Removing Rust Stains from Sinks, Bathtubs, and Toilets Naturally

Trust the Experts at A Maurais & Sons, Inc., for Help with Rust Stains

This month, we’re sharing tips for removing rust stains from sinks, bathtubs, and toilets naturally. While we’re not suggesting that you shouldn’t ever use chemically based removers, naturally eliminating rust stains promotes your fixtures’ longevity. A Maurais & Sons, Inc. knows some natural ways you can remove rust stains from sinks, bathtubs, and toilets, including:

  • Distilled White Vinegar
  • Citric Acid
  • Mild Abrasives


You should never mix chemicals or even natural products with chemicals as it may cause a dangerous reaction.


Get Rid of Bathtub and Sink Rust Stains with Distilled White Vinegar

Distilled white vinegar effectively gets rid of rust stains because it’s made with acetic acid. If you only have food-grade distilled white vinegar on-hand, that’s okay, but cleaning-grade has a higher acidity. We recommend using distilled white vinegar weekly to prevent rust stains from permanently remaining on your bathtub, toilet, and sink. Add one cup of distilled white vinegar to a spray bottle and dilute with water. You can cut the vinegar’s odor with your favorite essential oil. Use a scrub brush or scouring pad to clean, then rinse.


Citric Acid Inside Toilets Eliminates Rust Stains and Odor

Citric acid comes from fresh lemons, limes, grapefruits, and oranges and their juices. Just like distilled white vinegar, you can use citric acid weekly for permanent rust stain prevention. If using fresh fruit, dip the cut edge in a mild abrasive and scrub the toilet, bathtub, or sink well. For heavily stained surfaces, mix a citric acid juice and baking soda paste and apply to the rust stain. Cover with plastic wrap and let the paste sit for an hour to break down the rust particles before cleaning. As a bonus, citric acid eliminates odors, especially when combined with a mild abrasive, like baking soda.


Use Mild Abrasives to Remove Sink and Bathtub Rust Stains, Too

Mild abrasives effectively remove rust stains alone or combined with citric acid or distilled white vinegar. When you use mild abrasives, you prevent damage to the bathroom fixtures’ fiberglass, enamel, or porcelain finishes. We recommend wetting the rust stains with water, vinegar, or the citric acid liquid first. Be sure to keep the area wet while using the mild abrasive. Mild abrasives commonly found in the home include:

  • Baking Soda
  • Table Salt
  • Pumice Powder or Sticks


Remember what we said in our July blog about baking soda and vinegar? If you opt to use distilled white vinegar in combination with baking soda, don’t be alarmed when the mixture bubbles. The combination of distilled white vinegar and baking soda eats away at the rust stains. Because citric acid is chemically similar to vinegar, you might experience a similar reaction combining it with baking soda.



A Maurais & Sons, Inc., has provided plumbing and HVAC services for more than 90 years. Call us at (207) 897-3027 and follow us on Facebook. Our plumbers can explain more tips for removing rust stains from sinks, bathtubs, and toilets naturally.