A rusty toilet bowl

How to Remove Rust from Bathroom Toilets & Sinks

If there’s one thing that can ruin a home’s appeal, it’s a dirty bathroom. It’s not only a major turnoff to guests, but it’s also unpleasant for the home’s occupants as well. Who wants to soak in a hot bath with a filthy toilet in eyesight?

Unfortunately, sometimes the stains aren’t so easy to clean up. When rust sets in on a toilet or sink, it can be a lot tougher to clean than simply wiping it down with a clorox wipe. Fortunately, however, you don’t have to call a plumber about this.

What Causes Bathroom Rust?

Rust occurs as a chemical reaction when iron, oxygen, and water mix. The iron can come from either your pipes, or from trace amounts of iron minerals in your water itself. 

If your sink is slow to drain, the rust can pool at the bottom of the basin and stain the porcelain. Likewise, your toilet always has a pool of water in it, making it particularly prone to staining. 

Removing Rust Stains from Porcelain

Many homeowners try to remove these rust stains by pouring bleach down the drain. Not only is this often ineffective, but it’s also corrosive to your pipes and harmful to the environment. We recommend that you avoid harsh chemicals and tools that could damage your porcelain.

Here are some tips we recommend:

Baking Soda & Vinegar

Plumbers everywhere have leaned on this all-natural cleaning solution for decades. The baking soda, vinegar combo is gentle on your plumbing and typically gets the job done with no problem.

Just mix three tablespoons of baking soda with one tablespoon of vinegar to form a paste, then use that paste as a cleaner with a firm-bristled scrub brush.

Salt & Lemon

Simply mixing salt and lemon juice together at a 2:1 ratio can leave you with a natural, grainy liquid cleaning agent. Pour this solution into the sink or toilet to soak for half an hour, then scrub! 

Pumice Stone

While using the above solutions, you can also swap out your scrub brush for a pumice stone! This stone will remove rust as easily as it removes calluses and won’t scratch or otherwise damage the porcelain. 

Preventing Future Rust Stains

While removing the rust from your toilet or sink is easy enough to DIY, keeping the rust away can be tougher.

First things first, remove any metal items from your tub or sink. Metal toothbrush holders, cans of shaving cream, hair pins, and shower caddies can all leave iron deposits in your sink or tub. Removing them will help prevent rust in many situations.

Secondly, keep things dry! Rust can’t form without water, so wiping down the sink or tub with a towel after you use it can also prevent rust from forming.

If these don’t work, or if your problem is in the toilet bowl (which obviously can’t be kept dry), it’s time to call a plumber. 

LEE Plumbing is here to help. Give us a call or text at 918-300-0404 to schedule an appointment. We’re available 24/7 for emergency services to make sure your family is taken care of.