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How should I clean my toilet in order to maintain it in top condition?

It’s a fact - cleaning the toilet is the job that no-one wants. However, it is so important to clean your toilet regularly, as this will prevent a build-up of stains and stop bacteria from growing. It will also keep not only your toilet but your whole bathroom looking and feeling a lot fresher, and if you get into a routine of cleaning it once a week, it won’t seem like so much of a chore!

This guide will give you some hints and tips about how you can keep everything looking as good as new.

A quick clean

Sometimes, you only have time to give the toilet a very brief cleaning. This is fine, so long as every now and then you do a really heavy-duty deep clean, just to make sure everything is kept totally hygienic. For a very quick clean, you need a few essential items - gloves, antibacterial wipes and toilet cleaner. The gloves are vital, since even a basic clean will expose you not only to the bacteria in the toilet, but to the cleaning products themselves – neither of which you really want on your hands!

It is a good idea to have a specific pair of gloves set aside for the bathroom – not to be easily confused with gloves you might wear for doing the dishes, for example. Maybe pick a distinctive colour to help you remember. Keep the window open too, to make sure the room stays ventilated while you clean.

Spray or squirt the toilet cleaner into the bowl first of all and, depending on what it says on the bottle, you might want to leave it to soak for a few minutes. Put the seat down and then flush – this will make sure the cleaner gets around every corner, but having the seat down will prevent any splashes. After this, run the antibacterial wipes over the exterior of the toilet, remembering to take extra care with the seat and the handle. After this, remove your gloves and give your hands a good washing.

Something a bit more thorough

A deeper clean will involve the same steps as above, just with a few more things thrown in! For instance, before you do anything else, go over the exterior of the toilet with a cloth soaked in hot water. This will loosen any dirt that has collected, making it easier to clean. An excellent way to do this in the toilet’s interior is to put a little bit of bicarbonate of soda into the bowl and leave it to soak for a while before flushing – again, always with the seat down.

Once you have put some toilet cleaner into the bowl, give it all a good scrubbing with a toilet brush (the ones with plastic bristles are ideal, since these will get the job done without damaging the material of the toilet). Always remember to scrub the rim, since this is an often forgotten area which really does need cleaning. Once you have finished with the toilet brush, leave it to soak in disinfectant – this should be done after every use to ensure it does not pick up any harmful bacteria.

Wipe over absolutely everything with the antibacterial cleaner. This includes the hinges, all over the seat, the handle, the floor around the toilet, the point where the toilet meets the floor - everything!
Once everything has been done, give the toilet another flush to give the interior a rinse and then go over the outside surfaces with dry paper towels. Afterwards, remove your gloves and wash your hands thoroughly.

Remember to keep the window open throughout this process and maybe even power up the extractor fan. This will allow for a constant flow of air through the room. If you want to be extra safe, wear something protective over your eyes, just in case of any splashes. The brush must be left to soak after use and dispose of any wipes or paper towels you have used. The cloth you used initially should be washed before your next clean.

Cleaning your toilet is a sure-fire way of keeping your bathroom hygienic, smelling nice and looking as shiny as the day it was fitted. It is better to clean it regularly than to neglect it and have to do an industrial strength clean on really rare occasions. Keep your cleaning essentials in a convenient spot in the room and you can give the toilet a brief once-over every few days or so. A toilet can be a life-long investment, so keep it looking pristine by following a regular cleaning routine – this way, you can keep it fresh for as long as you have it.

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