What are those black stains in your toilet bowl & tank?

Have you ever taken off the toilet lid and came across what looks like black water or staining, it sure would have taken you by surprise. The black spots around the toilet rim make your toilet look unsanitary. 

You may end up scrubbing the black stains off the toilet only to find out that it has returned a few days later. These stains that often form in your toilet bowl indicate a problem with water, such as mould spores, bacteria or minerals. Cleaning the toilet regularly and treating the problem will keep your toilet in good condition. 

In most cases, the sports are above the waterline or if you don’t use the toilet very often, it’s most likely to be a problem with mould growth. However, if the spots are at or below the waterline, the problem is likely with your water. When you’re not sure what problem you have, start by treating them as mould. 

If the problem is with mould, following these steps would surely help solve this problem.

  1. Flush the toilet. While the sides of the bowl are wet, sprinkle borax on the black spots. 
  2. Put some white vinegar into a spray bottle and spray it on the spots. 
  3. Let this vinegar and borax solution sit for some time. 2-3 hours should be more than enough. In this time, do not use the toilet. 
  4. Use a toilet brush and scrub off the black stains. Flush the toilet to see the results. 

If you don’t have easy access to borax, you may use a bleach solution and it should also do the job for you. 

In most cases, the problem of mould should get solved and you would no longer see any black stains.

If the black spots are still present in the toilet bowl, chances are these issues are caused by manganese in the water. If manganese is present at high levels, it can destroy your plumbing fixtures and water-using appliances. It can leave deposits that build up to form tough black stains. 

How Does Manganese Get Into Your Water?

Manganese is one of the most abundant metals in water and soil. It is present in various food items that we consume. It is an essential nutrient and in small amounts is good for human health. 

However, soil composition is not the same. Manganese can be present in high quantities in some regions and can eventually find its way into both public water and well water. Manganese is frequently accompanied by iron and can be more annoying than iron.  

Homeowners with private wells can experience staining throughout the home if manganese exceeds safe levels. They also experience an earthy and metallic taste in their water. 

Deposits collect in plumbing fixtures in the form of black sediment which may also increase the turbidity. When fabrics are washed in water containing elevated levels of manganese, dark brown or black stains can be usually found due to the oxidation of the manganese.

High exposure to manganese has been associated with toxicity to the nervous system, producing a syndrome that resembles Parkinsonism.

Testing Your Water for Manganese

To be absolutely sure you’re dealing with manganese, getting a water test by an accredited laboratory is the best way to diagnose the problem. 

Based on the results of the water test, an expert water treatment company can advise the best solution and install the equipment to treat the problem. 

Manganese can be difficult to remove from water as its removal depends on several factors such as its state of oxidation, ph of water, and the presence of other minerals in the water to be treated. 

It is highly recommended to check with local county councils or the government of any water treatment grants that might cover the cost of the equipment to be installed. Since the private water supplies are not regulated by the health and safety authorities, well water grants are offered to homeowners to improve the quality of their water to national standards. 

Once your water quality has improved, you will see that those black stains are no longer present in your toilet bowl and around the rims. Needless to say, the plumbing fixtures would last longer saving you a lot of money on expensive maintenance.