For many, to smoke a bong is boss. By the time you’re done reading this guide, you’ll be an all-out bong expert. You’ll know how to smoke a bong like a pro. And you’ll also know how water filtration produces the clean and cool smoke bongs are famous for.
But first a little anatomy. Bongs are typically made out of glass. But they can also be made out of ceramic, wood, and acrylic. You can even find collapsible bongs made out of silicone. And clever marijuana smokers have figured out how to turn pretty much anything into a bong.
Whatever kind of bong you’re using, they all have a few key components:
- The bowl is the piece where you’ll put the actual herb.
- The downstem holds the bowl. It also extends down into the base of the bong, where it will be submerged in the water.
- The base of the bong holds the water.
- Smoke builds up in the smoke chamber. This is the long cylinder that extends up from the base.
- The mouthpiece is the opening at the very top of the smoke chamber. This is where you place your mouth to inhale the smoke.
1. Fill Your Bong With Water
To get things started, fill the base of your bong with water. Just pour it straight through the mouthpiece.
The downstem should be submerged beneath 1/2 to one inch of water. Any more than that and it’ll start splashing up into your mouth. It might also bubble up and get your herb wet.
Any less than that and you won’t get the bubbles you’re looking for.
2. Pack The Bowl
When you’ve broken your bud down into small chunks, pack them into the bowl. Now slide the bowl into the top of the downstem.
3. Get Your Bong Into Position
With the bowl in place, put your mouth to the mouthpiece. To smoke a bong, start drawing in. As you do, the water in the base should start bubbling.
4. Light The Bud
While drawing in through the mouthpiece, light the bud. You can use a lighter or hemp wick. Go at an angle. Try to torch only a section of the bowl at a time. This will give you as many fresh, green puffs as possible.
5. Let The Bong Chamber Fill With Smoke
Keep that bud burning as long as you need to fill the chamber with smoke. And don’t forget to keep drawing in through the mouthpiece.
That’s what keeps everything working. The airflow will help the bud burn, pull the smoke through the bubbling water, and up into the chamber.
6. Clear The Bong Chamber
When the chamber’s full of milky white smoke, it’s time to really let it rip. Remove the bowl from the downstem. Now give the entire thing one last, long and full draw.
As soon as the bowl’s removed, all the smoke in the chamber will rush into your lungs. Breathe it in deep. After passing through the water, the smoke should be cool and clean. It will feel smooth and mellow on your throat and lungs.
7. Pass the Bong
After you’ve cleared the chamber, repeat as needed, if you’re smoking with friends, pass it to the left. If you’re relaxing by yourself, take as many rips as you need.
Bong rips are usually pretty powerful. So if you’re looking for a light buzz, you might not need that many. But if you’re trying to get completely stoned, you may need a couple of good hits.
8. Rinse Out Your Bong
When your sesh is finished, dump out the water. Bongwater gets nasty. So be sure you get rid of it when you’re done.
Run some clean, warm water through the bong. This will help clean it out a little bit. From there, wipe it down with a clean rag or let it air dry.
Bongs can get filthy fast. So you’ll want to give your piece a more thorough clean every once in a while. But at the very least, give it a quick rinse after every sesh.
Some Bong Variations
The above steps will work for whatever bong you’re using. But there are a couple of the main differences you should know.
Some bongs use ice in addition to water. Typically, these pieces will include a place where you can drop in some ice cubes. Ice helps cool down the smoke even more. Using ice can give you some incredibly smooth smoke.
There are also some bongs that have a carb hole. Usually, it’s right where the rounded base meets the cylindrical chamber.
If your bong has a carb hole, you don’t need to remove the bowl. Instead, use your finger to cover the carb hole. Do this right from the beginning, just as you begin drawing in through the mouthpiece.
When the chamber’s full of smoke, lift your finer. The chamber will empty, and the smoke will flow into your lungs.
Final Hit: How To Smoke A Bong
Now that you’re a pro bong user, we’re going to drop a little science on you. Knowing this sh*t will elevate you to legend status in the world of pot smoking.
Bongs do two things to cannabis smoke: cools it down and cleans it.
To begin with, the reservoir of water helps dissipate the heat of the smoke. The result is smoke with a much lower temperature. And it gets even cooler if you’re using ice. Cooled down smoke feels smoother and less harsh on your throat and lungs.
Bongs also create cleaner smoke. That’s because a lot of the toxins in smoke quickly dissolve in water. When you force smoke to pass through water, most of those nasty toxins get pulled out. They dissolve and stay behind.
And although a lot of those toxins are water soluble, THC isn’t. Since THC is the chemical in cannabis that gets you high, that’s the stuff you want going to your lungs.
When marijuana smoke hits the water, the THC passes through while the nasty stuff stays behind. The result is pot smoke that’s cool, mellow, and clean. Congrats, now you know how to smoke a bong.