Ways to Remove Yellow Stains from Your Toilet

7 Easy Ways to Remove Yellow Stains from Your Toilet

In Cleaning Products, Home Products, Home Tips by Jamie

Just about every toilet gets yellow stains on it at one point in its life, and while these stains can be, at the very least, annoying to look at, there are easy ways to get rid of them. In this article, we will cover 7 easy ways to remove yellow stains from your toilet, from regular toilet bowl cleaners to bleach and even Coca-Cola. But first, you might be wondering what causes these yellow stains. Let’s find out!

What is Causing the Yellow Stains on Your Toilet?

There are many different reasons why there might be yellow stains in your toilet!

Generally, the most common of these reasons is hard water. Hard water contains minerals such as calcium, iron, and magnesium, and the presence of hard water in your toilet can lead to a limescale formation.

Sometimes parts of your toilet, like the seat, can get these yellow stains over time. If your toilet seat is made of a material like plastic it will lose the white color even faster than normal; at that point the only way to get rid of the yellow color is to replace the seat.

Another common reason is because your toilet might not be getting cleaned as often or as thoroughly as it needs to be. This can be easily fixed and the methods we’ve listed below can easily get rid of these unsightly stains so you can start fresh!

How to Remove Yellow Stain from Toilet?

1. Scrub with Toilet Bowl Brush and Toilet Bowl Cleaner

One way to clean the yellow stains from your toilet is simply with toilet bowl cleaner and a brush! It’s easy to do this, too: just follow the directions for use on the toilet bowl cleaner you have and it should do the trick!

If you’re looking for a new toilet bowl cleaner or are simply wondering which one is the best, there are plenty of good toilet bowl cleaners out there! Lysol Click Gel Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner, Gel Toilet Bowl Cleaner, For Cleaning and Refreshing – Mango & Hibiscus, 6 applicators

Scrubbing Bubbles Fresh Gel Toilet Bowl Cleaning Stamps, Gel Cleaner, Helps Prevent Limescale and Toilet Rings, Lavender Scent, 6 Stamps, 1.34 Oz

  • Another great toilet bowl cleaner comes from SC Johnson in their Scrubbing Bubbles line; the Fresh Bowl Toilet Bowl Cleaning Stamps are simple to use and were made specifically to combat limescale buildup in your toilet!

Method Antibacterial Toilet Bowl Cleaner (pack of 6)

  • If you’re looking for a product a little more environmentally friendly, give the Method Antibacterial Toilet Bowl Cleaner a try! It cleans just as well as leading brands with a non-toxic, plant-based formula.

2. White Vinegar and Baking Soda Method

You can also use white vinegar and baking soda to remove yellow stains from your toilet bowl. It’s easy to do, and you’ll be rid of those yucky yellow stains in no time! White vinegar is naturally acidic which means it is a powerful cleaning agent and cuts through hard stains easily; mixed with baking soda it releases carbon dioxide gas that cuts through stains.

You’ll start by turning off the water to the tank and then flushing the toilet; behind your toilet there should be a valve knob; turn it clockwise to temporarily turn off the water. Next, measure out and pour about 1 cup of white vinegar into the empty toilet bowl. You can treat it like a regular toilet bowl cleaner! Just pour it from the rim of the bowl and slowly go all the way around.

White Vinegar and Baking Soda Method 

Next, close the toilet lid and let the vinegar sit for as long as you can. The ideal time is about 8 hours but if you can’t wait that long it’s not a problem! After this time has passed, pour some baking soda into the toilet bowl. This time, you don’t have to measure out any specific amount; just however much you need to cover the bowl. The solution might fizz up, which is a good sign and means that it is working!

To remove hard water stains, you might have to add another cup of the vinegar after you’ve sprinkled the baking soda in! Then you’ll scrub the bowl with a toilet brush until the stains are loosened. Then, turn the water back on by turning that knob counter-clockwise this time, and flush the toilet.

You might have to repeat the process once more!

3. Clean with CLR Calcium, Lime, and Rust Remover 28 oz - 2 Pack

Cleaning with CLR–calcium, lime and rust remover–is just as easy as cleaning with a regular toilet bowl cleaner, except CLR specifically targets residue and buildup from hard water!

You’ll start by turning off the water to your toilet; usually, there is a knob that can be found behind your toilet; just turn it clockwise. Next, flush the toilet to remove the remaining water from the bowl. You’ll pour 1 cup of CLR into the bowl afterward and wait about 2 minutes.

Once these two minutes have passed, go ahead and scrub the bowl with a regular toilet brush or even a pumice stone for another 2 minutes. Then you’ll turn the water back on (to do this, just turn the knob counter-clockwise) and flush!

4. Bleach Clorox Toilet Bowl Cleaner with Bleach, Rain Clean - 24 oz, 3 Pack

You can use bleach to clean your toilet bowl, especially when you want to remove hard water stains, but it’s easier all around to use a bleach-based product such as Clorox Toilet Bowl Cleaner as it’s diluted a bit and safer to use than straight bleach. The Clorox Toilet Bowl Cleaner also disinfects as it cleans which means less cleaning for you!

5. Clean Using Coca-Cola 18 Pack of Cola

Believe it or not, you can clean a toilet, and even cut through yellow stains, using Coca-Cola! The acidity found in these beverages–while mild–is perfect for cutting through limescale buildup and, chances are, you have some in your home already.

Start by measuring 1 to 2 cups of Coke and then pour it into the toilet bowl. You want it to sit for as long as you can, ideally several hours; the longer it sits the more time it has to work. After waiting for a bit, flush the toilet and most, if not all, of the stains should be loosened and will wash away.

You might need to repeat the process more than once!

6. Mix Essential Oils with Lemon Juice

Mix Essential Oils with Lemon Juice 

You can use lemon juice mixed with essential oils to clean your toilet bowl! You can even use these products separately though they may not clean as well if not mixed together. Lemon juice, like most of the solutions in this article, is naturally acidic which makes it a powerful cleaning agent. It is also disinfecting, which means less cleaning on your part!

You’ll want to use at least 1 cup of lemon juice to clean your toilet bowl, and just add in a few drops of your favorite essential oil!

7. Spray WD-40 WD-40 110071 Multi-Use Product Spray with Smart Straw, 11 oz. (Pack of 1)

You might be surprised to learn that you can also use WD-40 to remove hard water buildup from a toilet bowl! Just spray a little bit into the bowl, right onto the stains. Let it sit for only a few minutes, and then scrub the bowl with a toilet brush. After flushing, the stains should be gone!


What’s the Best Way to Remove Yellow Stains from the Toilet Seat?

To remove yellow stains from the toilet seat there are a number of methods to try, including some of the ones you might use to get rid of similar stains in your toilet bowl! You can use bleach, a mixture of white vinegar and baking soda, and even lemon juice.

The best way out of these methods would be using bleach; in which you detach the toilet seat and soak it in a solution of water and bleach. But removing and then reattaching the toilet seat might be a bit labor intensive, which is where the other two methods come into play. They’ll work just as well without tools needing to be used!

How Can You Clean the Exterior Part of Your Toilet?

To clean the exterior part of a toilet, you can use any number of things, including disinfecting and/or bleach wipes, white vinegar, lemon juice, baking soda.

How to Prevent Getting Yellow Stains on Your Toilet?

To prevent yellow stains from appearing on your toilet the best thing you can do is give your toilet a thorough clean as often as you can. Sometimes a quick, even weekly, scrub with a toilet brush and toilet bowl cleaner isn’t enough to do the trick and you might need to use other cleaning agents to get the job done!

Should You Clean the Inside of Your Toilet Tank?

You should clean the inside of your toilet tank; it is recommended that you do so at least twice a year.

How Often Should You Be Cleaning Your Toilet?

You should clean your toilet once a week or more, if necessary. This can mean wiping it down with disinfecting wipes every couple days or thorough cleans every week.

How Long Do Toilets Typically Last?

Generally, toilets can last up to 50 years but most of them don’t make it that far. With proper maintenance and cleaning, however, you can lengthen the life of your toilet.


Related Questions

How Do You Clean Other Colored Toilet Stains?

To clean other colored toilet stains, such as brown stains, you can try just about every method listed above! No matter the stain, they can be easily cleaned by cleaning agents with acidic properties such as white vinegar and lemon juice.

How Long Do You Let Coke Sit in Toilet?

To clean a toilet bowl with Coke, you’ll want it to sit in the bowl as long as you can, ideally a few hours, to make sure that the acidic properties get enough time to properly break down the stains.

How Often Should You Replace Your Toilet Bowl Brush?

You should replace your toilet bowl brush about every six months or so.

Is CLR Safe for a Septic System?

Yes, CLR is septic safe.

Are Toilet Bowl Cleaners Septic Safe?

Most toilet bowl cleaners are not septic safe, especially ones that are chlorine or bleach based. However, toilet bowl cleaners that are made from natural and plant based ingredients are usually septic safe!

Is WD-40 Septic Safe?

WD-40 is not septic safe; it causes harm to the helpful bacteria in your septic system.

Can You Pressure Wash a Toilet?

You can pressure wash a toilet but really you should only do this with commercial toilets, especially those that are fully waterproof. If you try pressure washing your household toilet you risk damaging it and the walls around it.

Final Thoughts

Yellow stains, and other stains caused by hard water and other sources, can show up often in toilets. They might be pesky, annoying, and nasty but cleaning and getting rid of them shouldn’t be! Whether you use bleach, toilet bowl cleaner, or something more natural like white vinegar and baking soda, treating these stains is as easy as ever!

About the Author

Jamie

Jamie is the Founder of My Home Dwelling. He is a homeowner and enjoys sharing his homeowner tips with others. He has real estate experience working as a new home construction Realtor. Jamie has worked on numerous residential construction sites helping with interior and exterior renovations. He loves refinishing furniture, DIY home projects, and sharing his knowledge online.