Toilet bowl ring

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by snifferpro, Jul 4, 2014.

  1. snifferpro

    snifferpro New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    I installed 2 Toto toilets in mid December/January time frame.
    1 in the master bath and 1 in the guest bath. Both toilets have Sanagloss.

    The toilet in the master bath has developed a visible hard scaly toilet ring at the water line. The one
    in the guest bath (used infrequently) does not have this ring.

    I have a water softener installed so I have soft water throughout the house.

    Toilets are cleaned once a week.

    What is causing the ring in the master bath toilet?

    How do I remove the ring without damaging the Sanagloss finish? I've tried Lime Away and that does
    absolutely nothing.

    How do I prevent the ring from coming back once I'm able to remove the ring?

    I was going to use Clorox Toilet Bowl cleaner with Teflon, but that product is no longer available.
  2. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,796
    Location:
    IL
    You can use a Pumie pumice stick to remove. It is abrasive, but should not harm porcelain.

    To treat with Lime Away, or straight Chlorox, but not at the same time, empty the bowl. Apply strips of toilet paper or paper towel that you wet to let the chemical be right on the ring straight. When it dries, re-wet.

    Get a water hardness test to test your softened water. Hach 5-B is well respected and easy to use. Maybe your water is not being softened well enough.

    Flush after each use.
  3. snifferpro

    snifferpro New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    I've tested the water using Hach Sofchek and it checks ok. Same hardness/softness as all other water outlets. I can
    certainly try the 5-B to see if there is any difference.

    Toilets are always flushed after every use. In fact, because of the low gpf (1.6) the toilets are flushed twice after
    a number 2 to avoid any backups.

    Is there anything I can put on the bowl after it is cleaned to help avoid the ring.
    I saw this stuff (Self-Cleen ST3) but don't know if it's just a scam or if it really does what
    it says.

    Will the pummie harm the Sanagloss finish?
  4. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,796
    Location:
    IL
    Your Hach Sofchek is probably good. However the 5-B would be more sensitive I think.

    I suggest either the Fluidmaster Flush n Sparkle, or the Kaboom Scrub Free system. The Kaboom has the advantage that you could more easily reload with slow-disolving pool tablets rather than their refills. Avoid the Flush n Sparkle green or blue cartridges. Only the white is effective. Search for discussions.

    See http://terrylove.com/forums/index.php?threads/amazing-last-resort-stain-remover-on-porcelain.57718/ I don't know if wjcandee would suggest using this on Sanagloss. I am not sure, but if nothing else is effective, I think I know what I would do.
    One more thing... you might consider phosphoric acid. It is much easier on the lungs etc than muriatic would be. It used to be a major ingredient of CLR. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calcium_Lime_Rust It is sold as Klean-Strip 1-gal. Phosphoric Prep and Etch. It is not super fast, but it should be better than current CLR.

    I am not a pro. My toilets are not Sanagloss.
  5. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,973
    Location:
    New York, NY
    I would not use Pumie on Sanagloss.

    Call Toto customer service at the number on their web site, totousa.com, and ask them. They are very nice and that's what they are there for. And I would appreciate it if you would then share their answer with us.
  6. Wallijonn

    Wallijonn Member

    Messages:
    185
    Location:
    Arizona
    If the water softener was recently installed then the cause is probably minerals being flushed out, and since the master bathroom may be further away from the house water source it will probably have more mineral buildup to be flushed, it will take longer to flush the pipes.

    The water softener will probably attack the water heater; you will probably need to replace it about every 3 years; make absolutely sure that it is grounded correctly; keep a constant eye on it.

    If and when you do clean it of mineral deposits you may want to coat the inside of the bowl with Invisible Shield after cleaning with Miracle Scrub. http://www.cleanxshowerdoors.com/our-products.html They may work for you. They work for some, they don't work for others. Be aware that Miracle Scrub, being a mild abrasive, could damage the Sanagloss. It's because of our mineral deposits that I chose not to go with Sanagloss. Some people use vinegar to clean their toilet bowls. http://www.momalwaysfindsout.com/2012/01/how-to-clean-a-toilet-with-vinegar/ As an acid it too may attack the Sanagloss finish. It might be best to clean daily with vinegar (shorter sitting times) for at least a week than letting it work for an hour on just one day. Use a soft bristle brush. On my old toilets I would pour a cup of vinegar down the over-flow tube, let it work for 15 minutes, then flush - to try to keep the minerals from clogging the small rim drain holes. I haven't had to yet resort to that on my newly installed Drakes. http://plumbing.about.com/od/toilets/ss/Hard-Water-Stains-In-The-Toilet_2.htm suggests vinegar and baking soda. (I usually pour a cup of vinegar down each drain in the house, especially the bathtub and shower drains, once a month. The worse smells must be the ones that come out of the kitchen disposal... Never pour grease down a toilet or drain - it'll clog up the pipes if you do it often and long enough. I have PVC pipes so I'm hoping that vinegar won't affect them.)

    As always, look at ALL the YouTube videos. They may give some good ideas. (I had never heard of using denture cleaning tablets to clean toilets, for example. Yeah, Google it. Drop a denture tablet (or six...) into the toilet bowl after your last flush, wait 20 minutes, flush. Repeat daily for a week to gauge if it's working.)
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2014
  7. Reach4

    Reach4 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,796
    Location:
    IL
    What color is your ring? I had a color in mind, but it may not match the color in yours. Is there discoloration in the two toilet tanks, and what is the color if so?

    Interesting about the denture tablets. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denture_cleaner says some denture cleaner may be a mild chlorine bleach solution. sodium hypochlorite is sold widely in the swimming pool chemical section. hth brand sells it as their shock (#3) selection. I used some of that in my recent well sanitizing.
  8. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,973
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Okay, here's the answer directly from the Toto web site:

    "Hard water marks are composed of minerals from the water supply. They will not dissolve using bleach or detergents. It takes a slightly acidic cleaner like vinegar or a lime dissolving cleaner to remove the minerals. Neither of these cleaners will harm the SanaGloss finish.

    You can use vinegar or lime dissolving cleaner and a non-scratch scour pad made for porcelain. Allow a little contact time to allow the cleaner to dissolve the buildup.

    If the stain at the waterline in your toilet bowl persists, you may need to remove some water from the bowl. Then reapply the vinegar or lime dissolving cleaner at full strength. Removing the water prevents the solution from being diluted."
  9. snifferpro

    snifferpro New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    I'm heading out to the store this weekend to get some vinegar to give that a try.

    Still don't understand why one toilet (the most used toilet) has this ring.

    The ring color is just slightly darker the the cotton white and gets progressively darker
    if it is not taken care of over time.

    Thanks for all the replies and I'll post back with results of the vinegar treatment.
  10. dw85745

    dw85745 Member

    Messages:
    71
    Location:
    Arizona
    Before I tried pumice stone - last resort in my book -- I'd try liquid first.
    If liquid don't work then try some toothpaste (white). Toothpaste is a very fine abrasive,
    actually will polish glass, and I use it quite a bit for a number of different cleanup problems.
  11. snifferpro

    snifferpro New Member

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    ok everyone, I've had some success.

    I made a paste using salt and vinegar and used that with a non scratch scour pad to dissolve and remove the
    ring.

    Now I will closely watch the toilet to see if the ring reappears. Should it reappear in this
    toilet and not the other I will be completely mystified.

    Again, thanks for all the suggestions.
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