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Cleaning Your Paraphernalia

How To Clean Your Cannabis Paraphernalia, Including Our Favorite Tips!

Everyone’s favorite holiday is right around the corner… 4/20! April 20th is a sacred day to smokers worldwide, and even with an origin story that is a bit unknown, it’s a day cannabis lovers everywhere rejoice. In the last 10 years, the cannabis industry has seen tremendous growth and legalization, leading to innovative cannabis products. New types of edibles, a variety of concentrate types, marijuana infused beverages, and more. Along with new cannabis products, cannabis paraphernalia has also evolved. Seriously, some of these bongs and dab rigs are totally out of control yet unbelievably righteous at the same time. A big shoutout to all the glass artists out there.

Whether you have a glass piece you cherish like art, a favorite bowl that always hits right, or a trusty dab rig that somehow nails the perfect temperature every time, your cannabis gear can make all the difference. Even more so, keeping your bongs, bowls, pipes, rigs, & devices clean can make for a better, cleaner smoke. With 4/20 right around the corner, we are looking to get the best smoke session in and want all the flavors. So, why not do a spring cleaning session with us!?

In this short blog, we’re going to cover the basics of cleaning your cannabis paraphernalia as well as share some of our favorite tips!


How To Clean Your Bong

Keep in mind, bongs come in all shapes and sizes. The good news is, you can easily clean them with the same ingredients! Grab some isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) and salt and head on over to the sink. You’ll want to run the water warm, or hot, and rinse the bong out a few times. The hotter the water temperature, the better, as the water helps loosen up any gunk inside and prime it for cleaning. Next, grab your handy dandy rubbing alcohol and salt and fill your bong about ⅓ to ½ full with the isopropyl alcohol. Add salt generously as this agent will create some needed friction to rub away grime. Depending on your bong shape and size, we recommend plugging both ends and giving it a vigorous shake. Shake to your liking, but don’t overexert yourself, otherwise you’ll be ready to hit the bong and pass out after. Once you feel the rubbing alcohol and salt has cleaned the inside of the bong, very thoroughly rinse it with hot water. The goal here is to make sure you rinse out all the alcohol. Voila, you are done! Just let it dry somewhere.


Our Favorite Bong Cleaning Tips:

  • Do NOT microwave your bong unless you are certain it is tempered glass–even then, this isn’t usually needed.
  • For the first rinse of the bong with water, you can test out boiling hot water to really give it a good priming. If doing so, just make sure your bong is at a normal room temperature.
  • If your bong has hard to reach places, or there is one area that always retains a bit of post-smoke gunk, try a soft wire brush cleaner. They’re a few bucks and can help give your bong a brand new sparkle!
  • Some people love to use coarse sea salt as a better scrubbing agent–oh, you fancy huh!


How To Clean Your Bowl or Pipe

Very similar to bongs, your bowls and pipes can come in a plethora of different shapes & sizes. Yet, the way you clean them is very similar too. Don’t put the rubbing alcohol and salt away just yet! For this go around, you will also want to grab a ziploc bag that can fit your bowl. We bet you can guess the rest, but start by giving your bowl a rinse with hot water, then place it in the ziploc bag with isopropyl alcohol and salt. Once closed, shake it all up, or you can let it sit and soak for an hour before shaking. The rubbing alcohol and salt should do just the trick, but after rinsing everything off, if you notice residue, take a Q-tip to it to try to rub it off.


Our Favorite Bowl & Pipe Cleaning Tips:

  • If your bowl or pipe has a unique shape with internal nooks & crannies, we would again recommend trying a soft wire brush cleaner. These tools can flex into some tight spots to help remove additional residue.
  • We like to really fill up the ziploc bag with isopropyl alcohol and salt. That way, it’s easy to let it soak for a bit and after you take out your pipe, you can clean another one using the same baggie. Reduce, reuse, recycle!
  • Bowls can have less volume inside, so when drying it out we like to leave it somewhere where it can get some fresh air… a safe window sill will do just the trick.


How To Clean Your Dab Rig

There are two equally important parts to cleaning your dab rig: the dab rig itself and then the dab rig nail. For the dab rig body, you will treat this similar to other glass you have cleaned, such as a bong. Utilize your rubbing alcohol and salt to cleanse the inside of the dab rig, adding hot water as needed. Of course, always follow with a warm water rinse to make sure you are able to leave the dab rig alcohol free.

When it comes to cleaning your dab rig nail, there are several things to consider. Firstly, frequently cleaning your dab rig nail after taking a dab is the best way to keep your nail clean in the long run. This can be done by swabbing it with a Q-tip post-dab. When you are cleaning your entire rig and want to give the nail a more thorough cleaning, you will want to find a sturdy yet small object that you can scrape the nail with. However, you don’t want the object to be too sharp because then you can damage the nail. A paperclip, pair of tweezers, or another similar tool should do the trick. Keep that handy while you let your dab rig nail sit for 30 minutes to one hour in a solution of rubbing alcohol and salt. You can use the ziploc trick to easily get this done. After it has soaked a bit, take your cleaning tool and attempt to scrape out any leftover residue. Lastly, rinse the nail under warm water and then let it dry. Boom–that wasn’t too hard was it!


Our Favorite Dab Rig & Dab Rig Nail Cleaning Tips:

  • In the essence of time here folks (we have dabs to take you know), we like to remove the nail first before cleaning any other paraphernalia and let it soak in the alcohol-salt solution. If you have multiple dab nails, throw them in the same ziploc. While these are soaking for a bit, proceed to clean your rig.
  • Dab rigs are notorious for building up some truly sticky gunk that can be resilient when trying to clean. As cannabis concentrates have risen in popularity, especially here in Denver, so have cleaning solutions for the rigs they occupy. If for some reason the above tactics are not working, you can try a cleaning solution from a reputable company as backup reinforcements.
  • We mentioned this above, but the best way to keep your dab rig nail clean is to get in there immediately post-dab and swirl a Q-tip around. This small follow up action will keep your nail in good shape for quite some time.


How To Clean Your Grinder

We think grinders are the easiest to clean, so we are saving the easiest for last! To be noted, sometimes less is more with a grinder, and a valid question is, do you actually need to clean it? Grinders can get gunked up thanks to all the juicy goodness buds excrete when crushed and grinded. But if you have a high quality grinder and it is still functional, you may not need to clean it just yet. If your grinder has been sitting for months or there is too much debris inside to the point where it’s not getting the job done, alas, you know it’s time.

We’d first recommend a durable paper clip or toothpick to first try to remove the culprits inside the grinder that are causing it to get stuck. If it’s still not working after removing any debris, don’t fret. We like to let our grinder soak in rubbing alcohol in a small bowl for about 30 minutes to one hour, followed by rinsing it in the sink with hot water. Lastly, you can take a Q-tip to the inside of the grinder as it is drying to try to remove any additional gunk you see.


Must Follow Grinder Cleaning Tips:

  • We cannot stress this one enough: BEFORE DOING ANY GRINDER CLEANING, SAFELY CAPTURE YOUR KIEF AND SAVE IT! Your hard earned kief should be safely put in a small plastic bag or onto a paper plate so you can save it for later. Shoot, you can also rip a kief bowl in your freshly cleaned bong and save the grinder cleaning for tomorrow…
  • If your grinder still works fine, it may not need to be cleaned. Higher caliber grinders will be able to grind cannabis flower for months without needing a cleaning.

With a set of fully cleaned cannabis paraphernalia, you are ready to take on anything 4/20 throws your way. Why clean your bongs, rigs, and bowls anyways, though? Keeping your pipes clean can make a drastic difference in the quality of your smoke. You will be able to taste and smell your product more deeply. As true cannabis connoisseurs, we like to clean our bongs and rigs about once a month. It’s a healthy habit that gives us a consistently good smoke.

If you have any cleaning tips, share them with us! 

April 3, 2022
Cannabis Education
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