Informational Guide

How To Clean Shower Head Rubber Nozzles (DIY Guide)

Knowing how to clean shower head rubber nozzles is half the battle of having a clean shower. Read this post to discover our tips & tricks.

by Holly Curell

For our showers to form tiny streams of water, it needs rubber nozzles. These nozzles cover the tiny holes in the shower head and help guide the water in the right direction.

Taking care of them may seem tricky but knowing how to clean shower head rubber nozzles is half the battle. Keep reading to discover our tips and tricks. 

Want to clean your shower head but do not want any hassle? Here is a lowdown on how to clean stains off shower head rubber nozzles. 


  • Rubber gloves 
  • Face mask 
  • Soft bristle toothbrush 
  • Plastic bag 
  • Rubber bands 
  • White vinegar 
  • Bucket 
  • Clean water 
  • Baking soda 
  • Lemon juice 
  • Coca Cola 
  • Bowl 

Internal Clean 

While it may seem like just cleaning the surface is enough, getting to the inside of the shower head will help unclog and remove pollutants. 

The Vinegar Method 

  1. 1
    Fill the plastic bag with equal parts water and white vinegar.  
  2. 2
    Fit the bag over the showerhead and secure it with rubber bands to prevent leaking or premature removal. 
  3. 3
    Leave the bag for at least an hour or overnight if possible. 

Don’t have any vinegar? Here are some alternative methods: 

The Baking Soda Method 

  1. 1
    Mix equal parts water and baking soda in a bowl. 
  2. 2
    Coat the shower head with the paste and wait 30 minutes. 
  3. 3
    This method is particularly good for cleaning stains off shower head rubber nozzles. 

The Coca Cola Method 

  1. 1
    Remove the showerhead from the wall 
  2. 2
    Put a can of coke in a bowl. 
  3. 3
    Dip the head in and scrub gently with a cleaning toothbrush. 
  4. 4
    Leave to soak for 30 minutes if necessary. 

The Lemon Juice Method 

  1. 1
    Spray lemon juice on a clean cloth and coat the showerhead. 
  2. 2
    Let the showerhead sit for a few minutes. 
  • If possible, take the showerhead front off according to manufacturer instructions. 
  • Remove the filter and rinse under clean water, rubbing with the cleaning toothbrush if necessary. 
  • Replace and reassemble according to manual instructions. 

Surface Clean 

  1. 1
    No matter which method you used, you must thoroughly rinse it with clean water once the showerhead has sat in the mixture. 
  2. 2
    Dip your toothbrush in the mixture and rub circles into the nozzles. 
  3. 3
    Rinse and shine the shower head’s surface. 

Sometimes manufacturers may convince you that specific brand shower heads need special treatment. That depends on what the head is made of.

However, if you are looking into cleaning a Moen shower head with rubber nozzles, for example, these methods should work fine. 

Why Do Shower Head Rubber Nozzles Get So Dirty? 

Since showers spray water, it is easy to think that you only need to clean shower heads now and again. However, water can contain specific things that may make your rubber nozzles dirty. 

  • Organic Matter From The Water 
    As water makes its way to your tap, it naturally picks up sediments that can catch on your showerhead. Limescale, minerals, and other organic matter can build up inside your rubber nozzles, affecting your flow rate. 
  • Bacteria, Mold, And Slime 
    Showers are naturally hot and humid places which makes them perfect environments for growing bacteria. Just as sediments can be found in water, so can harmful bacteria and mold.  
  • Everyday Routine 
    When living our lives, things can get a bit messy. From hair dye splatter to mud splashes, all kinds of everyday gunk can get onto your shower head without you realizing it. 
Why Do Shower Head Rubber Nozzles Get So Dirty

Why Should You Clean A Shower Heads Rubber Nozzles Regularly? 

All of these elements described above can clog your shower head, making uneven or irregular water flow an annoying reality if left untreated. 

While sediment is not necessarily harmful, bacteria and mold can be. As the water sprays down, these spores enter the air or wash over your skin and enter your body; cleaning your showerhead kills bacteria and keeps this to a minimum. 

General staining on your showerhead can make your bathroom feel unclean and look unpleasant overall. We recommend cleaning your shower head every week following our methods below. 

What To Avoid When Cleaning Rubber Nozzles On Showerheads 

Rubber is a valuable but sensitive material that needs to be treated with care. Harsh chemicals and other items can damage the nozzles or remove them from the shower head altogether. Some things to avoid when cleaning showerheads include: 

  • Bleach 
    Bleach is a strong chemical that, while effective at killing bacteria, can also damage the rubber nozzles on your shower head. 
  • Harsh Chemical Products  
    Harsh chemical products like rust remover and limescale remover may be effective at cleaning other showerheads. However, they can erode or damage rubber nozzles. 
  • Brushes With Stiff Bristles 
    Stiff bristled brushes can accidentally remove or tear rubber nozzles; use soft-bristled ones instead. 


What is the best thing to clean a shower head rubber nozzle with? 

That depends on what the rest of your shower head is made of. We recommend giving some of our above methods a try to see which is right for you. 

How long does a shower head rubber nozzle last? 

There is much debate over this, but the typical range is six months to a decade with proper cleaning and maintenance. We recommend cleaning your shower head regularly and replacing it when you can afford to. 

Can I replace the rubber nozzle in my shower head? 

That depends on the model of shower head you have. Some manufacturers will replace them as part of a warranty, or you can sometimes find replacements on Amazon or eBay. 


Rubber shower head nozzles are a practical but delicate part of our daily routine.

By carefully cleaning them at least once every couple of weeks, you can save yourself money and potential health problems down the line. 

Holly Curell is the editor extraordinaire for Plumbing Lab. Having grown up in Michigan, Holly has spent time living in New York, Virginia, & currently North Carolina, where she lives with her husband & family. Holly loves DIY & has years of experience with at-home plumbing problems that arise from having 3 kids & living in colder climates. When she's not writing about her plumbing knowledge, Holly enjoys reading, hiking & relaxing with family.