How To Use a Bong

Everyone who loves pot should know how to use a bong. 

Bongs are just a chamber filled with water, used for smoking cannabis. 

But they’re also known for their smooth hits that come with highs that’ll take you to the moon.

A bong’s water-filled chamber filters and cools much of the smoke’s harshness — making hits so easy a grandma could do it. Seriously.

And we agree that getting high by a water bong is an excellent way for 420-smokers to switch things up.

Whether you’re a novice who needs to learn how to take the perfect hit or a weed-smoking veteran who wants to get more high, we got you covered.

Step #1) Preparing your bong

Using a bong is simple. 

The first step is to get your bong ready. 

Fill up your bong with water using the mouthpiece at the top of the bong. 

Tap water is perfect for this. 

The right amount of water is about an inch above the tip of the downstem. A downstem is the glass stick with the bowl where you put your weed.

Keep in mind:

Filling it up past this point runs the risk of water splashing up when you inhale.

Step #2) Adding the cannabis

Don’t just place a fat nug in the bowl, grind that sucker up first. 

Get your cannabis ready using your grinder (preferably) or your hands or any other strategy you have for breaking up your nugs. 

Place your ground cannabis in the bong bowl. The bowl will be sitting at the top of that downstem that we talked about in step #1. 

The perfect amount is not too much, and not too little. 

Don’t fill it past the rim of the bowl, or else some bud can fall out, leading to waste. 

Remember that you can always pack more in the bowl if you need to. 

You can also use a bong to smoke dabs as well as regular bud. Merely use it the same way. 

Step #3) Lighting up

Make sure you’re sitting in a comfortable position. You’re going to want to be sitting up straight to fill your lungs to the max capacity.

Then take a few deep breaths to get ready as it helps to get oxygen to your lungs, making your hit a lot smoother. This also limits the amount of coughing, allowing more THC to get absorbed. 

And who doesn’t want more THC to get absorbed?

Put your mouth to the mouthpiece with your lips inside the mouthpiece. Its bad etiquette (and hygiene) to put them over the rim of the bong, so be aware of this — especially when you’re training novices to take bong rips. 

Then once you put your mouth on the mouthpiece, remember to make sure you have a good seal between your lips and the inner mouthpiece. This seal is important, so the smoke doesn’t escape into the room, along with your high.

Lighting the bong is the part that many people find intimidating. But it’s not. It just takes practice!

Take out your lighter while your mouth is on the mouthpiece and bring the flame to the bowl. Hold it at an angle to help avoid getting your fingers burned. 

Light the cannabis on the edge of the bowl to help the bud last longer.

Don’t worry if it takes you a few times to get it lit. Practice makes perfect.

Step #4) Breathe in.

Breathe in. 

The secret to an excellent inhale isn’t to get the smoke to you but inside you to get that precious THC to your brain receptors. 

The smoke has to go from the point of combustion through the bong and the mouthpiece into your body.

This step, you can see happen as the smoke travels through the bong, which is rather cool to watch.

Step #5) Keep breathing.

Keep breathing in. This will bring the smoke into your mouth and then to your lungs. 

And in your lungs is right where you want it. 

Stop lighting the bud when you have enough smoke in the chamber. 

For new or casual smokers, about half a chamber is suitable to start with; you can always light another hit to get more.

Step #6) Finishing the hit: The key to getting super high.

While you’re still breathing in, pull the bowl out of the stem and inhale the smoke in the chamber.

Inhale deeply, so the smoke goes where you want it — your lungs! 

A good inhale is essential because if the smoke doesn’t get to your lungs with a proper inhale, the effects won’t be at their full potential.

Don’t worry if you can’t take the whole hit all in one go. 

You can ‘pause’ a bong hit by covering the mouthpiece to keep the smoke inside the bong. When you’re ready to take the rest, remove your hand, and quickly put your mouth back on to avoid smoke escaping.

Step #7) Letting the high times roll

Hold your inhale in for a few seconds to let the THC absorb and enjoy your high. But not for too long, that’ll only deprive your brain of oxygen.

Then once you’ve masted the art of the bong rip, it’s time to sit back and let the good times roll.

How Does A Bong Work?

Now that you’re ready for this bong hit, we’re going to bring in some science to your high.

A bong works as everything else does, based on physics. Primarily, the physics of how a bong works is a vacuum. 

When you breathe in, a vacuum is created within the bong, which displaces the water. This vacuum allows the water to suck the flame towards the bud bowl pulling the smoke towards the bong. 

When you see bubbles forming in the water, these are the secondary micro-vacuum pulling the smoke into the chamber. 

The consistent vacuum caused by breathing in, combined with the force of gravity, causes the water to act as a liquid diaphragm in the human lungs. This action brings the smoke further into the bong’s chamber, allowing it to fill up.

Then when you lift the slider, air from outside the bong rushes in to fill the vacuum. This displacement of air brings the rest of the smoke right into your lungs.

And the physics of the bong is why it provides a stronger, smoother hit.

Why Bongs Get You So High

Bongs are different from joints or blunts, or even pipes. 

If it’s your first time, you may think that it has to do with the water inside the bong itself. And if this was your guess, you’d be kind of right.

Bongs get you higher mainly because of the chamber and the vacuum created within it. The weed that you do use ends up having more of an impact as all the smoke from the hit is going into your lungs in fewer hits. 

While with a pipe or a joint, some smoke is burned and wasted between hits, bongs offer more hits with more intense effects from the same amount of weed. 

But the water in the bong is only a secondary part of why it gets you so high. 

The main reason bongs get people so blitzed is bongs offer you a smoother high. This is what draws most people to choosing bongs. 

Bong water filters out irritants from the smoke that causes coughing. This process helps facilitate more THC getting absorbed into your bloodstream before exhaling.

How to Clean a Bong: It’s more important than you might think.

Cleaning a bong is as crucial as cleaning your pipe or any other smoking contraption you decide to use. 

All of these, you have to clean, and bongs are no different. 

If you regularly clean your bong, it won’t only last longer, but you won’t need to deep clean or scrub it as often. 

An excellent-quality bong requires excellent-quality maintenance. Maintaining your smoking equipment ensures that they last.

Here’s what you need:

To clean a bong, you’ll need water, salt, and 99% isopropyl alcohol, more commonly known as rubbing alcohol.

Step #1) Take your bong apart

Remove the bowl and the downstem and place them to the side. This ensures that all the pieces get cleaned properly without chipping. 

Rinse each of the pieces with warm water as you take it apart. Warm water helps allow the loose resin to come off, making cleaning easier.

Step #2) Clean the bowl and downstem

Cleaning the bowl and downstem is easy. All you simply need is two plastic bags, salt, water, and rubbing alcohol. 

Allow the pieces to be fully submerged with salt and rubbing alcohol. Make sure to put these two delicate pieces in separate bags to avoid any damages.

Step #3) Fill up the bong

It’s now time to clean the bong. 

Remove the old bong water. 

Take the bong and fill it up with a handful of salt and rubbing alcohol. 

Plug the mouthpiece and the stem to make sure there isn’t a mess as you’re cleaning.

Step #4) Shake it up.

This is the fun part. 

Shake your bong, bowl, and downstem. This simple strategy is the best way to clean heavy buildup. Keep shaking until you see the buildup starting to come off.

Quick tip: If this step doesn’t seem to be taking all the resin off of the glass, allow it to soak in the alcohol and salt solution for more than an hour. Soaking enables the resin to soften up and be easier to clean.

Step #5) Rinse the grime away.

After the resin is cleared away, rinse your bong thoroughly with warm water. 

Make sure that all the pieces are clean before you reassemble the bong. Having loose resin or leftover alcohol doesn’t make for a quality smoking experience.


Regardless of your level of smoking ability, or even your skill with bongs, the general rules remain the same. 

Know your limits. Nobody wants to green out on a bong.

Be safe. Get high. Keep your bong clean and have fun. 

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