Skip to Content


How to remove hard water stains in a toilet

person cleaning a toilet

Sign-up now to take advantage of member exclusives!

As a member of Ask Team Clean, you get access to exclusive offers and the best cleaning tips.

A dirty toilet is, of course, not a pleasant topic of conversation. Nevertheless, it is important to know how to clean hard water stains on a toilet and, ideally, keep it clean in the future. Here are some easy tips for how to clean a stained toilet.

How do I clean toilet stains?

Among all household tasks, toilet cleaning is certainly one of the lowest on the popularity scale—. Getting rid of stubborn stains makes the task all the less appealing, so some good tips for how to remove hard water stains from a toilet will help immensely. Here are some suggestions.

Clean a heavily soiled or calcified toilet

The best way to clean a dirty toilet bowl is from top to bottom—this is also the case for hard water stains in a toilet. Clean the toilet rim first. Get a toilet cleaner and spray it under the rim. Let it soak in so that the limescale is removed and you can easily remove the dirt with a brush. For really bad stains, you can also leave the cleaner to soak in overnight.

How do you clean toilet stains on ceramic?

Directly below and above the water line is where dark spots from hard water can appear in the toilet. They aren’t the most appealing sight and may eventually smell unpleasant. Bad smells at home are never good, whether it is your vacuum cleaner, a lingering smell in your dishwasher, or indeed the toilet. That’s why a good cleaning routine is so important, even if it’s a bit of a chore!

The cause of these spots and smells in the toilet is also limescale and may build up faster if you’re in an area of hard water. If you want to clean hard water stains in a toilet, a cleaner specially designed to combat heavy limescale deposits is best.

How do you clean a stained toilet under the water line?

A good toilet cleaner is also the way to go for hard water stains on a toilet’s waterline.

  1. First, pour a generous amount of toilet cleaner into the toilet.
  2. Let the cleaner soak in for a few minutes. For particularly stubborn stains, you can wait longer.
  3. Now scrub the limescale and deposits with the toilet brush.

Clean the tank of a stained toilet

From time to time, you should also clean the tank of your toilet. It contains moving parts on which deposits can form. Limescale also builds up in the tank itself and, at some point, it starts to smell unpleasant. With a bit of bad luck, this clogs important parts, which stops the toilet from working properly. To clean the tank, remove the lid. Then brush the water tank with cleaning gel and a clean toilet brush.

How do I keep the toilet clean?

After all that work, you’ll naturally want the toilet to stay clean for a long time. You can achieve this, for example, by cleaning it regularly—once a week is enough. If limescale doesn't build up in the first place, you can save yourself the hassle of intensive cleaning. Then the toilet will always be sparkling clean and won't smell!

For more helpful tips and savings right to your inbox, sign up for Ask Team Clean today.