The Question You’re Afraid to Ask: How to Clean the Stuff You Use to Clean the Toilet

updated Sep 28, 2022
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
(Image credit: Anna Spaller)

You know that cleaning tools need to be cleaned—almost as much as your bathroom. It’s why you wash your dish towels every weekend and replace your sponge every week (ish). But be honest: How long has it been since you properly cleaned your toilet brush? Or—gasp!—the toilet brush holder? Try not to think about it too long, and instead, make a plan to give your toilet-cleaning supplies a good wash this weekend because cleaning your plunger and toilet brush is important!

How to Clean a Toilet Brush

The best time to clean the toilet brush is right after you’re done using it. Melissa Maker of Clean My Space recommends spraying the brush with a disinfectant, letting it sit for 10 minutes, then running it under hot water to rinse.

If it’s been a while since the last clean, you can give the brush a more solid soak in a mixture of bleach and water. My favorite shortcut is adding a capful or two of bleach to a toilet bowl full of clean water, then letting the brush soak inside for about an hour. When time is up, come back, rinse the bowl and brush with a flush, and let the brush drip dry into the bowl, sandwiched under the toilet seat.

No matter how or how often you clean it, the number one thing to be wary of is putting the brush back in the holder while it’s still wet. Speaking of the toilet brush holder…

How to Clean a Toilet Brush Holder

Make this a part of your routine every other time you clean the toilet: Spray the toilet brush holder with a disinfecting spray, let it sit for 10 minutes, then rinse under hot water. Let everything dry completely before replacing the brush inside.

How to Clean a Plunger

It’s not exactly a cleaning tool, but your plunger definitely needs the proper attention considering the messes it gets itself into—you want to clean it thoroughly every time it’s used. You can start off by flushing the toilet and using the running water to give the plunger a first rinse.

Then, do a bleach soak. If your toilet bowl is deep enough, you can add some bleach or another disinfecting detergent to the toilet bowl full of clean water, then swish and soak the plunger around for as long as necessary to get it de-grossified. Give the bowl and the plunger a rinse with a flush of fresh water, then let the plunger dry someplace convenient.