words by Josh Delzell | photos by Dana Sparks
A dirty bong is one of the saddest things to see as a frequent smoker. Your once pristine, sparkling bong is now covered in a sticky grime that smells funky and looks even funkier. Because of this, it’s important to clean your pieces regularly in order to keep the piece looking sparkly and clean. But what’s the best (and cheapest) way? There is bong cleaner you can buy online, but it usually ranges from $16 to $30. Never fear, there is a cheaper way, and it utilizes products that are usually found in your medicine cabinet.
Supplies: Toothbrush/pipe cleaner, paper towels, rubber bands, plastic baggies, hot water, salt, isopropyl alcohol (a lot), bobby pins.
How do I do it?: First remove the bowl and stem and dump out any water that is already in your piece. Take the toothbrush and try to scrub out any sludge you can manage to get off, wiping it clean each time on a paper towel. Do the same process with the bowl and stem. This part doesn’t need to be thorough, it just helps to get most of the heavy sludge out of the way.
Pour sea salt into both ends of the bong, so you have maximum coverage especially if the bong has multiple chambers. Pour a generous amount of rubbing alcohol into the pieces, and cover both ends with paper towels secured with rubber bands. Give a good cocktail shake, and let the piece sit for 24 hours, or overnight.
Now take a plastic bag and fill it with a generous amount of sea salt, and then toss in your bowl and stem. Fill the bag with the rubbing alcohol, using just enough to fully submerge the bowl and stem. Give the bag a good shake as well, and let it sit overnight. I’d recommend putting the bag into a mug, because the rubbing alcohol may eat through the bag itself.
After the long awaited 24 hours, remove your bowl and stem. Dump the mixture in the bong out as well. Finish it off with a last minute scrub and run some hot water through everything to get any leftover salt or rubbing alcohol out. Just like that, you have a sparkly clean bong that looks like new.
This method tends to lean more on the expensive side, but successfully gets your bong clean. Another more affordable route way is to soak your piece with denture or retainer cleaner, available in large packs at most department stores or pharmacies. The main component in denture cleaning tablet is baking soda. You can use plain baking soda as well in a bind, but denture cleaners have other ingredients that help dissolve any built up grime. It’s important with all methods to give your piece a good scrub before and after the soak to get off any extra residue. It’s really up to preference, and how clean you want your piece. Personally, I go for the rubbing alcohol method, just because it feels cleaner to me.
Do you have any other tips or tricks for cleaning your bong? Let us know for a chance to have your DIY featured on our social media.