How to Remove Iron Stains From a Toilet

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Iron stains in toilet bowls are actually rust stains. Rust stains in toilets come from the oxidation of iron in the water supply, rusty metal pipes, or rusty metal components in the tank of the toilet. If rust stains are not removed quickly, they build up and make cleaning more time consuming and difficult. Thorough, frequent cleaning keeps toilet bowls stain free and clean looking.

Rust stains make a toilet look dirty and old.
(metal texture image by PaulPaladin from Fotolia.com)

Things You'll Need

  • Commercial rust remover
  • Toilet ring remover pad or pumice stone
  • Rubber gloves
Step 1

Empty the toilet bowl of water. Shut off the water to the toilet by turning the water valve off. The valve is usually located behind the toilet bowl. Flush.

Empty the toilet bowl.
toy toilet image by Wayne Abraham from Fotolia.com
Step 2

Put on your gloves. Apply rust remover to the stains. Most rust removers come in bottles with small holes to control flow. Squirt toward the top of the stain and allow it to flow down. Some of the rust should come off immediately. Let it sit for five minutes.

Use gloves to avoid skin irritation from rust remover.
medical gloves image by sasha from Fotolia.com
Step 3

Scrub with an abrasive, like a pumice stone or a toilet ring remover pad. Apply more rust remover, if needed. Work your way around the toilet bowl, scrubbing with short, firm strokes.

Remove rust stains with a pumice stone.
texture image by Zbigniew Nowak from Fotolia.com
Step 4

Turn the water back on. It will take a few minutes for the tank to fill up. Flush and access. If there are still rust stains, repeat steps one through three. If the stains are gone, flush the toilet again to remove residual rust remover.

Flush toilet to remove residual chemicals.
water drop is falling down and impact with water surface image by Alexander Potapov from Fotolia.com

Tips & Warnings

  • Commercial rust removers can be found in hardware stores, the hardware aisle in most grocery stores and home improvement stores. Toilet ring remover pads are usually found where toilet bowl cleaners are found. Toilet ring remover pads are abrasive pads with a handle somewhat like a toilet cleaner brush. Replace rusty components in toilet tanks to minimize staining.
  • Excessive use of chemicals, like rust remover, may damage septic systems. Use sparingly.
  • Never mix rust remover with chlorine bleach.

References

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