Can You Put Soap in the Toilet? (Does This Trick Work?)

One life hack we’ve seen making its way around the internet is the idea that you can put any kind of soap in your toilet to help clean it. It sounds like a great idea, but, can you actually put soap in the toilet, and does it really work?

Putting soap in your toilet can help remove some dirt and soften small debris. However, it is not a replacement for an actual toilet bowl cleaner. Being mindful of the type of soap you use will help you clean your toilet more effectively.

In this article, we’ll be discussing the best ways to clean a toilet and what type of soap you should be using to do so.

There’s a lot to talk about, but don’t worry, you can stick with us for some good clean fun while we discuss all things soap! 

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Here’s a Quick Pro Tip!

Want to get your toilet unclogged, clean, and smelling fresh in no time?  Try one of these great Amazon products. 

They are all designed to work in your toilet and will not harm your septic system:

1. Clog Remover –  This clog remover can be used in a toilet, your sink, or tub.

2. Electric Toilet Brush – If you struggle to get out those stubborn stains, this electric scrubber may be exactly what you need!

3. Toilet Tank Tabs – These easy-to-use tabs are simply placed in your toilet tank.  When you flush, they’ll spread to the toilet bowl, providing cleansers and a pleasant scent!

Soap in General

Before we delve too far into the arguments for and against different types of soap, let’s first establish if you should be using soap in your toilet at all.

After all, you wouldn’t want to do more harm than good trying to clean up!

Is It Safe to Put Soap in the Toilet?

It is safe to put soap in your toilet, as long as you do it right.  In fact, if the right soap is used in the correct amounts, it should help soften small clogs and debris.  But, if you use water that is too hot, you may do more harm than good.

If you’re going to pour hot water down your toilet, do it carefully.  Do not use boiling water, as it can cause damage to your pipes and can accidentally splash back at you and harm you as well! 

If you’re having major issues, we recommend you contact a plumber. 

What Is the Best Soap to Clean the Toilet With?

The best soap to clean a toilet with is a soap designed for a toilet.  You can use mild soap, such as dish soap, to clean the inside of the bowl and the tank, along with a clean toilet brush.  Avoid putting heavy-duty cleaners in the tank, and don’t let it sit for long. 

If you leave heavy-duty abrasive cleaners in a toilet tank for too long, you risk eroding the tank’s inner plumbing. 

This can cause many issues, including making it necessary to replace your toilet tank. 

Can You Clean a Toilet With Just Soap?

If you only have soap on hand and need to clean your toilet, you can.  If the soap is in liquid form, simply squeeze a small amount onto your toilet brush, scrub and immediately rinse.  Do not leave the soap to sit for too long. 

Allowing soap to sit on your toilet’s surfaces for too long allows the risk of eroding the porcelain.  Do not put anything besides toilet-grade cleaners in the tank itself. 

If you’re adding water to the bowl or tank, make sure it is not overly hot.  You should be able to touch the water comfortably.   

Why Should I Put Soap in My Toilet at Night?

There’s no actual reason to put soap in your toilet at night.  Instead of leaving the soap in your toilet bowl overnight and hoping for the best, try putting a small amount of dish soap on a clean toilet brush and then scrub the bowl. This will remove any dirt and debris without wasting soap and time.  

If the dish soap isn’t enough, you may need a heavy-duty cleaner, but it’s important that you do not leave this kind of soap sitting overnight!

Another great option is to get yourself a pumice brush, like this one, to help remove hard water buildup.

You might also enjoy our post on How to Stop Your Toilet Bowl From Refilling

What Is the Easiest Way to Clean a Toilet?

The easiest way to clean a toilet is to use the right materials.  Get yourself a good toilet bowl cleaner and a brush.  If you clean your toilet every week, you shouldn’t have to worry about a ton of gross build-up.

Once it’s clean, you can use a daily cleanser to keep it looking clean and smelling fresh! 

You can purchase a stamp-on cleanser, use a hanging deodorizer, or utilize toilet tank tabs, whichever works best for you and your home. 

Dish Soap

One of the biggest trends we’ve heard of lately is that you can simply dump up to a cup of dish soap into your toilet tank overnight, and your toilet will magically be clean in the morning. 

In this section, we’ll discuss this and other more helpful hacks.

Is It Safe to Put Dawn Dish Soap in Your Toilet?

It is safe to put dawn dish soap in your toilet since it is safe for your septic system.  That being said, leaving it overnight to sit will not help your stubborn stains come out. Instead, allow the dish soap to sit for 10-15 minutes and then scrub. 

If you need to rinse the soap from your cleaning, be sure that the water is not boiling hot.  Sending boiling water down your pipes is not good for them and can cause major issues. 

Can I Use Dish Soap to Clean My Toilet?

You can use dish soap to help clean your toilet.  It works best if you combine a small amount of dish soap with vinegar and water to form a cleaning solution. Then, simply spray on the area to be cleaned and wipe it away. 

You can also make a baking soda and dish soap paste and apply it to more stubborn stains.  Set the paste on the stain and allow it to sit for 15 minutes, then scrub.

This should help get more stubborn stains out without harsh chemicals and is recommended by The Center for Environmental Health. 

If you don’t have any soap on hand, vinegar is an excellent cleaning agent that will freshen up your toilet.

Can I Clean My Toilet Bowl With Dish Soap?

You can use dish soap in place of toilet bowl cleaner to remove surface stains from the toilet bowl.  Put a small amount of dish soap on your toilet brush and scrub exactly how you would with a toilet bowl cleaner. 

However, it won’t do you any good to allow the dish soap to sit longer. 

If you aren’t able to remove the stain with scrubbing, you may need a more powerful cleaner, like these heavy-duty pumice scrubbers.

These will help remove the more stubborn stains, especially stubborn stains on your toilet seat.

You might also enjoy our post on Your Cloudy Toilet Water Problems

Why Should You Put Dish Soap in Your Toilet?

You can put dish soap in your toilet bowl to help remove dirt and debris.  Some say that a small amount of dish soap can also help to remove small clogs, but we were unable to verify that claim. 

If you have a large clog, stick with tried and tested equipment instead of relying on viral hacks, or just waiting for the toilet to unclog itself. 

We understand if you don’t want to call a plumber for a clog, but we do recommend using a drain snake to fix the problem.

Why Put Dish Soap in the Toilet Overnight?

It’s claimed that putting a cup of dish soap in your toilet overnight and then flushing it, along with hot water, will help remove clogs.  This is due to the chemical composition of dish soap and its capacity to remove dirt.  Unfortunately, it won’t typically work.

Putting dish soap in your toilet can help remove surface stains, and maybe it will help soften very small clogs.

For larger issues, you’ll either need to call a plumber or use a clog remover gel, such as this one from Amazon. 

What Happens if You Put Dish Soap in Your Toilet?

If you put dish soap in your toilet, it will help loosen dirt and other debris in your toilet bowl.  It is septic safe and will not harm your system.  It may help to remove small clogs, but it shouldn’t be used in place of actual clog removers for large problems.

If you put dish soap in the tank of your toilet, you’ll probably notice bubbles forming every time you flush.  This is the soap redistributing in the toilet bowl. 

It shouldn’t hurt your toilet, and it won’t help remove dirt.  

Does Dish Soap Unclog Toilet?

Science says it’s unlikely that pouring dish soap down your toilet will help unclog it.  While there is some truth that dish soap contains the chemicals necessary to break down food and dirt, without help, it won’t do much. 

Also, the other key to using dish soap to unclog your toilet involves flushing it down with very hot water. 

Not only is it dangerous to ‘pour boiling water from waist height,’ as one article suggested, but the water that hot can also damage your pipes and septic system. 

Your pipes and septic system are not designed to receive hot water. So, all in all, we do not recommend using this supposed “hack”.

You might also enjoy our post on Does Charmin Clog Toilets?

How Much Dawn Does It Take To Unclog a Toilet?

It’s been said that using anywhere between half and a full cup of Dawn poured down your toilet bowl will help to remove clogs. However, this is unlikely to work unless the clog is very small, as the most Dawn will do is soften the debris.

If you need to remove a clog from your toilet, we recommend using a drain snake or a liquid clog remover instead of dish soap. 

You’ll just be wasting your Dawn if you try to use it as a clog remover. 

How Long Does Dish Soap Take To Unclog a Toilet?

Unless you have a very small clog, you’ll never unclog a toilet only using dish soap.  While dish soap can help break down some debris, if left for an hour or so, it’s simply not strong enough to remove a clog without help. 

The most common suggestion when using dish soap to help with clogs is to use boiling water to help flush the system. However, this is not safe and should not be done. 

Using boiling water is dangerous for the user and can harm your septic system.

Instead, you can use your Dawn to soften the clog so you can remove it with the proper tools, such as an auger.

Can You Put Dawn Dish Soap in Your Toilet Tank?

You can put Dawn dish soap in your toilet tank, but it’ll be a waste of dish soap.  It may provide some fun bubbles when you flush next time, but it will do little actually to help keep anything clean. 

Additionally, putting too much soap in your toilet tank can lead to long-term problems with your tank’s internal workings, causing damage. 

Instead, get yourself a hanging deodorizer to keep your toilet bowl clean and smelling fresh.

How Much Dawn Do I Put In My Toilet Tank?

You can put up to half a cup of Dawn in your toilet tank at a time, depending on why you’re doing it.  That being said, no matter how much you use it, it won’t clean any better than toilet bowl cleaners. 

Instead, consider getting yourself some toilet bowl tabs, which are designed to be placed in a toilet tank. 

They will help clean and deodorize your toilet, and that way, you’re not wasting your dish soap.

You might also enjoy our post on Can You Replace a Toilet Tank

Bar Soap and Hand Soap

We’ve spent quite a while talking about dish soaps and your toilet, but it’s time to move on.  Next, we’re discussing if you can use a bar of soap to help keep your toilet clean. 

Can You Put Bar Soap in Toilet Tank?

You can put bar soap in a toilet tank, as it’s not going to harm your toilet. But, it’s not going to clean as effectively as a toilet cleaner. Additionally, it will dissolve slowly over time, but not quickly enough to help you clean.

If you want to put a cleaner into your toilet tank, try something designed for the tank, such as these tab cleansers from Amazon. 

They are designed to go directly into your toilet tank, where they quickly dissolve, then the chemicals are flushed into the toilet bowl to help clean.

How Do You Dissolve a Bar of Soap in the Toilet?

The best way to dissolve a bar of soap is to add hot water to it. Be careful when adding hot water to a toilet, however.  Toilets aren’t designed to have super hot water in their pipes, and exposure to hot water may hurt their seals. 

There really isn’t a good reason to have a bar of soap in your toilet. So if you’re looking to clean and deodorize your toilet, consider one of these hanging soaps instead of a bar.  

They’re designed to sit on the edge of your toilet bowl and spread their cleaner when you flush, and they dissolve more easily than bar soap!

Can You Put Irish Spring Soap in Toilet Tank?

You can shave Irish spring soap into your toilet bowl to help soften minor clogs. Unfortunately, while the fatty properties in soap can help soften minor clogs and debris, this is unlikely to work for larger issues.

For the soap to help remove clogs, you would need to add boiling water to your toilet tank, and this is very dangerous. 

Your pipes and their seals were not designed for exposure to water that hot, and using boiling water and soap flakes may harm your toilet more than it helps.

Can You Use Hand Soap to Clean Your Toilet?

You can use hand soap to clean a lot of things, including the outside of your toilet. But, it won’t work for the inside of the bowl. The safest thing you can use to clean your toilet bowl is a bathroom cleaner designed specifically for flush toilets.  

If you need to clean the outside of your toilet, you can use hand soap and a rag or paper towel.  Just be sure to rinse the area after and dry it completely.

We recommend using an anti-bacterial hand soap if you decide to go this route.

You might also enjoy our post on What to Do if Toilet Water Splashes on You

Laundry Detergent

We’ve all heard the hack: pour a cup of laundry detergent in your toilet tank, allow it to settle, and every time you flush, you’ll be getting a fresh scent boost in your toilet bowl!

But does this hack actually work?  Let’s talk about it. 

Can You Use Laundry Detergent in Your Toilet Tank?

It’s not recommended to put laundry detergent (or any other cleaner that’s not designed for a toilet and septic system) in your toilet tank.  If it’s not designed for a toilet, it could clog the pipes or erode the seals, causing major issues to your systems! 

If you are having problems keeping your bathroom smelling fresh, consider getting yourself some hanging deodorizers instead. 

These deodorizers sit inside your toilet bowl, and every time you flush, clean water flows through them, spreading cleaner and a fresh scent! 

Can You Use Detergent to Clean Toilet Bowl?

You can use a small amount of detergent to clean your toilet bowl, as long as your detergent is safe for septic systems.  Be sure to read the label before use, and do not let it sit for more than 10-15 minutes.

If you’re not sure whether your laundry detergent is safe for a septic system, it’s best not to use it. 

If you need to get your toilet bowl clean, you’re better off using a toilet bowl cleaner, such as this one from Amazon. 

Is It Safe to Put Fabric Softener in Your Toilet Tank?

Fabric softeners are not usually safe for a toilet tank. Unless the fabric softener says specifically that it’s safe for a septic system, it’s best not to put it in the toilet tank.  Having unsafe chemicals in your septic system can lead to all kinds of expensive issues down the line. 

Instead, focus on finding cleaning and deodorizing products that are designed for your toilet tank and septic system.

These cleaning tabs, for example, are specifically designed to be placed in a toilet tank and provide a cleanser and a clean scent when the toilet is flushed. 

Can You Put Laundry Softener in the Toilet?

You should not put laundry softener in your toilet.  Unless the softener is specifically designed to be septic safe, adding it to your bowl will only help clog the toilet and can even harm your pipes and system. 

There are plenty of other ways to keep your bathroom smelling fresh.  Completing a weekly cleaning routine, including scrubbing your toilets with a real toilet cleaner, can help. 

For extra freshness in between cleaning, try a hanging deodorizer, such as this one. 

Can You Put a Tide Pod in Your Toilet Tank?

You can’t put tide pods in your toilet tank.  They won’t dissolve correctly in cold water with no agitation and can lead to clogs, or other issues, with your tank’s plumbing. We suggest not putting anything besides water and toilet cleaning products in the toilet tank. 

We also do not recommend pouring hot water into your toilet bowl or tank to help dissolve tide pods that have been put in your toilet. 

If any are accidentally dropped into the tank or bowl, consult a professional to avoid hurting yourself or your septic system.

Can You Use Tide Powder to Clean Your Toilet?

You should not be using tide powder to clean your toilet.  Using any cleaning chemicals that are not designed for a toilet and septic system is a bad idea.  You may cause a chemical build-up that can harm your toilet and septic system. 

Instead, stick with tried and true toilet cleaners.  To clean the outside of a toilet, you can use a cleaner of your choice.

Just be sure to rinse, and dry the surfaces thoroughly afterward, and not allow the chemicals to sit for more than ten minutes. 

What Detergent Is Good for the Toilet?

A good detergent you should be using for your toilet is a cleaner designed specifically for toilets and septic systems.  Using laundry detergent, dish soap, or any other product not designed for a toilet can lead to clogs, and it also endangers your septic system. 

If you’re worried about keeping your toilet in optimal shape, you can always use a product like this electric toilet brush, which gives you the power to scrub those tough stains without having to use too much energy. 

Can You Use Laundry Detergent to Unclog a Toilet?

You shouldn’t use laundry detergent to unclog your toilet.  In fact, the chemicals in detergent and fabric softener can do the exact opposite. The chemical build-up from these cleaners can actually make a clog worse. 

If you have a stubborn clog, you can try a liquid clog remover.  If that’s not strong enough, you can try calling your plumber to assess the situation.

However, you can also get yourself a drain snake to help you remove the clog.  Either way, do not put anything in your toilet that is not safe for a septic system. 

You might also enjoy our post on Should You flush the Toilet After Peeing

Related Questions

Why Pour Dish Soap in Your Tub at Night?

There is no real reason to pour dish soap into your tub overnight.  Viral hacks may tell you that they will help prevent clogs, but in reality, you’re just wasting soap.  While the degreasing properties of dish soap may help a little, it won’t prevent clogs from forming.

Get yourself a good clog remover instead if you’re dealing with a clogged tub. 

These liquids are designed to be used in drains to help remove clogs and, when flushed with hot water, will work considerably better than dish soap. 

Why Put Dish Soap in the Shower?

Because of dish soap’s degreasing qualities, it can be used in place of other shower cleaners to remove soap scum and build-up.  Simply apply the soap using a rag, allow it to sit for five to ten minutes, then scrub and wipe. 

This hack can actually work well in a pinch, but we wouldn’t recommend replacing your usual cleaners with dish soap. 

Cleaners like this Mr. Clean Clean Freak are designed specifically for your shower and help prevent soap scum without sacrificing your bathroom surfaces. 

Can You Use Drano in a Toilet?

You should NEVER use Drano in a toilet.  Drano is designed for sinks, showers, and bathtubs.  Even Drano’s website says not to use them in toilets, as they are not designed for toilet systems.

Not only can using Drano in your toilet cause damage to your septic system, but it can also harm you if it splashes back. 

Because the Drano will be caught in the bends of your pipes, it can easily splash back and hit you. So do not ever use Drano in your toilet. 

Final Thoughts

We all want to find easier ways to clean our bathrooms, and viral hacks give us lots of hope. 

However, it’s always wise to do your research before believing anything you read on the internet. Unfortunately, our research says that using other types of soap in your toilet is a bad idea.  

We hope we’ve given you some good ideas for other ways to clean your toilet that don’t involve wasting dish soap or laundry detergent. 

Remember, it’s always best to use a cleaner designed for the surface you’re trying to clean.  

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