If you enjoy smoking herb or tobacco from a glass bong, you probably know how important it is to keep your piece clean and fresh. A dirty bong can ruin your smoking experience, affect the flavor and quality of your smoke, and expose you to harmful bacteria and mold. That’s why you should change the water in your bong regularly and deep clean it at least once a week.
Why You Should Change the Water in Your Bong
Changing the water in your bong is not only a matter of hygiene, but also of taste and health. Here are some of the benefits of changing the water in your bong after every smoke session:
- It improves the flavor and smoothness of your smoke. The water in your bong acts as a filter, trapping some of the tar, ash, and toxins from your smoke. However, if you don’t change the water often, it will become stale and dirty, affecting the flavor and harshness of your smoke. Fresh water will ensure that you get the best taste and smoothness from your herb or tobacco.
- It prevents the growth of bacteria and mold. The water in your bong is a breeding ground for bacteria and mold, especially if you leave it for too long or expose it to sunlight or heat. These microorganisms can cause respiratory infections, allergies, and other health problems if you inhale them. Changing the water in your bong will prevent them from growing and contaminating your smoke.
- It makes cleaning your bong easier. The longer you leave the water in your bong, the more resin and gunk will build up on the walls and inside the tubes of your piece. This will make cleaning your bong more difficult and time-consuming. Changing the water in your bong will reduce the amount of resin and gunk that accumulates and make cleaning your bong easier.
How to Change the Water in Your Bong
Changing the water in your bong is a simple and quick process that you should do after every smoke session. Here are the steps to follow:
- Pour out the old water. Carefully pour out the old water from your bong into a sink or a bucket. Make sure you don’t spill any water on your piece or yourself.
- Rinse out the bong with warm water. Fill up your bong with warm water and swirl it around to rinse out any remaining debris or residue. You can also use a pipe cleaner or a bottle brush to scrub any hard-to-reach areas. Pour out the rinse water and repeat until the bong is clean.
- Fill up the bong with fresh water. Fill up your bong with fresh water until it covers the bottom of the downstem or percolator. You can use tap water, filtered water, or distilled water, depending on your preference. Some people also like to add ice cubes, lemon juice, or mint leaves to their water to enhance their smoking experience.
- Enjoy your smoke. Your bong is now ready for another smoke session. Enjoy the fresh and smooth smoke from your herb or tobacco.
How to Deep Clean Your Bong
Besides changing the water in your bong, you should also deep clean your piece at least once a week to remove any stubborn resin and gunk that may affect its performance and appearance. There are different methods to deep clean a glass bong, using various ingredients and tools. Some common ingredients are alcohol, salt, vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice. Some common tools are bottle brush, pipe cleaner, and saucepan. The basic steps are to fill the bong with the chosen ingredient, shake it, and let it soak for some time, then rinse it with warm water and dish soap. Some methods require boiling water, but this could bust the glass. Here is one of the most popular methods to deep clean a glass bong:
- Separate all the moving pieces from the bong. Proper cleaning usually involves shaking and some scrubbing, which can damage delicate glass parts if you’re not careful. Separate each of the parts — the bong, the slide, and the stem — and set them aside to be cleaned separately. You may want to wear latex gloves, as the smell of resin can be hard to remove from your hands.
- Place the smaller parts in resealable plastic bags. Make sure that they can seal effectively. You’ll use the bag to contain your cleaning fluid while you soak the smaller pieces. Though you can do them at the same time, it is safest to put them each in separate bags. You can also use cups and bowls, as long as you can fill them with enough liquid to cover the pieces. However, cleaning may leave an unsavory smell to the cookware, making plastic bags the most convenient option more often than not.
- Fill your plastic bags with isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol and salt. Purchase 90% isopropyl instead of 71% whenever available, though both will work. They can be found in the first aid section of your supermarket or pharmacy. Make sure the pieces are fully submerged in the fluid. Alcohol reacts with the tar and resin, making it easier to remove, making it a cheap and effective home cleaner. Salt acts as an abrasive, helping to scrub off any stubborn bits of resin. If you don’t have iso alcohol available, there are several alternatives, such as vinegar, baking soda, or lemon juice.
- Shake the bags and let them soak. Seal the bags and shake them vigorously for a minute or two, making sure that the alcohol and salt reach every part of the pieces. Then, let them soak for at least 30 minutes, or longer if they are very dirty. You can also place the bags in a bowl of warm water to speed up the process.
- Fill your bong with alcohol and salt and shake it. While the smaller pieces are soaking, you can clean the bong itself. Fill it with alcohol and salt, just enough to cover the bottom of the downstem or percolator. Plug the holes with your fingers or some paper towels and shake it for a minute or two, making sure that the alcohol and salt reach every part of the bong.
- Pour out the alcohol/salt mixture and rinse with warm water and dish soap. Pour out the alcohol/salt mixture from your bong and your bags into a sink or a bucket. Rinse out the pieces with warm water and dish soap to remove any remaining alcohol, salt, or resin. You can also use a pipe cleaner or a bottle brush to scrub any hard-to-reach areas. Rinse until there is no smell or residue left.
- Let it dry completely. Place your bong and its parts on a towel or a rack and let them dry completely before using them again. This may take an hour or more, depending on the size and shape of your piece. Make sure there is no moisture left inside your bong, as this could cause mold or bacteria to grow.
Cleaning your glass bong is not only a matter of hygiene, but also of taste and health. By changing the water in your bong after every smoke session and deep cleaning it at least once a week, you will ensure that you get the best smoking experience possible from your herb or tobacco. You will also prevent any health risks associated with inhaling dirty smoke. Cleaning your glass bong is easy and cheap, and it will make a big difference in your enjoyment of your piece.