Can Toilet Bowl Cleaner Kill You? (Here’s the Best Answer)

Toilet cleaners are a daily necessity, without which you can’t think about cleaning your toilet. However, you might be afraid that these toxic chemical cleaners can do any harm to you and your family members, especially when there is a kid or pet in your home. Thus you ask yourself, can toilet bowl cleaner kill you?

Ingesting toilet cleaners can cause severe problems and sometimes lead to death. Its toxic chemicals can kill you if used incorrectly and unconsciously. If you swallow a toilet bowl cleaner, seek medical attention immediately. 

In this article, we’ll discuss how dangerous toilet bowl cleaners can be and what health issues you might face when accidentally ingesting or inhaling the cleaners. Also, you’ll learn what you should do when you see the symptoms. 

So let’s begin!

Table of Contents

Can Drinking Toilet Bowl Cleaner Kill You?

Can Toilet Bowl Cleaner Kill You

Toilet bowl cleaners are one of the most important household cleaners that keep your toilet clean and germs or bacteria-free to ensure a healthy life for your kids and family. 

However, along with its incorporable importance, it also has some risks. There is always a chance that your children or pets reach the cleaners and can drink it. 

What Would Happen If Someone Drank Toilet Bowl Cleaner?

drank toilet bowl cleaner

Toilet cleaners are strong in chemicals; thus, even if someone drinks a small amount of cleaner, it can lead to a poisoning state. 

So when you or any of your family accidentally drink the cleaner, check if they have any following symptoms. 

  • Blood in stool
  • Abdominal pain
  • Difficult breathing
  • Chemical burns from the mouth, throat to stomach lining
  • Severe drooling or mouth pain
  • Collapse or loss of consciousness 

What Happens If You Inhale Chemical Toilet Cleaner?

inhale toilet bowl cleaner

If you inhale cleaning products, such as toilet bowl cleaner, you will experience chemical burns in the nose and throat. Sometimes, inserting too many fumes or chemicals can lead to brain damage.

Moreover, these toxic fumes also cause irritation in the throat, coughing, nose, eyes, and breathing.

So if you often clean with these chemical products, wear a proper safety mask to prevent chemical inhalation.

What Should You Do If Someone Swallowed Toilet Bowl Cleaner?

swallowed toilet bowl cleaner

If you see any symptoms mentioned above or suspect your children drank the cleaner, get them to the emergency room as soon as possible. 

Similarly, if you think your pet drank the cleaner take them immediately to the vet.

Is Toilet Bowl Cleaner Safe?

is it toilet bowl cleaner safe

Most toilet bowl cleaners contain harsh chemicals and acids that are not completely safe for you. They can harm your lungs while breathing in, and if they come into contact with your skin can cause chemical burns. So it’s best to use the mildest product and also make sure to take safety precautions. 

How Dangerous Is Toilet Bowl Cleaner?

Toilet cleaners are dangerous as they are poisonous due to their toxic ingredients. They contain dangerous detergents, isopropyl alcohol, and phenol. So if you ingest the cleaner, it can lead to severe issues in your body.

Also, if you accidentally mix the cleaner with other chemicals, it can be risky too. Sometimes mixing chemicals can make hydrogen sulfide which is a poisonous gas. Otherwise, if your eye or skin comes into contact with the cleaner, it irritates those sensitive body parts.

How To Keep Your Pet And Family Safe From The Toilet Bowl Cleaner?

pet safe toilet bowl cleaner

In order to keep you, your family, and your pet safe from the poisonous toilet bowl cleaner, you should always keep them alert while using the cleaner. Lock the bathroom door, so your children or pets can’t get into it.

In addition, when you do not use the cleaners, put them in a cabinet with a lock which is out of reach for your kids and pets.


Toilet bowl cleaners are useful to kill germs, clean stubborn stains as well as prevent pink rings in the toilet bowl. But you have to take some precautions while using toilet bowl cleaner to avoid unexpected accidents.  

  • Wear a mask while applying and cleaning the cleaners to avoid breathing vapor or mist. 
  • Keep your eyes protected by wearing safety goggles
  • Keep your skin protected from a chemical burn with hand gloves

Note: If somehow the product touches your eyes, rinse your eyes thoroughly under running water for 20 minutes. Or if skin contact occurs, wash it with soap immediately and rinse well with water. 

Is Toilet Cleaner Necessary?

Your toilet bowl cleaner is necessary to use because it kills your toilet bowl bacteria and keeps your toilet clean. If you don’t like using chemical toilet bowl cleaners, you can use any homemade cleaners with kitchen ingredients. 

How Do You Find A Safer Toilet Bowl Cleaning Product?

toilet bowl cleaner products

At present, manufacturers produce safer cleaning alternatives to hazardous cleaning products. All you need to be careful about while purchasing the cleaner.

Look for toilet bowl cleaners with credible third-party certifications like Green Seal, Safer choice or EcoLogo. This certification means the products have been reviewed for performance, environment, health, and sustainability. You can also look for smaller manufacturers’ products that might not have a third-party certification but are transparent about their product ingredients. 

However, no matter how much safer the cleaning product is, always protect them, keep them in a safe place and avoid mixing cleaning solutions.

Is it safe to leave the toilet bowl cleaner overnight?

You can leave the toilet bowl cleaner overnight. It’s safe to leave overnight but not longer than that. Otherwise, the chemicals of your cleaner can corrode the toilet.

When you leave the cleaner overnight, inform your family member, so they don’t accidentally use the toilet. If possible, use a non-chemical toilet bowl cleaner to protect your toilet from the bleach. 

If you have a pet at home, close the door so the pet can’t enter the bathroom and drink the cleaner at night. 

Can toilet bowl cleaners kill a dog? 

Usually, toilet bowl cleaner contains toxic chemicals, including ammonia, bleach, chlorine, phenol,  formaldehyde, and isopropyl alcohol which are all harmful to your pet. Ingesting them can sometimes kill your dog, but mostly the chemicals irritate your dog’s entire gastrointestinal tract, from his mouth and esophagus to his stomach and intestines, while causing vomiting,  Diarrhea. Plus, they may also face lethargy, seizure, and sometimes lead to coma. 

Can toilet bowl cleaners kill a cat?

Yes, the toilet bowl cleaner kills your cat in some severe cases. Traditional toilet bowl cleaners have toxins, and inhaling or drinking it can create major health issues for your cat, sickening them with trouble breathing, vomiting, tissue damage, or even killing the cats. However, if you feel the risk of using a cleaner for your cat, then using a diluted automatic bowl cleaner will be safe for your cat or dog. 

Will Toilet Bowl Cleaner Damage A Septic System?

Usually, toilet bowl cleaners do not damage a septic system. But if you leave a corrosive and harsh toilet cleaner in your toilet bowl more than overnight, it probably damages your septic system.

Wrapping Up

As toilet bowl cleaners contain harsh chemical ingredients harmful to you, your pet, and your household members, it’s best to keep cautious using them. Otherwise, you can use some DIY homemade toilet bowl cleaner to clean toilet bowl if you want the safest option.

Hopefully, you got your answer, and now you know how to deal with your toilet bowl cleaner.

So best of luck! 

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