Whatever kind of stains you may have in your porcelain toilet bowl, they can be a difficult to remove. This guide is about removing toilet bowl stains.
To clean stubborn stains from your toilet bowl, first if you have a wet/dry vacuum, suck out all the water so you have a virtually liquid free bowl. Then, pour in hydrogen peroxide. It will get rid of all stains and lime. I would suggest using 1/2 a bottle for each cleaning. You might need more or less.
It is cheaper than buying the cleaners made for a toilet bowl, even if you use a whole bottle of it. Many times you can get it on sale for 2 for $1.00. Don't buy any more than you can use before the date expires, because it will turn to water eventually and be ineffective.
Source: This Old House magazine and Eons group
By Elaine S. from Belle Plaine, IA
How do I remove a brown stain from the toilet?
By Donna from Wallsend, NSW, Australia
February 3, 2012Best Answer, 1 found this helpful
Borax will not do it and please do not buy any type of acid to use. Just go to a pool supply store, or a hardware store like Lowes or True Value and ask for a pumice stone. Price is about two dollars. That is a volcanic stone made for the purpose of removing hard water or any other difficult stains from ceramic or porcelain surfaces. People clean tiles around swimming pools with them. They are used in antique restoration. All that is needed to remove stains is to rub it over the stain and stain is gone. No harm, easy, safe,c heap, and fast. You will be happy to have found this product.
February 5, 2012Best Answer, 1 found this helpful
Lime Away Toilet Bowl cleaner! It is fairly new and in a container shaped like all the other toilet bowl cleaners. It is awesome! It also removed hard water buildup from sinks, faucets and tubs. Be careful, it's really strong and can discolor some metals. This is also the only thing that will clean a glass shower door, just the glass. I just love it! I live in Central TX and the hard water buildup here is awful! It is currently only available in our HEB grocery stores.
I would like to get some help cleaning and disinfecting the toilet that the dog drinks from. I have hard water stains which are only getting worse, because I cannot find a product that actually works.
Thanks, all you tippers. I'm waiting for a response.
By Debby from San Diego, CA
May 29, 2011
Wow!! "The Works" from the dollar store just wiped away all the stains. Seriously good stuff and I only used a bathroom brush with maybe 10 strokes and the stain was gone. Removed stains that nothing could get rid of before. The toilet bowl is super white now and clean. Thanks for the heads up on this product. Highly recommended.
We have iron and sulfur in our water. Our toilet has a brown water ring at the water's edge. One time, when I cleaned the the toilet, I forgot to flush. Now it has a blue ring around the brown ring. I have tried different things with no success. Please help.
By Cindy I.
June 4, 20111 found this helpful
I use this stuff called the works on my toilet. I have hard water also and I just pour it in and let set for about 10 to 15 minutes and it works great. Hope that helps.
By Neelie 3
Trying to get rid of those stubborn sink and toilet mineral deposits? Use a superfine grit sandpaper and gently run a folded corner around the faucet or drain area with the hard water or mineral deposits and voila, they are gone! The same holds true with your toilet bowl waterline mark. Lightly sand as your bowl is filling with water after a flush and the deposits are gone!
By Neelie from Chapel Hill, NC
I am a real nutcase about my bathrooms. Our toilets are still fairly new, so there is no need for them to have brown stains. I had a ring around my bowl and streaks coming down where the water runs into the bowl. Since I use CLR on my faucets I decided to dump some into the toilet bowl to try and get rid of that stubborn stain that wouldn't go away. It worked! Now the bowl is new potty clean.
Sometimes those toilet stains are from bad water and should be dealt with as such. Regular bowl cleaners won't work on mineral deposits. I wrote an email to the CLR people to suggest they make a little disc to put into the flush tank to clean as you flush. I'll let you know what their response is.
By MartyD from Houston, TX
By Dee 2
What is the best way to clean a hard brown stain in a toilet?
By Dee from Covington, KY
January 12, 2011
My son is single and does not like to "clean" all the time so he just keeps a jug of white vinegar in his bathroom and pours a little around the inside before going to bed. Seems to work for him.
How do I remove or keep hard water stains from my toilet?
June 1, 2011
Lime Away or SLR both found in grocery stores, hardware stores, big box stores.
I used Lysol toilet bowl cleaner, and some of the liquid got on the toilet seat, leaving a blue stain. The seat is injection molded plastic. Any ideas about how to remove this stain? Thanks.
Susana from Houston, TX
December 10, 2008
Thank you all!! The stains are mostly gone (there's a little one that resists to go)
I tried a combination of two tips: bleach and magic eraser. (BTW, I had tried magic eraser alone and bleach alone, and they didn't work)
Does anyone know how to clean water spots out of a black toilet? I have a beautiful black toilet and it is full of water spots that are ugly! Any advice on how to get rid of them?
Sarak from OR
December 4, 2014
Oh, and forgot to mention that Barkeepers Friend is very inexpensive, usually less than most cleaning products.
By Kat 1
I cannot get a brown stain out from right underneath the toilet bowl rim. It goes around a large portion of the bowl. I suspect the porcelain was not finished properly (coated) and is still porous. What can I do?
We'll be putting our house on the market within the next year, and I don't want such an ugly stain to repel potential buyers (and us, in the meantime). Thanks in advance.
By Piove from USA
October 6, 2009
Try using BarKeeper's Friend cleanser on a sponge (the kind with a rough scrubbing side). The stain sounds like a mineral stain to me, and BarKeeper's will remove that kind of stain whereas the bleach cleansers won't. The stain will probably dissolve in less than 5 minutes.
DON'T mix the two kinds of cleansers!
By Barbara J. 1
I used Lysol in my toilet bowl and it dyed my bowl. How do I get this out?
By bobbyjus from Perry, FL
May 5, 2011
I suspect the lysol is dying some lime deposit that is in the toilet. You may want to try some acid to remove this; or just go with the bleach as Klavier. suggested. But don't combine cleaners.
My question is how do I remove the "pinkish" water stains in my toilets, due to our soft water? I have tried so many different products without success. I am so frustrated I hope someone may have a solution. Our toilets are only a year old, and I clean them 2-3 times a week. I would appreciate any information anyone who may have this similar problem. Thank you so much.
The toilets in our retirement home are six years old and some genius had taped over a couple of the holes under the rim (or just never removed them). We've tried everything including a brass bristle brush used for cleaning handguns. Zoom foam doesn't work, CLR doesn't work and I'm not enthusiastic about using sandpaper on the porcelain glazing. We are on a septic tank so very strong bleach is also out.
June 18, 20121 found this helpful
Empty the toilet of water or get it very low. Take some light weight cotton cloth or washcloth, and dip it in vinegar and ring it out. Stick it under the rim covering the stain. You will need about six cloths. You can cut washcloths in half. The cloths should stick to the porcelain. This also works for stains around the water line.
Let the cloths stay their for at least six hours. You can check to see if the stain is lessening. If the vinegar does not work, try dipping the cloths in CLR or any mineral remover, instead of the vinegar. Read the label on the product because some are very strong and can etch the coating off the porcelain. You would need to dilute it first.
Basically, the stains under the toilet rim are minerals that have stuck to the porcelain. They make a pretty tight bond so you need to dissolve them with acid to remove them. Rust removers are acidic. Vinegar is acetic acid.
You can also try lemon juice which is citric acid. For stains at the bottom of the bowl, empty all the water out of the toilet and pour in straight vinegar high enough to cover the stain. Then just let it sit until gone. Use a stronger acid as above if needed.
If you have hard crusted stains, the acid will loosen them but you may need to chip them away with a plastic spoon. You can also remove stains from under a faucet with the same cloth and acid technique.
Over a 10-14 day period, blue/purple stains develop in the bottom of our toilet bowl. The tank is crystal clear. They do not form in our other toilet. We have soft water. Where are the stains coming from and how can we prevent them from forming?
Michimac from Michigan
I have a toilet in a vacant rental house that was used many times (by someone who broke in) after the water was turned off, so basically it was never flushed and full of nasty. I have cleaned it numerous times.
It was a new toilet, a $400 low water energy efficient one. I cannot afford to replace it. The stains (brown) are not from hard water, as there was no water in it. The "solid" material is out, but how do I get it white again? I have used every cleaner, bleach, and vinegar I have and no luck.
On my toilet around the top circle part is what looks to be some brownish material. I don't know what it is or how to get rid of it. Any ideas?
My toilet bowl has a black stain in it that is easily removed, but it returns almost daily. If someone urinates in the toilet and does not flush the toilet the black residue is even greater. We have city water which appears to be quite clear. The tank for the toilet is clean as well. Could a drug or some form of bacteria cause the toilet bowl to change color? Any ideas?
By Dan D
I have used "Jonny Fresh" on my toilets and it left blue stains in the bowl. Is there a way to remove them?
By Ali D.
I have a bad stain in my teen's toilet, right below the top edge of the toilet where it's hard to reach. I've used several different products to try and get this cleaned but they haven't worked. I've used lime away, Clorox Teflon for toilet bowls, etc.
Try Wink. You can get it at any hardware store. Lots Of Love, Bonnie (05/10/2001)
Don Aslett (the "cleaning guy") recommends using a toilet pumice. I like this because you're not pouring toxic chemicals into the sewer or septic. Not sure what stores carry them, but you can find one at his website www.cleanreport.com. (05/10/2001)
I've been told that pouring a can of Coke into the toilet and letting it set overnight will remove stains. I've also heard that using Alka Seltzer tablets or denture cleaning tablets help a lot. I've not tried them myself... (05/11/2001)
Try denture cleanser--the kind you put in cup with teeth and soak overnight. It worked for me. (05/15/2001)
I was told some of the Janitorial Supply Stores carry a product called "Pretty Potty" It really works good. You have to wear gloves and have really good ventilation. Good Luck (05/15/2001)
If your stain problem is rust a product called Zud. It comes in a container like cleanser and worked for me. Hope it works for you. (05/21/2001)
I put "LIME-AWAY" in my really bad toilet (My mom said I was going to have to replace it, the stains were so bad!)....in less than 10 minutes, I scrubbed it with a quick swish of the toilet brush...and I was almost done! (04/24/2004)
By Mary DiCroce
I found a cleaner that WILL work, or they pay you ten dollars if it fails to work.
Go to: http://www.pollyproducts.bz
If it fails to work, they will pay you ten dollars for your time, or you can order it off the net, at:
or it is better to buy it direct as you will get a better price and be able to talk to the owner.
Put vinegar into the toilet and let it sit overnight (or at least a few hours). Put some rubber gloves on and brush off the stains with a toilet bowl scrubber. Works wonders! (10/22/2004)
We built a new house and have lived in it for 16 months. But after only a few short months two of my commodes developed terrible stains in them. I can't seem to get rid of them. I have tried CLR and THE WORKS, besides the normal Comet or toilet bowl cleaner. None have begun to make a difference. My mother used to use some type of industrial cleaner but I don't recall the name of it. Does anyone know of anything that is sure to get them out, or the name of an industrial cleaner I could purchase? (03/26/2005)
We go to the hardware store and get the finest grade of sandpaper that you use in water only. It works wonders for our sink and commodes. Does not harm them..
It sounds weird, but spray a little oven cleaner on the stain and leave it for about 30 min. and wipe clean. Works like a CHARM! (03/26/2005)
I have used ELIMINATE which I purchased at Home Depot. It worked fine; also good for the shower & tub. Be sure to open the window (s) or use the fan for ventilation if you have no windows in your bathrooms.
I have the same problem I used bicarb and lemon juice mixed it made it better. (03/26/2005)
By Kay Rose
I am an Independent Watkins Associate (i.e. vanilla, spices, salves, liniments, household cleaners, etc.), and we carry a couple of products that will help you. If you don't like the product(s), there is a 100% money-back guarantee. We have the Watkins Toilet Bowl Cleaner, which is amazing and will take ANYTHING off (I cleaned my sister's and brother's-in-law "shop" toilet which had sat for ages with it, and you wouldn't believe it.) There's also the Bathroom Cleaner Plus, which I think might work well for you as it is thicker and clings to vertical surfaces. This cleaner is also multi-purpose and can be used in the whole bathroom (i.e. tubs, tile, porcelain, grout, and fiberglass), and is made to eliminate rust plus lime and organic deposits. My favorite thing about the Bathroom Cleaner Plus is its cherry/almond fragrance - no bad fumes at all!
I can send you a WATKINS catalog if you want to the look at the products and see what you think.
By Trudy Powell
See if they sell Pumie Heavy Duty Scouring Stick in your area this is really good for stains in toilets. Use as directed on package. I find mine at the dollar stores. (03/29/2005)
I used some spray called "The Works" from Walmart on my son's toilet, it's awesome and it's cost is under a dollar. (04/13/2005)
The Works is really good but it is so bad on your skin, hair, and ALL metals - it has very awful vapors. You cant clean fiberglass toilet lids with it either.
Pretty Potty is the best so far. It has vapors but it smells SO pleasant and its vapors are minimal (From the acid - all working products need the hydro acid.) That and the use of a pumice stone for those very hard stubborn hard water stains etc. The trick to pumice stones is elbow grease and to keep the pumice stone always wet. (05/07/2005)
I've just tried a lot of the suggestions included here. The oven cleaner just didn't cut it. In the end, the best one was "The Works" but be careful! The active ingredient is hydrochloric acid. It will eat up clothes, sponges, etc. So spills can be a problem. And be sure to wear good rubber gloves. (05/23/2005)
There are dozens of acid type products that remove Ca scale and rust. but all these products take elbow grease after waiting for them to work
I'm looking for a cake that i can put in the tank that will prevent mineral build up before it starts to happen
Everything sold that i can find is Chlorine base and all that does is bleach the mineral deposit white. You can't see it but it's still there. Found a solid cake that I think was citric acid at the dollar store that worked great but they no longer have (08/14/2005)
okay-I squirted some toilet cleaner on my toilet and then I accidentally let it sit there over night, but now there are brownish red streaks where the cleaner was! Is this some kind of weird chemical reaction? How do I get it off?
Editor's Note:Chris, you don't say what the cleaner was which makes it hard to answer. (05/18/2006)
There's a product called Whink; I think this is what Bonnie is recommending. www.whink.com (10/06/2006)
Pumice Pumice Pumice. A pumice stone will get the hard-water mineral stain out of your toilet. I've seen one called "Pumie" for sale before, but I can't always find it in Albuquerque. I've bought a pedicure pumice stone the last time I had to deal with this in one of my rentals. (04/17/2007)
I had a toilet that had stains for 14 years. Add to that a teenage son who didn't clean his toilet. I used Whink (found at Walmart) in combination with a pumice and 14 years of grossness is gone! (04/30/2007)
I used bicarb, it's better. (07/26/2007)
Is it rust? If it is - SNOWBOL - OH MY WORD you will not believe how this stuff works - I had a horrible IRON problem in my toilets and my sister in law told me about SNOWBOL and I just pour it on and it literally runsssssssss down the bowl -- the rust that is! I empty my toilet and turn the water off every week and leave snowbol in there overnight and walla - my toilet never needs SCRUBBING! (07/26/2007)
Hello frugal family! We live in a community that has some REALLY hard water. I use a pumice stone to clean the hard water stains. I was told those commercial tablets you put in the tank are bad for the toilet so what's a tightwad... er I mean frugal hubby to
Any suggestions appreciated (SMILE)
Jim in FL
I just discovered that a paint scraper tool works :) (05/05/2005)
We got some ChemFree Mineral Magnets for the toilet tanks. These attract the minerals that make the hard water stains. You first need to clean the toilet and the tank, then put it in. They seem to work very well and cost about 5-6 dollars. You can easily spend that much on cleaners in the 5 years that they last. They are also safe for septic tanks, pets and kids.
We got ours through Myles Kimball but there are other places on line that carry them. Google "Impex ChemFree" and you will find some sources.
Susan from ThriftyFun (05/05/2005)
The ChemFree Mineral Magnets are now sold in Home Depot. I saw them there just this weekend. I have used them for over 15 years now and they work great! (05/05/2005)
I had this same problem.. the toilet upstairs was AWFUL!! It hadn't been used in years. I drained all the water out and put CLR in it.. came right off and looks like new. Believe me.. it's worth the $5 the CLR costs. I get mine at Wal Greens.
Hope this helps! (05/06/2005)
Try Denture Tablets (05/06/2005)
We have extremely hard water here to and the product that works like magic is called "The Works" toilet bowl cleaner. Be sure and get all the water out of the tank, make sure the surface is dry and put The Works on it, let it sit for couple minutes and poof the rust and hard water stains are gone. (05/06/2005)
Hi Jim; Family Dollar Store has a product called Sno Bol. I paid 1.50 for a 24 oz. bottle, and it saved me the cost of a new toilet. Follow the simple directions, and in minutes you'll have a wonderful surprise~! I usually try to avoid harsh chemicals, but I was desperate (05/07/2005)
Try Bring-It-ON water spot remover. It's a paste that you wipe on, leave on for a few minutes to dissolve the minerals, and wipe off. Invented by a gal that got tired of trying things that didn't work!
Just so everyone knows, The Works does not work. I drained the bowl and put the super thin blue just in the bowl and waited 45 minutes. Nothing. The only thing it did was turn water stain blue, so now it's worse than it was before. At least Easy-Off BAM will bleach the mineral stain so you don't see it as much! NEXT. (10/28/2007)
We just bought a newer home, only 5 years old. The toilets and tub/showers have awful hard water stains. I have tried CLR, toilet bowl cleaners, Easy Off Bam and even oven cleaner. Bleach dulls it. Any ideas, we have a water softener that we use, but the stains have been there awhile. Thanks!
PS-Any ideas on chlorinating our well if that would help. There is a rotten egg smell to our water.
Sarah from Indiana
Have you tried Clorox with teflon for toilets? It comes in a bright blue bottle. We used to live in a house that was on a well and that's what I used. It's worth the extra money. I swear by the shower cleaner with teflon too but haven't been able to find it anywhere in a while.
The toilet was really stained and it didn't take it all the stain away but it did help. We put the shower in and about 6 month later was when I found this product and it took 6 months of hard water stain out that nothing else had been about to touch. (02/07/2008)
Try Mr. Clean Magic Eraser... it works wonders! (02/07/2008)
Use the works from the dollar store. Use the tub and shower. Do NOT mix with anything this contains phosphoric acid so cant be mixed. My sister inlaw ignored and almost knocked herself out. lol she passed out! It works miracles. I use it on whites sometimes for rust or hard stains. If that doesn't work, I will be amazed. If it does not, try bar keepers friend, kinda like comet! (02/07/2008)
I use the works all the time and my toilets sparkle. I use nothing else; works and a toilet brush. I swear by the works! I keep 2 bottles in all my bathrooms! Nothing is 100 percent with out scrubbing, that's like hoping for a miracle! (02/07/2008)
Try Bathroom Cleaner Plus, it is from Amway(It has a big plus sign on the bottle). It may seem expensive at @ 15.00 a bottle, but it works especially on set in hard water stains. You only need a little, the bottle goes a long way. Just drain your toilet and spray on the stain. You won't be disappointed. (02/08/2008)
Please get a lab test done to ascertain whether or not you have coliform bacteria in your well water. About $250.00 will get you a full testing battery. Please post the results, or ask the thrifty.com people to put you directly in touch with me. I'll be happy to help once you have results. There are things you can do for very little money that pros will charge a fortune for. The stains are cosmetic. It's the symptomatic sulfur smell that you need to be concerned with. (02/09/2008)
WalMart carries a product called Iron-Out. They have it in two sizes. I use it to clean my toilets, and also add a little to my whites when I do laundry, because bleach turns my clothes orange.And my dishes get rusty stains, too, that disappear if i soak them in water with Iron-Out.
Sarah doesn't say if she has well water, but if she does, she might think about putting a charcoal filter between the pump and the holding tank. That will take care of most of her water staining problems as well as the sulfur smell which is what the rotten egg smell is.
Harlean from Arkansas (02/09/2008)
Put in two denture cleaning tablets and let sit overnight. Amazing how clean it will become! (02/11/2008)
I can along with some of the others vouch for the Works. I clean houses on the side and we cleaned some apartments that had been abandoned for ten years. You can imagine what those toilets and tubs looked like. I used it not only in the toilets, but tubs and sinks as well and it's only $1 a bottle. You don't have to do anything but wipe and rinse and you are done! It was something short of a miracle! The owners thought for sure they would have to replace everything in the bathrooms! (02/11/2008)
Please think about the chemicals that you are flushing into the water sytem or ground. Very scary stuff to use just for a hard water stain. A little pumice stone made for toilet bowls works like a charm and does not remove the porcelin if done softly.
Thanks for reading. (03/06/2008)
Use Lime away or lime remover, it works!! (04/24/2008)
Aaron, you have iron that the bleach is oxidizing. get yourself a filter with "KDF" media (google it) and the problem will vanish (04/25/2008)
I tried all of those other items and none of them worked...UNTIL I purchased Zep's Professional Strength Calcium, Lime & Rust remover at Home Depot for about $5. The hydrochloric acid knocks it out...quick! Just drain your bowl and pour it in. Within 10 mins. this hard caked on crap was gone. No scrubbing period!
One more bathroom tip: The Easy Off Bam (in the toilet bowl dispenser "bleach jell") removes the hardest tile grout stains. Just be careful, the fumes are rough. It removed my hard to clean shower in SECONDS. What took hours the last time I did it only took seconds. This stuff is gold!
I ran a bead down 2 grout lines and walked away. 5 mins. later the lines were winter white! I've NEVER had anything work this quick. NO SCRUBBING! After that...it was on! I finished the whole shower in under 15 minutes. I can now return the never used "As seen on TV" grout pen. (05/18/2008)
Any brand of carburetor cleaner will take mineral stains off. Just drain bowl, spray the affected area liberally, let sit 20 minutes. Turn water back on, flush. That simple. (07/11/2008)
How do you get rid of the stain down the front of the toilet (men did this I'm sure)? After being gone for two weeks, I came home to this. I don't need to clean inside of toilet, it's down the front outside, down the whole stem. The products, that clean the inside, don't seem to have any effect on this problem. I have tried almost everything and nothing budges it. Hope someone can help.
Staza from Granite Falls
Try bleach. I put a little bleach in my toilets once a week, let is still for several hours (tell everyone in the house not to use that toilet) and then scrub if necessary. (08/02/2007)
I love using the black very fine mesh used for sanding sheetrock. It helps remove stains,etc. around sinks, faucets, toilet stains, and any other tough buildup or stain on hard non-porous surfaces. Good Luck. (08/02/2007)
Submitted via e-mail:
Have you tried Never Scrub, I started using it in October of 2006. I have not had to replace the cartridge yet. It starts cleaning and makes your toilet bowl cleaner.
If you have a mineral buildup in the bottom, it will eventually be removed without scrubbing, but if you can scrub it, it will speed up the process. I just occasionally wipe out the toilet bowl. I no longer have to scrub it, it holds true to its name.
I have no ring or any type of build up anywhere the water touches.
By Babbie (08/02/2007)
A pumice stone works great! I have used the ones that you can get at dollar stores for one dollar. Just dump a bucket of water into your toilet so that the water level goes WAY down, then rub the stone on the stain. I worried about this ruining the toilet or making it worse, but it actually acts as an eraser and cleans it great. Also, they sell them on sticks for in-ground pools, so any pool supply place should have them although they will be more costly. Hope this helps!
Try Iron Out, its good for toilets, tubs, or dishwashers. You can also use it for laundry. Read the instructions carefully. It can be found in hardware stores, such as Ace Hardware, or in grocery stores near the laundry products. It's really the best. (08/04/2007)
Beware of pumice stone! Here is the information I got from an expert: "Pumice stone does clean, but it also removes some of the enamel and leaves a rougher surface. You can't see it or even feel it, but it happens. Then stains can collect even faster and they have to be rubbed a little harder to get them off. With just normal cleaning the enamel can become thin where it is rubbed the most, leaving dark streaks." I learned this too late. After using a pumice stone for just a few years my two toilets were ruined. (08/27/2007)
By D. R.
I had a serious problem with rust stains, and tried several products and a lot of elbow grease. Some things worked to some extent, but nothing renewed the toilet. I stumbled on something in Walmart called simply "Rust Remover' by a company called Whink. It's one of the rare products that actually did what the label claimed. I poured it in and let it sit a minute, and by the time I tried to go after it with the toilet brush, the stains were already gone. I'd spent hours on that toilet with other products, and couldn't get them out. (08/06/2008)
What are the blue stains in my toilet bowl?
Eva from Los Angeles
Do you have a drop in toilet bowl cleanser in the tank? Not sure if
that would cause a stain or not. But if you ever see a pink stain
around the bowl rim it just means it needs a disinfectant cleanser. (11/11/2006)
I this might be your problem. Hard water deposits can accumulate on the sides of the toilet bowl. Then if you clean the toilet using something like Vanish, which turns the water blue, it can cling to the mineral build-up on the bowl. Kohler does not recommend using Vanish. To get rid of these stains, you can try some muriatic acid (diluted of course.) You only need about a 10% solution. Be very careful so you don't burn your skin or eyes if it splashes; wear rubber gloves and eye protection. The brush you use with the muriatic acid should not have any metal that can come in contact with the acid in the toilet. There are brushes available that do not use heavy wire to hold the bristles. A good toilet bowl cleaner is Zep available from Home Depot. This is a good alternative to the muriatic acid. (11/12/2006)
If you have copper piping and your water is a little acidic, then it will slowly break down the copper, leaving blue stains in the toilet or sink and will sometimes plug your shower head. Try some CLR (Calcium, lime, rust remover) or a similar cleaner. It should take away the blue stain, but sometimes, depending on how long its been in contact with the surface, it may just lighten it. But it's worth a try! (11/13/2006)
I think Dennis is right on. I too had this problem. And I was using Vanish. If the products he mentioned don't remove the hard water deposits, you can buy a pumice stone from Lowe,s or Home Depot. They won't damage the porcelain and they work great. (11/14/2006)
I am looking for a way to clean a yellow stain from the back of a toilet bowl. It was probably caused by slow dripping water. The stain runs vertically from the rim of the toilet down.
HJG from South Australia
Do you have those hard to clean stains in your toilet bowl? Try taking a small piece of red brick and rubbing the area. You will be amazed at the results.
By Joyce from Cumming, Georgia
I use my husband's denture tablets in each of the toilets, once a week. Drop the tablets in at night, close the lid. Flush the next morning after whisking with a toilet brush.
This is a time saver that you will love, I promise! (07/24/2006)
By Pauls Jo Carr
Try Shaw's Pads. Simple, inexpensive and it works without scratching the toilet. (05/01/2009)
Does anyone have a tip as to how to get really bad hard water deposits out of a toilet bowl?
Gwen Smith from Palatka, FL
Have you tried CLR and let it soak? It is great for removing tough stains. You may have to scrub some with a pumice type scrubber to aid in removing the stain. (07/29/2008)
Don't know if it will work or not, but I read recently that plain old soft drink (Coca Cola was recommended by writer) will dissolve hardwater stains. It's worth a try. Good luck and God bless you. (07/29/2008)
When I can't stand looking at mine for awhile, what I do is sit on the edge of the tub and just use a good old SOS pad. It works all the time. (07/30/2008)
I've been having a battle with yellow stains in 2 of my toilets for months. I've used everything and nothing has worked. I just bought and used The Works and the stains were gone with out me even scrubbing. Praise the lord, I can stop obsessing about my toilets now. (08/03/2008)
By Nicole, PA
I just purchased a pool stone (found with the pool supplies at Home Depot) and used it on my toilet and finally the stains are gone. It took little effort to do this and now my bowl is clean again. (08/10/2008)
Out of all I have read, I have heard no one mention vinegar. My research on the internet mentions a drained toilet bowl and 1 liter of vinegar in the bowl/scrub and add 1 liter of pure vinegar to water tank to get the rim on the next flushing of the toilet.
Thanks for all the tip on hard water and toilet bowls (09/10/2008)
Using bleach will just exacerbate the problem if you have rust.
The Works and Iron Out are the best cleaners to use on your toilet or shower for hard water and iron staining. They work almost immediately without scrubbing too much. A water treatment system will only do so much to remove the iron in your water, unless it is seriously heavy duty.
As for the sulfur smell, you can chlorinate your well with pool shock powder. Pour about a pound in your well, run it into the pipes in the house until you can smell the chlorine, then let it sit for 24 hours. Run off the chlorine from a garden hose (never into your septic system!) This will also kill any bacteria in your well. (01/15/2009)
Flush your toilet and pour bleach into the "back" of the toilet let it set for 3 hours and then flush. No scrubbing needed, how great is that. (10/20/2009)
How do you remove stubborn stains from your toilet, when common toilet cleaners do not work?
By Jane from Deerfield Beach, FL
This came up not too long ago. Check it out: thriftyfun.com (01/20/2010)
I moved into a rental house with a very neglected toilet. I tried about everything until I found my trusty old pumice stone. It took a lot of elbow grease, but those old hard water deposits and "whatever else" stains did finally disappear. I am now not embarrassed when guests use my shining white toilet! I have also successfully used fine grit sandpaper or fine gauge screen on previous toilets. I have found nothing better! (01/21/2010)
Wearing rubber gloves, try scrubbing the stain with a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser or Comet powder with a scrubber-type sponge. (01/21/2010)
By Lady Bee
Yes, pumice stone works! You can get one at the grocery store usually on a bottom shelf where the rest of toilet cleaners are found. (01/22/2010)
I put two of my husband's Polident denture tablets in the toilet and shut the lid; in the morning I run the toilet brush around in the clean toilet bowl. Depending on how dirty and stained it is this may take more then once with the denture cleaner. (01/22/2010)
By Paula Jo