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How to Clean Your RV Toilet Bowl

March 25, 2020

How to clean an RV toilet, use proper cleaning tips for your RV toilet by using an RV toilet cleaner and tank enhancer you avoid waste build up and mineral deposits in your RV toilet.


  1. There are two basic types of RV toilet bowl cleaners: (1) safe and (2) chemical. We highly recommend that you completely avoid chemical cleaners and use only safe products in your RV. 
  2. We recommend that you avoid bristle brushes if you have a plastic RV toilet bowl. These brushes will scratch your toilet bowl! Instead we recommend using a dish cleaning sponge like the one linked below. 

Did you know that you could potentially be damaging your RV toilet? You may not realize that the standard RV toilet is very different from the toilet in your home and therefore needs special cleaning products over traditional chemical-based products to avoid damage while cleaning. Aside from damaging the bowl itself, chemical toilet cleaners can also lead to clogs, odors, and misreading level sensors. This guide will discuss the right cleaning products, tools for cleaning, and some best practices to keep your RV toilet working properly!

Cleaning Your RV Toilet Bowl

Ok, here’s the deal: this guide is a bit of a bait and switch. There is no special method to use when physically cleaning your toilet. Using gloves, a good non-abrasive scrubbing tool, and some good old fashioned elbow grease is going to get that toilet sparkling clean. The big difference between cleaning your RV toilet and your home toilet is what type of product you’re using to get those bowls clean. Let’s explore the best options for getting that toilet clean while still keeping your RV waste system safe.

Different Types Of Toilet Bowl Cleaners

To begin, let's go over the different types of toilet cleaning products. Basically, all toilet cleaners can fit into two categories that are relevant for RVers:

  1. Safe
  2. Chemical

It is important to understand the difference between these two types of toilet-cleaning categories as it can affect not just how you clean, but how your entire wastewater system functions. 

Chemical Toilet Bowl Cleaners

When we refer to chemical cleaners, we are talking about chlorine or bleach-based toilet bowl cleaners (i.e., the types of products you might already find under your home sink). These types of cleaners normally work well to remove residue from your RV toilet. Although bleach and chlorine cleaners may be effective, that does not mean they’re safe! In fact, they can contain chemicals that are harmful to you as the user, and (most important for the RVer) have detrimental effects on your black water holding tank. These chemical cleaners kill off all the beneficial bacteria in your tank which then lead to disastrous clogs and backups! Because of this, we strongly recommend completely avoiding chemical toilet cleaners! 

Guide Continued Below

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Safe Toilet Bowl Cleaners

When we use the term “safe” in reference to toilet bowl cleaners, we are referring to the danger the cleaner might pose to people, pets, and the environment. In terms of home toilet bowl cleaners, there are many brands that fit this criterion. For instance, mineral/pumice cleaners are often very safe and do a great job of keeping your toilet and bathroom clean.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of these cleaners aren't made specifically for RVs and can damage the soft plastic or porcelain in your RV toilet bowl.

Thankfully there are other safe RV toilet bowl cleaning products that don’t contain abrasive materials out there that will work perfectly in your RV, some of which are designed specifically for RV’s. The value in using an RV specific toilet bowl cleaner is that it will break down mineral deposits and human waste inside your toilet bowl with tank boosting microbial cleaners. These tank boosters (a high-quality bacterial / enzyme blend) will wash down into your tank and help further break up the waste and toilet paper inside. Essentially, every time you clean your toilet, you will also be boosting the breakdown process inside your RV black water holding tank!

*Please note that using a product like Unique RV Toilet Bowl Cleaner is not a substitute for using a high-quality RV holding tank treatment.

About That Scrubber

If you have a plastic RV toilet bowl, we recommend staying away from using the standard plastic-bristled toilet brush. Many people make the mistake of using a stiff brush and end up with large scratches and grooves inside their toilet bowl. Not only does this damage the toilet bowl, it also makes it harder to clean, since human waste and mineral deposits can gather in these grooves.

Instead of a toilet brush, we recommend using a dish cleaning sponge like this. The soft sponge will do just as good a job as the tough plastic-bristled brushes—without damaging your toilet! 


Certainly, there are many differences between your home toilet and RV toilet, and selecting a toilet bowl cleaner that is designed specifically for you RV is very important. It is also extremely important that you use a safe RV toilet bowl cleaner in conjunction with a high-quality holding tank treatment. And remember, for the best results, never use aggressive bristle-brushes that can scratch your toilet bowl! We hope this guide has proved helpful! If you have any questions, concerns, or comments, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us!

Adopt The Unique Method

You bought your RV so you could enjoy life and spend time with family and friends. The last thing you want to do is waste precious time and money on fixing wastewater holding tank problems. Keeping your tanks in peak operating condition doesn’t have to be hard, confusing, or expensive if you follow our proven process: The Unique Method.

The Unique Method is a comprehensive tank care plan that we developed after years of conversations with real customers facing real problems. The Unique Method provides you with simple, preventative steps to stop odors, clogs, and sensor problems before they start so you can spend less time worrying about your holding tanks and more time enjoying the freedom and adventure of RVing. Try it yourself and see why thousands of campers trust their RVs with The Unique Method every day.

If you need more help with anything covered in this guide or simply have a comment, we’re here to help you anytime!

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