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Toilet cleaner buying guide

Keep your commode fresh and clean with ease.

A good-quality toilet cleaner can help you keep your porcelain in pristine condition with minimal scrubbing and polishing. From liquids and gels to automatic toilet cleaners, there’s a wide range of toilet cleaning products available. To decide which one is right for you, consider the cleaning performance of a range of products, as well as their price tag and environmental friendliness.

Compare some of the best toilet cleaners

NameAvg. price
Lysol Power Toilet Bowl Cleaner
Lysol Power Toilet Bowl Cleaner
$3.72LiquidTwo 48-oz bottlesAngled neck bottleBuy now
Clorox ToiletWand Disposable Toilet Cleaning System
Clorox ToiletWand Disposable Toilet Cleaning System
$8.88WandWand, stand and 6 refill headsToilet wandBuy now
Scrubbing Bubbles Toilet Cleaning Gel
Scrubbing Bubbles Toilet Cleaning Gel
$6.35Gel12 gel stampsGel stamping wandBuy now
Soft Scrub 4-in-1 Rim Hanger Toilet Bowl Cleaner
Soft Scrub 4-in-1 Rim Hanger Toilet Bowl Cleaner
$7.88In-bowl hangerTwo hangersRim hangerBuy now
Green Works Toilet Bowl Cleaner
Green Works Toilet Bowl Cleaner
$18.48LiquidFour 96-oz bottlesAngled neck bottleBuy now
Data obtained April 2019. Prices are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

What types are available?

You’ve got a few options to consider when wandering down the cleaning aisle of your local supermarket. Toilet cleaners come in these forms:

  • Liquids and gels. These products are great for a deep clean, since they can be sprayed into the bowl, left to sit for a while and then scrubbed clean. These are the most commonly available toilet cleaners and often come with an angled nozzle to help you spray under the toilet rim.
  • Toilet wands. These handy cleaners come with a pre-filled, disposable scrubbing pad, which you attach to the end of a plastic wand to easily clean your toilet bowl without having to reach your hand inside.
  • In-tank toilet cleaners. These automatic toilet cleaners come in the form of tablets that can be placed in the cistern, which release cleaning agents every time you flush. The idea is that your toilet stays sparkling for longer without the need for excess scrubbing.
  • In-bowl cleaners. These cleaners are also designed to clean the toilet as you flush. They typically consist of a gel held in a cage suspended from the edge of the bowl, or are attached directly to the wall of the bowl. These cleaners remove bacteria and stains and reduce the time and effort required to scrub the bowl clean.

How to compare toilet cleaners

While buying toilet cleaner is relatively straightforward, there are still a few factors to consider before deciding which product is right for your needs:

  • Price. Most products fall within the $2 to $10 price range, but some products are priced as high as $20 or even $30. Remember to consider the amount of cleaner you’re purchasing so that you can compare products on a like-for-like basis.
  • Effectiveness. Check out independent reviews online from people who have actually used the product. What sort of results does it produce? How much scrubbing is required?
  • Ease of use. Read the label to find out exactly how to apply the cleaner to your toilet. Most liquids and gels require you to flush the toilet, spray the cleaner around the bowl, leave it for a specified period of time — usually 10 or 15 minutes — and then scrub clean.
  • Fragrance. From lemon or citrus to sandalwood and eucalyptus, toilet cleaners come in a variety of fragrances. There’s not really any way to tell whether you’ll find the odor bearable until you use it, but many manufacturers offer a choice of fragrances so that you can at least pick the one that sounds the best.
  • Disinfectant. Check the label to find out whether the cleaner you’re using also disinfects or whether its main use is removing stains.
  • Environmentally friendly. If you’re an eco-conscious cleaner, check the ingredients on the label to find out exactly what sort of chemicals you’re using. Some manufacturers use entirely plant-derived formulas and recycled packaging.
  • Design. Many toilet bowl cleaners come with an angled neck that allows you to spray the liquid under the rim, where all sorts of nasty stains and bacteria tend to gather.

Bottom line

There are several toilet cleaner types available, in a wide range of prices. Choose the right fit for your cleaning needs by comparing a few of the top brands.

How did we choose these products?

We compared features like price, type and effectiveness to create our list of the best toilet cleaners. We conducted our own online research and factored in third-party product reviews.

Frequently asked questions

Are toilet bowl cleaners safe?

Most toilet cleaners contain toxic chemicals and should always be stored out of reach of children and pets. If you’re concerned about safety, choose one of the many plant-based products on the market.

How do you remove brown toilet bowl stains?

Many toilet bowl cleaners claim to have stain-fighting power to tackle even the toughest of stains. If you’re looking for a DIY option, try using a white vinegar and borax mixture, letting it sit for several hours before wiping clean.

Are bleach tablets bad for your toilet?

Bleach tablets have been shown to cause damage to rubber seals inside your toilet, which may cause leaks and other problems if used frequently.

Ready to buy? Compare popular toilet cleaners

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