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In Australia, where bongs outnumber vapes and joints 420:1 – there’s always that one stoner mate who simply refuses to clean their billy. Well, this article is for you — tosspot!
Let’s get one thing straight — cleaning your bilge is not rocket science. 🚀⚗️🧪
In reality, it’s pretty much one of the most basic tasks a stoner is faced with (after *joint rolling*, of course!)
Despite how simple and fundamental this process is, the bong-cleaning ritual is often overlooked, ignored or simply forgotten by everyday Aussie cannabis smokers. If this sounds like you, let this article serve as a wake up call: there is just no excuse for grotty, tar-scummed, resin reeking paraphernalia.
The FAB team has gone out of our way to scrape the bowl; presenting to you a host of effective remedies that will help ensure your bong-pong stays long gone. Bloody ripper!
Reckon We’re Preaching to the Choir?
Perhaps; but then, how is it that there’s always that one guy in your circle who never seems to clean their god-damn bong? Feel free to send them this article as a subtle, passive-aggressive reminder that they are being judged (Just kidding… mostly).
Essential Supplies for Bong Cleaning
Step 1: Choose your Bong Cleaning Solution
Bong cleaning solutions really help get all that gunk unstuck from your piece. There are many solutions that work well; we recommend these (either alone or in combination):
Finish Dishwashing Tablets – simply add boiling water to catalyse the reaction!
Lemon Juice – natural stain remover.
Tea Tree Oil
Commercial Bong Cleaner Products – Randy’s ‘Black Label’ cleaner is a commercial cleaning behemoth – as is ‘420 Cleaner’!
Rubbing Alcohol (Isopropyl Alcohol – use warm water to speed reaction. Rinse thoroughly; can be toxic to humans).
Be sure to thoroughly rinse your bong with water after cleansing with any solution. Stay away from products that may be (or are) toxic for human consumption, such as methylated spirits.
Step 2: Choose your Cleaning Instruments
Bottle brush(es) – A solid investment for the regular toker
Latex gloves – for protection
Coarse sea salt and/or rock salt – Great for scouring
Raw, uncooked rice
Earplugs – For covering any carburettors
Gaffer tape – For plugging any remaining holes
Silicone Bong Plugs (pictured right/below)
How To Clean Your Bong
Step 1: Dismantle The Beug
This step is rather simple — pull apart your bong, as much as you can (without breaking it, of course).
Take out the stem, the cone piece, and any other loose parts. This is… unless you’ve opted for using dishwashing tablets. In that case, you can basically ignore this step and move to #2.
Step 2: Rinse
Next, you’ve gotta rinse your bong; repeating the process until large amounts of gunk are falling into the sink.
Douse your bong with warm water to get rid of majority of the chunky, gunky crap. This will make the job a whole lot easier for your cleaning solution!
Step 3: Apply Cleaning Solution
Add the desired amount of cleaning solution/s to your bong, and dilute with a bit of warm/hot water.
If you’re using Finish Dishwashing Tablets, make sure that you boil the kettle to add extra-hot water to your bong. Fill with boiling water to the brim. You will need to have sealed any carburettors and holes with earplugs and gaffer tape, so as to prevent leakage.
The Dishwashing Tablet method skips Step 4; the bong is left to soak. The dishwashing tablet can take an hour or so to fully work its magic on your bong.
Step 4: Gaffer Up, And Shake It!
Seal your bong with tape, if that’s your kinda thing.
Then, take your bong and shake it around. Any scourers (such as rice, or rock salt) will help you get some of the worst gunk out of your bong.
Step 5: Scraping Time
Take your toothpicks, bottle brushes, toothbrushes, scrubbers and rags… and start cleaning the walls of your piece. You will find that having used your solution and scourers on the gunk, it’s a lot easier to get off.
Try to get into the nooks and crannies as much as you can. This part is definitely the hardest; give it some time and patience.
If you aren’t happy with the results, try going back and repeating from Step 2.
Step 6: Rinse (Again) and Leave Your Bong to Dry
Be especially thorough with this rinse, particularly if you have used commercial cleaning products.
If you’re really keen on safety, leave your piece to dry for half an hour and rinse once more before use.
Step 7: Clean Up!
Be honest, you probably made a mess.
Make sure to clean up your space.
Why Clean Your Bong?
Joints are socially acceptable and cool. Pipes are elegant and classy. Vaporisers are futuristic AF.
Bongs, though? Bongs are filthy. Destined to be bundled into the same category as crack-pipes and needles; bongs are seen by some folks as a kind of equipment for drug addicts. Clean bongs, on the other hand, contradict this stereotype.
In a way, every time you give your bong a clean… you’re not just doing yourself a favour. You’re playing a part in shifting the public perception of people who use the bilge.
It’s just more classy when you’ve got a nice, clear glassy!
Phwoar! The smell of an idle, uncleaned bong can be just unbearable; its stench can quickly extend across and fill an entire room, wilting your nose hairs and making everyone involved very sad.
Combat ‘Bong Pong’ today. Clean your bong, and it shall begone.
No explanation needed, mate – how a clean bong smells and looks in comparison to a dirty one tells you all you need to know.
It’s going to taste better when it’s clean. Smooth greens and clean water are just infinitely superior to clogged up stems, smelly resin and brown bong juice.
Physical/Mental Health and Wellbeing
There are some really clear health benefits to making your receptacle, respectable.
You generally feel better about your habit and have more positive mental associations when you respect your own body with a clean bilge. A simple ritual such as cleaning the bong can help combat feelings of depression, anxiety and self-doubt, in some cases.
Furthermore, cleaning your bong on a regular basis actually lowers the risk of contracting necrotising pneumonia — a rare lung disease, that basically zombifies your lungs.
“Necrotising pneumonia is an aftermath of the vigorous inflammatory response occurring between pulmonary inflammation and pulmonary necrosis, with the formation of abscesses and gangrene. The entire process signifies a cataclysmic pulmonary infection.”
Cleaning your piece thoroughly also reduces the chances of other lung-related diseases and bacterial infections.
Ease Of Use
Punching cone after cone is much harder with a clogged-up bong. Take it from experience. Half of the time, you can’t even get a satisfying pull.
You know what they say… you get what you deserve. This fact right here truly is one of the best reasons to regularly clean your bong. It will contribute to an easier life, with less struggle.
FAB’s Final Thoughts on the Ritual of Bong Cleaning
Why settle into cleaning your bong as a chore, when you can really enter deep into the process? Cleaning your bong can be thoroughly meditative and calming activity, in much the same way as a Zen tea ceremony.
Consider how the action of ‘cleaning the Billy’ is a form of compassion extended to yourself and others around you. Witness its power, and let the habit of cleaning the bilge develop into your life. Embrace it as a part of your own psychological and spiritual practice.
The spotless bong is a representation of the everlasting purity of your soul. – Laozi
We’ll leave you with a final rule of thumb: the longer you leave this task, the harder it will be to clean! The cleaning ritual is karma – impossible to run from.
As resin builds up, your job will only become way more laborious and time-consuming. Daily cleaning, regular rinsing and frequent bong-water changes all ensure an easy-clean, every time.