How to Clean a Toilet Without Chemicals


Donna asked: How can I clean our toilet? We are on a septic system, and our dog drinks out of the toilet. Thank you.

If your dog likes to drink out of the toilet, the last thing you want to do is plug it full of chemical cleaners.  Instead, try this pet-friendly, eco-friendly cleaning technique to keep toilets fresh.  Simple and effective, it’s even safe for septic systems!

You Will Need:

  • White vinegar
  • Clean toilet brush
  • Baking soda
  • Spray or squirt bottle
  • Warm water

Steps to Clean the Toilet:

  1. Add vinegar to a squirt bottle.  For routine cleaning, dilute it with a bit of warm water. For bowls with obvious stains or grime, apply full strength.
  2. Spray or squirt the bowl with the vinegar.
  3. Allow it to sit for several minutes (or up to overnight for really dirty toilets).
  4. Scrub the bowl with the clean toilet brush.
  5. Flush to remove the dirty water and vinegar.
  6. If stains remain, make a paste of baking soda and warm water and apply to the bowl. Allow it to sit overnight, then scrub clean.

Additional Tips and Advice

  • To remove stubborn stains or rust rings, you may need to use a stronger cleaner the first time.  Lock your pet out of the bathroom overnight while it works, then rinse and flush several times until the residue is gone.
  • To maintain your “green clean,” be sure to repeat the process frequently. The more often you clean, the more effective this method is. Clean at least once a week; preferably twice.
  • Baking soda and vinegar are both non-toxic and safe for pets. However, if your pet has a sensitive stomach, it’s best to keep him away from the bowl while it “soaks.”
  • When you combine baking soda and vinegar, you get a frothy “volcano” effect.  Do so only with caution; it’s not dangerous, but it can be extremely messy.

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