Home Improvement Expert Danny Lipford

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Where to Find Muriatic Acid

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Muriatic acid.

Danny, On one of your episodes, Joe Truini said that muriatic acid would remove scum and water deposits from tile in a bathroom. What I need to know is where can I purchase muriatic acid? – Denise

Hi Denise,

Muriatic acid is used to remove excess mortar from bricks and to balance the pH of swimming pools, so it can often be found at both home centers and pool supply stores. Look for it in the building supply or gardening sections.

Muriatic acid is strong stuff, so be sure to read all the precautions and follow directions including wearing rubber gloves and eye protection. Dilute it with water following the directions on the container before using and make sure there is adequate ventilation.

You can read and watch the video on Joe Truini’s method of cleaning bathroom tile with muriatic acid on our website at How to Clean Tile with Muriatic Acid.

Danny



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63 Comments on “Where to Find Muriatic Acid”

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  1. MrWolf Says:
    January 4th, 2008 at 6:15 pm

    You can’t find muriatic acid on the Home Depot site.

  2. Official Comment:

    Ben Erickson Says:
    January 7th, 2008 at 4:06 pm

    Mr. Wolf,
    It is available at The Home Depot stores.

  3. ann Says:
    February 25th, 2008 at 1:55 pm

    danny can you use muriatic acid on the one piece fiberglass tub enclosure? have tried everything else to remove hard water spots aand soap scum thank you love your website

  4. Frankie Says:
    April 5th, 2008 at 7:07 am

    I would also like to know if you can clean a fiberglass tub of hard water spots and scum with muriatic acid?

  5. downdraft Says:
    April 15th, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    I have a tile shower. Where the wall meets the floor, I have the ancient problem: Caulking deteriorates and wanter seeps below the pan, not to mention meldew buildup. I want to do thios right and not often have to re-do it.
    I have been advised to:

    1. Use grout and epoxy mixture n the seams. I can get it at Lowes.
    2. Muratic acit to clean the tile scul.
    Also, I have a few tile cracking at the threshold area, corners, etc so I am removing them, ibncluding the Duroc and thin set, and starting fresh in the threshold with net tile.

    While doing this I want to redo it right and correct errors of past.

    Any thoughts??

    THNX
    Downdraft

  6. Tim McCarthy Says:
    May 23rd, 2008 at 11:41 am

    Can you use muriatic acid to clean iron stains off of stone?

  7. mr. clean Says:
    June 12th, 2008 at 12:45 am

    I can not find any muriatic acid at Home Depot or Lowes. Any other suggestions?

  8. John Says:
    June 15th, 2008 at 5:56 am

    Check McCoy’s Building Supply or Ace Hardware last time I was at those two places that had it.

  9. Kristina Says:
    June 23rd, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    Check your local swimming pool store. They sell it by the gallon. It is less than $5.

  10. Tawnee Says:
    July 6th, 2008 at 11:09 am

    Muriatic Acid is in the paint dept of my local Lowes store. I just bought a gallon for $6.98 today. Hope this helps.

  11. wm siemon Says:
    July 8th, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    Can anyone buy muriatic acid in N.Y. State? I heard that you have to be a contractor.How about the states of Connecticut and Mass?

  12. mr. clean Says:
    July 9th, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    thanks i found it now

  13. wm siemon Says:
    July 9th, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    I want to clean around the rim of a toilet. I also want to clear a possible partial blockage as the toilet only flushes COMPLETELY one out of three or four times. This makes no difference whether all liquid or semi-solid waste. I have asked whether just ANYONE can buy muriatic acid in New York State. I have heard about something called IRON OUT. Can you tell me anything about it?

  14. melanie Says:
    July 31st, 2008 at 5:13 pm

    Home depot have stopped stocking it HAZMAT issues. Hardwear stores ACE etc or pool suppliers: ths is the best stuff when used properly

  15. Kent Says:
    August 10th, 2008 at 11:47 am

    Why has the price of muriatic acid gone up so much lately?

    I put a pool in 4 years ago and used to by muriatic acid at Home Depot for less than $5.00 for a 2-gallon box. The las time I bought it I had to pay $8.99. I’ve also noticed that it doesn’t have the same strong smell that it used to have and it takes more to keep the pH in my pool where it should be. So it would seem it’s getting weaker as well as more expensive.

    Does anyone know why this is or any more about it?

  16. intrepid Says:
    August 19th, 2008 at 7:09 pm

    muriatic acid has gone up in price because of new hazmat laws and shiping is stricter.

    it is weaker because of terrorist threat it is easy to make into a weapon.

  17. jeff Says:
    October 5th, 2008 at 3:20 pm

    For those who are looking for “muratic acid” to clean your toilet…why not just buy toilet bowl cleaner from the grocery store? “Muratic acid” (more properly known as hydrochloric acid) is already the main active ingredient of most commercial toilet bowl cleaners.

    For example, see http://householdproducts.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/household/brands?tbl=brands&id=14003001

  18. Al Says:
    November 9th, 2008 at 4:57 pm

    City Mill carries muratic acid in various sizes.

  19. Carolina Says:
    January 3rd, 2009 at 7:22 pm

    Can you use muriatic acid on a fiberglass tub? We have used it before to clean oil spots on cement driveway.

  20. Jason Gillespie Says:
    January 15th, 2009 at 5:14 pm

    Could this acid be safely used to clean an old oil stain on a driveway?

    thanks,
    Jason

  21. dave regester Says:
    January 19th, 2009 at 10:12 pm

    I have calcium buildup in my washer , someone said to use muriatic acid , how should I use it safely ?

  22. guido Says:
    January 20th, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    I would try buying it of ebay.

  23. Kevin R Says:
    January 20th, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    You can also purchase Muriatic acid from True value stores.

  24. P. Rodriguez Says:
    February 12th, 2009 at 1:26 pm

    Sorry, you can no longer purchase muriatic acid from home depot.

  25. hong Says:
    February 15th, 2009 at 8:47 pm

    i heard from someone, forgot the name, but they told me lime a-way is much safer and cheaper. it contain all the ingredients of muriatic acid. i think all the general stores sell lime a-way. there is no laws to stop it. please research oxalic acid, it is good too on all rusts.

  26. Mike Says:
    April 3rd, 2009 at 7:15 pm

    Muratic acid is availible at every pool supply store I’ve ever been to. I haven’t been to a pool store in years though.. I don’t know if new regulations have forced it out, but I know it used to be a key component of maintaining a pools ph balance.

    Typically, it’s in a red plastic bottle that should be returned for a deposit afterwards. (don’t just throw it away… by returning it, you are disposing of it properly.

    Don’t forget to dilute it though.. I beleive the mixture is prediluted a bit when you buy it, and messages above mine seem to indicate that it’s even MORE diluted than it used to be.. but you should probably dilute it even further, to see how well it works and then build up the strength if you need to.

  27. Louis Says:
    May 10th, 2009 at 10:30 am

    White Vinegar is a cheap alternative to muriatic acid, since muriatic acid is about a 25 percent dilute of hydrochloric acid in water, vinegar is about 8-10 percent hydrochloric acid dilute and can be used to achieve a much similar affect.

  28. Isaac Says:
    May 12th, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    White vinegar is _NOT_ the same as muriatic acid. Muriatic acid is diluted hydrochloric acid (HCl) and white vinegar is dilute acetic acid (CH3COOH). HCl is a strong acid and is fairly caustic whereas CH3COOH is a weak organic acid and is weakly caustic. While they may be used to achieve a similar effect in some situations, they are not the same thing and when faster a, stronger effect is desired HCl is the way to go.

  29. Audra George Says:
    May 18th, 2009 at 2:14 pm

    Hi there. We are trying to get the old rust stains off the top of our retaining wall (concrete) from the rusted old iron railing. What do you suggest to use and will pressure washing help?

  30. Tom Says:
    May 21st, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    I just bought muriatic acid at Home Depot last weekend. 2 one gallon containers was just under 9 bucks.

  31. nmmom Says:
    May 27th, 2009 at 11:15 am

    Have tried just about everything to no avail to remove hard water/rust stains in toilet. Purchased muriatic acid from a Do It Best hardware store on the advise of a plumber. Worked like a charm. Been years since I’ve seen the white bottom of the toilet bowl!

  32. Eloise Says:
    June 2nd, 2009 at 7:55 pm

    Will Muratic acid remove old gum and oil stains from cement walk way?

  33. warren duffy Says:
    June 8th, 2009 at 5:03 pm

    I was hunting around for Muriatic acid to soak some spa filters in to remove deposits. Instead, I diluted a $1 bottle of “The Works” toilet bowl cleaner (which is a mix of HCL and other ingredients) and it worked like a charm eating off deposits. Filters are like new.

  34. John Says:
    June 12th, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    Masonry supply outlets sell Muriatic Acid. Masons use it to clean excess mortar off bricks. I am using it to lower the PH in our pool. Way better to buy a gallon at a contractor’s store than to go to a pool supply store and be ripped off. Another example: Bicarbonate of Soda (Baking Soda), used to balance your pool water costs $3.69 for a 4lb box of Arm & Hammer at the grocery store . The Pool Supply store, with its pretty packaging, gouges customers for $12.50/4 lb box.

  35. Rudy Says:
    July 6th, 2009 at 11:22 pm

    Hi, I spilled a litre of muriatic acid in my car over 2 months ago, it seems to have evaporated but right now everything in my car (work van) is oxydating ( rusting) is there something to neutralize the remaining (concentrated?) acid with. Thank you.

  36. Jeff Roe Says:
    August 17th, 2009 at 10:57 am

    Muratic acid may be used to lower the ALKALINITY, not the PH of pool/spa water. Soda ash or sodium carbonate is used to raise PH. It is usually used as a last resort. Baking Soda (sodium bicarbonate) can be purchased at Sam’s Club type stores in 12lb. bags for about $7 – a great price compared to pool chemical suppliers. Baking soda is used to raise the ALKALINITY of pool/spa water.

  37. Official Comment:

    Ben Erickson Says:
    August 19th, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    pH is the measure of the acidic or basic (alkali) nature of a solution based on the concentration of hydrogen ions. pH is expressed using a scale ranging from 0 to 14, with 0 being highly acidic, 7 neutral, and 14 a strong alkali. Examples of acidic solutions (from strong to weak) include battery acid, lemon juice, and vinegar. Examples of base (alkali) solutions (from strong to weak) are lye, bleach, household ammonia, and baking soda. Distilled water is considered neutral. The pH of a pool is adjusted by adding either acidic or basic chemicals to keep it balanced in a range between 7.2 to 7.6, making it slightly alkali.

  38. Richard Masrers Says:
    September 13th, 2009 at 10:46 pm

    Can the type Muriatic acid found in the local hardware store be used to test rocks for gold?

  39. Richard Says:
    September 24th, 2009 at 7:44 pm

    I have a steel gasoline tank for a motorcycle that has a lot of rust inside it. Can Muriatic Acid be used to clear off the rust? Ive been told that will work.

  40. jerry Says:
    October 10th, 2009 at 11:53 am

    I was told you could use it to kill tree roots.

  41. Avery Says:
    November 3rd, 2009 at 10:43 am

    i need it for a school project can i get it in small countainers

  42. Lee May Says:
    February 5th, 2010 at 2:04 am

    February 5th, 2010 at 1:51 am
    This is a question I have. Last fall I chose a color from the computer to paint and trim my house in. The color and trim turned out to be all wrong and my husband was told to spray it on and it would be faster. The overspray got on the stone and brick pretty bad and the paint color is all wrong for the color of the brick and stone. We live here in Mobile. My husband and I both have back trouble and we bit off more than we could chew with this home improvement venture. Any advise on what we could do?

  43. george Says:
    March 29th, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    i HAVE A 2 INCH METAL PIPE DRAIN THOUGH CEMENT TO GRAVEL/BEDROCK BELOW FOUNDATION THAT HAS OLD CEMENT CLOGGING IT TO A SLOW DRAIN CAN MURIATIC ACID HELP TO DISOLVE THE OLD CEMENT/MORTAR

  44. gary Says:
    April 18th, 2010 at 11:08 am

    we used muriatic acid to clean a stone wall and some of the rocks had copper in them and turned green…how do i clean the green off

  45. Handyman Matters Blog » Guest Blog: Top 10 Home Improvement Questions & Answers Says:
    April 20th, 2010 at 11:43 am

    [...] areas, garages, etc. And you want to add a dash of color. Here’s how. There are a lot of muriatic acid products out there that are designed to do this job, even if many people find it a little on the messy side. [...]

  46. benaderet2 Says:
    May 11th, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    i just bought muriatic acid at lowes its in paint section

  47. Carol Says:
    June 14th, 2010 at 12:58 pm

    When my washer is in the spin cycle and draining, the water is backing up the drain and not going down fast enough. Can muratic acid be used to unclog the drain?

  48. warhouse Says:
    July 27th, 2010 at 3:16 pm

    Where can I get muriatic acid at 40% HCL concentration. I need it to remove the autocoxic fruits from the seeds of pokeweed that I want to plant. Without the acid treatment I have been totally unsuccessful in germinating such seeds; and of course those that are so treated by passage through the digestive tracts of the small animals that eat them sprout wherever the animals have dropped them on my property. Unfortunately those that sprout never fully succeed in my efforts to transplant them so I want to resort to the same methods used by commercial propagators of pokeweed. Where can I buy this concentration at a reasonable price I’d only need a few ounces.

  49. Pat Davidson Says:
    September 17th, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Where do I get rid of Muratic acid? Can you put it in the ground?

  50. mary Says:
    January 11th, 2011 at 9:00 am

    when my washer is draining, the water is backing up and overflowing. The washer is near the kitchen and the kitchen drain seems to be involved also. Can I put muriatic acid in the washer drain to upstop it?

  51. Official Comment:

    Ben Erickson Says:
    January 11th, 2011 at 9:46 am

    Hi Mary,
    I would try a regular drain cleaner, rather than muriatic acid, and/or use a drain snake to remove the clog.

  52. Jan Nyland Says:
    January 14th, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    Its been 8-9 yrs ago that I used a product I think was Muriatic Acid to DE-Silver a mirror, or a part of a mirror, it worked great–had to wear glasses and wear gloves. Is the Acid now as strong as it was then? I bought a product that they called “ego friendly” muriatic acid, but it didn’t work. Web sites offering alternatives to use to de-silver mirror, but just not working. Please help.
    Thanks

  53. Cydney Gobrecht Says:
    January 14th, 2011 at 6:19 pm

    Folks, muriatic acid is a very common chemical. It’s in many products you probably already have in your house. It can be found in some products made by Lysol, Lime-A-Way, Liquid Vanish, Sparkle, Zep, etc. Check out the link that ‘jeff’ added above and a similar link I added here:

    http://householdproducts.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/household/brands?tbl=chem&id=140

    And, check out this tragic story from Indiana–this stuff is serious and should be handled accordingly–it can be lethal:

    http://www.thestarpress.com/article/20110114/NEWS01/101140314/-1/NLETTER01/Lawsuits-fly-in-wake-of-May-s-fatal-well-accident?source=nletter-news

  54. jim21253 Says:
    January 20th, 2011 at 8:45 am

    As a former pool builder I used Muriatic Acid to etch new concrete so that it will accept masonry paint. Contrary to what Jeff said earlier… Muriatic Acid is not the same as Hydrochloric Acid. Muriatic Acid is a “watered down” product made from Hydrochloric Acid. Normally, Muriatic is about 30% Hydrochloric and 70% fillers.
    Great caution should be used when handling and using this stuff and I would discourage anyone from using it inside the home without extreme ventilation. Even when used outside on concrete pools the fumes can be overpowering.
    Muriatic Acid is used by cement mason’s to clean concrete and brick surfaces, and it does a wonderful job. This stuff eats calcium like candy, and cement finishes can be permanently ruined if a professional doesn’t handle its use.
    If you do decide to use it yourself remember this… Muriatic Acid is neutralized with a strong mixture of AMONIA & WATER.

  55. Jim Mense Says:
    February 27th, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    If I remove the pressure valve and disconnect the water line from my hot water heater and drain it halfway, can muriatic acid be used to clean the scale out of the inside?
    I read on the internet that this works!

  56. Carla Says:
    March 4th, 2011 at 8:07 am

    I have gotten excellent results removing scale buildup from toilets using cheap cola. I drain the toilet and pour in 2-4 liters and let it sit overnight, then scrub in the morning before I flush it.

  57. Luis Says:
    March 16th, 2011 at 9:30 pm

    Im going to use it for a science project at my middle school. I bought it at Frys’ Marketplace for about 10 dollars. I also found it at Home depot and it was 10 dollars for 2 gallons. My question is, is muriatic acid the same thing as hydrochloric acid ?

  58. Official Comment:

    Ben Erickson Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 4:36 pm

    Hi Luis,
    Yes, muriatic and hydrochloric acid are the same chemical. Both are available in different strengths. Be careful when working with muriatic acid, and be sure to wear protective clothing, rubber gloves, and goggles, as it can burn you! Good luck with your project!

  59. Martin Says:
    September 30th, 2011 at 1:39 am

    hi i am going to refine gold out of microchips and electronic parts and i need hydrochloric acid 15%-30% will they sell it at home depot or pool supplies stores? Thank you

  60. Tom Holmquist Says:
    May 27th, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    Will muratic acid clean scum , and lime buildup off aluminum pontoons , without eating aluminum, or will it hurt my concrete driveway when it drips off pontoons?

  61. willie Says:
    June 24th, 2013 at 8:22 pm

    I have use it to clean heat exchangers to get the junk out of the 1/4 inch holes and works great at 20% I want to use it to clean my aluminum siding but brake it down to 15% and then paint my house… They use it to wash big trucks so I am going to try it what your thoughts.

  62. Keith Says:
    July 29th, 2013 at 8:36 am

    I have 1 to 2 million used bricks in piles and I’m looking to clean off the mortar the easiest way possible and then sell. Muriatic Acid seems to be the best way along with a wire brushes & a small hammer/chisel. Any suggestions or advice since I am definitely a beginner in this area.

  63. MARVIN PURSER Says:
    October 18th, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    KEITH/2013 YOU HAVE TO BE KIDDING! 2 MILLION WITH ACID? ACID WILL EAT JUST LIKE IT DOES THE CONCRETE PATIOS OF SWIMMING POOLS. AND HOW MANY THOUSAND MEN ARE YOU GOING TO PUT HAMMER AND CHISEL IN THEIR HANDS TO GET ON THEIR KNEES AND CHIP AWAY THE HARD STUFF FROM THE 2 MILLION BRICKS. YEH, YOU HAVE TO BE SPOOFING US.

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