Cleaning Tips On How To Get Rid Of Limescale In The Toilet

Cleaning the bathroom and especially the toilet is one of the most tiring and disgusting tasks of all the household chores. I bet that no one likes it! It’s not just sweeping and mopping a bathroom and wiping the toilet. A homeowner should do more, like remove mould from the bathroom, regularly clean the shower glass or even the bathroom tiles. But the truth is that It’s a task that we all have to do, and in fact, pretty often. Why? There are so many bacteria camping in the toilet that can affect our health. 

A smiling young woman wearing rubber gloves cleans the toilet bowl with an all-purpose cleaner

Beyond, though, these unwanted campers in the toilet, there’s also something else that is ruining its appearance and makes it even more disgusting. Limescale! Don’t panic! It isn’t something you have done wrong or to be ashamed of. It’s beyond your powers! In fact, you need to clean limescale around your entire house, not just in the toilet. However, you don’t need to be a plumber to make things better. Here are the best cleaning tips on how to get rid of limescale in the toilet!

What is limescale?

Knowing the enemy is the best way to face and eliminate it. Thus, if you want to get rid of it, you need to know what it is. Limescale, or else calcium carbonate, is a white, hard substance that deposits wherever water passes through, like the toilet , the taps, the shower screens, the sink, or even the hot water boilers, kettle and other pots and pans. 

A dirty toilet bowl covered with limescale stains

Limescale is a hard substance that looks like chalk. Water that arrives into our houses passes through soft rocks and picks up some minerals. This is what turns it into hard water. Despite the filters in the supply system, hard water finds its way through the pipes. The stubborn limescale tends to build up in places where it evaporates.

Those mineral deposits are a powdery white substance that appears on surfaces in the kitchen and the bathroom like showerheads, walls, toilet bowls, faucets. Limescale stains may also appear as orange, brown or pink stains.  The build-up is a problem for any house. However, those who live in hard water areas face a greater problem. Nevertheless, everyone has you get limescale out of the house.  

Why should you remove limescale from the toilet?

It is something that you need to get rid of your toilet and prevent from building up. Despite the disgusting way it makes your toilet look, there are other reasons that make it necessary for you to remove it. 

Deposits from limescale can clog the pipes as well as block the water flow in pipes, showerheads, taps, toilet bowls, and appliances like the dishwasher and washing machine. This means that the appliances won’t wash properly, or the toilet may not flush. And that is something that affects your hygiene

How to remove limescale from your toilet

Removing the stains from your toilet is an easy to go task. Some elbow grease is required, along with the use of cleaning products. However, several cleaning methods are using more natural ingredients to DIY limescale removal despite the commercial cleaners. Let’s see the most popular cleaning methods.

Using white vinegar

White vinegar is a natural ingredient capable of cleaning and disinfecting almost all kinds of stains and surfaces. You can use it to clean your washing machine or your shower glass. It’s also an excellent limescale remover, that can also take care of urine deposits from the toilet. You need a couple of things to create the vinegar toilet cleaner:

white vinegar on the wooden table top

  • White vinegar (undiluted)
  • The toilet brush

Then follow these steps:

  1. Pour the vinegar into the toilet bowl and let it sit for 3-4 hours. If there’s a severe problem, leave it overnight. 
  2. After the time has passed, get your brush that you keep next to the toilet and scrub the problematic area. 
  3. Add more vinegar if you feel that the stains aren’t completely gone.
  4. For extra stubborn stains, put on a pair of rubber gloves, get a kitchen sponge and start scrubbing the stained areas with the scourer side.
  5. Once all the stains disappear, flush the toilet a few times to rinse any vinegar and mineral deposits

Note: You can repeat the process as many times as you wish until you get rid of the limescale

Extra tip: You can use vinegar to clean the cistern as well. 4 cups of vinegar and a sponge are enough to clean the cistern and stop passing through mineral and limescale deposits into the bowl. For more details, you can check our Step-By-Step Guide On How To Clean A Toilet.

Using baking soda

It is the most natural way of cleaning all the surfaces in the house. Due to its cleaning properties, it can combat all stubborn and water stains, like limescale. A few pinches of baking soda can work miracles in your toilet. You need:

A jar of baking soda on a wooden surface, a handy ingredient to remove limescale from the toilet

  • A bowl
  • Baking soda
  • Water
  • Liquid detergent 
  • A sponge

Now, you can do as follows:

  1. Mix in the bowl baking soda and water until you create a thick paste
  2. Apply the soda paste on all the stained areas and let it sit for a few hours or overnight for better results. 
  3. The following day, use a kitchen sponge to scrub the paste with the scourer side. 
  4. Finally, make soapy water to wipe clean the soda residue off and rinse with boiling water

Using lemon juice

Lemon is another natural, inexpensive, and easy to find ingredient capable of cleaning and disinfecting all surfaces due to citric acid. You can get rid of it just with the juice of a lemon. Needed materials:

A bowl of lemon juice next to some lemons

  • A spray bottle
  • Lemon juice
  • Steel wool/ bathroom scrubber


  1. Pour some lemon juice into the spray bottle and spray the affected area in the toilet bowl.
  2. Let it sit for a day. While waiting for it to work, avoid using the bathroom as it won’t be effective enough. 
  3. Finally, scrub the stained areas with steel wool or a scrubber and then flush the toilet. 

Using sandpaper or pumice stones

Another useful and effective way to remove these stubborn stains is by scrubbing the sides of the bowl with medium grain sandpaper or pumice stones. Both have a harsh surface that can bring the results that you want. Once you have removed most of the limescale, use fine-grain sandpaper to buff the rest of the stain. Finally, flush the toilet and clean it as always. However, you should bear in mind that they can damage the toilet’s finish due to their harshness, so don’t use this method pretty often. 

Using bleach

One of the most popular allies when it comes to cleaning. It can remove any tough stain, kill bacteria and disinfect surfaces. You can also use it to get rid of the limescale of your toilet.

A woman wearing rubber gloves holds a bottle of bleach to get rid of limescale in the toilet

  1. Pour some bleach on the affected areas and let it work for a while.
  2. Afterwards, get the toilet brush and start scrubbing until the limescale disappears. 
  3. Finally, flush the toilet a few times to rinse thoroughly

However, you should bear in mind that bleach isn’t so effective in removing limescale. It might remove part of it, but it can also discolour the porcelain. Thus, it isn’t recommended for regular use. 

How to prevent limescale from forming in the toilet

Once you’ve found a way to get rid of limescale, it’s time to work out a way to keep it out of your water supply. Thankfully, there are several ways to do so. The rule of thumb for all the preventive measures is regular cleaning. Hence, at least once a week, lift the toilet seat and start cleaning the toilet bowl. Next to cleaning, there are some extra things you can do:

  1. One thing you can do is install a  water softener to your water supply. It’s the most expensive way of all, but It can remove calcium and magnesium from the water once and for all through ion exchange.
  2. Install magnetic descalers to your pipes. They will prevent minerals from forming limescale
  3. Another helpful and inexpensive way is to pour a small amount of lemon juice or vinegar into the toilet once a month. Their acid properties will remove any signs of limescale deposit.

A dirty toilet bowl with limescale stains

Having said all these, you can, from now on, keep your “porcelain throne” clean. You don’t need to do much or spend a fortune on cleaning products. As stubborn as limescale might be, you have a few natural ingredients hidden in your kitchen’s cabinet that can make your toilet sparkle like new. Follow our tips and you’ll make it like a pro!

Scroll to Top
Send this to a friend