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Yellow Stains on an Old Porcelain Tub


One of our bathrooms has the original bathtub, it's 40+ years old. A drab yellowish stain covers much of the interior sides, especially towards the front of the tub. It has also lost any shine on the porcelain, too. I do not want to resurface the tub as I have been told this really doesn't hold up for a tub with daily, constant usage. What could I use to remove these stains? Thanks for any ideas!

Mam from Atlanta, GA



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By chas (Guest Post) 07/11/2006 Flag

have you tried the mr. clean magic eraser? With it and a lot of elbow greese it might work. I have used it to remove old stains from a porcelain sink used outside in a waterfall. There is another product you might try it's called The's a very strong cleaner but I don't know if it will work for this but it's worth a try. Hope this helps.

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By (Guest Post) 07/14/2006 Flag

Our tub is like this also and I have tried everything....and nothing helps. It'e embetted in the tub itself. I just try to spray it down with Clorox clean-up or bleach water and rinse often and it does lighten it a little. At least it smells clean!

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By Carol in PA (Guest Post) 07/14/2006 Flag

After you get your tub cleaned you can put auto paste wax on the sides to make them shine. I wouldnt do the bottom as someone could fall.

Also, try cleaning your tub with window cleaner like Windex to remove soap scum and make shine.

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By Paula Jo Carr (Guest Post) 07/16/2006 Flag

I fill my sink/tub up with warm to hot water pour in a small bottle of clorox, stir from side to side and front to back to mix. Close the door (so pets & children will not get in it) go to work, bed or out for the day. When you come home after a near 8 hours you will have a white tub again, I promise!

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By Marge Mayhew 3 149 07/22/2006 Flag

If you have a water condition called "iron bacteria" it will react with liquid clorine bleach (clorox) and will stain clothes and fixtures a nice peach to orange color! What I would try is Sno Bol toilet bowl cleaner. Squirt a small amount on the stained area and scrub it around with the toilet brush. If it appears to remove the stain you can gradually work on the whole area. Remember this is a strong chemical. Don't get it on your skin or splatter in your eyes or breathe the fumes! Rinse well with lots of water. It can be hard on the metal drain components and gaskets if allowed to be in contact very long, so rinse it away quickly! An even stronger chemical that may work is muratic acid. That is what I used.....and it worked.......but be warned that this is a very strong chemical and you should not be careless with it or breathe the fumes!!!!

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By (Guest Post) 11/28/2008 Flag

Try Zud cleaner, it is like Comet but works better. It is awesome and takes rust stains out.

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By jeri johnson 1 31 04/28/2009 Flag

Try soaking the tub over night with a product called "Iron Out" this worked great on a terrible rusty yellow stain left on a tub by our last tenets. Nothing else even budged it. This is a before picture.

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By jeri johnson 1 31 05/08/2009 Flag

This is the after picture after one soaking, No scubing at all! The product Iron out can be obtained at most any Home supplie store like Lowes or home depot. Or most any Hardware store would probley order it for you. good luck.

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By arlene 3 07/31/2009 Flag

I used bleach to clean my bath tub and it left yellow brownish stains just like your picture. Scrubbed and scrubbed with every product and even more bleach. Nothing worked until I tried Hydrogen Peroxide-oral rinse! I couldn't believe my eyes! All I did was put a little Hydrogen Peroxide on a wash cloth and with one wipe all the stains disappeared. No scrubbing at all.

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10/21/2012 Flag

After reading about using hydrogen peroxide oral rinse, which I did not have. I tried some Colgate baking soda and hydrogen peroxide toothpaste. It worked! I just put the paste on and let it sit for about half an hour and then came and rinsed it off.

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By roxanne9000 1 07/31/2013 Flag

Thanks so much for the great advice. I was having this problem - a horrible crusty orange appeared in my tub after trying to bleach some yellowy stains. I tried all manner of cleansers, magic eraser, even a razor blade - but nothing budge this stain.

I tried hydrogen peroxide as suggested on this thread and it worked miraculously. The stain disappeared in less than a minute... almost upon contact. Thanks again! I was really in a panic when I thought I'd ruined my bathtub!

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By moericka34 1 09/21/2013 Flag

I had some yellow brown stains on my old porcelain tub. I believe my cleaning service attempted to clean the tub with some type of harsh chemical. I tried just regular hydrogen peroxide and it was fading the stain. Then I used some Aquafresh extreme clean toothpaste- with whitening action (just my toothpaste I use) as I was spreading the toothpaste I could see the stain completely disappearing. Left it on for 10 minutes or so, but don't think it was necessary to even leave sitting. After rinsing the stain was completely gone!

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By Sarah L. 1 02/09/2014 Flag

I recently tried using kaboom foaming spray and it worked miracles on my walls and grout but left my porcelain tub covered in orange stain that I could not scrub away. Before going out to the store to buy more expensive cleaner, I turned to the internet to find out what my best course of action would be.

After reading I came across a few that of course led to more expensive cleaning agent, but I did find hydrogen peroxide as a suggestion I ran up stairs grabbed my bottle and to my eyes surprise it faded about 50% I rinsed with hot water and repeated and it is now completely gone within about two min. time thank you so much for this helpful hint! Very pleased.

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Here are questions related to Yellow Stains on an Old Porcelain Tub.

Question: Removing Stains from a Porcelain Bathtub

I have tried Tilex and Clorox. The Tilex made it worse. Any suggestion what else I can try?
The Clorox did take a little off, but I put the Tilex on after and it got worse. It is a yellowish brown. Any suggestions?

By James

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Most Recent Answer

By MelBunny 1 5 08/16/2012 Flag

This stain was made by rust. Bleach will set the rust stain in, making it almost impossible to remove it. Thanks to those who suggested Barkeeper's Friend, I'll have to give that one a try. I've use Mr. Clean Magic erasers on other stains, don't know if it will work on the rust.

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Question: Bleach Left Yellow Stain in Tub

I am moving into a new apartment. The cleaning crew came in and could not take off these black marks. So I put bleach with water into the tub and I let it sit for 2 days and now I have a yellow ring around the tub and the black marks are still there. Please help. I think this tub is over 60 years old.

By Stephanie C

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Most Recent Answer

By Sharon Cross 19 61 01/27/2012 Flag

Straight peroxide should remove the yellow stain...

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