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How to Remove Hard Water Deposits

Hard water deposits are a pain in the butt.

You typically see them on faucets or shower doors.

I’ve used a cleaning process for years that removes this residue in less than 15 minutes.

And for some reason I didn’t think to share it until Donna (one of our community members) showed me her before and after pictures.

Today’s tutorial is a little over 2 minutes and could make your bathroom cleaning a lot easier πŸ˜€

What’s the best way to remove hard water deposits?

Scotch brite pads?

SOS pads?

These might work but they’ll scratch the heck out of your faucet.

Our oil rubbed bronze faucet gets hard water deposits on it all the time.

What can I say, we should probably clean our bathroom more often but life gets in the way (familiar?)

If you get way behind on cleaning your glass shower doors I also have this video for you.

The video below shows you how easy it is to remove hard water deposits without a ton of abrasive cleaners.

I bet you’ll like this tip, especially since it’s natural. Let me show you what I mean.

What’s Next

You may have known about this technique to remove hard water deposits.

If you didn’t then WOO HOO!

If you’re doing a bathroom remodel and need help, join one of our online courses – they’ll make your bathroom renovation much easier!

Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll do my best to help.

Thanks as always for reading, watching, and being part of our awesome community.



Hard Water Deposit Removal

  1. Lee says:

    I been getting your emails and reading them using your tips. Thanks… the other week my wife came home and told me to use this in the grout and also on the shower doors. It worked awesome….take a couple tablespoons of baking soda and add some hydrogen peroxide to it in a plastic cup (maybe a leftover red solo cup works too in case you wanna recycle them πŸ˜‰ just enough to make a paste..then take a toothbrush and apply it to the grout let sit for about 5 min then scrub lightly with the toothbrush and then rinse…Seemed to work really well , I will have to try this vinegar method on the hard water stains in our sink…Thanks…looking forward to your other tips.

    1. Love your tip Lee. I’ve been tinkering with using this recipe myself. If you’re getting good results then I’m all in. Having multiple ways to clean grout is a must these days πŸ˜€

  2. George says:

    If you think one of your multiple toilets has a leaky flapper valve but, you’re not sure which one try this simple trick. Just add a few drops of a dark food coloring to the tank. Wait a few hours and check the bowl. If the water is clear no leak, if it’s colored you’ve found the leaky valve.
    I’ve used this trick for years and it always works.

    1. Thanks George for this tip. I’ve used it before with blue food coloring and sure enough there was a leak. This is also good for identifying leaks coming from the tank itself. One time I had a bolt that was leaking water, used the food coloring, found the leak in about 2 minutes πŸ˜€

  3. Renee says:

    I have mentioned this before on your site but it is the best way I have every found to remove soap scum/hard water residue from our shower. Put 2 oz of warm vinegar and 2 oz of blue Dawn dishing washing soap in a spray bottle. Spray on all your shower surfaces and let sit for 2 hours. After that time, spray the shower off, wipe down with a cotton cloth and sit back and admire your work (or in this case, lack of it!) It works wonders!

    1. This is a totally awesome tip Renee. Thanks for sharing again. I’m a huge believer in Blue Dawn and have used it for oven cleaning. These two combined are a cleaning solution made in heaven πŸ˜€

  4. Kathy says:

    Can this be used on marble? My grand children drip soap and water around the faucets and it is a pain to get off. Can I use vinegar on the marble counter? Thank you!

    1. Good question Kathy. One thing I recommend with any cleaning is to do a small test, hence the Q-Tip.

      You could do your own test using the same Q-Tip method but leave it on an inconspicuous location on the marble. See what the vinegar does. If there’s not stain then you can move forward. This is my best advice for your surface.

  5. J Stone says:

    I have two tips.

    How do you remove the water deposits that form on your shower head (around all of the little holes), a place that you cannot lay a paper towel across? Take a plastic bag that is a little bigger than your shower head, put enough vinegar in it so that the holes are covered up and let it soak. You will want to use twist ties around the ‘neck’ of the shower unit to keep the bag in place. You will get excellent results. Once you do one shower, take the bag off and take it into your 2nd bathroom and use the same vinegar bag and soak it also.

    Tip #2:
    Once your shower fixtures are clean, keep them that way by doing a quick towel drying right after you shower. It will only take a second to dry the shower head and handles. You will be glad that you did.

    1. Fantastic tips J!

      I like using a microfiber cloth for fixtures and doing a quick wipe down. It’s amazing simple and does wonders for cleaning.

      Thanks for your great ideas πŸ˜€

    2. Javie Laky says:

      Good tips, I think the 2nd one will help much with a very little time. Thanks

  6. Squafdonoboles says:

    Great tip, Donna – thanks!

    1. This is certainly a keeper πŸ˜€

  7. Tim Wallace says:

    That’s a great idea! I hadn’t ever thought of doing it like that! I was going to suggest the plastic bag over the showerhead tip, but it looks like someone already beat me to it!

    1. I love that tip for the shower head. It’s cool that vinegar has so many uses. And it’s cheap!!

  8. Jim B says:

    Great hard water deposit tip. Almost too easy. Thanks again for an informative and well done video!

  9. Linda Weeks says:

    Well, I’m mos’ def’ gonna buy some of the extra strong vinegar you used! I bet the manufacturers just love you! There are so many good uses for vinegar out there, not just for pickles!
    Thanks again, Jeff!

  10. I’m really glad that you explained an easy way to remove hard water deposits. I grew up having to deal with hard water, so I always thought that it must be really difficult to remove those deposits from my tap water. It’s no wonder it only took you two minutes to do this to make cleaning your bathroom a lot easier. Now I have an excuse to use vinegar to turn my hard water into soft water so that cleaning my bathroom won’t be as difficult.

  11. Eli says:

    My parents switched over to soft water, and I can’t believe how much easier it is to clean their bathrooms without the water deposits everywhere. Isn’t it funny how some of the simplest solutions exist for so many problems? Vinegar and baking soda are strong enough to clean so much, yet they are completely natural (and even used in cooking). I suppose we shouldn’t freak out so much that Coke and Mountain Dew will break down scum better than cleaners (and we put those in our stomachs!) because our stomach acids are some of the toughest there are.

  12. Lynette says:

    how is “blue Dawn dish washing liquid different from other dish washing liquids? Just would like to use what I have.

  13. Shane Jones says:

    wow, I was told vinegar on oil rubbed bronze faucets would damage them, but you did it & it cleaned them great!!!

    1. Carolyn says:

      Are you sure that vinegar will not harm oil-rubbed bronze bathroom fixtures?

      1. Carolyn says:

        The finish have worn off my oil-rubbed bronze bathroom fixtures. Is there anything, other than replacing them, that I can use to darken them again?

  14. Mike says:

    Doesn’t work. Helps loosen chunks but I have a major hardwater glaze still on my fixtures. I live in California and we have major hard water. I took my shower fixtures and let them soak in hot vinegar for 1.5 hours then scrubbed them with a tooth brush and they are still gazed over with hard water. Looks horrible.

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