How to Remove Rust Stains From Toilet

Like toilet bowl rings, rust stains in your toilet are caused by deposits from iron minerals that are found in the hard water that you use. When the iron minerals get exposed to oxygen, they react to form brown like rust stains in your toilet.

This will leave your toilet bowl and tank looking dirty or full of stains. The good news is there is a better way to remove rust stains from your toilet. This simple guideline will easily restore your toilet’s sparkle and make it look brand new. Here it is.

Step 1: Turn of Your Water Supply

Identify the water shut off valve at the back of the toilet and turn it off. To turn it off, you need to turn it in an anti-clockwise direction.

Now flush your toilet. Make sure you hold the toilet handle down for a while to make sure that you flush as much toilet as possible.

You should follow this with a heavy plunge. Ensure you plunge as much water as possible. If you don’t have a plunger, borrow one.

Tip: In order to have the best results you will need to work with a dry bowl. This will prevent the cleaner from getting diluted. Plunging the water and flushing the tank will easily dry your bowl.

Step 2: Get the Right Rust Cleaner

There are many over the counter toilet bowl cleaners that you can use. However, for rust I suggest you skip all of them and head for a toilet bowl cleaner containing dilute hydrochloric acid such as those listed in the Toilet Rated Blog.

Pour your aggressive toilet bowl cleaner on your toilet brush then spread it evenly all over the toilet bowl surface.

This might not easily access the nook or the hard to reach areas (under the toilet bowl rim), so use a spray bottle instead to evenly spray your cleaner.

Let your toilet cleaner sit for a while (10-15 minutes) before you start scrubbing. This ensures that it tackles the rust effectively.

Tip: Don’t use a toilet bowl cleaner with diluted hydrochloric acid over bleach and don’t use bleach containing cleaner on rust. It will set the stain.

Step 3: Scrub Your Toilet with Brush

Buy a toilet cleaning brush made of stiff nylon bristles with a base on plastic. Use it to scrub your toilet.

Brush cautiously along your toilet jets (water holes under the toilet rim) and along the toilet rim/ around visible rust stains.

Make sure you scrub until the stains disappear. You can always add a little more cleaner on your brush as you keep scrubbing.

Tip: Scrub slowly and cautiously. You don’t want cleaner dropping on your carpet. It can easily cause damage to the carpet, vinyl, skin, or tile.

Step 4: Rinse your Toilet with Cold Water

Once the rust stains disappear you can rinse your toilet’s bowl with cold water until it remains spotlessly clean.

Additional Tips

  • Have a bucket of water and a rag to instantly clean any droplets on the floor.
  • Turn on the bathroom exhaust vent or open bathroom window for free air flow.
  • Use chemical resistant gloves and protect your eyes with goggles.


Rinse your bowl immediately you are done. Waiting for long may dry it up and leave you with a very hard job to do again. Try this and share with your loved ones if you love the final results too.

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