How to Clean a Glass Bong

For every stoner, using a glass bong is one of the best ways of getting a good hit. Glass bongs have now flooded the market thanks to the continuous marijuana legalization taking over the country. This has even spread to other countries that are following in the footsteps and making it legal to grow, process, sell and consume weed.

You may wonder why you have to use a bong in the first place which is a valid question. Bongs or water pipes are one of the most popular ways most users prefer to smoke cannabis. This instrument has been around for centuries in most parts of South East Asia and Africa. It became part of the English dictionary back in 1944.

Glass pipes are a very fancy way of smoking marijuana with the bubbling water, heavy smoke chambers, and big bowls. They are quite easy to use hence their popularity despite their complex designs. They have to be easy to use otherwise who wants to waste time learning to use a complex instrument to smoke some weed?

Many smokers prefer using bongs because they are a much safer way of smoking cannabis than just lighting up a blunt and going for it. A bong acts as a filter for the smoke that you’re about to inhale. It absorbs the heavier particles that otherwise would end up in your mouth, throat, and lungs. The water also dissolves harmful toxins and water-soluble particles making the smoke cleaner.

After some time of using a glass bong, you start to notice a residue build up on the walls of the glass pipe. This is tar and other harmful by-products that have separated from the smoke and stick on the walls. It can get very grimy and unsightly after some time. You have to learn how to properly clean this out to keep getting smoke free from these harmful products.

Why use a Glass Pipe (Bong)?

1. Better Hits

Glass pipes are one of the most popular ways to smoke marijuana. The wave of legalization has seen its manufacture increase. One reason they are so popular among users if they offer a better hit. This works best if that is your aim. There are those stoners who prefer bigger and better hits so using a bong gets them there quicker.

Other methods of smoking weed won’t deliver this type of effect. This is, however, not recommended to new smokers of marijuana as the hit can prove to be too big for a start. It’s best to ease into smoking by using other methods before jumping to using a glass pipe. There are some pipes that you can use for smaller hits though.

2. Water Filtration

Veteran smokers understand more why it’s better to use a water pipe. This is because of the water filtration system used to purify your smoke before you consume it. Direct smoke from lighting a blunt has all the impurities including harmful ones like tar. All these end up in your body lining every part of your mouth, throat, and lungs.

The water filter used in glass pipes benefits you in very many ways including cooling the smoke before it gets to your mouth. The water in the bong is what gets rid of the tar and other particles that either dissolve on the water or line up the walls of the bong. After some time, you’ll see all these on the glass. This is why regular cleaning is important.

3. Simple to Use

Learning to use a glass pipe is like learning to ride a bicycle. It seems complicated at first, but once you’re used to it, it gets very easy. Glass bongs are very easy to use and since they offer pure smoke through the filtration system, they are a much better option.

How to Clean a Glass Pipe

With all these importance of a glass pipe, then it’s only logical to want to know how to maintain it in the best condition always. With the build-up of impurities, cleaning is a must even for hygienic reasons. The other reason you have to clean it is to keep it looking shiny and new. You can then see the smoke as it gets filtered.

After some time, your bong can get very disgusting if you don’t take the initiative to clean it put once in a while. The water in it turns a very ugly color and the walls are all covered by black tar. If you keep using it this way, the taste of the smoke changes and this can even be more harmful to your health. The water is now building up with impurities and even bacteria.

All glass pipes have the same ailment of having tar build-up which is inevitable if you intend to get your hits using a bong. You then have to learn basic cleaning to maintain a pristine pipe that delivers the best hits always. However, you have to realize that even though the pipes are made of glass, the different designs are cleaned differently. This is because they have varying vulnerability points which you must keep in mind.

Home Made Solutions for Cleaning a Glass Bong

Cleaning a pipe using homemade solutions is the most practical way of maintaining a clean instrument. You don’t have to find complex ways, all you need is right under your roof.

a) Rubbing Alcohol

When you think about rubbing alcohol, make no mistake of just grabbing any bottle of it and pouring it down your pipe. This is essentially alcohol made primarily for cleaning purposes. This is by far the most popular way for users of marijuana to clean out their bongs. Even when you purchase one, it’s highly recommended by the manufacturer to use rubbing alcohol as the main way to clean it out.

What is required is rubbing alcohol, percolators, and salt. You pour them into the pipe and cover all the holes. Shake the pipe vigorously. Ensure you do this after the pipe has cooled off. You don’t want to do this when it’s still hot as it can easily shatter. The salt scratches the residue from the walls after the alcohol has loosened it. You need to be a little careful for salt tends to scratch the walls, therefore, stop shaking as soon as the entire residue has been removed.

b) Baking Soda

Baking soda is one of the most popular products and won’t lack in many homes. You can use it to clean out your glass pipe leaving it clean for more use. All you need is to first wash your bong using hot water and soap. Then pour in the baking soda and let it remain for a few hours or better yet overnight.

The following day, the resin on the walls is loose enough to remove by washing out with hot water and soap once more.

c) Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is what is commonly known as bleach at home. This chemical can be found almost in all homes and is used for several reasons including cleaning clothes, the house, etc.

Bleach can be used to clean out a glass bong. This is because it cleans out the resin from the walls easily by eroding it off. The only caution with using bleach is it can leave a very nasty after taste. This is why it’s only recommended for very gnarly bongs with a heavy build-up that can’t be removed by any other method.

This method may not be the best especially when you enjoy the taste of pure smoke from your bong. Only use it as a last resort.

d) Acetone

Acetone, also known as nail polish remover, is one of the most effective cleaning agents you can use to clean out your pipe. It has to be very effective to remove nail polish. This is why it’s recommended for cleaning out the tar on the walls of your bong.

Pour acetone into your pipe and cover all the holes. Shake it and watch as all the residue peels off the walls of your glass instrument. After pouring it out, wash the pipe thoroughly with water and dish soap. This helps to clear out the acetone which can have a very strong after taste that interferes with the taste of your smoke.

e) Store-bought Cleaning Solutions

Certain cleaning products are manufactured specifically for cleaning out your glass pipe. These products are always sold together with the bong so check them out from the site or store you buy your bong from.

f) Vinegar

Vinegar has been used as a cleaning agent in many homes across the world for centuries. It’s no wonder it’s being used to also clean out a glass bong. All you require is to fill the bong with vinegar and let it sit for 30 minutes. After that, take a small and soft cleaning brush and gently brush off the now loose residue from the walls of your instrument.


To enjoy smoother, cleaner, and better hits, learn how to effectively clean out your bong. When you let the tar and other impurities build-up, it not only interferes with the taste of the smoke, it’s very unhygienic too.