How To Clean A Glass Pipe | Cleaning A Pipe With Vinegar
The thing inside your glass pipes that causes them to colour up is resin, which leads to clogs and needs to be cleaned every so often so your pipe is up to peak performance. There are a wide variety of options for how to clean resin:
- Epsom salt cleaning - epsom salt and rubbing alcohol
- Sea salt is another coarse salt option. Thanks to the large grains, it's a more highly recommended cleaning option than table salt.
- Smoking pipe cleaning kit (purchased; specifically designed for marijuana pipes)
- Rubbing alcohol, dish soap, and hot water
- Clean pipe hydrogen peroxide
- Mile high soap
- Denture tablets are rumored to work (though we won't venture into that here)
- Hot water to rinse whatever cleaning supplies off of your glass when you're done!
Those are just a few of the many ways people have found to successfully clean a glass pipe. It’s important to note that just because it was effective in cleaning the pipe, doesn’t mean it’s safe to use on something you’re planning to smoke out of or that it’s the cheapest or easiest method. Leftover cleaner that's toxic is not something you want to inhale with your kush.
Photo cred goes to Grav Labs' Insta, @gravlabs. Make sure to check them out for some inspiration of what you want in your next smoking device.
There are many videos online to help guide you through the important process of pipe cleaning. Here's one of our favourites! They combine some isopropyl alcohol with some coarse salt in a plastic bag, shake the bag (drink some beer), and voila! A beautiful, clean glass pipe. Rinse with hot water and fill your precious glass back up with some tasty kush!
In this article, we’ll point you in the right direction for safe and easy pipe cleaning and provide you with a handy list of dos and don’ts.
From the simple spoon pipe like the one shared above to more innovative glass pipes, Grav has got you covered.
For a cross between simple and innovative, try out their Pebble Spoon. It's super portable and durable, so it can be your new favourite travel buddy!
Photo cred? Yep, you guessed it. Back at @gravlabs.
Once your resin builds up like this you know it's time for a cleaning! @Alamy
What’s the best method to clean a glass pipe?
As we said above, just because a method is effective, doesn’t mean it’s safe or wise. We recommend not using products you don’t feel comfortable inhaling. For example, you’d probably feel a little uncomfortable inhaling something like Home Depot acetone. Not even boiling water could make us want to light our pipe back up after it has been shook around in a ziploc bag with that!While you're always instructed to do your best to rinse the pipe thoroughly with hot water or, better yet, boiling water after cleaning with these products, you can never be too sure. We've got tips on how to clean a pipe without alcohol written below and in videos!
We recommend using the vinegar and baking soda method. This method uses 100% safe products that most people have in their homes already, like cotton swaps and the same plastic bag you'd put your sandwich in, and are inexpensive. Vinegar is also a natural odor-absorber, meaning you're also working to remove the smell from your no-longer dirty pipe.
Looking to step up your pipe game? Need the perfect gift for your nature-loving toker friend?
Empire Glassworks's Beehive Handpipe is not only beautiful, with lots of detail in the little glass bees, but it's also super functional. This is definitely worth the short time the cleaning process will take!
@empireglassworks's insta does a great job of showcasing their pipes as the real works of art they are!
How to clean a glass pipe: vinegar and baking soda solutionWhether you’re trying to figure out how to clean glass bong or how to clean glass pipe, this method is the most effective, cheapest, and safest method for cleaning a glass piece without alcohol or other harsh chemicals.
What you need:
- White vinegar
- Baking soda
- Plastic container like Tupperware
- Bong brush, pipe cleaner, or cotton swab (maybe let's make it cotton swabs to be safe!)
Step One: Soaking your pipePlace your pipe in the plastic bag or container and cover it in a fine layer of baking soda, making sure to cover as much of the pipe as possible with a thorough coating. Then, fill the container with your white vinegar and make sure you seal it up tightly. Careful! There will be a bubbly reaction when the two substances meet!
Leave it soaking for about 30 minutes, but if it’s seen some serious mileage, you may want to leave it longer. Once it’s done soaking, give it a good shake to ensure the solution reaches each and every nook and cranny of the pipe. If the pipe has been well maintained, this should be an effective method for how to dissolve resin.
Step Two: Using pipe cleaners, a cotton swab, or a bong brush to remove resinSometimes, if you've got an extra dirty pipe, the soaking method alone won’t rid you of the resin problems in a weed bowl. If you need to figure out how to clean resin out of a glass bowl or, heaven forbid, how to scrape resin from a bowl, you’ll need the tools we mentioned above.
Start with gently scrubbing to try to remove the resin, but sometimes that won’t cut it. You may need to scrape the resin off with a paper clip or safety pin or even purchase a bong cleaner or other weed-specific cleaner.
Step Three: Rinse the bowl thoroughly
The last step in how to clean a bowl involves thoroughly rinsing your pipe in super hot water, as hot as you can stand. We recommend using thick dish washing gloves to ensure you have a thick layer so you can handle hotter water. You want to be sure you thoroughly rinse your piece out so that no solution remains. Then, set your piece out to dry.
For a beautifully made pipe with a bit of a Sherlock twist, try the Chameleon Glass Sherlock Flamethrower glass pipe.
Not only is it easy to use, but it's easy to clean no matter which cleaning solution you use. It's also high quality at a very affordable price.
Do's and dont's of cleaning your pipe:
The method we mentioned above is effective for cleaning a dirty glass water pipe and glass spoon alike. Here are some do's and don’ts for you to keep in mind when cleaning your glass pipe:
Do: Rinse your bong and glass pipe thoroughly before and after soaking.
Don’t: Use 99 isopropyl alcohol home depot if you’re concerned about using chemicals
Do: Let your pipe soak long enough to help dissolve the resin
Don’t: Use hydrogen peroxide to clean your pipe
Do: Shake the bag vigorously, but cautiously so you don't accidentally knock your glass into something and cause damage!
Don't: Mix rubbing alcohol and salt, OR try to mix dish soap with anything. It's not a good idea!
Do: Stock up on some pipe cleaners. It's such a satisfying feeling when you know you've cleaned literally every part of your glass baby.
If you’re concerned about using a certain product and can’t find the answer online, we recommend just avoiding it. There are tons of marijuana-specific cleaning products that will help you clean your pipes in a more natural way. Sometimes even lemon juice and coarse kosher salt will do the job. Often times you don't have to go further than your local drug stores to find the materials you need.
The three marbles on the right side (carb hole on the left) of this artfully designed Inside Out Spoon Pipe by Glassheads combine for the fully package. A well-priced, thoughtfully crafted piece of glass for you to enjoy each toke with.
We recommend taking the time to research the method and products you choose thoroughly before you use them. Your pipes are important to you. You don’t want to damage them or clean them with harmful products. Plus, you certainly don’t want to risk inhaling a toxic chemical.
There are many benefits to keeping your glass clean and ensuring it looks its best. In addition to having your pipe return to like-new condition, cleaning your pipe can give you smoother rips, and you'll spend less time having to deal with annoying clogs. It can prolong the life of your pipe and enhance the taste and smoking experience of each and every bowl. Which cannabis consumers wouldn't think that made it worth the effort?
We hope this article helped you to find a method of cleaning your pipe thoroughly without the use of harmful chemicals like alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or acetone, despite these products’ effectiveness at having the pipe look clean.
Can’t get enough? Here are some other fascinating topics you can research:
- How to clean a bong without alcohol
- How to keep your bong safe and clean
- The best bong money can buy
- How to turn your bong into a dab rig
- The best rig soap you can buy
Equipped with this simple knowledge you'll keep your toking equipment in good shape for years of use!
Need more info? Drop questions into the comments below and we'll get back to you!
Written by Megan Medeiros (BA)
Megan Medeiros has a bachelor’s degree in English and is currently working on a master’s in English at James Madison University. She's the owner and operator of Medeiros Writing, and has been working as a cannabis writer for the past three years, mostly following the legal climate of marijuana, especially in areas like California, Colorado, Oregon, Canada, and other legal areas.
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page. All photos were sourced from Pinterest.com | updated 2021