Health Risks of Not Cleaning Your Bong

Dirty Glass Bong
November 10, 2020 By Cody Marchant

When you buy a new bong it is an exciting feeling. The smoke has never tasted so clean and so green, but unfortunately, after only a few sessions it begins to taste like ash. Did you know that as a moderate to heavy user, you should be cleaning and changing your bong water almost every day? Although you might be fine with being a bit lazy, little do you know, a dirty bong is more than just smelly water and dirty smoke, it can actually affect your health!

Why you want a clean bong

Benefits of a Clean Bong

There are many reasons why cleaning your bong is important, but a few that generally benefit you.

Smooth Hits

A clean bong means a clean hit! The gunk that is clogging up your bong the smoother each hit will be from your bong. If you routinely clean your piece you can replicate the smooth hit you first got from your bong when it was brand new. 

Better Taste

If you are choosing your herb based on taste, terpenes, or smell, then you want to get the most out of it! Stop wasting your money only to taste dirty bong water.

Clean Bongs Don’t Smell

Dirty bongs not only taste bad but they also smell. Avoid stinking up your house with the smell of resin by cleaning your bong consistently so you don’t have to hide it from guests.  


Health Risks of Not Cleaning Your Bong 

There are health risks that come with smoking weed. Anytime you are inhaling smoke into your lungs you are running the risk of problems. Inhaling smoke is never good for your health, although a bong is a cleaner way to smoke weed it still is not the healthiest option. Smoking is simply an irritant to the throat and lungs which can cause a heavy coughing during and after use. 

Despite the possible negative health risks of smoking in general, these risks are low as long as it is not coupled along with tobacco use. There are more risks involved with dirty bong water. Actually, the longer the water stays in a bong after it has been used, it creates a huge amount of biofilm that is filled with toxins. 

Mold, Bacteria, and Microorganisms

Have you noticed an odd cough that you aren’t quite sure where it comes from? The same biofilm can contain spores of mold, bacteria, and thousands of microorganisms. These are things that you should never inhale! 

Unfortunately, it is impossible to know what is inside of your bong, and these contaminants can begin to grow after sitting for only 24 hours. This can lead to mold ingestion, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), and other respiratory problems.

Smoking Circles

Smoking circles are great but they usually aren’t the most sanitary. Let’s face it, when was the last time you were passing around a piece and we were impressed with how clean it was? Probably not too recently unless a friend just purchased a brand new bong. 

Sharing is caring but sharing germs is not cool. Cleaning your bong routinely after smoke sessions can help prevent the spread of germs between your stoner friends. 

Reasons Why People Don’t Clean Their Bongs 

Why people don't clean their bongs

Steps to cleaning your bong

How to Clean Your Bong

Outside of using bong cleaner, there are a few other home remedies for cleaning your bong!

Option #1: Boiling Water

One method of cleaning a bong has always been to boil in hot water. The only important thing to note about this method is that you will need to majorly clean the pot afterward. 

After you boil your piece, remove it, and allow it to cool. Then shake the piece, and you can dump out the remains. You may need to do this process a few times to get it fully clean.

Option #2: Rubbing Alcohol and Iodized Salt

Another way to clean your bong is to use rubbing alcohol and iodized salt. 

Step 1: Rinse Your Bong

Begin by dumping out the old bong water. Rinse it will clean, hot water. You will also want to rinse your bowl and downstem, then place it into a plastic bag.

Step 2: Add the Alcohol and Salt

At this point, you will now want to add both alcohol and salt into your bong, and also into the separate bag that holds the down stem and bowl. You may way to let it soak for a while if you have not cleaned your bong for a while. Add more salt after a few minutes of soaking.

Step 3: Cover Openings

Now take a towel and plug up the mouth opening, and any other openings. It should be tightly sealed, along with the extra bag for your down stem and bowl.

Step 4: Shake

This step is important to do carefully. You will need to shake your bong. Do not drop it or hit it. The salt should combine with the alcohol to scrub off the mess.

Step 5: Empty, Rinse, and Repeat

After enough shaking, you will need to empty out the solution. Rinse your bong with warm water. All the salt should come out. If the bong is stubborn then you can repeat the process again, but allow the solution to sit longer than before. Once it is clean, enjoy your sparkling bong.

Option #3: 420 Cleaner

You can also visit Helping Pot‘s glass and merch shop. Here you can find different brands of 420 Cleaner. They provide a similar cleaning to rubbing alcohol and salt and, although more expensive, do a great job of cleaning your pieces without the extra hassle.


How to Dispose of Bong Water 

Disposing of bong water is simple, either pour it down your toilet or outside. Although you can dump it down the drain, it might make your sink smell a little funky. This is why the best choice is to dump it outside, in the toilet, or into a sealed container that you throw out in the trash. 

Don’t wait to change your bong water until its more murky than the fish tank in Finding Nemo. Replenishing bong water every time you smoke is an easy way to improve the cleanliness of your water pipe and get cleaner hits.

How Often Should You Clean Your Bong?

If you are committed to your health, and you are a moderate to heavy smoker, then you should try to clean your bong every other use. This means that if you are a daily smoker, you should dump your bong water each time you smoke, and then clean your bong every other session, or every time after smoking with someone else. 

What you can do is to perform a rinse out after every use. Then, perform a moderate clean with salt and rubbing alcohol every few days, and do a more intense cleaning every week or so with a 420 cleaner. This will make it more affordable, and keep your lungs healthy as well.

bongs that are easy to clean

Bongs That Are Easy to Clean

Although a Z bong might look cool, it is definitely one of the harder bongs to clean! There are a few different types of bongs that are easier to clean such as:

  • Beaker Base Bongs
  • Straight Tube Bongs 
  • Round Base Bongs
  • Silicone Bongs
  • Acrylic Bongs

How an Ash Catcher Can Help to Keep Your Bong Clean

An ash catcher is an attachment that you place onto your bong. It is useful when keeping your bong clean because it helps to keep the debris and ash from ending up in your pipe. They essentially have the appearance of a smaller pipe, but it is an addition to your larger bong.

There are many different types of ash catchers available. Choose from long ones, smaller ones, ash catches in different shapes and styles. It will also make cleanup easier and may allow you to simply wash out your bong (and only wash the ash catcher) rather than complete a full clean every day.

Where to Get the Best Bongs? – Helping Pot

Here at Helping Pot, we strive to provide marijuana users with all of the best products and advice in the industry. We created this article to show you why you should clean your bong regularly and hope that you get cleaner and better tasting hits because of it!

Finding a reliable glass company can be tough, we carry hundreds of glass bongs and accessories from all of the major brands across the industry. Check out our wide selection of glass products to find a new piece for you! For more information feel free to contact us with any questions or products you would like to see on the site.


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