How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

Have you ever experienced something dreadful- and slightly mortifying- like having your phone slip out of your hands and accidentally tumble into a toilet?

Well, I did. Whether it was an item of yours or someone else’s, the feeling is universally known not to wish upon anyone. 

But fortunately, with some quick thinking and know-how, there are ways to disinfect whatever has fallen in the watery depths effectively. Surprised?? But yes, it’s true. Keep reading this blog post to find out how.

If something falls in the toilet and you can’t get to it, there are a few things you can do to disinfect it.

You can pour hydrogen peroxide down the toilet to kill any bacteria, or pour household bleach down the toilet and wait 30 minutes.

If neither of these work, you can call a professional to clean out the toilet.

Things You Can Successfully Disinfect After Dropping In The Toilet 

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

Firstly, let me tell you. Not every item dropped in a toilet can be safely salvaged; however, some items can be successfully cleaned and disinfected with minimal effort if done correctly.

These include items like

  • Plastic phones cases
  • Wallets made of synthetic materials like vinyl or leather
  • Fabric purses/bags (depending on their composition)
  • Rubber flip flops/shoes (again depending on composition)
  • And other non-porous items that are not damaged by water exposure (check labels for details). 

Items made of porous materials like wood should not be submerged in water as they are difficult to dry afterward, which could lead to mold growth thoroughly.

Instead, they should be wiped down with an appropriate cleaner such as rubbing alcohol, followed by drying them off completely before storing away until needed again.  

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How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet | 8 Best Ways

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

Accidents happen. You’ve just dropped your phone in the toilet, and you’re wondering what to do now. Don’t worry; it can be salvaged!

Here I will discuss the best ways to disinfect any item that has fallen into the toilet and relax because of many of these ways I have tried personally. So yes, you can also try any of them.

1) Get the Lost Item Back and Clean It

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

The first step is to retrieve your lost item. We recommend using a pair of tongs or rubber gloves for this task, as it reduces contact between you and the toilet water.

Once retrieved, carefully rinse the item with clean running water and let it air dry. This helps flush out any bacteria or germs on the object’s surface. 

2) Clean With Disinfectant Products

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

After rinsing off your item, use a disinfectant product such as bleach or hydrogen peroxide to kill any remaining bacteria or germs that may still be present on the object.

Be sure to properly mix these chemicals with water per instructions on their labels before applying them to your item. 

Additionally, rubber materials should not be exposed directly to bleach or hydrogen peroxide as they can cause discoloration or damage.

Finally, wipe down your item with a clean cloth once finished disinfecting and let it dry again before use. 

3) Sanitizing With Rubbing Alcohol

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

Another great way to disinfect items is rubbing alcohol (isopropyl alcohol).

This method benefits electronic devices such as phones or tablets that cannot be submerged in liquid solutions like bleach or hydrogen peroxide. 

Simply pour some rubbing alcohol onto a cotton ball and gently wipe down all surfaces of your device until thoroughly sanitized.

Let air dry completely before using again so that all rubbing alcohol has evaporated from its surface. 

Try Hydrogen Peroxide

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

One of the most common methods for disinfecting an item is hydrogen peroxide. Simply fill a bowl with 3% hydrogen peroxide solution, then submerge the item for 10 minutes.

Hydrogen peroxide has been proven effective against many different types of bacteria, including E. coli and salmonella.

After 10 minutes, remove the item from the bowl and rinse under running water. 

Heating Durable Items Up

If you have an item made out of metal or plastic that can withstand high temperatures, then heating it is another option for sanitizing it after it has fallen into the toilet. 

You can do this by putting your item into boiling water or placing it on a baking sheet in an oven preheated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes (or until dry).

Check if your item can withstand these temperatures before attempting this method! 


Another popular method for sanitizing items is using bleach. Mix one tablespoon of bleach with one gallon of cold water in a bucket or sink.

Then submerge the item for five minutes before rinsing it with warm water and allowing it to air dry completely. 

Bleach is especially effective against germs because its active ingredient kills microorganisms on surfaces without leaving any harmful residue.

However, be sure not to use too much, as bleach can damage certain materials if misused!       

Use Sanitizer Wipes

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

You may already have some of these in your bathroom for easy cleaning and sanitizing.

For example, sanitizer wipes are great for disinfecting objects that have fallen into the toilet because they kill most bacteria in just 30 seconds. 

They are also effective against germs like E. coli and Salmonella, which can cause serious illness if ingested or absorbed through cuts on your skin.

To use sanitizer wipes, wipe down the object with them and allow them to air dry before handling or using them again. 

Also Read:

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Essential Oils

How To Disinfect Something That Fell In The Toilet

Essential oils offer a natural alternative to sanitizing an object that has fallen into the toilet.

Tea tree oil is one of the most effective essential oils when it comes to killing bacteria and other germs on contact.

Mix tea tree oil with water (1 drop to 1 cup) and spray onto the item you need to disinfect before wiping it down with a cloth or paper towel (make sure both are clean). 

Other essential oils, such as lavender, lemon, and eucalyptus, can also be used for their antibacterial properties.

Still, tea tree oil is generally considered more potent than these others when it comes to killing germs quickly and efficiently. 

Also Read:

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Does Using Vinegar To Disinfect Something that Fell in The Toilet Right?

If you’ve ever had the misfortune of dropping something in the toilet, you might wonder if vinegar is an excellent disinfectant.

The answer is yes; vinegar is indeed an effective disinfectant for small items. 

While it may not eliminate any dangerous microorganisms attached to the item, vinegar will help kill bacteria and germs that might cause harm if left unchecked.

To ensure your item is appropriately disinfected, soak it in one part vinegar mixed with two parts water for fifteen minutes and rinse off before use. 

Of course, this isn’t a method you can use on everything; more delicate items may sustain further damage from the acidity of the vinegar.

Still, it’s worth trying on anything that fell into your toilet rather than risking possible contamination.

Also Read:

Can I leave bleach in the toilet overnight

Bottom Line

So there you have it, a complete guide on disinfecting something that fell in the toilet.

I hope you never have to use these tips, but now you’ll know exactly what to do if you do.

As always, if you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to me.


What happens if I drop something in the toilet?

It can clog the toilet, cause damage to the plumbing, and create unsanitary conditions. Retrieve it with caution.

How long does it take to disinfect a toilet?

Disinfecting a toilet typically takes 5-10 minutes, depending on the product used and level of cleanliness desired.

What is the best way to disinfect toilet?

Use a disinfectant cleaner and let it sit for the recommended time. Scrub all surfaces and flush with the lid closed.

Can you use sanitizer on a toilet?

You can use a sanitizer on a toilet, but it is not as effective as a disinfectant cleaner in removing germs and bacteria.

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