4 MIN READ | General

David Tobin

A Beginners Guide to Water Bongs

Cite This
David Tobin, (2021, December 31). A Beginners Guide to Water Bongs. Psychreg on General. https://www.psychreg.org/beginners-guide-water-bongs/
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Bongs have been around for centuries because it enables people to enjoy smoking cannabis for recreational and medical purposes. Despite an incredible variety of bong devices in the market, water-based ones are preferred. 

But what makes a water bong so unique? Why is it becoming increasingly sought-after in the market these days? And how long can you use a bong? These are several critical queries new users may have about this exceptional device. Here are some answers to help make the process easier.

How do they work?

An incredible number of people are using cannabis for their medical and therapeutic benefits because it can help with numerous ailments. It can effectively ease chronic pain, help fight depression and anxiety, and reduce nausea in people battling cancer, among other things. And since bongs are easy to use and portable, they are often the preferred choice for most cannabis smokers.

To understand how bongs work, know that the device has four essential parts: 

  • Percolator
  • Bowl
  • Downstem
  • Tube (or body)

Some bongs do not have percolators but function just as effectively.

The fundamental function is to smoke from the flowers filters through the downstem (or slide) and gathers in the chamber of the smoking device. If the device has a percolator, the smoke will be filtered. Alternatively, it will filter through an ice-catch on the devices that have it.

Finally, the smoke reaches the mouthpiece, through which you can inhale and enjoy the hit. In recent times, new designs have been introduced with complex features, such as different chambers, recyclers, etc.

Common designs

Water-based bongs come in various designs, but most fall into one of these three major categories: 

  • Beaker bongs. Beaker bongs typically feature extra-wide bottoms that give the device more stability. Also, these bottoms generally taper back upwards to the neck.
  • Mini bongs. Mini bongs are usually less than eight inches tall and come in a wide range of colors, shapes, and sizes.
  • Straight tube bongs. Straight tube bongs are cylindrical throughout and are preferred by daily users who do not care much for unique pieces or collectibles.

All three varieties are highly functioning and great for first-time users to invest in.

Are they better than dry devices?

There cannot be a typical or definite answer to this as it depends solely on the user’s preference since no two people have the same taste in things. Moreover, it may also depend on the situation and circumstances. For instance, suppose you wish to take a smoking device along on a trip, and you might find a small dry pipe or other hand devices easier to carry than bongs, which are often larger than them and less portable.

But if you want a smoother hit with little to no carcinogens and toxins in it, a bong is the best way to do it. Also, the water cools down the smoke before you can inhale it, protecting your throat and lungs from being burnt. Most seasoned smokers prefer to keep sets of all types of devices as they like to change smoking styles every once in a while.

The cost

You will find countless companies in the market selling an unbelievable variety of bongs, catering to customers’ changing and diverse needs. The cost of a water bong can vary from $50 to upwards of $500, depending on the make, model, quality, size, attachments, design, and other factors. But you can buy a good, reliable bong for under $150 from a reputable source. To regular clients, legitimate sellers even offer unique designs for princes under $100.

All in all, anywhere from $100 to $200 is a reasonable amount to spend on a bong. Moreover, if you are unhappy with a standard bong, you can always invest in suitable attachments instead of buying a new one all over again. Users who like collecting one-of-a-kind devices often have bongs customized to their preferences without thinking twice about the cost. They make sizable investments in distinctive designs, shapes, filtration techniques, and top-quality craftsmanship.

Average shelf life

Standard bongs made of robust borosilicate glass can last for a considerable time, provided they are not dropped. Some users report their bongs stayed for around five years when the devices were used only at home and cleaned regularly.

Therefore, handle your bong with care and keep it safe, ensuring it is out of reach from pets or children. Also, clean it enough times to remove all residue so that it does not cause damage to the glass and pose a health risk. On average, you should clean your smoking device at least two to five times a year.

How to clean it

New users might find it challenging to clean their bongs for the first time. However, the process is quite simple, with the only requirement being that you handle the glass device with care. A primary way to clean the water bong is by using vinegar mixed with a cleaning agent and room-temperature water. Pour the mix into the bong and let it rest for a little while, allowing it to break loose debris, resin, and other contaminant residues. After a few hours, you can clear the bong of the mixture and rinse it a couple of times with water to ensure it is entirely free of the cleaning agent.

Buying the right bong

If you have never purchased a bong before, deciding which one is best can be a bit challenging at first. Moreover, the multitude of choices in the market may only make the task more difficult by adding to the confusion.

Consider its design, functionality, size, and other features to buy a suitable device. Check the make and manufacturer of the bong, ensuring a reputable company has created it. Generally, an average-priced device with all the essential elements should satisfy you. It would help to ask friends who smoke about which model they use.

Alternatively, you can look at various online options offered by dependable sellers. Always ensure to read the reviews and customer testimonials of water bong carefully along with the shipping charges before making a final decision.


David Tobin did his degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. He is interested in mental health and well-being.


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