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Bathroom Cleaning

How to Clean Toilet Bowl Stains and Prevent Odours – A Comprehensive Guide

Cleaning the toilet isn’t the most glamorous job, but someone’s got to do it.  Nobody likes a persistent smell from the toilet, after all. Wondering how to clean toilet stain from the bowl? This comprehensive guide on how to remove stains from the toilet bowl is sure to help.

How to Clean Toilet Bowl Stains – What You’ll Need

When considering how to remove stains from the toilet bowl, it’s necessary to ensure you’ve got all the right tools on hand before you begin.

  • Toilet Cleaner

The standard toilet cleaner is essentially chlorine bleach or a commercial disinfectant containing bleach liquid. These are often scented to help freshen up the air in the loo, however the disinfectant itself should effectively eradicate smell from your toilet. There are plenty of toilet cleaners on the market that will do the job – Domestos bleach works wonders.

  • Limescale Removers / Borax

Limescale removing powders and liquids containing strong cleaning agents like borax can be purchased if you need to perform a deep clean on your loo. These are also good for considering how to get stains out of the toilet bowl that have proven themselves particularly stubborn.

  • Toilet Brush

When considering how to clean toilet bowl stain, a good brush is an essential piece of cleaning equipment. Go for those with plastic bristles, so as not to damage the toilet surface.

  • Wipes

Some people wipe down the outside of their loo with re-usable cloths. However, it’s more hygienic to buy disposable wipes. Alternatively, you can use a paper towel, along with a good all purpose cleaner, such as Domestos, to leave your loo bright white and sparkling clean.

  • Gloves

It’s important to protect your skin when dealing with bleach-based products. Gloves and protective clothing will ensure you keep yourself safe. Additionally, make sure to move bathroom supplies or mats away from the toilet while you clean it, so that you don’t splash them. Finally, be sure to keep the area well-ventilated by opening the window.

How to Clean Toilet Bowl Stains – Step by Step

Get rid of unsightly stains and nasty odour by following this step-by-step guide to a sparkling loo:

  • When considering how to get stains out of the toilet bowl, many people forget they need to access the entire surface inside the bowl. To be able to do this, you need to turn off the water valve, before flushing it to reduce the water level.
  • Lift up the toilet seat and squirt your chosen cleaning product around the rim and sides, letting it run down the sides of the bowl. Scrub with a toilet brush, spreading the liquid all around the bowl as you go. Set aside the brush and leave the disinfectant to work.
  • In the meantime, shut the lid and begin work on the outside of the toilet using your wipes or paper towel and cleaner. Clean around the tank, hinges, toilet seat and base. Remember to lift up the lid and seat itself, to clean underneath, as this can be the source of lingering grime and bad odours.
  • Grab your scrubbing brush again and give the toilet bowl a second scrub, focusing on key areas like underneath the rim and down into the u-bend. When finished, flush the toilet, using the fresh water to clean off the toilet brush.
  • For heavier limescale deposits, take a wet pumice stone and gently rub the area, taking care not to scratch the enamel.
  • Step back and admire your work! The toilet should be gleaming by this stage, with a much more pleasant smell.

How to Clean Toilet Bowl Stains with Vinegar

If you have pets liable to drink the toilet water, or if you simply have run out of toilet cleaner and urgently need to clean the loo, you will happy to know there is a great alternative likely stored in your kitchen cupboards – vinegar. It’s a great soaking agent and deodoriser. How to clean toilet bowl stains with vinegar? Pour approximately 3 cups into the toilet bowl, taking care to cover as much of the sides as you can before scrubbing with your toilet brush. A couple of cups of vinegar in the toilet every month can actually prevent limescale stains from reoccurring.

Vinegar can be helpful elsewhere in your bathroom too – here's how to unblock a drain with vinegar and baking soda:

How to Clean Toilet Bowl Stains and Prevent Odours – A Comprehensive Guide

There you have it, a comprehensive guide on how to clean toilet bowl stains. Remember, the best way to control stains and odours is with day-to-day maintenance of your loo. Leave the toilet brush soaking in soap solution or diluted toilet cleaner and keep it by the toilet so it’s always on-hand for a quick scrub. Place some disposable wipes on top of the tank, follow the steps above for a regular clean, and it will be easy to keep your toilet looking and smelling fresh.

limescale-free toilet bowl

We recommend


To maintain a sparkling limescale-free toilet bowl, clean it regularly with a top quality cleaning product such as Domestos. Always use as directed

Safety Warning


Use biocides safely. Always read the label and product information before use.

Key Steps:

•       Squirt cleaner around the sides and rim.

•       Scrub the bowl with a toilet brush.

•       Soak: give the disinfectant some time to work before scrubbing again, this time focusing on underneath the rim and the u-bend.