How To Clean Your Toilet Tank Naturally

Looking for ways to clean your toilet tank naturally? Many Australian homes are embracing homemade bathroom cleaning products as an eco-friendly, affordable alternative to the commercial cleaning products you can buy in the supermarket.

Tucked away out of sight, the humble toilet tank is one of the most overlooked spots to clean in a bathroom. But cleaning your toilet tank doesn’t need to be difficult, nor does it need to do damage to the environment. This article will show you how to clean your toilet tank naturally with six different homemade, eco-friendly toilet tank cleaners.

How Often Should I Clean My Toilet Tank?

Generally, our plumbing professionals recommend cleaning your toilet tank twice a year to eradicate mould and bacteria, and freshen up your bathroom’s smell. Not only will cleaning your tank stop nasty odours from flooding your bathroom, it can extend the life of your toilet.

Why Use A Natural Toilet Tank Cleaner?

Natural toilet tank cleaners are ideal for families who want to reduce the use of chemicals in their home.

These homemade toilet tank cleaners are easy to whip up at home (often using ingredients you already have in your pantry) and work just as well, if not better, than commercial toilet tank cleaners.

How To Clean Your Toilet Tank Naturally

#1 How To Clean Your Toilet Tank With A Toilet Brush

The humble toilet brush makes for a useful scrubbing tool, ideal for cleaning your toilet and the tank that sits below the flush button. For best results, choose a brush with a long, narrow handle, medium-to-firm bristles and a shape that lets you scour corners and reach under tight spaces. Here’s how to clean your toilet with just a toilet brush.

Best for: Tackling easy-to-remove rust stains and mineral deposits

Benefits: No harsh or dangerous chemicals, just elbow grease.

You’ll need:

  • 1 toilet brush with a long handle
  • 1 pair of rubber gloves
  • 1 bucket of warm water


  1. To drain all the water from your tank, turn off the water valve near the wall behind your toilet. Once it’s switched off, flush your toilet.
  2. Put on rubber gloves to protect yourself from bacteria and germs.
  3. Dip your toilet brush into clean warm water.
  4. Scrub down all areas inside the toilet tank, including the sides and bottom of the tank. Clean the ball float and flapper.
  5. Once you have managed to loosen the rust and mineral build-up, rinse the tank with clean water.
  6. Repeat until all stains are gone.
  7. While cleaning, remember to check your toilet’s inside for signs of wear and tear. The best time to make replacements is when the tank is empty and clean.

#2 How To Clean Toilet Tank With Vinegar

A great defence against mould, mildew, rust and hard mineral deposits, vinegar is one of the best all-natural cleaners.

Best for: Removing discolouration, hardened mineral deposits, mould and rust stains

Benefits: Vinegar free of chemicals and naturally antibacterial. You also likely have it already in your pantry!

You’ll need: 

  • 1 pair of rubber gloves
  • 1 bucket of warm water
  • Vinegar
  • 1 toilet brush


  1. Empty the toilet tank by locating and shutting off the water valve. Flush your toilet until the tank drains completely.
  2. Leave your drained tank to dry.
  3. Fill up your tank with vinegar to the level of the overflow valve.
  4. Let the vinegar sit in your tank for at least 12 hours.
  5. Drain the vinegar by flushing the toilet.
  6. Use a toilet brush to scrub the tank and clean all working parts in the tank.
  7. Once you’ve scrubbed the tank thoroughly, turn the water valve back on and flush the tank to rinse.

#3 How To Clean Toilet Tank With Baking Soda and Vinegar

Baking or bicarb soda combined with vinegar makes for an effective bathroom cleaning product.

Best for: Clearing away hardened mineral deposits, mould and rust

Benefits: Vinegar is a natural and effective way to disinfect and destroy rust and hard mineral deposits, while baking soda helps your toilet tank water maintain a proper pH to keep your water soft and resistant to mould and mildew. The tea tree oil in this natural toilet tank cleaner will remove toilet smells and leaves a fresh scent behind.

You’ll need: 

  • 1 pair of safety gloves
  • 1 bucket of warm water
  • 2 cups vinegar
  • 1 cup of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of tea tree oil


  1. Drain your toilet tank.
  2. Mix the tea tree oil with the vinegar in a spray bottle.
  3. Spray the mixture on areas where you can see mineral build up.
  4. Let this mixture soak in for 5 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle baking soda on the sprayed areas.
  6. Scrub the stains with a toilet brush.
  7. Rinse with warm water.
  8. Repeat until you are satisfied the toilet tank is clean.

#4 How To Clean Your Toilet Tank With Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide cleans stains and disinfects them to leave your toilet tank clean and beautiful.

Best for: Cleaning stains and disinfecting your toilet tank

Benefits: Occurring in nature as part of animal and plant cells, hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is environmentally benign. When it breaks down, it breaks down into oxygen and water. Hydrogen peroxide does not release dangerous gases like other chemical oxidising cleaners.

You’ll need:

  • 1 – 3 cups hydrogen peroxide
  • 1 pair of rubber gloves
  • 1 standard toilet brush
  • 1 bucket of warm water


  1. Drain the tank and let it dry.
  2. Use a toilet brush to apply the hydrogen peroxide to the inside of the tank.
  3. Let the peroxide sit on the stains for half an hour.
  4. After the wait time is up, scrub the loosened stains thoroughly with a toilet brush. Clean in the corners, around fixtures and all over the bottom to remove grime and build-up.
  5. Rinse the toilet tank with warm water.
  6. Repeat until your toilet tank is clean.

#5 How To Clean Your Toilet Tank With Borax, Vinegar and Essential Oils

Borax is a tough, natural cleaning agent that provides a powerful clean to eliminate all stains.

Best for: A more powerful clean that thoroughly removes bacteria, rust and mould

Benefits: Borax is a robust cleaner. You can also adjust this homemade cleaner recipe to find the essential oil mix that smells best to you.

You’ll need:

  • 1 cup of vinegar
  • Three quarters of a cup Borax
  • 6 drops of lemon essential oil
  • 9 drops of lavender essential oil
  • 1 pair of rubber gloves
  • 1 container of warm water


  1. Empty your toilet tank.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle until the Borax dissolves.
  3. Apply the spray to the area you want to clean inside your toilet tank.
  4. Allow the mixture to sit for 4 hours or overnight.
  5. Scour the inside of the tank with a toilet brush.
  6. Rinse with warm water.

#6 How To Clean Your Toilet Tank With Homemade Toilet Tank Tablets

Commercial toilet tank cleaning tablets can corrode the rubber and plastic toilet components, or damage the inside of your tank. In contrast, homemade tank tablets are 100% safe to use.

Best for: A eco-friendly solution that is easy to make at home

Benefits: This highly effective cleaning method is affordable and easy to create at home.

You’ll need:

  • Half cup of baking soda
  • Quarter cup of citric acid
  • 10 to 15 drops of your favourite essential oil
  • Half a tablespoon of liquid dish soap
  • 1 pair of gloves
  • 1 bowl of warm water


  1. Mix the baking soda and citric acid in a plastic, glass or ceramic container.
  2. Stir in the essential oil.
  3. Slowly stir in the liquid dish soap and mix it thoroughly. The mixture should hold its shape when squeezed in your hand.
  4. To create the homemade tank tablets, fill a number of silicone moulds, such as ice cube trays, with a tablespoon of the mixture and pack well.
  5. Allow these to dry for 12 to 24 hours.
  6. Pop the tablets out of your moulds and let them dry over a few days.
  7. Once they are thoroughly dry, store your dried tablets in a sealed jar.
  8. To clean your tank, simply drop a tablet into the back of your toilet tank and wait a few minutes for it to dissolve.
  9. Once the fizzing has finished, let the toilet tank sit for 15 minutes.
  10. Scrub your toilet tank with your toilet brush until clean.
  11. Flush the toilet.

Yarrow Plumbing offers affordable general plumbing services. For all your plumbing needs, get in touch with Yarrow Plumbing today on (07) 3277 5742.