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How to Clean an RV Toilet Bowl: A Step-By-Step Guide

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If you are a recreational vehicle (RV) owner, then you know that having a toilet on board is a must. However, it’s inevitable that, over time, your RV toilet bowl will become dirty. Not only is this unsightly, but it can also be a health hazard. So, how do you clean an RV toilet easily and quickly?

First, remove the toilet seat and set it aside. Next, pour a generous amount of RV toilet bowl cleaner into the bowl and let it sit for a few minutes. Then use a silicone bristled brush to scrub away any stains or buildup.

Finally, flush your toilet and rinse the bowl thoroughly with water. Repeat this process to keep your RV toilet bowl clean and sparkling.

As you can see, cleaning an RV toilet bowl is a relatively easy task. This article will provide you with a detailed step-by-step guide on cleaning an RV toilet bowl the right way.

What’s the difference between cleaning an RV toilet bowl and a home toilet?

There are a few key differences between cleaning an RV toilet vs. a home toilet. RV toilets usually have specific cleaning equipment and a smaller water tank, so you must flush them more often. They also tend to have a shorter flush cycle, so you don’t want to put too much paper in at once.

In contrast, home toilets usually have a larger water tank and can flush more waste at once. You can go longer between flushes without worrying about the toilet getting clogged. However, RV toilets are easier to clean because the bowl is narrower and less profound than a home toilet bowl.

If you’re following the unique method, you should avoid using the conventional home toilet cleaners in your RV toilet since they contain harsh chemicals that might damage your RV’s plumbing. The grocery store’s low-cost toilet scrub brush will not suffice for cleaning your RV toilet either.

What toilet bowl cleaners are safe for cleaning RV toilets?

Cleaning your RV toilets with unsafe, harmful bowl cleaners can lead to unexpected spoiling. This is why it’s essential you clean with safe toilet bowl cleaners. Safe toilet bowl cleaners disinfect your RV toilets and prevent a sudden tear of the bowl and other critical components. 

So, what are the recommended RV toilet bowl cleaners? For safety, good sanitization, and multi-purpose functions, below are the right toilet bowl cleaners for cleaning your RV toilets;  

Vinegar and Water

Mixture of vinegar and water
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A mixture of vinegar and water in equal proportions is safe for cleaning your RV toilets. The properties of Vinegar as an acidic solution make it efficient for cleaning surfaces.

You can easily remove dirt, eliminate bacteria, and dissolve stubborn deposits such as grease with vinegar. The best part is, Vinegar doesn’t damage surfaces.

To clean your RV toilet with Vinegar and water, take a half-half portion of the liquids and blend them in a container, preferably a spray bottle. Apply over surfaces, allow it to sit for some minutes, brush, and flush.

Silicone Bristled Brush

Silicone bristled brush like this one is excellent and safe for cleaning RV toilets. This brush comes with a softly rounded fibril that allows smooth and deep cleaning of surfaces.

Because of its non-porous nature and ability to resist microbial growth, It helps tackle bacteria. In addition, a Silicone bristle brush can efficiently get into the underneath and surroundings of the RV toilet bowl fast.  

Non-Abrasive Sponges 

Non-abrasive sponges like this are also an ideal choice for cleaning RV toilets. With their soft bristle, you can easily scrub the nooks and crannies of the bowl without any form of damage. 

Moreover, they have antibacterial factors, perfect for preventing bacteria and germs.

Thetford Aqua Clean RV Toilet Cleaner

Thetford Aqua Clean RV toilet cleaner is a no-harsh bowl cleaner. It is safe, bleach-free, and perfect for removing difficult stains such as organic deposits and soap scum. Additionally, it works on all surfaces. 

Unique RV Toilet Cleaner

Cleaning RV toilets with Unique RV Toilet Cleaner keep your toilet fresh, odorless, and free of germs. Unique RV Toilet Cleaner is a blend of bacteria and highly effective unrefined enzymes with no additives. This combination makes it safe and effective for removing tough stains and proper waste breakdown in the holding tanks.  

Dometic 3-in-1 Bowl Cleaner & Tank Treatment

This bowl cleaner comes with lavender-scented drop-in-packets, useful for neutralizing odor from the waste tank. Its effervescent cleaning action is super handy in scrubbing the bowl.

Also, they help in treating and quickly breaking down waste in the holding tank while leaving a refreshing clean smell around the toilet.

How to clean an RV toilet bowl in an easy step-by-step guide

Cleaning RV toilet with sponge and RV toilet cleaner
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Cleaning your RV toilet doesn’t have to be complicated. Below is an easy step-by-step guide to help you clean efficiently in minutes.

Step 1: Pour a generous amount of RV toilet bowl cleaner into the bowl

Pick any safe RV toilet bowl cleaner of your choice and pour a generous amount into the bowl. Ensure to spread the cleaner evenly around the bowl for better action.  

Step 2: Let it sit for a few minutes

After pouring and spreading the cleaner around the bowl, allow it to sit for some minutes. This will help the cleaner work through the bowl, getting rid of tough stains and germs.

Step 3: Use a silicone bristled brush to scrub away any stains or buildup

Now, use a silicone bristle brush to wash away any stains or buildups. It’s worth noting that using an alternative brush can scratch the bowl’s surface. Thus, I recommend using a Silicone bristled brush.

Step 4: Flush your toilet and rinse the bowl thoroughly with water

After scrubbing, flush your toilet and use clean water to rinse the bowl thoroughly. Any remaining waste in the black holding tank will further get broken down by the flushed cleaner.  

How to clear a clogged RV toilet

If you’re having trouble clearing a clogged RV toilet, here are some tips to help you unclog it.

Tip 1: Use Ice Cubes

Start by filling your RV toilet with one-third of water. Next, add ice cubes and flush properly. If there are still clogs, continue to add ice cubes and flush till the clog is removed.

Tip 2: Use a toilet snake

Get a toilet snake long enough to move through the pipes. Work the toilet snake into the bowl till you find the clog. Once you have removed the clog, flush with water and check to see if it’s draining fine. 

Tip 3: Use boiling water

Boil some water, open your RV toilet valve and pour it down into the clogged toilet. Allow it to sit for some minutes before flushing. This will help the hot water get into the holding tank and melt down any substances responsible for the clog.

Meanwhile, it is worthy to note that this method may require you to repeat the process several times before the clogs can break down.

Tip 4: Use a tank cleaner

A tank cleaner can break down waste, which can help eliminate the clog in your RV toilet. However, it’s worthy to note that this method may take some time to unclog your toilet.

How to replace toilet seal in RV

RV toilet with seal
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Your RV toilet is leaking and then causing unpleasant smells to escape into the surrounding spaces. Here’s how to replace the toilet seal and filter back any unpleasant smell.

First, confirm the make and model of your RV. Using your RV details, buy a new seal replacement.

Ensure to disconnect water sources linked to your water pump before continuing the work. More importantly, you should turn off the water pump in the toilet. 

Other necessary tips to consider before replacing the seal include;

  • Wearing protective gloves
  • Flushing the toilet thoroughly
  • And wiping your bowl dry

Now back to replacing your toilet seal. Find and remove the nuts holding the toilet to the floor. Locate the seal, remove and wipe clean the flange. 

Next, get your new toilet seal and adequately secure it into the flange using a sealant. Before setting back the nuts into the holes, allow the seal to dry. Finally, fix the toilet, connect your water sources, flush and confirm if it’s working fine.

Final Thoughts

Cleaning an RV toilet bowl, removing clogs, and replacing a leaking toilet seal is relatively easy. If you follow the step-by-step guide explained in this post, you will be sure to properly remove clogs from your toilet and replace your seal correctly. Also, stick to using safe bowl cleaners for cleaning your RV toilet bowl.  


Is an RV Toilet Bowl Different from a Home Toilet Bowl?

An RV toilet bowl is different from a home toilet bowl. An RV toilet bowl has a smaller water tank, a narrow bowl, and easy to clean. While in contrast, a home toilet bowl has a larger water tank and is hard to clean. 

Which of the RV toilet cleaning products work best?

RV toilet cleaning products that work best are;

I have personally tried these three products and they all serve their purpose.

What toilet bowl cleaner is safe for RV toilets

Safe toilet bowl cleaners for RV toilets are;

  • Vinegar and Water
  • Thetford Aqua Clean RV Toilet Cleaner
  • Unique RV Toilet Cleaner
  • Domestic 3-in-1 Bowl Cleaner & tank Treatment
  • Non-abrasive Sponges

Can you clean an RV toilet with bleach?

Bleach is a harsh cleaning agent and is not recommended for RV toilets as it can cause severe damage to the components of the RV toilet.

1 thought on “How to Clean an RV Toilet Bowl: A Step-By-Step Guide”

  1. Like every other Star Brite product we’ve used, very impressed. It doesn’t smell like chemicals and cleans the nasty caravan toilet really well. I had no idea how dirty it was until I cleaned it with this product.


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