Would you eat your dinner off a dirty plate? Would you drink from a stained glass? We’re hoping the answer to both questions is a resounding ‘NO’! Therefore, it always astonishes us when we hear that bong owners have no issues smoking from a filthy glass piece.
It doesn’t take long for a pristine bong to become a toxic dump, which not only hurts the quality of your smoke; it could also damage your health. If you want to get the best out of your bong, clean it regularly. This guide will show you how.
How to Clean a Bong – Information for All Bong Owners
When it comes to cleaning a bong, the central question is: “How often should I do it?”
This is down to personal preference, but it also depends on how often you use the device. Some dedicated smokers will clean their bong after every single session! This is probably a little excessive. However, if you’re a heavy smoker, washing it every second day is not a bad idea.
Why You Need a Clean Bong
As well as making the weed taste better, a clean bong preserves your health. If you insist on using a nasty piece, you invite the risk of respiratory infection, which will ruin future sessions. There is even a slight possibility of contracting a lung infection, which is terrible news for weed smokers!
Why are you at risk when using a dirty bong? It should be common sense, but here goes. Stagnant water in bongs and water pipes is a prime breeding ground for fungus and bacteria. For example, have you seen black spots on the ceiling of a bathroom without proper ventilation?
You may also have spotted a pink film, which is a fungus. One of the most common types, Fusarium, grows in damp locations. Fusarium is also capable of utterly destroying cannabis plants. Mold tends to accumulate around reclaims and percolators, two of the most challenging areas to clean.
Mold varies in terms of appearance and color, but it comes in green, black, gray, pink, and white. If you use a dirty bong, there’s a danger that you’re inhaling the spores of mold; a recipe for illness. If that isn’t enough of a reason to clean your bong regularly, here are three more:
Fresh Tasting Weed
Ideally, you’ll get a clean and fresh-tasting hit when you use a bong. Given the price of marijuana in some states, it makes sense to get your money’s worth. However, if you don’t clean your bong, you get residues of previous sessions. You could also inhale the smoke that has passed through water that your buddy drooled into in a past session.
When you inhale cleaner smoke, it is better news for your respiratory system. You also enjoy the taste of the smoke more as the flavors come through.
Have you ever taken a rip, only for it to be so harsh on your lungs that you had no option but to cough? You can reduce the risk of this happening by cleaning your bong. If nothing else, make sure you change the water after every session. Also, a clean bong helps the percolator to work at its highest capacity. A clogged perc prevents you from getting a smooth smoke.
The best hit you’ll get comes from a clean bong. The THC-laden smoke gets a straightforward path from the bong to your lungs. If there is a sticky resin build-up at the side of the base and near the neck, you won’t get the full effects of the weed.
You should clean your bong in the following scenarios. If:
- There is a significant build-up of resin.
- The bong water is discolored, brown, and smelly.
- You can see a slimy film inside the bong.
- There is visible gray or white mold fuzz on the resin.
- Black or white specks dot the pipe’s walls.
How to Clean a Bong Without Alcohol
Alcohol is prevalent for bong cleaning. Therefore, we decided that it would be a great idea to show you how to clean a bong without rubbing alcohol first. Isopropyl alcohol is a perfectly safe household solvent to use. However, there are lots of users who prefer to learn how to clean a glass bong without alcohol instead.
It is a method that takes a little longer, but you’ll eventually get the job done. Firstly, boil enough water to cover the entire bong in a saucepan. Next, reduce the heat to simmer and submerge your bong in water for 30 minutes. It is a delicate process.
Too hot and the glass could crack if the water evaporates and leaves part of the piece exposed. Too cold, and the water won’t release any bubbles. Drain the water after half an hour and use pipe cleaners and paper towels.
Other Bong Cleaning Options
Another standard method of cleaning a glass bong without alcohol is to use lemon along with boiling water. Once again, boil water and add lemon juice to the bong. Many users recommend purified water. If this sounds like you, make sure you filter it first.
Pour the boiling water into the bong, shake thoroughly and wait for approximately five minutes. This process enables the acid from the lemon juice to help get rid of the gunk. Pour the solution out of the bong and rinse it with warm water.
Another option is to boil enough water to submerge your bong in a saucepan. Reduce the heat, so the water is simmering and leave the piece in the water for around 30 minutes. The water must remain warm enough to release some bubbles. However, too hot, and it will evaporate and leave the glass uncovered. Drain the water when time is up, and wait until the glass cools down. Finally, use paper towels to clean the bong.
The main issue with both methods described above is the possibility of cracking your bong in hot water. Today’s glass bongs should be sturdy enough to withstand the heat. If you would prefer not to take the risk, there are other options.
How to Clean a Silicone Bong
You’ll be shocked to hear how easy it is to clean a stained silicone bong. Users of glassware have to be careful every time they use and clean it. In contrast, a silicone bong clean is remarkably easy, as long as you have a dishwasher!
Silicone bongs are light, small, and last for a very long time. Learning how to clean a silicone bong is about as hard as figuring out how to work a machine. Instead of having to dislodge resin or spend money on isopropyl alcohol, you can clean your silicone bong in the dishwasher. Why? Because they are all but unbreakable.
If you don’t have a dishwasher, there are three other simple ways to clean your silicone bong:
- Freezing: Silicone is resilient against heat and cold. Put your dirty piece in the freezer for a few hours. When you take it out, crush it up and dump the frozen bits that come out. It gets rid of practically all solid material. Flower smokers may still get the smell of tar from the piece, however.
- Alcohol: Silicone is non-reactive to polar solvents, which is precisely what alcohol is. Fill the silicone bong or rig with warm or cold alcohol (warm alcohol works a bit faster). Immerse the piece in the alcohol solution overnight and rinse with water.
- Plant-Based Cleaners: There are special cleaners with coconut oil and Vitamin E. They work as well as alcohol without the issue of damaging your house’s plumbing.
How to Clean a Bong Stem
Those who try to learn how to clean the downstem of a bong soon discover that it is a massive pain in the ass. Not only do the holes get clogged, but it is also reasonably hard to reach every part of the stem. One quick and easy way to clean a glass bong stem is to pour salt down the downstem until it is almost full. Make sure the downstem is still attached to the bong at this stage.
Pour rubbing alcohol to the top. Create some suction on the bong to help the isopropyl move through the salt. Warning! There is a danger of breathing in alcohol fumes, so don’t try this method if you have any concerns. Make sure the room is well ventilated. It is probably a better idea to place your hand over the top of the bong. Remember, the goal is to create suction.
Keep pouring alcohol and create negative pressure in the bong until all of the salt passes through. Shake the solution while it is in your bong for a fast clean, and rinse everything with hot water. Those who use this method tend to use Everclear instead of isopropyl alcohol.
A quicker and safer method of cleaning the stem of a bong is to place the stem in a Ziploc bag. Fill it with salt and alcohol and shake it for a few minutes. You can also use this method for a quick bowl clean.
How to Clean a Bong with Vinegar
An alternative method of cleaning your bong involves the dirt-beating combination of white vinegar and baking soda. Here is the process:
- Fill the bong with warm water. Give the piece a powerful shake while covering the mouthpiece and shaft. Dispose of the dirty water.
- Pour baking soda into the mouthpiece, making sure it clings to the glass inside. Don’t proceed until you cover a large percentage of the bong’s surface area.
- Allow the bong to sit for several hours; most users leave it overnight.
- Next, add several more spoons of baking soda followed by a cup of vinegar. A large bong may need more. Cover all holes and give the bong another shake. It is best to do this over the bathtub. The reaction of the baking soda and vinegar will start to fizz and overflow.
- Scrub the inside of the bong with a long brush and marvel as it scrubs all the dirt away.
- Rinse the glass piece with warm water until all of the dirt, vinegar, and baking soda vanishes.