How to Remove Toilet Ring Once and For All? [DIY Methods]

Did you notice a discolored ring around your toilet bowl at the waterline? This is called a toilet ring and it usually appears when the toilet is not frequently used.

Toilet ring isn’t only unsightly but can also become extremely stubborn over time. This makes it difficult to remove the toilet ring with just a regular cleaning.

heavy mineral deposit in toilet

Luckily, this post presents easy and cheap methods to remove a toilet ring from your toilet bowl.

Apply these methods to get rid of a toilet ring and enjoy a clean and more relaxing toilet bowl.

Reasons Behind Toilet Ring

It’s important to understand the toilet ring and its causes. This will help you to identify and prevent the further appearance of a toilet ring in your toilet bowl.

A toilet ring that looks like a rust ring is a result of hard water stains or mineral buildup.

A yellow ring is due to a lack of regular maintenance. You may notice a yellow ring in your toilet bowl after an extended period of exposure to urine.

An orange, green, or sometimes black ring may be the handiwork of mold buildup.

A pink or slightly orange ring is caused by a slimy bacterium called Serratia marcescens. Serratia marcescens can cause wound and/or urinary tract infections in immune-deprived people.

This bacterium can also cause a discolored ring in the tub or around the faucet.

Now that you understand the various causes of toilet rings, let’s consider the methods of getting rid of the ring.  

How to Remove Toilet Ring at Home?

Don’t be in a haste to get rid of the toilet ring and damage your ceramic or porcelain toilet bowl. Be calm and follow our guide.

Using a harsh chemical or metal brush on the ring can damage your porcelain toilet.

As said above, a yellow ring is a result of poor toilet maintenance. It appears after leaving urine or feces in your toilet bowl for an extended period.

You can prevent this ring from forming by flushing your toilet immediately after every use.

mild toilet ring

Also, regular cleaning can prevent the buildup of germs, mold, bacteria, or stains that may cause unsightly toilet rings.

However, if regular cleaning can no longer eliminate the ring and restore your toilet bowl, try the following amazing methods:

Method 1: Eliminate Toilet Ring with Baking Soda and Vinegar

A combination of baking soda and vinegar is also proven to remove a toilet ring.

vinegar and baking soda
  • Pour a cup of white vinegar directly into your toilet bowl to mix with the water.
  • Leave the toilet to rest for a few minutes to allow the vinegar to soak the ring.
  • Add a cup of baking soda, and immediately add two cups of white vinegar.
  • The mixture should start fizzing. Cover the toilet bowl and allow the fizzing to go for about 15 minutes.
  • Open the bowl and use a toilet brush to lightly scrub the toilet ring using the mixture.
  • Leave the toilet for another 30 minutes.
  • Scrub again and flush your toilet twice.

The toilet ring should be gone by now. Otherwise, scrub the ring again (apply effort) or repeat the entire steps.

Method 2: Eliminate Toilet Ring with Bleach

Bleach can effectively break down stains and remove a toilet ring. If you have an extremely stubborn toilet ring that wouldn’t go, try this heavy-duty cleaner.

pouring bleach on toilet

You can use bleach for your regular toilet cleaning as a preventive measure as well. But we don’t recommend doing this unless the rings come back frequently.

  • Carry out regular cleaning on your toilet and flush it.
  • Put on a pair of latex gloves.
  • Mix two tablespoons of bleach with a gallon of water.
  • Stir the mixture thoroughly but gently.
  • Pour half of the mixture directly into the bowl to mix with the water.
  • Pour the remaining mixture on the surface of the toilet bowl to cover the discolored ring.
  • Leave the toilet to rest for about 15 minutes to allow the bleach to soak the ring. The longer the bleach stays on the toilet ring, the more effective it will be at eliminating the ring. Nevertheless, don’t leave the bleach on your toilet for too long.
  • With a toilet brush, scrub the ring thoroughly to remove the ring.
  • Once the ring has been removed, thoroughly rinse the toilet bowl with lots of water to remove the bleach.

Note: Use bleach only in a well-ventilated toilet and put on protective gear. Most bleaches contain chlorine as their active ingredient.

You must be very careful with such bleaches because chlorine can damage rubber plumbing fixtures.

Also, bleach can be very reactive, be careful not to mix it with anything containing vinegar or ammonia.

Method 3: Eliminate Toilet Ring with Borax

If you have borax at home, you may try this-

  • Add a tablespoon of borax to a cup of water.
  • Add two tablespoons of white distilled vinegar to the mixture and stir gently until the borax dissolves.
  • Pour the cloudy solution into a spray bottle.
  • Shake the mixture well and spray some of it directly on the toilet ring.
  • Allow the mixture to soak the ring. You may need to spray the mixture on the ring every 5 minutes to keep it wet.
  • Make a Borax paste by mixing Borax with a small amount of water.
  • Apply some of this paste to your toilet brush and scrub the toilet ring.
  • After scrubbing, rinse the toilet bowl with water before flushing the toilet twice.
borax powder

If the toilet ring is under the water level, you may use a plunger to push the water out of the way and follow the method.

Method 4: Eliminate Toilet Ring with a Degreaser

A degreaser can also help to remove a toilet ring from a porcelain toilet bowl.

Get a general-purpose household degreaser and spray some on the toilet ring. In most cases, the degreaser should break down the ring.

Leave the degreaser on the ring for about 15 minutes for it to loosen up the dirt.

Apply baking soda or dishwasher liquid to your toilet brush and scrub the toilet ring. You may need to apply some effort when scrubbing.

After scrubbing, rinse the toilet bowl interior, and scrub once again before flushing the toilet twice.

This will remove any remaining degreaser, baking soda, or liquid detergent from the bowl.

Method 5: Eliminate Toilet Ring with Fine Sandpaper

If all the methods above failed at removing the toilet ring, it means the ring is now somewhat permanently set on the surface.

In such a case, you can try this more practical method to eliminate the ring – sanding.

You can use sandpaper to sand off the stubborn ring off your toilet bowl. Make sure it’s fine-grit sandpaper.

  • Wear a pair of rubber hand gloves.
  • Grab a sheet of fine-grit sandpaper and gently scrub the toilet ring. Depending on how thick or thin the ring is, you can try medium-grit or extra fine-grit sandpaper.
  • Flush the toilet after scrubbing.

While sanding, make sure to soak the surface with water to prevent unwanted scratches.

Be informed that the method is for the rings that don’t go away with any of the non-invasive methods.

There is a risk of damaging the bowl finish by sanding which will attract more dirt in the future. So, only use this as a last resort.

Method 6: Eliminate Toilet Ring with Pumice Stone

This method is very similar to the method above. If you can’t lay your hand on sandpaper, you can use a pumice stone instead to remove the ring.

Don’t forget to wear a pair of rubber hand gloves.

Grab a pumice stone (we recommend a pumice stone on a stick) and gently scrub the toilet ring. The pumice stone must be wet while scrubbing to avoid damaging your toilet.

After scrubbing, flush or rinse your toilet.

Method 7: Eliminate Toilet Ring with a Commercial Cleaner

If you don’t want to risk scratching your porcelain toilet with sandpaper or pumice stone, try a commercial cleaner. Some commercial cleaners are very potent at removing stubborn toilet rings.

Though some commercial cleaners are harsh, some are mild and suitable for toilet use.

Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be careful when handling them. Each commercial cleaner always comes with its method of application.

So, make sure to carefully read and follow the instructions on how to apply the commercial cleaner you purchase.

For your safety, don’t forget to put on a pair of rubber or latex gloves before handling the commercial cleaner.

For added safety, a pair of goggles and a mask is also recommended.

Method 8: Eliminate Toilet Ring with a Denture tablet

This method is suitable for those with a porcelain toilet. A denture tablet can also eliminate stains from porcelain fixtures.

  • Get a denture tablet and drop it into the toilet bowl.
  • It should start fizzing. Leave it for about 30 minutes. For effective performance, you may leave it to fizz overnight.
  • Scrub off the toilet ring thoroughly with a toilet brush the next morning.
  • Flush your toilet afterward.


Several factors can cause a toilet ring, but the methods above will remove the ring once and for all.

These seven methods are not only cheap and safe for your health but are also septic-system safe.

After removing the toilet ring with any of these methods, always try to prevent the ring from building up again. You can achieve this by cleaning your toilet bowl regularly.

Cleaning your toilet bowl regularly will prevent the buildup of anything that may lead to a toilet ring.

If the toilet ring is due to hard water buildup, you can also prevent it by doing the following:

Spread a cup of borax inside and around your toilet bowl before going to bed once a week. Gently scrub the bowl with a toilet brush in the morning and flush.

This will loosen up any buildup that may want to develop.

Leave a Comment

error: Content is protected !!