The presence of toilet bowl rust stains gives the impression that your home is constantly in a state of disrepair, despite the fact that you clean your toilet and fixtures on a regular basis. The recognizable reddish-brown stains are not only unsightly, but they are also difficult to eliminate. Using regular toilet cleaners will not remove the stain; in fact, they may make it worse by setting the stain and making it even more difficult to remove.

toilet bowl rust stains

Make Use of Citric Acid’s Potency

Citric acid can be obtained from fresh lemons, limes, grapefruits, lemon or lime juice, or powdered citric acid, available at supermarkets and pharmacies. If you’re washing using fresh citrus fruit, dip the cut edge in salt or baking soda to offer a soft abrasive as you scrub the rust-stained area.

Make Use of Distilled White Vinegar

The acetic acid in distilled white vinegar works well to remove rust spots. It, like citric acid, can be applied on a weekly basis to help prevent rust stains from becoming permanent. While distilled white vinegar can be used to remove rust stains, cleaning vinegar with higher acidity is preferred.

Weekly, spray vinegar on rust stains on sinks, tubs, and shower walls. Rinse well after cleaning with a scrub brush. Pour one to two cups of vinegar into the toilet bowl and scrape with a toilet brush. To erase old stains, immerse the toilet bowl in undiluted vinegar for two hours (overnight is better). Rinse completely with clean water.

Try the Cream of Tartar

Unless you make meringue or bake, you probably have the cream of tartar in your pantry. Cream of tartar is a powdered tartaric acid widely used to solidify whipped egg whites and leaven baked goods.

Sprinkle it on rust-stained sinks and tubs before scrubbing with a wet nylon-bristled brush. Make a paste with water to apply on shower walls or toilet bowl stains. Allow it to work for a while, and cover it with plastic wrap to keep it wet.

Use Abrasive Materials Gently 

Gentle abrasives such as baking soda, table salt, or pumice powder can be used alone or in conjunction with any of the acid cleaners. They are soft enough not to damage the porcelain, fiberglass, or enamel finishes of bathroom fixtures. Make sure to dampen the stained surface with water or a cleanser before applying the abrasive and to keep the area moist while applying it to the surface.

Pumice is a naturally occurring volcanic rock that occurs in both powder and solid forms. Hard water stains and rust can be cleaned with pumice sticks or stones.

New Flow Plumbing is Here to Meet All of Your Bathroom Requirements!

If you are unable to remove all of the rust, New Flow Plumbing would gladly upgrade you to a new toilet or other fixture. We also provide flexible payment alternatives to ensure that you can always afford our services. And, with emergency appointments available 24 hours a day, there’s never a bad moment to call us.


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