I have a Moen faucet in the laundry area, which looks very similar to the one mentioned in this question (Removing Moen kitchen faucet aerator):

Here's what the faucet looks like I have also not been able to open the aerator yet. [edit]: I was actually successful in removing the aerator by using a tool I found while rummaging in my toolbox. It worked perfectly. So I can now submerge just the plastic aerator bits in vinegar instead of the entire faucet head. Here is a link to the product I used: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M31LE5D

However, I'll keep this question around since it relates to the chemical reactions of vinegar/etc. with the chrome finishes of typical Moen faucets.

Would it be entirely ridiculous to just submerge the faucet head in a cup full of vinegar and let the various calcium etc. deposits dissolve/loosen up?

Here's what the outside of the aerator looks like Or is this a surefire way to destroy the chrome finish of the faucet?

  • 1
    Probably depends how cheap they've managed to make the chrome finish, and if any of it is "chrome-look plastic" rather than chrome-plated brass.
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 17:58
  • 2
    If left for days maybe, but for the few minutes to half an hour needed quite safe
    – crip659
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 17:58

3 Answers 3


I don't have Moen, but in general I'd like to point out that you can put vinegar (or lemon juice) in a baggie and hang the baggie from the faucet, fastened with a rubber band, and leave it overnight. Hang it so the aerator, which you will leave in situ, is submerged in the liquid.

baggie containing vinegar


I have used vinegar in the past but found on shower heads I had better and faster results with CLR a chemical Calcium, Lime & Rust Remover. Many grocerie stores have CLR and all the big box stores have it in my area.

I still use vinegar on my coffee maker to clean it and it may take a few cycles I don’t want the other chemicals inside a machine I drink out of but don’t worry about on a shower head after a rinse. Or on the tub, sink or toilet….


I would try lemon juice first: 20:80 with hot water.

And it smells better. I do it with my kettle often.

  • But does it open your sinuses as well.
    – crip659
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 18:01
  • @crip659 I’ll have lemon tea, you can check out vinegar tea :)
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 18:02
  • Stupid question, but is it 20 parts for the lemon juice and 80 for the hot water? Or the other way around? :-)
    – VSR
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 18:05
  • @VSR yes, you’re right. Water is cheaper than lemon juice, so 4/5ths water…
    – Solar Mike
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 18:16
  • 1
    I just posted an edit in the question to clarify that I was actually able to find a specific tool to remove the aerator itself, so I am simply soaking that part without risking the finish of the faucet wand. I also posted a link to the tool, but will still keep the question around.
    – VSR
    Commented Jun 5, 2022 at 18:34

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