plumbing services can impact salaries. High demand, especially in booming construction sectors, can drive up wages for skilled plumbers.

6. Union Membership

Plumbers who are members of trade unions may benefit from collective bargaining agreements that establish minimum wage standards and ensure fair compensation.

7. Technological Skills

Proficiency in modern plumbing technologies, such as water-saving systems, digital diagnostics, and energy-efficient solutions, can contribute to higher salaries.

8. Size of the Company

Working for a large plumbing company may offer greater earning potential compared to smaller firms. Larger companies often handle more extensive projects, leading to increased compensation for skilled plumbers.

9. Economic Conditions

The overall economic health of the country can influence salaries. Economic growth may lead to increased construction and infrastructure projects, boosting demand for plumbers and potentially raising salaries.

10. Work Schedule and Overtime

Plumbers working irregular hours or taking on overtime assignments may earn higher incomes. Emergency call-outs and flexible schedules might contribute to additional compensation.

How to Become a Plumber in South Africa

To become a plumber in South Africa, individuals typically follow a structured path that includes education, training, and practical experience. Here is a detailed guide on how to become a plumber in South Africa:

Education and Qualifications

1. Complete Basic Education: Ensure you have a solid foundation by completing at least a Grade 9 education.

2. Mathematics and Science: Focus on mathematics and science subjects during high school, as they provide a strong basis for plumbing concepts.

3. Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET): Consider enrolling in a Technical Vocational Education and Training college that offers plumbing courses. Look for institutions accredited by relevant authorities.

Apprenticeship and Training

1. Find an Apprenticeship: Seek out plumbing apprenticeship programs offered by accredited plumbing companies or unions. Apprenticeships typically last for about four years.

2. On-the-Job Training: Gain practical experience by working under the supervision of experienced plumbers. This hands-on training is crucial for developing skills in installing, maintaining, and repairing plumbing systems.

3. Theory and Classroom Training: Attend theoretical classes as part of your apprenticeship. This education covers plumbing codes, safety practices, and advanced plumbing concepts.

Licensing and Certification

1. Write the Plumbing Trade Test: After completing the apprenticeship, aspiring plumbers must pass the Plumbing Trade Test administered by the Plumbing Industry Registration Board (PIRB). This test assesses theoretical knowledge and practical skills.

2. Register with PIRB: Register with the PIRB after passing the trade test. This registration is essential for legal recognition as a qualified plumber in South Africa.

Ongoing Professional Development

1. Stay Informed: Keep abreast of changes in plumbing regulations, technology, and best practices through ongoing education and professional development opportunities.

2. Specialization: Consider specializing in specific areas of plumbing, such as water supply, drainage, or gas installations, to enhance your expertise and career prospects.

Tips for Success

1. Networking: Build a network within the plumbing industry by attending trade shows, joining professional organizations, and connecting with experienced plumbers.

2. Business Skills: Develop basic business skills if you aspire to run your own plumbing business. This includes understanding financial management, customer service, and marketing.

By following these steps, aspiring plumbers can navigate the path to becoming qualified professionals in South Africa’s plumbing industry. Remember that regulations and requirements may vary, so it’s essential to stay informed and comply with the latest industry standards.



The average Plumber Salary in South Africa is R16,608 per month. In South Africa, the salary landscape for plumbers is multifaceted, with numerous factors influencing compensation levels. Aspiring plumbers and employers alike should consider these factors to make informed decisions regarding education, specialization, and employment strategies. By understanding the dynamics of the plumbing industry, individuals can navigate their careers effectively, and companies can attract and retain skilled professionals in this essential field.