How to Clean A Bong- Stoner’s Guide to Cleaning Your Piece

How to Clean a Bong

So you just got a new bong, you’ve been using it for a while now and the time is come to clean it, now what? Cleaning a bong isn’t like cleaning some silverware or a plate, you won’t be able to use dish soap and a sponge. There are several different ways to clean a bong depending on the bong itself and what materials you have/want to purchase, but overall cleaning a bong is actually really easy!

However, before we talk about how to clean a bong, we should first discuss when the proper time to clean your bong actually is.

When To Clean Your Bong

Cleaning your bong will actually do a lot more than just make it look better, it will make your herb taste better and can even prevent health problems! A dirty bong can invite a respiratory infection or even a lung infection, which I can guarantee you will not be pleasant as a stoner. Also, none of your friends want to hit a nasty bong, so do yourself and them a favor and just keep it clean! Here are a few things you should look out for that tell you your bong is due for a cleaning.

  • Color- If you’ve got a bong with clear glass, but instead your bong is a gross black/brownish color, it’s time for a clean!
  • Draw Resistance- Depending on the design of your bong, resin can build up overtime and create a noticeable draw resistance that makes smoking harder. This happens a lot with percolators, they get all covered in resin and clogged up making it harder to pull.
  • Gray/White mold- If you see gray/white fuzzy mold building up on the resin of your bong, or in the form of white and black dots on the neck, ITS TIME FOR A CLEAN! If there are lots of little pieces of weed floating around in your bong for a long period of time, these can also grow mold on them as well, if you see this, empty and clean your bong immediately.

Materials Needed to Clean a Bong

You actually don’t need that many materials to clean your bong, and if you’re lucky, you might even have all of the necessary materials right at home.

  • Isoprophyl Alcohol- Usually 91% or 99% as they are the strongest for cleaning. You can pick up iso alcohol at any drugstore, as well as online. Can also use vinegar or Formula 420 as we’ll discuss later.
  • Pipe Cleaners- These aren’t always necessary, it depends on your bong and if you’re going to have a lot of nooks and crannies to get into. However, they’re nice to have and you can purchase them right off Amazon for $5!
  • Salt- Salt is very coarse and is really helpful in removing the resin. Again, not always needed and you can definitely go without, but it’s going to make it all the easier.
  • Ziploc bags- These can be any size really, you just need to be able to fit your downstem, bowl and any other removable pieces of your bong that need cleaning.
  • Cloth/Stopper- You need to find something that you’ll be able to use to plug the holes of your bong. Part of the cleaning will involve shaking the bong with liquid in it, so basically you just need something to stop alcohol from going everywhere. I also recommend wearing plastic gloves during this process so you don’t get alcohol on your skin.

How to Clean Your Glass Bong


Now that you have all of your materials, you’re ready to finally clean your piece! Since we’re going over how to clean a bong with three different solutions, I will be breaking this next part into there parts. All three methods are very similar, however you should follow the one that’s using the same solution as you for best results!

How to Clean a Bong Using Vinegar

Cleaning a bong using vinegar may be the most convenient for many of you as vinegar is a common household item. Unfortunately, vinegar is actually the least effective method to cleaning a bong, but it will get the job done and that’s all that matters.

Your first step is to disassemble the bong, then pour some baking soda into the bottom, and then pour vinegar in on top. The baking soda isn’t completely necessary but it’s going to act as the salt would and help to get the resin off. You’ll notice that the baking soda starts to bubble when mixed with the vinegar, don’t be alarmed, this means it’s working.

Next is where you’re going to need a cloth/stopper or just something to plug the holes of the bong, because you’re going to be shaking it. Next, shake the bong for 3-5 minutes to get the vinegar and baking soda everywhere, then let the bong sit and soak for an extended period of time. I usually leave it to soak overnight when I use vinegar, vinegar isn’t as strong as iso alcohol or Formula 420, so it will take a bit longer to come fully clean.

After the bong has soaked for a while, empty out the vinegar and baking soda and give the bong a thorough rinsing with warm water. Use the pipe cleaners to wipe out any left over res and then you’re good to go, enjoy your clean bong! For the bowl and downstem, put them separately in Ziploc bags with vinegar and baking soda and let them soak overnight. Then empty the contents of the bag, clean out any leftover res with pipe cleaners and then thoroughly rinse and then you’re done!

How to Clean a Bong using Isoprophyl Alcohol

This is the most common method of cleaning a bong, and probably what most people are familiar with. The first step to take with this is to once again disassemble your bong. Then instead of baking soda, pour salt into the bottom of the bong this time. Then pour the alcohol on top of the salt and once again plug the holes of the bong. You’re then going to want to start shaking the bong for about 2-3 minutes, this should be able to clear out most of the res on even the dirtiest of bongs.

Your bong shouldn’t need as much if any soaking after shaking, the alcohol is much ore effective at removing the resin than the vinegar is, but if your bong is still dirty after shaking feel free to let it soak for a couple hours. Next, pour out the contents of the bong and then rinse it out with hot water, and use the pipe cleaners to get any nooks and crannies the alcohol couldn’t reach.

To clean the downstem and bowl, put them in separate plastic bags and fill it with enough of the alcohol and salt solution until the pieces are fully submerged. Then, let them soak for a couple hours, then pour out the contents of the bag and rinse the pieces with hot water and you’re done!

if you want to purchase some Isoprophyl Alcohol for cheap, you can purchase 6 bottles for $19 on Amazon!

How to Clean a Bong Using Formula 420

For those of you who have never heard of Formula 420, it’s a solution designed specifically to clean out bongs and other glass pieces. For this reason, Formula 420 works extremely well, and I believe it’s the most effective way to clean a bong. Using Formula 420 to clean your bong is going to be very similar to using alcohol, Formula 420 just works a bit faster and might not be as intimidating to some as using alcohol.

The first step when using Formula 420 is to disassemble your bong, then pour Formula 420 into the bong. Use something to plug the holes of the bong and then shake away. Your going to be really surprised at how well this stuff works, after barely over a minute your bong is going to be basically 100% free of res. One of the great things about Formula 420 is that it actually has a pleasant smell, and you won’t even need salt or baking soda to help with the cleaning!

To clean out the bowl and downstem, put them in separate plastic bags and submerge them in Formula 420. Leave them to soak for about 10-20 minutes and then empty the bags and rinse out the pieces. Then you’re all done, you should have a perfectly clean piece ready for toking!

And if you’re looking to purchase some Formula 420, you can purchase a pack of three large bottles for only $17 on Amazon!

How to Clean a Silicone Bong

Cleaning a silicone bong is as easy as turning on a dishwasher, because that’s all you’ll have to do! Silicone bongs are virtually indestructible, they’re small, light and can easily be cleaned in any dishwasher! You heard that right, no need for alcohol or Formula 420, although if you don’t have a dishwasher you can still use the same methods used for glass bongs!

But for many people, using a dishwasher is the perfect way to clean a silicone bong. If you are using a dishwasher to clean your bong, I’d recommend doing it fairly regularly. If you wait until your bong gets absolutely disgusting to put it in the dishwasher, it’s going to leave the dishwasher smelling like res for a while, and could make your other dishes smell the next time you wash them!

And if reading about how easy it is to clean a silicone bong has left you wanting one, feel free to check them out on Grasscity!

I hope you’ve all learned a thing or two about how to clean a bong! The most important things to remember are all the tips on WHEN to clean your bong, as that is what can actually jeopardize your safety! As always, if you have any questions, comments or concerns, feel free to leave them in the comments below or reach out to me via my email!

Did you try any of these above methods? Let us know in the comments below how it worked! And if you have any tips that you do to make things easier share those as well, let’s help each other out!!!

Thanks for reading everyone! Enjoy your clean bong and have a great sesh!


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