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To clean or not to clean toilet tank

This topic contains 40 replies, has 24 voices, and was last updated by  hojo04 5 months, 1 week ago.

Viewing 20 posts - 1 through 20 (of 41 total)
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  • #613846

    hojo04
    Pro
    Burton, Michigan

    I got my first in October and notice in toilet bowl we keep getting yellowish brownish ring coming back. (First time home owner). We have well water so I thought maybe it was from the well. I bought the toilet tablets like 2000 flushes and this is what I seen when I lifted the cover off the tank. Can this be cleaned or pretty much have to buy a new toilet?

    #613850

    ChadM
    Moderator
    East Palestine, Ohio

    Looks like you some serious iron in your water…those toilet tablets won’t do much for that.

    Chad

    A Working Pro since 1993

    Member since 12/07/2013

    A Carpenter's Journal

    Housewright Construction

    #613852

    kswiss
    Pro
    edmonton, AB

    Ya you might want to invest in an iron filter.

    #613857

    Doobie
    Pro
    Ajax, ON

    Is it leaving a ring or stains in the bowl as well, or just in the tank? Looks like you have really hard water.

    Kevin.

    #613859

    58Chev
    Pro
    Etobicoke, ON

    Can this be cleaned or pretty much have to buy a new toilet?

    It can be cleaned with commercial cleaners. I know in Canada We can get a really good cleaner with 23% Hydrochloric Acid content. I have this stuff and it will clean just about anything.

    https://www.homehardware.ca/en/rec/index.htm/Indoor-Living/Home-Commercial-Cleaning/Cleaners/Bathroom/Bowl/4L-Toilet-Bowl-Cleaner/_/N-ntkgcZ1z141re/R-I4521226

    “If you don’t pass on the knowledge you have to others, it Dies with you”
    — Glenn Botting

    #613877

    hojo04
    Pro
    Burton, Michigan

    I have a water softer, but I dont know if there is a iron filter hooked to that or in it.

    I can clean the bowl, but that tank is right out right nasty. Even if I clean it it will come back. Maybe I can look into the iron filter.

    #613897

    brianpeters
    Pro
    Murray, KY

    A new toilet will look the same after not too long, if nothing changes with the water.

    #613899

    Clev08
    Pro

    Definitely get an iron filter. I’d hate to see what the inside of your plumbing looks like…

    #613911

    Doobie
    Pro
    Ajax, ON

    I know in Canada We can get a really good cleaner with 23% Hydrochloric Acid content.

    How hard is that on his rubber components in there though. He may be prematurely killing them using that stuff.

    Kevin.

    #613913

    jponto07
    Moderator
    Bloomington, IN

    Are we sure that there isn’t something in the water that is corroding the metal parts in the tank…thus causing the rust color?

    Jon P.
    Timber Carpentry & Construction
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    #613917

    RonW
    Pro
    Holladay, Tn

    I got my first in October and notice in toilet bowl we keep getting yellowish brownish ring coming back. (First time home owner). We have well water so I thought maybe it was from the well. I bought the toilet tablets like 2000 flushes and this is what I seen when I lifted the cover off the tank. Can this be cleaned or pretty much have to buy a new toilet?

    After installing the proper filters. I would buy new.
    A new toilet will save a lot of water per flush.

    Ron

    A Working Pro since 1994!

    Member since March 26, 2014.

    #613925

    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Pro
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    Are we sure that there isn’t something in the water that is corroding he metal parts in the tank…thus causing the rust color?

    well water is notorious for being high in Iron. It will leave rust stains in toilets, showers and sinks much like that.

    #613928

    I agree with jponto can be tank itself you definitely need a good filtration system for sure if you are using well water.maybe piping inside the house causing the iron . You may use clr to clean the tank.

    #613930

    hojo04
    Pro
    Burton, Michigan

    I never seen a toilet tank like that before. My girlfriend said she seen one of our pieces of silverware looks like it has small rust spots on it. Also noticed that we have a Brita picture and inside is starting to show a light brown rind. Thats on plastic

    #614046

    Seven-Delta-FortyOne
    Pro
    The Emerald Triangle, Northern California

    That looks like iron bacteria. It’s caused by high iron levels in well water, and is exacerbated by organic matter finding it’s way into the well.

    “Iron filters” are extremely problematic, for the simple reason that in the presence of high iron, they clog rapidly.

    Another option is well cleaning. 2 ways, basically; Chlorine, and Oxolic acid. The problem with chlorine is it is highly toxic, and it doesn’t break down easily. There are a couple of methods for dechlorinating the water, including Vitamin C. The bigger problem is that chlorine only kills about 97% of bacteria. The other 3% comes back even stronger. This is why I would recommend an acid clean. It just takes longer, usually 36 hours of soak time in the well.

    The first step is to get your water tested at a lab. You can hire a company to test it and do a full analysis for you, and recommend proper treatment.

    Delta

    Goin' Down In Flames........

    #614049

    hojo04
    Pro
    Burton, Michigan

    That looks like iron bacteria. It’s caused by high iron levels in well water, and is exacerbated by organic matter finding it’s way into the well.

    “Iron filters” are extremely problematic, for the simple reason that in the presence of high iron, they clog rapidly.

    Another option is well cleaning. 2 ways, basically; Chlorine, and Oxolic acid. The problem with chlorine is it is highly toxic, and it doesn’t break down easily. There are a couple of methods for dechlorinating the water, including Vitamin C. The bigger problem is that chlorine only kills about 97% of bacteria. The other 3% comes back even stronger. This is why I would recommend an acid clean. It just takes longer, usually 36 hours of soak time in the well.

    The first step is to get your water tested at a lab. You can hire a company to test it and do a full analysis for you, and recommend proper treatment.

    Delta

    I would have to check my paperwork, but I though I had a water test done before I got the house. I know the inspector said the well was a good well that it won’t dry up anytime soon. I’ll have to look.

    #614050

    MrFid
    Pro
    Sudbury, MA

    After installing the proper filters. I would buy new.
    A new toilet will save a lot of water per flush.

    I agree that it looks like a high volume tank, but if you can deal with the iron situation (already hashed out above) you don’t need a new toilet necessarily. You can reduce the flush volume by taking a 1 liter plastic bottle (seltzer often sold in this size), filling with sand (or water, or anything heavier than water), and placing in the tank where it won’t interfere with the mechanicals. Then the tank will fill one liter less of water for each flush, which is quite close to the difference between high flush and low flush toilets. You just need to secure the bottle to a location where it won’t interfere with the process.

    Not to be too descriptive here, but the only thing you need to worry about with the liter bottle solution is if you really “sink a ship” in there, it can clog a little easier since the commode is made for 1.6gal, but I never noticed it as a big problem when I used them.

    #614072

    cmeyer25
    Pro
    Bellingham, WA

    I should try that with my toilet @mrfid. I keep thinking about doing it, but our toilet has a hard time flushing anyway.

    Charlie
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    #614116

    Rob
    Pro
    Birmingham, Alabama

    One other side effect that you will notice is that your water will turn your hair red. As the iron/water is rinsed through your hair it will stick and collect. It will rust on your head. If you try using a different shampoo, while rinsing, it may look like your head is bleeding. (I have a client that this happened to.)

    #614204

    hojo04
    Pro
    Burton, Michigan

    One other side effect that you will notice is that your water will turn your hair red. As the iron/water is rinsed through your hair it will stick and collect. It will rust on your head. If you try using a different shampoo, while rinsing, it may look like your head is bleeding. (I have a client that this happened to.)

    WOW. Sounds like I may have a mess on my hands. I have a 1 yr old that we bathe him in this water, plus we drink this water through a Brita pitcher. I wonder if this is still harmful to my son and us if we drink it?

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