Does CLR Really Work?

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Does CLR work?Calcium, Lime, and Rust, that’s what CLR is supposed to remove easily from all types of surfaces. At least that’s what they say in their ubiquitous TV spots. At this point, it’s been put to the test in thousands of homes across the country, so the reviews are in, and we can make a determination on whether it actually works or not.








What Can You Use CLR For?

CLR is a very powerful formula that is manufactured to easily and quickly dissolve and remove stubborn lime, calcium, and rust surface stains. This product works well in the bathroom on toilet bowls, bathtubs, glass shower doors, and stainless steel faucets and shower heads. It can be used in the kitchen on many coffee makers, dishwashers, stainless steel sinks, and facets. Use it in your washing machine to remove hard water calcium build up. The use of CLR is septic safe as it contains no phosphates. Other surfaces CLR can be used on are:

    • Porcelain
    • Chrome
    • Stucco
    • Fiberglass
    • cement
    • ceramic
    • glass
    • brick
    • Plastic

Here are Some How To’s for the CLR Product

How Do I Clean My Shower Head?


Over time, minerals from hard water can build up in your shower head and cause clogged spouts, reducing the water flow. This can be very annoying.

To clean your shower head with CLR simply remove the showerhead, submerge it in a 50/50 mix of CLR and water, wait 2 minutes and rinse thoroughly with cold water.

Reinstall your showerhead. This product works quickly to dissolve these mineral build-ups, which increases proper flow of water through your showerhead.


How Do I Clean My Bathtub with CLR?


CLR is an amazing product for cleaning bathtub dirt, grime, and water mineral deposits. It is very easy to use. Always make sure you wear gloves when handling this product. Follow these simple steps for a clean, stain-free tub:

  • remove all items from the tub and surrounding tub area
  • Spray CLR directly onto the tub surface
  • Let the product sit on the tub for no longer than 2 min.
  • Simply wipe the tub surface with a clean damp cloth or sponge
  • Rinse the tub well with cold water

For stubborn stains, you may have to repeat this process, however using CLR on a regular basis will prevent stain build up.

How Do I Clean My Coffee Maker With CLR?

Coffee Maker

Mineral deposits and calcium buildup from tap water can greatly affect the way your coffee maker works for you.

To keep your coffee maker working well and adding longevity to it, it is recommended that you clean it regularly with CLR. However, this product should not be used on coffee machines that permanently hold water like Keurig Machines.

For a regular 8-12 cup coffee machine follow these instructions:

  • For every 8 cups of water, mix one cup of CLR
  • Run this mixture through your coffee machine
  • Dispose of the water/CLR mixture once it has run through the coffee maker
  • Run a complete cycle through your coffee machine using fresh cold water two times
  • Your coffee machine is now ready to use.

Remember to never use CLR in espresso machines.

These are just a few simple ways you can remove calcium, mineral, and rust from household items. There are many other uses for this product.

Is This Product Good For Outdoor Use?

garden tools

Many outdoor items may become rusty due to weather conditions and changes. CLR is a great product for removing rust from many metal surfaces. Allowing rust to remain on metal items can cause the metal to corrode and deteriorate. This is why it is important to remove rust when you first notice it. This product can be used on metal garden tools, metal arbors, outdoor metal furniture, and works great to clean hose nozzles.

What CLR Products are Available?

There are several CLR products on the market. Some are for specific areas of use such as CLR Bath and Kitchen and CLR Stainless Steel. The CLR, Calcium, Lime, and Rust Remover can be used on many surfaces and household appliances. Other CLR products available are:

  • CLR Mold & Mildew Stain Remover
  • CLR Power Plumber
  • CLR Grease Magnet
  • CLR Outdoor Furniture Cleaner
  • CLR Metal Clear
  • CLR Septic System Treatment

There is a CLR product available to make your household cleaning jobs much easier.

How Much Does CLR Cost?

CLR product prices vary depending on the size and the specific product you choose to purchase. These products are available at many store locations and also online.

Amazon’s pricing ranges from $7.17 to $50.16, depending on the size. Amazon also offers package deals, so the more you buy, the better the price will be.

Customer Reviews


Many of Amazon’s CLR customers have rated this product between 4 and 5 stars out of 5 stars. This is a good rating for a product. Choosing to read customer reviews prior to making a purchase can help you decide if this is the kind of product you are looking for.

Special Notes About CLR


As with many cleaning products you should never use CLR with any other products, especially if they contain bleach or ammonia.


  • Always wear protective gloves when handling this product even though it is a non-toxic product.
  • CLR is a powerful, safer cleaning product alternative to chemicals.
  • This product is safe to use around children and pets.
  • When using this product full strength, do not leave on any surface longer than 2 minutes.
  • If you dilute this product, it can be left on a surface a little longer.

Our Recommendation to You

If you are looking for a multi-purpose household cleaning product, CLR is worth trying.

Read some customer reviews to determine what this product works best on and if it will meet your needs.

You may want to consider purchasing the smaller size bottle to try it out before investing in a large quantity of the product.

If you are happy with this product, you should share your findings with family members and friends to make their cleaning jobs as easy as yours.

Be sure to tell your friends and family to check out what we had to say here about CLR.

375 Customer Reviews on “Does CLR Really Work?

  1. I’m honestly shocked by the negative reviews. I had a terrible stain on my toilet bowl that I couldn’t scrub out no matter how hard I tried. I really wanted to buy a new toilet because the stain looked like poop. I tried CLR just to see if it would make a difference before buying a new toilet. I drained my toilet water and filled it up with CLR up to where the stain was overnight. I scrubbed it a little in the morning and when I flushed my toilet, the stain was gone and my toilet looked brand new! Since it worked for me, I would highly recommend this product.

  2. No it does not work. PERIOD
    It does not take out rust and calcium deposits.

    Safe for the environment ?
    I highly doubt THAT statement also.

  3. The yellow spray bottle for kitchen and bath is a total waste of my money. Scrubbed and scrubbed the lime didn’t come off. But I had a work out! Never again over priced non working product

  4. I wouldn’t recommend this product. I had high expectations after watching tv ad and it didn’t even live up to half of my expectations. I used it in the shower and kitchen sink that have your typical calcium build up. I use it as directed (dilute 1:1), wipe and rinse. There was no difference at all! Then I used it as concentrate from the bottle and still nothing as per the tv ad! And finally I decided “that’s it” I’m putting on my elbow grease, concentrated clr, soaked for 5 minutes, and started scrubbing like there’s no tomorrow. Finally there’s some results! It most of the deposit off (more like I took it off with my heavy scrubbing) but there’s still residual remaining. So I’ll say 1/5 stars!

  5. I tried this product over 10 years ago. Bought it from Canadian tire. I used a small amount to wipe off the stain and the yellowish grime on the bathtub/sink as well as lime build up on the shower head. Needless to say, it DID not work, I don’t know why it is still on the market, perhaps the marketing hype keeps fooling people. I returned the opened product to Canadian tire and they refunded the entire amount. Don’t waste your time and money!!

  6. Tried CLR (not a knock off brand but the real CLR) on a shower head that was pretty clogged up with the white crusty deposits of city water. I let it soak overnight when initial results weren’t very promising. Found it no more effective after 12 hour soaking so I tossed the shower head and the CLR in the trash. What turned out to work much better was a new shower head from Lowes. Worked much better for not much more than the cost of CLR.
    Maybe I should have tried the AmWay CLR my neighbor is always peddling – NOT!

  7. I’ve used it a lot. As I remember it used to work really well and the ingredients listed a real acid. Strong enough to work but not strong enough to hurt you unless you did something really stupid. Now it barely does anything and the “acid” in there sounds like a food product. I think that they weakened it so now it does nearly nothing.

    1. In short I think that they dumbed it down a few years ago and now it’s basically works like vinegar except a lot more expensive. A very weak acid. I’ve been experimenting with diluted muriatic (hydrochloric) acid and it seems to work like CLR used to work before they dumbed it down.

      1. I agree with reef bismuth-The CLR ingredients have changed and the product is no longer effective at removing calcium, lime and rust. However, the company did make CLR environmentally safe (it says so on the container) Save your money and don’t buy the new CLR.

  8. I’ve tried CLR a number of times….mostly I found it’s completely useless! I let it sit for quite awhille and although it took SOME of the very lightest accumulation off, mostly I had to scrub and scrub to get it off…If I have to do that anyway….why buy CLR? It doesn’t do whats claimed!

  9. CLR contains very caustic substances (it has to). If it leaks on a rug or clothing, etc., it will probably stain/bleach it or burn a hole through it. It has also been known to dissolve the finish on porcelain/ceramics (like your toilet or sink). You will get a great clean only to find that a stain comes back that you have to work hard to get out now. That could be indicative that the coating on the porcelain/ceramic is gone. Stains on toilets shouldn’t take elbow grease to get out if the finish coating is still viable. If you haven’t used CLR on your bathroom porcelain/ceramics, I would suggest using something else.

    With things that work wonders, there’s a price.

    1. Thanks for that. I did think it would containing certain chemicals detrimental to stripping the Enamel, and and it may be problematic in an old house, where we have copper /lead and brass fittings. I watched a few mechanics who used this and swore blind to it, on youtube to flush cooling systems. However, I note many are brass, plastic, and ceramic. It may cause more problems than it solves.

  10. I don’t know about coffee maker and dish washers, but anything in the bathroom is tough to clean. Especially the tub always gets dirty build up on the side and removing them is a pain in the ass. I was going to gladly purchase this since it’s fairly cheap, but is too bad it’s not receiving good enough reviews. I don’t know anymore…

    1. I use the CLR on my coffee maker. My expensive coffee maker quit working and I couldn’t figure out why. My husband said it had lime buildup and he went and bought the CLR. I couldn’t believe it. We put a cap full of CLR into the maker along with water and ran it through a few times and the coffee pot works just like brand new. I use it in my bathroom for hard water stains. This is an amazing product and very reasonable in price too.

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