Traditional cast iron manhole covers are being stolen, leaving the manholes open and dangerous.

With Vanstone's Drop-in Replacement Covers, you can now almost instantly change


Open and dangerous



Safe and strong


Manhole covers were traditionally made of cast iron to standard sizes and load bearing strengths specified in SANS 588. Because of the high scrapmetal value of cast iron, the covers are being lifted, stolen and sold on a large scale. This leaves scores of open manholes that are unsafe and dangerous.

The old cast iron frames were built in, and that makes it more difficult to remove. It has to be chopped out. The old frames are mostly left in place.

Closing up the open manhole presents a new challenge. Various solutions have been tried:

  • Replacing a cover with another cast iron one is futile as it is soon stolen again.
  • Mild steel replacement covers are also taken.
  • Locks if fitted are easily broken.
  • Most polymer and concrete covers have thick edges that protrude above the surface and generally does not fit the old frames.
  • Make-shift replacements are unreliable and unble to withstand the loading as per the original SANS covers and are unsafe.
  • Replacement with a new cover and frame is a major operation. It requires a skilled building team and it takes time to organise and do.

Visit the Gallery to see some samples



Vanstone developed reinforced concrete covers with special thin galvanized steel rims. These covers drop perfectly into the standard frames and usually require no further work. Some steel is visible but the covers are mainly concrete, heavy and not attractive to thieves.

See standard sizes below.


Vanstone Type 2A Drop-in Replacement Cover

Fits standard 2A cast iron frame
Extra heavy duty and suitable for roadway installation.
Size: 600 diameter x 150mm thick; ±100kg
Product code: P2-1575/1

Standard Square and Rectangular Replacement Covers

Fits standard cast iron frames, most of which were commonly manufactured is SA under SANS 558.

The replacemnet covers are medium duty. As such it will withstand occasional heavy vehicles wheel loads travelling dead slow. It is not suitable for roadway installation.

See below for standard sizes




Clear Opening
Cover Size
Click for drawing Vanstone Code Comment
 2A 560 diameter 627 diameter x 150 drawing P2-1575/1 EHD for roadway
 8A 600 x 450 750 x 594 x 80 drawing P2-1590/8A MD. No double seal for replacement cover.  13mm gap around.
 9B 600 x 600 675 x 675 x 80 drawing P2-1590/9B MD
 9C 600 x 450 672 x 520 x 80 drawing P2-1590/9C MD
 9D 600 x 450 680 x 527 x 80 drawing P2-1590/9D MD
 9E 900 x 600 990 x 685 x 80   P2-1590/9E MD
 14A 267 x 267 292 x 292 x 50 drawing P2-1590/14A MD
 14B 450 x 450 490 x 490 x 60 drawing P2-1590/14B MD
"25kg" 600 x 450 647 x 495 x 80 drawing P2-1591/25kg MD - Original cover was light weight, not SANS.

EHD: Extra heavy duty suitable for use in the roadway. Not for airport airside, dockside or similar.
MD: Medium duty for occasional heavy vehicle wheel loads moving slowly. Not for roadway.


More standard sizes will be developed when justified by demand. Ask for a quote.


How do I know which standard size is my manhole frame?


  • Take a picture or two,
  • Measure as shown,
  • Send the pictures and measurements to Vanstone who will do a quote for you.