Alberta has some of the hardest water in Canada outside of Ontario, and with Calgary near the top of the list for hardest water in the province, it’s no surprise that many Calgarians are in a constant battle with hard water stains and mineral scum. In particular, toilets are infamous for nasty, red-brown hard water stains. But how do you get rid of these stains without damaging your plumbing?
That’s a great question. Many of the commercial toilet cleaners that are widely available in stores are not made with your plumbing’s longevity in mind. In particular, toilet cleaners with bleach or which are designed to be placed inside the toilet are highly corrosive and will slowly damage your toilet and your plumbing system at large. Learn more about keeping your toilet clean. But with drop in solutions and bleach ruled out, what’s a homeowner to do about those toilet stains? Turn to good old fashioned baking soda and vinegar!
This method takes about 2 minutes of your time, but about 40 minutes over all (there’s a lot of waiting), so make sure everyone has peed before you start. You may also want to find a book or get some work done during the waiting period. To get started, grab a measuring cup, a box of baking soda, and a bottle of vinegar.
Pour one cup of vinegar into your toilet.
Wait one minute, then add one cup of baking soda.
Wait ten seconds, then add a second cup of vinegar.
Set a timer for ten minute, and go read or get some work done.
When the ten minutes is up, grab your toilet brush and give the toilet a thorough scrub. Swish the baking soda and vinegar solution around, and try to touch every nook and cranny with your brush. Do NOT flush the toilet.
Set a thirty minute timer and go back to your book or work.
After thirty minutes has passed, give the toilet a final, vigorous scrub. Flush.
When it comes to keeping your toilet in sparkling condition, it’s best to stay on top of cleaning. The longer stains are allowed to build up, the harder they are to remove. If your toilet is excessively stained and quite old, you may also want to consider whether it’s time for an upgrade. Older toilets are water hogs that use over double the amount of water (13L per flush) compared to new, dual-flush toilets (5L per flush). The oldest toilets still in use can use over 5x as much water as a modern one — over 26 litres per flush.
Contact the friendly, Calgary plumbers at Plumbing Paramedics today to learn more about how a new toilet can help you save money and water.