Update: Label on the bottle of ROG1 is incorrect, company says — they will correct it

Here’s an update to my continuing saga about searching for a cleaner that will clean cast iron bath tubs and sinks without potentially damaging the porcelain surface. Today, I follow up with a report on how I discovered a discrepancy on the ROG1 label. In a nutshell:  In contrast to what’s on their website, print on the ROG1 bottle says it contains “sulfonic acid”…. So I reached out to the company — and they said this labeling information was an error, that “The ROG 1 cream contains no acids”. Read on for their complete response, which includes saying they will correct the info on the bottle.

You will recall — in this story — I reported that I had discovered what seems to be a terrific product, ROG1, that is doing a good job of cleaning my circa 1963 vintage Kohler cast iron sink and the bottom of my newer Kohler cast iron tub. In a subsequent story here — I went back and forth with Kohler to verify their list of recommended cleaners — and also to understand better what makes for an acceptable cleaner — one key seems to be no acid, minimal abrasives.

I was using ROG1 again — actually testing it against Kohler’s Cast Iron Cleaner (full story to come) when I saw that the label on said it contained “Sulfonic Acid”. This, even though the owner of ROG products says on the company’s website, and has said on this blog in comments, that there is no acid in their products. Previously, I had been looking at this product’s ingredients directly on the website — the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) there.  So, I sent an email to ask about this discrepancy. Here is the exchange, and the company’s response:

I wrote to Vince Vallone, owner of the company:

This is Pam from Retro Renovation.

I was just using ROG1 and noticed that an ingredient listed on the label is “Sulfonic Acid”. However, I don’t see this listed on the MSDS <– linked here. And you said this as a comment, “Yes Gina the ROG products are not caustic, no acids, many folks don’t realize the the grocery store and walmart caries many acid contained cleaners and will dull the bathtub over years, magic eraser has acid, 409 scrubbing bubbles and many more.”

Can you clarify?
Thank you, Pam

To cut to the chase, owner Vince Vallone said the label on ROG1 is wrong — and that they will correct the label. Here is is complete response (edited slightly because I had one quick followup question and incorporated the answer):

Hello Pam

Hope all is well and we appreciate your follow up.

 The ROG 1 cream contains no acids.

After your e-mail….

Well we researched this and found the mistake and figured out what went wrong with the labeling.

We many years ago manufactured a deck and hull cleaner similar to the ROG 1 but it was called BCD’s deck and hull cleaner product named ROG 9

The ROG 9 Deck and Hull cleaner for the yachting, and boating industry this product had the sulfonic acid in the proprietary mixture and our bottle printer who prints the data on the bottle left this acid statement on the ROG 1 label, by mistake we never caught it till you mentioned it. Thank you, your new name should be retro-thour-ough-. LOL.

The ROG 9 was an experimental cleaner we tried years ago the formulas was to clean exhaust fumes on the aft side of the boat from inboard engines exhaust marks from the diesel engines and worked great but it never took off as expected so we stopped production on this product. Both were created around the same time, as we also had Glass cleaner and deodorizers, we no longer make.

But leave it up to you with your great journalism to find this mistake. Again thank you, we have now taken steps to remove that error from all future ROG1 bottles.

Thank you for looking at our mistake and we have now taken steps to remove this on all the ROG 1 bottles.

So there’s the update. I have updated the other stories to share this clarification, as well. Readers: Here on the blog, as homeowners ourselves, we may try new cleaning products aimed at solving our own cleaning problems; if we think we’ve found something promising to consider, we may write about it. But, we are not professional chemists or engineers or home economists. So, please: Do your own research into these products and their suitability for your projects!


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  1. linda h says

    I wrote a comment earlier, then decided it was unkind to both the cleaner manufacturer and to Kohler. Anyway, I am glad they will be quick to change their label. I will still probably continue to use my un-recommended product anyway.

    • says

      Very wise. When people respond positively to “criticism” or editorial comment, that response should be rewarded, not punished.

      Parents often make the mistake of punishing children for telling the truth, and what they learn from that is to lie, or at the very least, that the penalty for lying is the same as telling the truth, and they might as well gamble that they won’t get caught. Everybody makes mistakes–it’s how you take responsibility for them that counts.

      So, when a company’s customer service is thoughtful, and responsive, I like to reward them. If only government were as motivated to keep customers happy! And if only it were as easy to find a substitue when they aren’t!

  2. Greg says

    I ordered the Kohler cleaner, and it came in yesterday. I gave it a try on part of my tub and it seemed to do nothing. I’m interested to hear your results.

    • pam kueber says

      sneak peek — the Kohler branded cleaner was okay for superficial dirt — but no, it did not get the deep crud of my “ruined” sink bottom clean. My vintage sink had been cleaned with harsh stuff in the past — I am pretty sure the surface of the bottom is “etched / damaged”. The Kohler would not lift off the yellowed stained. The ROG1 did, though.

      • Greg says

        I went by a plumbing supply today (for a different reason), and they had a few products. I picked up the one they recommended most, and will give it a try tonight.

        I’ll probably just have to break down and try the ROG1.

      • Greg says

        Tried KRC-7 Ultra from the plumbing supply store last night. It got out some of the grime. But not all. And it doesn’t restore shine.

        Was your tub “chalky” before you you used ROG1?

  3. Robin, NV says

    Pam – I don’t think we thank you enough for all of your great sleuthing. You’re the awesomest!

    I plan to get some ROG1, I’m really hoping it will spiff up my green tub.

  4. Mary Elizabeth says


    I wrote you a comment about the Kohler cast iron sink cleaner, and it worked marvelously on my 50-year-0ld Briggs pink tub. Got up the scuffs I thought were sratches and took off years of grime. But your correspondent is right–if the underlying surface has been etched by acid or other harsh cleaners, it won’t help. I recommend it to everyone for a first try, to see if the tub or sink is really damaged or not.

  5. Mairi says

    I have a 1930’s farm sink with an etched bottom. Despite the extra work in maintaining it-only necessary once a week- I have found that a Magic Eraser does a fine job in a few minutes. Prior to that I was using Zud successfully but this is even quicker. A very mild bleach soaking for 10 minutes also works for the odd time I need to do tea cup stains. Hope that helps..

    • pam kueber says

      All of those products damage/destroy the original finish, which is meant to resist stains etc if properly cleaned with non-abrasive, non-acidic cleaners. If your finish is wrecked already, so be it — but DO NOT USE those products on an intact porcelain enamel sink. At least that’s my experience.

  6. jennifer says

    Hi Pam,
    I have a question on a VERY old sink. I have a 1929 Crane kitchen sink that is HUGE and yellow. At some point, this was removed from its kitchen and put into a barn, for many years – until I purchased it. I think during that time someone stored can of paint in the basin, because I have HUGE circle rust marks. I have tried everything to remove the rust – all the products on the no-no list. 🙁 Nothing is making it budge. Do you think ROG will remove these ancient rust rings?
    Thank you!

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