Limescale. It can be a complete pain in the derriere!
In our previous blog, we provided some helpful tips on how to remove unsightly limescale stains from laminate countertops, granite surfaces, porcelain and stainless sinks and even bath tubs.
Here, we provide some further recommendations on the best ways to clean limescale naturally from other areas of your home – without resorting to cleaning products from your local supermarket.
Yes, there are ways to keep limescale away. But, because these pesky mineral deposits will keep returning for as long as you have hard water coming through your mains supply, the only effective way to stop limescale build-up once and for all, is to have a soft water system fitted. We wrote another article here about why Mrs Hinch’s limescale cleaning tips are good – but never as effective as water softeners!
So these tips are really designed for everyone who is without a water softener at the present time.
Firstly, in case you were wondering, limescale isn’t bad for you. It doesn’t pose a health risk to people, although it can certainly cause long term damage to boilers, pipework and everyday appliances, like washing machines and kettles. That said, if you’ve ever seen limescale presence in your kettle – when it starts getting furred up – it can actually put you off drinking tap water or even making cups of tea. If this is the case, you could find yourself becoming unintentionally dehydrated – and this certainly could have an adverse affect on your health.
So this is how we suggest you remove limescale (naturally) from various areas and implements in the home:
Cleaning taps of limescale
You can’t do anything about preventing limescale build-up inside your household taps, without installing a water softener. However, you can keep the outside of the taps looking clean and free from limescale. The cleaning process can be a bit fiddly, but your hard work will be rewarded with a sparkling finish!
Stainless steel, chrome or brass taps with limescale
- Using two parts of bicarbonate of soda to one part of white vinegar, mix up a thick paste
- Cover any deposits of limescale or hard water stains with the paste
- Leave in place for half an hour
- Rinse off the solution and dry the taps for the best results
Chrome taps with limescale
- Chrome will need to be treated a little more delicately
- Put some lemon juice on a damp cloth and rub gently over the limescale-affected area
- You may find that this is not as effective as using bicarbonate of soda paste and, if you do decide to revert to the bicarbonate, ensure it’s only left on the taps for a short period of time
As an additional tip, it’s always helpful to have an old toothbrush to hand, to tackle those fiddly spaces that taps often have.
Kettles with limescale
Here’s how to prevent that unpleasant white fur from collecting in your kettle as a result of continually boiling hard water:
- Fill the kettle in equal amounts of water and white vinegar. Lemon juice is an alternative to vinegar.
- Allow the mixture to soak for at least one hour
- Bring the kettle to the boil
- Discard the contents and ensure the kettle gets a good rinse round.
- For good measure, give the outside of the kettle a nice rinse and wipe with the same water and vinegar combination
Toilets with limescale
Despite the best-intentioned cleaning, it’s really hard to avoid limescale deposits from collecting in the toilet. It can look unsightly and can be tricky to clean off – especially from the bowel of toilet underneath the water line. Limescale can be removed, but our suggestion is to do this at a time when you know you won’t need to use that toilet again for half a day or so.
- Wear protective gloves
- Scoop the water out from the toilet bowl
- Tip sufficient undiluted white vinegar into the bowl so that the area of limescale deposit is submerged
- Leave for several hours to enable the solution to get to work
- On return, give the bowl a good scrub with the toilet brush, before flushing
Glass Shower Doors
One of the most obvious places that limescale induced water staining will show up is on glass shower doors. Because of the sheer amount of water used in the shower and the large area of glass involved, it can be a lengthy process keeping limescale from ruining the appearance of an otherwise pristine bathroom.
- Prepare a solution of equal parts water to white vinegar
- Dispense the mixture into an empty pump action bottle and spray liberally across the shower door
- To really let it soak in, it should be left on the door for about 15 minutes, then wipe off with a clean cloth
- Give the door a good rinse with the showerhead. This should be sufficient but, if any stains are still visible, repeat the exercise
We hope these cleaning recommendations prove useful. You should certainly notice the results of your endeavours, but if you are fed up with the amount of cleaning you have to do just to keep limescale at bay from your kitchens and bathrooms, you may wish to consider the long-term solution of having a water softener installed. To discuss the best soft water solution for your property, please contact the area’s number one sales and service provider, SJ Water Softeners, on 01243 607494 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org