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Everyday Cheapskate: How to Get Rid of the Dreaded Toilet Bowl Ring

Mary Hunt on

It is not the most elegant question I get but certainly one of the most common. "I've tried everything I can think of, but that stubborn, ugly toilet bowl ring won't go away!" readers say. "It goes away but just keeps coming back!"

Toilet bowls develop discolorations for many reasons that have nothing to do with the quality of the housekeeping. Basically, the dreaded toilet bowel ring is the result of hard-water conditions, water sitting in the toilet and the toilet seeing a lot of use.

While there are lots of commercial products that promise to remove hard-water stains in the toilet, ordinary pantry items can be just as effective with no harsh chemicals needed.

Under most conditions, weekly cleaning prevents heavy stain buildup and reduces the appearance of any existing stains so the bowl can look pristine and white again.

And when none of that works? Don't worry. I have the mother of all solutions for that, too, in a bit. But let's start with the easiest.



Make sure you protect your hands with rubber gloves.

Never mix bleach with anything other than water, because doing so can cause dangerous chemical reactions.


These two common nontoxic and harmless edible items, when used together strategically, are powerful at cleaning things, including hard-water stains in the toilet.


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