How to Erase the Rings From Your Toilet Bowl

Many homes--even those which are otherwise spotlessly clean--are afflicted by gross looking, stained toilet bowls. The problem isn’t that you don’t clean your toilet, and it has nothing to do with what your home’s inhabitants use the toilet for. It’s the water!

The water we pipe into our homes for drinking, cleaning, and toilet flushing purposes can contain small traces of minerals, like calcium, lime, and others that, over time, cause a build-up of hard mineral deposits on any surface they come into contact with. 

Sometimes the stains appear white and scummy. Sometimes they are brown, and sometimes even have a greenish tinge to them. One nearly universal attribute of mineral stains is that they can’t be scrubbed away, and regular cleaning products are powerless against them.

But don’t despair! It is possible to get those layers of mineral residue out of your toilet bowls and leave them gleaming white!

Here’s how:

  1. Gather your materials. For this job you will need a bottle of white vinegar OR Coca-Cola, a pair of rubber gloves, and a pumice stone or stick of the sort sold for cleaning applications. (Try Pumie Scouring Sticks—we use them in our business and they WORK!)
  2. Cordon off the toilet for the day. Since this is going to be a day-long process, we recommend you do your toilets one at a time. Or, if you only have one toilet in the house, do steps 2 and 3 before everyone leaves in the morning for work and school, and continue with step 4 in the evening when you get home to avoid any emergencies when you close your toilet for maintenance.
  3. Turn off the water supply to the toilet. There’s a valve behind your toilet that cuts off the water supply. Turn it (most likely to the right) to close it. Flush the toilet to empty the tank. Then, with your rubber gloves on, bail as much of the water out of the toilet bowl as you can, using a cup.
  4. Loosen the stains. Now that the bowl is empty, pour your white vinegar or Coca-Cola into the toilet bowl until the stains are submerged. Leave it to soak while you go about your day. (4-8 hours.)
  5. SCRUB!  When you return, the mineral deposits should have been loosened pretty well by the vinegar or coke. Now you can flush the toilet (since you turned the water off earlier it should not fill back up again.) Now, simply scrub away at the loosened stains with your Pumie scouring stick or other pumice cleaner. You may need to put a very small amount of fresh water into the bowl to help the scouring stick do its work. Tip: You may want to shape the end of the scouring stick slightly in order to get into the nooks and crannies of your toilet bowl, like under the rim and in the flush hole.
  6. VOILA! You’re done. The toilet should now be clean and white, and it should stay that way for quite awhile. From now on, whenever you start to notice a little buildup of mineral deposits, you can attack them early with the pumice stone and a little water.

Thanks for reading our post on how to erase the rings from your toilet bowl! If you live in the Asheville, NC area and are looking for a professional, green, residential cleaning service, give us a call at 828.505.7320 or use our contact form to get in touch today!