Welcome to our third post in the new series, 52 Weeks to a Cleaner House. If you need some encouragement to stay on task with your cleaning resolutions, don’t forget to Subscribe to 52 Weeks to a Cleaner House. We’ll send out weekly updates of our cleaning antics and entertain you along the way.
How to Clean a Toilet–A life lesson you wish you could live without.
Today we’re heading into the busiest room in my home. One would assume it’s the kitchen. But, since my husband and sons have super efficient digestive systems, ahem…it’s the bathroom. (My youngest once ate dinner on the toilet.)
Before we get started, here’s an interesting (and stomach turning) fact. Each time you flush, bacteria droplets can spray out of your toilet over ten inches in every direction! So put the lid down and keep your toothbrush across the room.
Now, throw on some rubber gloves and grab your scrub brush. We’re cleaning the crap out of that toilet. (Excuse the crudeness. I’ve just always wanted to say that.)
What you’ll need:
-Clorox or Lysol toilet bowl cleaner with angled head dispenser
– 409, Fantastik or your favorite disinfectant cleanser
-Toilet brush (one with the extra side brush appendage for getting under the rim)
-Tooth brush (preferably one that no one in your family is using anymore. Allshecooks.com is not responsible for any toothbrush sabotage resulting from this post.)
-Cotton swabs (for cleaning the hinges and tight spaces behind the lid. If you live with a member of the male species, this makes complete sense.)
-Cloths or sponges
-Rubber gloves (recommended)
HAZMAT suit (optional. But seriously, do put on old clothes…unless you like bleach stains.)
1) Squirt a liberal amount of toilet bowl cleanser under the rim. Get up in there as far as your courage allows and cover the entire circumference. The liquid will automatically begin running down the sides into the bowl. Let the cleaner battle it out with the germs for about 15 minutes.
2) Spray disinfectant all over the outside of your toilet and wipe it down completely with the cloth. Pay special attention to the bottom, near the floor. It amazes me how many dried urine splatters I find down there. Years ago, I was convinced that we had a leak somewhere in the piping because I kept noticing it in the caulk around the base. But it wasn’t a leak. My son just needed glasses and my husband was drinking too much.
3) Once your exterior porcelain is nice and shiny again, it’s time to open that lid and get to scrubbing. Your scrubbing time will depend on how long it’s been since your bowl’s been cleaned, how much use it gets and what kind of toxic waste is being dumped in there. Be sure to get the scary black gunk out from under the rim. For neglected toilets that have a ring around the drain, try some Lime Away. Several cleanings maybe required to get rid of it.
4) Use disinfectant to completely wipe off your toilet seat and top of rim. DO NOT NEGLECT THE BOTTOM OF THE SEAT. It’s usually covered in petrified DNA samples (to put it politely). If the seat stains easily, a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser works very well to remove those brown and yellow set in stains.
5) Any mom of boys can relate to how difficult it is to clean the “drippies” out from the toilet seat and lid hinges. I swear my sons aim there on purpose (which is why they clean it themselves now). Usually the hinges have covers that pop right up, but the toothbrush and cotton swabs come in handy for those impossibly tight spaces. If you still can’t reach a stain, flood it out with a steady stream of water or disinfectant until the liquid runs clear. I’ve resorted to that on more than one occasion.
In addition to the cleaning how-to’s, here are some tips suggested by friends. Give them a try and let me know what you think.
-Drain toilet bowl and soak overnight with vinegar if you prefer natural cleaners.
– Use sandpaper to scrub away that stubborn ring.
-Soaking a piece of Magic Eraser in your bowl overnight will also remove the ring.
-Use Coca Cola to clean your toilet bowl. (They say it works.)
-Use denture cleaning tablets to keep your toilet bowl fresh. (But do NOT use toilet bowl cleaning tablets on your dentures.)
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