A glass bong is a great way to enjoy your favorite herb or tobacco, but it can also be a fragile and expensive piece of equipment. If you accidentally drop your bong, knock it over, or mishandle it during cleaning, you may end up with a crack, a chip, or a complete break. This can be frustrating and disappointing, especially if you invested a lot of money and love into your bong.
But don’t despair! There may be ways to fix your broken glass bong and restore it to its former glory. Depending on the type and extent of the damage, you may be able to use some household items, some specialized products, or some professional services to repair your bong. In this blog post, we will explore some of the different methods and how they work, as well as some tips on how to prevent future damage and where to get a replacement if needed.
Assess the damage
The first thing you need to do is make sure the bong is repairable at all. Some damage cannot be reversed. If you dropped your bong and it shattered into a million pieces, you’re pretty much out of luck. Don’t expect to sweep up all of those shattered pieces and be able to put them together again. You’re better off moving on at this point.
However, if the damage is more along the lines of a single crack, chip or busted piece, the bong may be salvageable. Now you just have to decide what method will work best to fix your bong based on the damage incurred. It’s important to go for the safe-for-humans options to repair a bong. While some substances may do a good job of sticking glass together, they may also have toxic solvents that you don’t want to accidentally heat up and inhale.
Choose the method
Here are some of the most common methods for repairing a broken glass bong:
- Food grade silicone: This is a non-toxic substance often used to make molds for various food items like chocolates or jellies. This substance is also highly resistant to damage and doesn’t crack, crumble, peel, or dry out. It’s great for use as a sealant. You can use food grade silicone to repair cracks, chips, and other minor damage to your bong, especially in areas where the tube meets the base or other similar joints. However, it provides no structural support and is easily removed/peeled off, so it’s not useful in sealing areas that are frequently handled or that require more strength. You can also use food grade silicone over non-waterproof glues to provide an extra layer of protection.
- Two-component epoxy: This is a type of glue that is created by mixing two substances: a resin and a hardener. There are dozens of brands to choose from that bond to glass, but look for non-toxic, heat-resistant or both. This method works best on fixing bongs with clean breaks. So, if you are left with particularly pointy pieces to mend, you might want to invest in a glass cutter. Scoring and snapping off the jagged pieces to create the clean break. High grit sand-paper can be employed to smooth out any rough areas before applying the epoxy. Besides a glass meld, this is the longest-lasting fix, although if the bond is left submerged, it can become “waterlogged” and leak. Emptying the bong between uses will prevent this and prolong the seal.
- Loctite Glass: This is a brand of glue that is similar in look and usage to super-glue but chemically different. This unique butyl formula bonds to the glass without any solvents or activators. This glue is water- and heat-resistant and does not contain solvents which could be toxic to humans. However, it is not very flexible and may crack under stress or temperature changes.
- Cyanoacrylates (Super-Glue): These are fast-acting adhesives that bond well with glass and other materials. They are easy to apply and widely available, but they have some drawbacks. They are not water-resistant and may dissolve over time when exposed to moisture. They also contain solvents that may be harmful if inhaled or ingested.
- JB Weld, Quick Steel, Plumber’s Putty: These are some examples of metal-based or epoxy-based putties that can be used to fill in gaps, holes, or cracks in your bong. They are usually heat-resistant and water-resistant, but they may not bond well with glass and may look unsightly. They are also not very flexible and may crack or peel off over time.
- Duct tape: This is a cheap and easy option for bong repair, but not very glamorous or discreet. You can use duct tape to seal a crack in the bong and make sure that it remains functional, but it will not look very nice and it may affect the taste and quality of your smoke. Duct tape is also not very durable and may peel off or lose its stickiness over time.
- Blow torch: This is a method that requires some skill and equipment, but it can be very effective in repairing a broken glass bong. You can use a blow torch to heat up the broken edges of the glass and fuse them together, creating a strong and seamless bond. However, this method is not recommended for beginners or for complex breaks, as it can be dangerous and difficult to control. You may also end up damaging your bong further or burning yourself if you are not careful.
Call the professionals
If none of the above methods work for you, or if you are not confident in your DIY skills, you may want to consider hiring a professional to fix your bong. There are some glassblowers or glass repair shops that specialize in fixing broken glass bongs, pipes, or other smoking accessories. They may have the tools, techniques, and experience to restore your bong to its original condition or even improve it. However, this option may be costly and time-consuming, depending on the extent of the damage and the availability of the service.
Prevent future damage
The best way to deal with a broken glass bong is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Here are some tips on how to protect your bong from damage:
- Store it safely: When you are not using your bong, make sure to store it in a safe place where it will not be knocked over, dropped, or exposed to extreme temperatures. You can use a padded case, a box, or a shelf to keep your bong secure and out of harm’s way.
- Clean it regularly: Keeping your bong clean will not only improve your smoking experience, but also prevent damage from buildup of resin, ash, or mold. You can use warm water, alcohol, vinegar, salt, or specialized cleaning products to clean your bong thoroughly and gently. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive materials that may scratch or weaken the glass.
- Handle it carefully: When you are using your bong, be careful not to drop it, hit it, or twist it too hard. Use both hands to hold it firmly and avoid placing it on unstable surfaces. If you are passing it around with friends, make sure they are also careful and respectful of your bong.
- Use a silicone koozie or base cover: One of the best ways to avoid broken and cracked bongs is to give your bong a silicone koozie or base cover. This is a net or sleeve of springy silicone that will absorb hits and protect the glass if your bong is set down too hard on the countertop or dropped a short distance.
Get a replacement
If all else fails, you may have to accept the fact that your bong is beyond repair and get a replacement. This may be an opportunity to upgrade your smoking gear and try something new. You can browse online or visit local shops to find a new glass bong that suits your preferences and budget. You can also look for alternative materials like ceramic, metal, wood, or silicone that may be more durable and less prone to breaking than glass.
A broken glass bong is not the end of the world. There are ways to fix it yourself or get professional help if you want to salvage your beloved piece. However, prevention is better than cure, so make sure to take good care of your bong and avoid unnecessary damage. And if you need to get a new one, don’t be afraid to explore new options and find the perfect match for you.