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How To Clean A Glass Bong

Bongs offer a great way for cannabis consumers to enjoy flower, and are one of the preferred methods among enthusiasts. However, too much use can leave your water pipe looking nasty, and nobody wants to put their favorite herb into a dirty bong. The build up of sticky residue, and black tar-like resin, can leave your whole room smelling rank. Nothing is worse than showing up to a session and having someone pull out a filthy bong.

Never worry about foul smelling bong water again. Keep your glass water pipe looking as pristine as the day you purchased it with these foolproof bong cleaning techniques.

When Should I Clean My Bong? 

Having a clean piece is incredibly important. Bacteria can grow in dirty water, and make you sick. Grimy cannabis residue can also affect the way of your bud tastes. All the delicious flavors and terpenes in even the highest quality of flower can taste rancid if smoked from a dirty bong. What a waste!

How often you need to clean your water pipe is up to your personal preference, and depends on how often you partake. Heavy smokers will need to clean their bongs more regularly to keep resin from forming. Some people like to clean their bong every few weeks, others prefer daily. Some die-hard enthusiasts even insist on cleaning theirs after every hit. Do what works for you, but at least make sure to keep the water fresh!

Method #1: The Hot Water Method

The first method this guide will cover is the hot water method. This is the technique that requires the least amount of materials—perfect for when you're in a pinch, The hot water method works best on bongs that have been regularly cleaned, and aren’t too dirty

Here’s all that you’ll need: 

  • A large pot (not the kind you smoke)
  • Access to water and stove top 
  • A tool like a qtip, pipe cleaner, or paper clip 

First, fill your pot with water. Make sure there’s enough water to completely submerge your bong. 

Second, take your tool and knock out any large chunks of residue that may be attached to your water pipe.

Third, bring the water to a boil. Once you start to see bubbles forming, reduce the heat and bring the water down to a simmer. 

Fourth, carefully place your bong and bowl separately into the pot of water, taking care not to touch the water with your skin, or drop the bong. Make sure that your bong isn’t cold before placing it in the water, or the shift in temperature may cause your pipe to shatter.

Fifth, let your bong chill out in the hot water for at least thirty minutes. If your piece is dirtier, it may need more time to soak. 

Sixth, carefully remove your bong from the pot, and use your tool to scrape away any leftover residue.

Method #2: The Alcohol And Salt Method

The alcohol and salt method is a tried and true technique that every avid smoker should know.

Here’s what you’ll need: 

  • Isopropyl alcohol. At least 70%, but the higher the better
  • Coarse salt
  • A tool like a qtip, pipe cleaner, or paper clip
  • Cleaning plugs
  • A plastic bag

First, shake out any leftover cannabis from your bowl, and dislodge any large chunks of resin from your bong. 

Second, place your bowl into the plastic bag. Fill the bag with salt and alcohol, tightly seal it, and let soak while you begin the other steps.

Third, fill your bong with alcohol and salt, then attach the cleaning plugs. 

Fourth, vigorously shake the bag containing the alcohol and salt. 

Fifth, vigorously shake your bong, making sure the salty alcohol mixture reaches all of your water pipes crevices. 


Repeat steps two through five as many times as needed until your bong is looking sparkling clean. 

Sixth, rinse your bong and bowl, making sure to leave none of the alcohol. Use your tool to scrape away any excess residue.

Method #3: Formula 710

For exceptionally dirty bongs, you’re going to need to get out the big guns. Formula 710 is the easiest way to keep your water pipe looking squeaky clean. Simply pour the liquid cleaning agent into your bong, and give it a shake the same way you would with the alcohol and salt method.
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