skip to content
Limescale in your toilet

Removing limescale from your toilet

Equip yourself with facts and tools to remove limescale from your toilet

Limescale in your toilet bowl can be a recurring problem in hard water areas – not to mention limescale build up on your taps, sink and shower. This article will explain what limescale is and give you some tips to help you remove limescale from your toilet. 

What is limescale? 

Limescale is a hard, chalky substance which is mostly made up of calcium carbonate. It often builds up inside kettles, boilers, and pipework, especially, but not exclusively, where there is hot water. It can also build up on old pipes and other surfaces where ‘hard water’ has flowed, including your toilet bowl. Once it’s there, limescale can be very difficult to remove by scrubbing alone.  

What causes limescale? 

Limescale tends to occur in ‘hard water’ areas. Hard water is water that contains a higher quantity of dissolved minerals such as calcium and magnesium. As the water evaporates from exposed surfaces, these minerals can be left behind, causing the deposits known as limescale. 

What does limescale look like? 

Limescale usually manifests as an unsightly, chalky deposit which might be white, pink, or reddish brown in colour. Hard and engrained, it can be very difficult to remove, which distinguishes it from many other types of stain in your toilet.  

Is limescale bad for you? 

The short answer is no – limescale is not harmful, just unsightly. Limescale doesn’t contain any dangerous chemicals – it’s mostly made up of calcium and magnesium, which you’re also likely to find in bottles of mineral water for drinking.  

Cleaning limescale from your toilet 

What removes limescale? Scrubbing alone is rarely enough to get rid of limescale, especially if it’s been there for a while. However, there are a couple of ways you can get to work to remove limescale from your toilet bowl. 


White vinegar can be a great tool to help you get rid of all kinds of stains, including limescale, though you’ll also need some serious elbow grease to make the most of it. The acidic values of vinegar allow it to soften limescale and prepare it for scrubbing clean. Pour undiluted white vinegar into your toilet bowl, making sure you get it up under the rim where limescale often gathers and cover every part of the surface. Leave it for three to four hours and then scrub it with a brush. Repeat if necessary. When you’ve finished cleaning the limescale from your toilet, flush to finish.   

Domestos Zero Limescale Toilet Gel 

One of the best ways to remove limescale is to use Domestos Zero Limescale Toilet Gel. This specially developed formula is 3x thicker than other toilet cleaners and descalers. When you don’t just want clean, you want really clean, it removes 100% of limescale and kills 99.9% of all known germs dead to leave your toilet sparkling clean, fresh, and smelling good too. Open the bottle and squirt the gel evenly around the rim of your toilet, leave it for about 30 minutes (follow the directions on the bottle) and then flush away or scrub with a toilet brush if the limescale is particularly difficult to shift. Repeat if necessary. Domestos will get rid of your limescale, kill germs, and leave your toilet smelling fresh and clean. 

To best prevent limescale build up and keep your toilet clean and fresh, you can also use our range of Toilet Rim Blocks; or follow our Thick Bleach instructions to prevent limescale on other surfaces around your home. 

Get more product recommendations and hints & tips to tackle all your bathroom cleaning problems. 

Domestos Partnership with UNICEF 

Read about our mission to help 100 million people have access to clean and safe sanitation by 2030, and how you can support our partnership with UNICEF

Domestos safety 

Be sure to wear gloves and protect your eyes and skin while you’re using Domestos bleach products – they’re powerful, and deadly to germs! Always make sure that you use Domestos products according to the on-pack instructions.