Can You Use Toilet Bowl Cleaner on a Bathtub?

Simply laying down in a bathtub filled with warm water is probably one of the best luxuries we can get. It can be therapeutic and relaxing, especially after a long and tiring day. You can even add a touch of classic bath bombs, and you’re good to go.

The problem, though, is you can’t fully make the most out of your bathtub if you don’t clean it. With everyday use, it will surely start to turn yellow at one point. In the worst-case scenario, you may even encounter bacteria-related issues.

Thus, this leads us to the usual question of homeowners – “Can you use toilet bowl cleaner on a bathtub?”

In this article, we’ll try to give you the best answer to the said concern.

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Can You Use Toilet Bowl Cleaner on a Bathtub?

Can you use toilet bowl cleaner on a bathtub?

This is one of the most common questions that a homeowner probably ponders a lot about.

The quick answer is yes. You can definitely use a toilet bowl cleaner to thoroughly clean your bathtub. It will surely result in a brand new-looking tub. However, even taking the possible results into account, this is not recommended if you want to use it for a longer time.

Toilet bowl cleaners are very toxic cleaners. It’s specifically designed to get rid of every bacterial growth that a toilet may have. Thus, expect that it’s one of the strongest ones in the cleaning field.

This is where the issue arises.

Bathtubs don’t have the same structure as a toilet. Hence, you may get more cons than pros.

What is a Toilet Bowl Cleaner Made Up Of?

Toilet bowl cleaners are made up of a combination of a lot of harmful chemicals. Generally, though, there are two main active ingredients that you should look out for. These are bleach and hydrochloric acid.

Here is an overview of what each ingredient does:


Bleach is a chemical commonly used to whiten surfaces. It can also kill germs and bacterial growth. What makes this good is it actually does its job. Because of this, some solely use bleach to clean their bathroom, toilets, bathtubs, and likes.

A big con, though, is it can be dangerous if you somehow inhale a lot of its fumes. Considering that bathrooms are closed spaces, it already exposes you to great risks when you use bleach-infused chemicals.

Hydrochloric Acid

Hydrochloric acid is also a cleaning agent. Its role, however, lies in keeping a clean and glowing look on surfaces.

Again, this also has a lot of health risks. It’s even riskier to use compared to bleach. This is because even subtle contact with this acid can already burn your skin. Not to mention, it also has strong fumes that you should definitely avoid inhaling.

Most toilet cleaners contain these two chemicals. It can be hard to avoid them since even modern cleaners have these. The least that you can do is not to use them to clean large areas like a bathtub.

What Will Happen If You Use A Toilet Bowl Cleaner on a Bathtub?

We do not recommend using a toilet bowl cleaner for bathtubs.

However, if you still do so, then here are some things that may happen:

Ruined Tub Exterior

Toilet bowl cleaners can come off too strong against the exterior of bathtubs. It may peel off, turn yellow, or get cracks. Anyhow, it won’t be good for your bathroom’s aesthetic and quality.

In some cases, you may not see this con after one use. Don’t feel relieved since there is a chance it may gradually turn visible as days go by.

Excessive Fume Inhalation

Bathtubs have a great size difference compared to toilets. Hence, the already dangerous amount of fumes that you may get from the latter can multiple more if you use it on tubs. This won’t be good for your health and possibly every family member that will use the bathroom afterwards.

Strong-Smelling Bathtubs

Sometimes, the smell of bleach and hydrochloric acid combined can stick to bathtubs no matter how much you try to scrub it off with fragrance. This will result in long-existing fumes and unpleased bathtub experiences.

As you can see, the effects will mostly harm you and your bathtub. So it won’t be worth it, especially if the only reason is you want to save money.

If it’s unnecessary (which will only happen in rare cases), you should consider better solutions. This is what we’re going to focus on in the next section.

Alternatives to Cleaning a Bathtub

Instead of using a toilet bowl cleaner (which are effective but toxic), we suggest using these alternatives instead:

Vinegar + Baking Soda + Dishwashing Soap Method

To create this cleaning solution, get a glass or plastic container, and mix 1 2/3 cup of baking soda, 1/2 cup of dishwashing soap, 3 tablespoons of vinegar, and a 1/2 cup of water.

Stir it until the solution becomes smooth enough. Make sure that there are no lumps of powder. For easier use, transfer the mixture in a spray or squirt bottle.

Once done, just apply it to your bathtub and let it sit for a few minutes. Scrub it with a good brush once you see the solution carrying the dirt down.

Special Bathtub Cleaners

Of course, you can never go wrong with cleaners that are made especially for bathtubs. You can easily get one from your nearest convenience stores and grocery stores.

If you don’t want to spend money, then you can opt for using the first method. However, if you want the best possible cleaning solution, then consider investing in a bathtub cleaner.


To wrap it up: if you’re still curious as to can you use toilet bowl cleaner on a bathtub or not, then the answer is, you can, but it’s not recommended.

If you still use a toilet bowl cleaner despite our suggestion, then you may end up with more cons than pros. These include having a ruined tub exterior, excessive fume inhalation, or strong-smelling bathtubs. All of these are something that you won’t really want to encounter.

For a safer and equally effective cleaning solution, you can use baking soda and vinegar or a bespoke bathtub cleaner. These guarantee a new-looking bathtub while not putting your health and the tub’s condition at risk.