How Much Water to Put in a Bong: A Beginner’s Guide

If you are new to smoking with a bong, you might be wondering how much water you need to put in it before you light up. The amount of water in your bong can affect the quality and smoothness of your smoke, as well as the ease of pulling it through the water. In this blog post, we will explain how to find the perfect water level for your bong, whether it has a simple downstem or multiple percolators.

Why Does the Water Level Matter?

The main purpose of using a bong is to filter and cool down the smoke from your herb or tobacco. The water in the bong acts as a natural filter, trapping some of the tar, ash, and toxins that would otherwise enter your lungs. The water also cools down the smoke, making it less harsh and more enjoyable to inhale.

However, if you put too much or too little water in your bong, you might not get the best results. Too much water can make it harder to pull the smoke through the water, and you might end up getting some water in your mouth. Too little water can reduce the filtration and cooling effect of the water, and you might end up inhaling hot and harsh smoke.

How Much Water to Put in a Bong with a Downstem?

A downstem is a tube that connects the bowl where you put your herb or tobacco to the base of the bong where the water is. Some downstems have slits or holes at the bottom to diffuse the smoke into smaller bubbles, which increases the surface area and contact with the water.

The general rule of thumb is to put enough water in your bong to cover the bottom of the downstem by about half an inch. If your downstem has slits or holes, make sure they are all submerged in water. This way, you ensure that all the smoke passes through the water and gets filtered and cooled.

You can fill your bong with water by pouring it through the mouthpiece or directly into the base. You can also use a funnel or a bottle with a nozzle to make it easier. You can use tap water, filtered water, or distilled water for your bong. Some people like to add ice cubes, lemon juice, or other additives to their bong water to enhance the flavor or freshness of their smoke.

How Much Water to Put in a Bong with Percolators?

A percolator is an additional chamber or device inside the bong that further diffuses and filters the smoke. There are many types of percolators, such as honeycomb, matrix, showerhead, tree, etc. Some bongs have multiple percolators in different chambers for extra smoothness.

The idea is similar to filling a bong with a downstem: you need to put enough water to submerge all the openings of the percolator. For flat percolators like honeycomb or matrix, you need to cover them by about half an inch of water. For vertical percolators like showerhead or tree, you need to cover them by about an inch of water.

You can fill your bong with percolators by pouring water through the mouthpiece and letting it trickle down to each chamber. You might need to tilt or shake your bong slightly to distribute the water evenly. You can also use a syringe or a dropper to add water directly into each chamber.

How to Test Your Water Level?

Once you have filled your bong with water, you need to test it before you start smoking. To do this, simply inhale from the mouthpiece without lighting anything and observe how it feels. You should be able to pull the air through the water easily and smoothly, without any splashing or gurgling sounds.

If you feel any resistance or hear any noise when inhaling, you might need to adjust your water level. If there is too much water, pour out some until you find the right level. If there is too little water, add some until you find the right level.


Finding the perfect water level for your bong is not rocket science, but it does require some trial and error. The optimal amount of water can vary depending on your bong size, shape, and features. The best way to find out is to experiment with different levels and see what works best for you.

The main goal is to fill your bong with enough water to filter and cool the smoke, but not so much that it makes it hard to inhale or gets in your mouth. As a general guideline, you want to cover the bottom of your downstem or percolator by about half an inch of water. You can always adjust the level according to your preference and comfort.

We hope this blog post has helped you learn how much water to put in a bong and how to fill it properly. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. Happy smoking!