The Bern Gallery

The Best Ways to Clean Your Glass Bong

Clean glass is happy glass! A good bong can provide one of the cleanest and most pleasant smoking experiences possible, but at the same time, they require proper maintenance to make sure they are working their best! Clogged percs, dirty walls and filthy water can detract from the experience and from the value of your beautiful glass! Knowing how to properly care for your tubes will keep them and you smoking for years to come! In this post, we will go over the best methods for cleaning your glass bong.

The Absolute Best Way To Clean Your Glass Bong? Our Pipe Cleaning Services!

Hands down, the absolute best way to clean your glass bong PROPERLY is by using our Pipe Cleaning Services available here at The Bern Gallery in Burlington, VT. We know how difficult it can be to clean your favorite piece, and we’ll make sure it’s done right. Getting in all of those nooks and crannies is a job for a true professional! Check out our pipe cleaning options:

  • Spoons, Slides, and Downstems: $10 each
  • Sherlock Pipes, Bubblers, and Steamrollers: $15 each
  • Bong Cleaning is Dependent on Size & Percs: $25, $35, or $45
    • Additional $10 per perc
    • Additional $10 for extra-thick glass

Schedule A Cleaning!

Disclaimer: we can’t promise that we’ll be able to clean every pipe in every situation.

The Best DIY Method: Salt & Isopropyl Alcohol

Can’t make your way into the shop? No problem, read on for a tried and true bong cleaning method.

How to Clean a Glass Bong Using The Salt Method

You can search “how to clean my bong” and get umpteen answers. Fact is, you can technically clean a glass bong in a lot of different ways. But, for the sake of simplicity, we’ve narrowed down what we believe to be the best way to clean a bong. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Latex or Nitrile gloves (Resin and dirty alcohol can get gross and sticky!)
  • Rubber bong plugs, stoppers, or paper towels
  • +91% or 99% Isopropyl alcohol and fine salt, OR 420 Cleaner / Randy’s BL
  • 420 Soak/Rinse or Grunge Off
  • Plastic tupperware container
  • Randy’s Snaps alcohol-filled cotton swabs or Q-Tips

Best Way to Clean a Glass Bong at Home: Step-by-Step

Before you get started, find a flat, level surface that you can easily clean up afterward.

1. Start soaking your downstem and bowl.

Remove your downstem and bowl and discard loose resin or debris. Run your faucet as hot as it will go and blast out any residue you can. Place your bowl and downstem in the tupperware and cover it with your 420/Grunge Off soaking solution. Grunge Off has the advantage of being reusable several times, so save the tupperware under your sink if you have a lid for it! If you don’t have time to soak them, you can place them individually in small ziplock bags with alcohol and salt to shake them clean.

Quick tip: The downstem can be fragile, so handle it with care. If you accidentally break it, we do have single downstems available.

2. Empty your bong, add salt and cleaning fluid.

Discard any leftover water in the bong. Pour in enough salt to have a hefty layer on the base, and then add about one-fourth of a cup of alcohol. Ideally you will make a loose paste of salt and alcohol. If your bong has a secondary perc chamber, be sure to put salt and alcohol into the second chamber as well! Beware that course/kosher salt is often too large to fit through the holes in percs. We recommend this type of salt only for simple beakers and straight tubes. Fine salt still has the abrasive properties you need.

3. Plug your bong and shake.

Bong plugs or stoppers can be stuck in the mouth and stem openings to seal your cleaning fluids inside. You can pick these up at most smoke shops and some bongs even come with some type of plugs when you buy them. Go ahead and plug the openings and then shake the salt and alcohol briskly in the bong to slough away the sticky debris. Once the bong looks clean, unplug and discard the cleaning solution.

Quick tip: if you don’t have bong plugs or stoppers, we recommend you plug the mouthpiece and joint with paper towels wrapped in Saran wrap.

4. Clean your bowl and downstem.

After a day or so in the soaking solution, hot water from your sink should flush everything out of your bowl and downstem without much difficulty! If you’re using a quicker shaking solution, you may find it effective to drop the glass into a fresh bag of it for a final rinse before using the sink! Pipe cleaners, QTips and Randy’s Snaps alcohol-filled cotton swabs can also be very useful in removing stuck ashes or gunk!

5. Tackle any tough spots and rinse your pieces.

If your bong hasn’t been cleaned in a bit, you may have to do a final shake with a bit of fresh alcohol and salt to get everything clean. Bongs that have sat for years without being cleaned can develop stains, both from dirty water evaporating and from resin drying onto the glass. While these stains can be very difficult to remove, it is possible with enough elbow grease! To avoid this, we recommend you never leave your bong dirty for too long!

Once your bong is cleaned to a satisfactory point, give all the pieces a good rinse with cool water and allow the pieces to air dry before assembly.

A Clean Bong Delivers the Best Smoking Experience

Whether you’ve got a mini bong, a full-sized tube or a legendary headpiece you prefer to smoke from, keeping your bong nice and clean is ever-important. Hopefully, this guide will help you keep all those gorgeous glass pieces you pick up from The Bern Gallery looking their finest for many years to come. Need a new piece? Check out our lineup of glass water bongs, hammers, bubblers, and more.