Clean Gray Stains from the Toilet Bowl
LESLIE: Lauren in Florida finds The Money Pit on WCOA. What can we help you with?
LAUREN: Well, I might have inadvertently combined bleach and another cleaner in my toilet …
LESLIE: (chuckling) OK.
LAUREN: … not remembering that I had put the lemon-scented bleach and I think I might have added something else. And then I may have left that in there for a couple of days. And – this is a spare bathroom so I’m not in there everyday. And when I went back in, I noticed that – right away – that from the water line down, it had turned a grayish color. And I flushed it, flushed it, flushed it out with water and then …
LESLIE: And that grayish color just sort of stayed?
LAUREN: Well, the gray disappeared but the glazing now feels very rough from the water line down.
TOM: Have you tried a product, Lauren, like CLR? CLR stands for calcium, lime, rust. It’s a really good cleaner for pulling out whatever ails you in that toilet.
LESLIE: But that could be if it’s just a buildup that she’s now feeling.
TOM: Well, it could still be. There could be some residual there. I mean I would do that before I did anything else. Because glazing rarely wears out that quickly. I mean you would have to have really put a nasty mix in there to have impacted it.
LESLIE: Yeah but if bleach is so sort of detrimental to your plumbing piping itself, what could it do to the bowl?
TOM: No, it’s not going to do anything to the bowl. It would be very corrosive for the metal parts and the rubber gaskets and the seals and stuff like that but it shouldn’t affect the bowl at all. So that’s why I feel this is probably some sort of a mineral deposit or other deposit and I would use CLR on it as a start.
LAUREN: OK. And then if that doesn’t work, if there’s still like that rust feel from the water line down …
TOM: Well, if you can’t get that out then that’s what you’ve got and you’re probably not going to be able to get it any more clean than that, Lauren.
LESLIE: If the glazing is gone, Tom, is there any sort of detriment to the bowl itself? Like is the toilet going to break down because the glaze is gone and then the – it’s porous?
TOM: Nah. Toilets don’t wear out. You know, the mechanical wears out; the toilet doesn’t. You know what? Lauren, I would clean it up and I would just put a little sign on it and tell no one to reach into the bowl.
LESLIE: (chuckling) Yeah.
TOM: Never feel the bowl.
LESLIE: Keep your hands out.
LAUREN: No feeling below the water line. (Leslie chuckles)
TOM: That’s right, yeah. Put some of that blue stuff in there. It’ll all look great. (chuckling) OK?
LAUREN: OK, well thanks very much.
TOM: Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT. 888-666-3974.