Something you may not know about me. I was a professional janitor — well Mr. Joybilee was, I tagged along. Cleaning bathrooms isn’t my favorite activity. But we did clean toilets professionally for 3 years, working in a commercial building. It’s one of the things you can do with a Master’s Degree, if you want to be able to keep the power on and feed your kids. I learned how to clean a bathroom by cleaning a lot of bathrooms.
I cleaned 24 toilets, twice a week, every week. Our first week on the job, I ditched the commercial toilet bowl cleaner. It didn’t do an adequate job and left a green ring on every toilet bowl, no matter how often I scrubbed and rinsed. Commercial toilet bowl cleaner is toxic. There are warnings on the bottles. You need to minimize your exposure as much as possible. I held my breath while I cleaned. Toxic fumes do not equal a clean, fresh bathroom.
In my time there, I experimented looking for ways to clean toilets without getting assaulted by toxic chemicals. The method also had to be fast as I didn’t have the time to scrub every toilet for 5 minutes – 48 toilets plus sinks, mirrors, and floors, is a lot of scrubbing to do every week. After several false starts I’ve found a method that is efficient, nontoxic, even pleasant, that gets the toilet clean and fresh in just a minute or two of hands-on effort. I’ve brought that knowledge home to make my job at home easier and less toxic. After all there are more creative activities that we’d all rather do than scrub toilet bowls.
I don’t want to sit there scrubbing with a brush, or a rag, hoping the mineral deposits will vanish. Instead, I’ve been using this easy diy toilet bowl cleaner. You just drop it in the toilet, walk away and let it work, while you clean the other fixtures. Come back a while later and wipe it with the brush. It is sufficient cleaner for all but really tough mineral deposits. For those really tough mineral deposits use more citric acid. Citric acid binds with the minerals in hard water and lifts it off the porcelain toilet bowl.
Natural Toilet Bowl Cleaner with real cleaning power
1 tbsp. of citric acid
1 tbsp. baking soda
Place 1 tbsp. of citric acid in your toilet bowl and allow to sit for 15 min, while you clean the mirrors, sink, and bathtub. Spritz the inside of the toilet bowl with lemon-vinegar cleaner (or Thieves vinegar cleaner). Add 1 tbsp. baking soda to the toilet bowl. It will fizz. When the fizzing stops, swish the bowl with the toilet brush. Once you’ve brushed the bowl, use your citrus-vinegar cleaner and an un-paper towel (*reserved for bathroom use, please) to clean the seat and the rim. Flush and you’re done.
Keep the ingredients separate until you are ready to use them. If you mix them early they will spend their chemical reaction needlessly, and you won’t have it for cleaning. This is why I don’t recommend the toilet pucks that you see online. To make the pucks, some of the chemical reaction is spent.
*Hint: I made two sets of unpaper towels in different colours so I never get them mixed up and use the wrong one in the bathroom.
When I clean the bathrooms at home, I do all 3 at once and add the citric acid to all the toilets that I’m cleaning at the same time. I try to do this when there isn’t a line up for the bathroom. This way, as I move from one bathroom to the next, the citric acid has had a chance to work, and I can immediately proceed with the next step.
How are you reaching your goal of fewer chemicals in your home, and less money out of your pocket?