How To Clean a Bong - The Master Guide

best way to clean bongs

How to clean a bong is a commonly asked question.

In this ultimate guide we are going to break down all the ways to do that and more importantly not only keep your bong clean but also your lungs!

Bongs are amazing and they come in all shape and forms from straight tubes to crazy bubblers – you know you love that bubbly sound. But have you ever noticed on the first hit on your pristine glass bong, a light-yellow film begins building?

This is the notorious resin building and if the resin in your bong begins to build for too long the bacteria will begin to produce mold.

So, imagine taking a big rip of your favorite flower … and some mold. Doesn’t sound like a good combination, right?

Cleaning your bong is important, but you also may want to put on your proactive worker hat and take actionable steps to prevent bacteria buildup as well. In this master guide you will learn just how to clean a bong and prevent germ build-up as well!

Cleaning Resin Out of a Bong

You know that light yellow circle that starts forming near the waterline of of your bong after the first couple of uses? This is this tar and resin created when smoking cannabis. This is the same stuff that turns your bong water from clean and clear to cloudy muck.  

When resin builds in the bong, so does bacteria, fungus, and mold. Ingesting these dangerous pathogens can cause illness and serious health issues. If health is important to you, put on your proactive worker hat and take action to prevent dangerous bacteria buildup. Keep your bong clean and your bong water fresh to achieve a healthier high while smoking cannabis. 

Keep in mind, your bong water doesn’t filter all the resin and tar within cannabis smoke. Using a  MouthPeace filter reduces the tar, resin, and pathogens you breath in when smoking cannabis. As an additional benefit to filtering your smoke, you will experience a smoother pull that limits coughing and tightness in the chest.

General Steps To Cleaning A Bong 

Remove loose or detachable parts from the Bong:

Remove parts like the bowl and the stem to protect them from damage during the bong cleaning process. Set them somewhere safe and sound. We will be returning to clean them later.

Fill the bong with rubbing alcohol and course salt:

Rubbing alcohol (70% or more) is a common solvent used to disolve resin build-up in pipes, bongs, and dab rigs. The chemicals work to break apart the structure of resin, which removes it from the walls of a dirty bong. However, some bong owners choose a non-isopropyl approach due to the toxicity of rubbing alcohol. 


Shake and swirl the salt and alcohol mixture to speed the cleaning process and enhance its results. As the mixture is shaken, the salt gently scrubs the inside walls and helps the rubbing alcohol break apart gunky resin build-up. Pour out the mixture and repeat this step if necessary. 


Rinse your bong with hot water. You may want to give the bong a scrub with dish soap as well. You’ll want to rinse your bong out multiple times to remove any residual isopropyl alcohol. As stated by Dr. Michael Kaliszewski and published by the AAC,  rubbing alcohol is toxic and dangerous to consume at any quantity. 

Final Touches:

For detailed bong cleaning, take a Q-tip and wipe away any remaining residue from small and hard to reach areas of the bong.Pro tip:use a pipe cleaner if the Q-tips won’t reach. 

Clean your bong often:

Now that your bong is clean, let’s keep it that way! To avoid mold, bacteria, and resin build-up, give your bong a rinse after each use. This practice successfully slows the rate at which you bong becomes dirty. 

Give your bong a deep clean weekly or as soon as you spot resin build-up. Some cannabis smokers who use bongs wait a month in-between deep cleans. The wait time between deep cleans changes depending on how often the bong is used. Find a good cleaning schedule for your smoking pieces and stick to it closely to avoid the consumption of harmful pathogens. 

Another pro-tip: Any water left sitting out, let alone dirty bong water, is prone to fungal and bacterial growth. This growth increases the chances of illness from consuming harmful pathogens. Keep your lungs and body safe by pouring out, rinsing, and drying your bong in-between uses.

Glass Bongs, Silicone Bongs, Plastic Bongs and more

How to Clean a Bong

Before you pull up your sleeves and get in the nitty-gritty of cleaning your bong, we first have to figure out which bong type you have. The three primary types of bongs are Glass Bongs, Silicone Bongs, and Plastic bongs. There are also others like ceramic handmade bong and metal bongs as well. Let’s break down the various cleaning methods on each one.

How to Clean a Glass Bong

Glass bongs are a signature piece in classic ganja smoking households. Glass bongs are superiorly customizable and often intricately hand-made by talented glass artists.     Many cannabis smokers report a more even and efficient “pull” when smoking from a glass bong compared to a silicone and acrylic (plastic) bong. Although, some argue that glass bongs are more of a burden, especially considering how easily they break.

Due to the delicate nature of glass, you must practice caution during the cleaning process. I can not tell you how many chipping, cracking, and shattering horror stories I have heard throughout the years. If you are a classic glass lover, learn the tips and tricks to keeping your glass beauty crystal clean and all in one piece. 

Fill your glass bong half full using one part course salt and two parts rubbing alcohol. Layer two towels in an empty sink. The towels will act as padding for the glass incase the bong gets dropped. Hold your bong over the sink, place your hand on the top of the bong, and gently shake and swirl the mixture. Be sure to have full control of your bong so as not to slam the glass against the sides of the sink. 

Rinse and repeat as needed, but be mindful of the water’s temperature. Rapid changes in temperature can cause glass to shatter or break due to stress fractures. After rinsing multiple times, do detailed cleaning with Q-tips and allow the bong to fully dry.

How to Clean a Glass Bong

What You Will Need to clean your glass bong:

  • Sea Salt
  • 70% or 91%Rubbing Alcohol
  • Hot Water
  • Pipe Cleaner
  • MouthPeace

Step 1: Empty out your sink and place your glass bong in there. Put the sea salt chunks inside of your bong first. The sea salt works as the scrubbing agent when you shake the bong so make sure to put in a good amount.

Step 2: Depending on it’s size, fill your bong with ½ cups- 2 cups alcohol, leaving plenty of room so you can still shake the bong and the alcohol won’t come toppling out the top. A good ratio is to fill the alcohol a bit above the salt. Optional Pro Tip – We like using Resolution Cleaning Caps to keep the cleaning solution inside.

Step 3: Now begin to swirl the mixed alcohol and sea salt to begin cleaning your bong. You can also place your hand on the top of the bong and shake harder but be sure to have full control of your bong as not to accidentally slam the bong into the sink. When you shake the salt will crash into the sides of the bong helping to clear the stubborn residue off.

Step 4: Repeat the steps until your bong is clean. After run some hot water through and use a pipe cleaner to take out any last remaining residue pieces.

If you do not want to use alcohol keep reading and we will break down some further options.

Now that you have a nice clean bong make sure are keeping your lungs clean as well. Your bong water doesn’t catch all the resin and a significant amount of resin and tar end up in your lungs. Using a MouthPeace filter helps catch resin and tar before entering your lungs, which cuts down on coughing and burning after your bong rip. It is also proven that when sharing pipes with friends, using a personal MouthPeace will reduce the bacterial contamination by as much as 5,924%!

How to Clean a Silicone Bong

Silicone bongs are highly regarded in the cannabis industry. Many bong owners prefer smoking out of silicone because it is portable and easily cleaned. Unlike glass, silicone can be easily transported without fear of chipping or breaking. As for the cleaning, there are many different methods. However, there is one method in particular that is quick and nearly effortless!

Once your silicone bong collects a layer of grime, remove its detachable pieces and pop it in the freezer overnight. After freezing the resin, give the bong a squeeze and tap it against the countertop to break apart the hardened gunk. Empty the contents and rinse the bong thoroughly. This freezer trick should remove the bulk of the resin, but there is likely more work to be done. 

Luckily, silicone is dishwasher safe! Run it though one or two cycles to dissolve any remaining smut. And of course, if there is any detail work to be done, use Q-tips. Be sure that all bong pieces are dry before reassembling your bong. Trapped moisture can grow bacteria or mold. 

Make sure you are not just keeping your bong clean but also your lungs! MouthPeace bong filter help reduce the amount of resin and tar that enters your lung and is proven to reduce the bacterial contamination by as much as 5,924% when sharing pipes.

How to Clean a Plastic Bong

What you need to clean a plastic bong

Plastic bongs are a popular choice for cannabis smokers on a budget. Plastic bongs are cheap, portable, and surprisingly durable. Most plastic or acrylic bongs can get dropped and still live to see another day. However, plastic bongs do come with a few downsides as well. Especially when it comes to the cleaning process. 

Most bong owners use isopropyl alcohol to remove ashy gunk and resin build-up. However, rubbing alcohol contains strong chemicals that can eat away at plastic or acrylic materials. After a few uses of rubbing alcohol to clean your plastic bong, the plastic may begin to crack or break. 

For a less abrasive cleaning method, use warm water, a toothbrush, and dish soap. Soak your bong in warm soapy water for half an hour. After soaking, rinse the bong and begin scrubbing the remaining gunk using a toothbrush. This method may take more time and tough scrubbing, but we promise the sparkling results are definitely worth it! 

What You Will Need to clean your plastic or acrylic bong:

  • Salt
  • 50% or 70% Rubbing Alcohol
  • Hot Water
  • Lemons

Step 1 : Empty out your sink and place your plastic bong in there. Put some salt inside of your bong first. The salt works as the scrubbing agent when you shake the bong so make sure to put in a hefty amount.

Step 2: Fill your acrylic bong up with ½ cups – 2 cups of alcohol but leave room so you can still shake the bong and the alcohol won’t come flying out the top. A good ratio is to fill the alcohol a bit above the salt.

Step 3: Now begin to move your hand in a circular motion to move the mixed alcohol and salt to begin cleaning your bong. You can also place your hand on the top of the bong and shake harder, but be sure to have maximum control of your bong as not to accidentally slam the bong into the sink. When you shake the salt will crash into the sides of the bong helping to clear the stubborn reside off.

Step 4: Rinse the bong out now with hot water and add in a full squeezed lemon and the hottest water you can get from your sink. Swirl this around for 60 seconds and then rinse your clean plastic bong out to dry.

Now that your plastic bong is nice and clean, make sure to prevent bacteria build up by snagging up the most trusted bong filter on the market: The MouthPeace is proven to reduce bacterial contamination by as much as 5,924% when sharing your bong with friends. Not only do you want to focus on cleaning your bong of all the dirty resin, you want to make sure the resin isn’t flying into your lungs with each rip, and the MouthPeace filter helps do exactly this!

If you do not want to use alcohol scroll down for some other popular methods, you can use that doesn’t involve rubbing alcohol.

How to Clean a Bong Bowl

The bong bowl is undoubtedly the most important piece of the bong! The bowl is usually removable and is often made of glass or metal. Weed gets packed into the bowl, which means that resin builds up here quickly. As most of us already know, gunky bowls severely affect the flavor and the harshness of weed smoke. Luckily, the bowl cleaning process is rather painless.  

Grab a zip lock bag and place your bong bowl inside. Fill the bag half full of isopropyl alcohol and a handful of coarse salt. Shake the bag and allow the rubbing alcohol and salt to break down and scrub away the resin buildup. Once most of the residue has come off, take the bong bowl out and rinse it thoroughly with hot water. Use a pipe cleaner to wipe away any hard-to-reach grime. 

To keep your bowl clean, give it a quick soapy scrub after each use! To keep your lungs clean, filter tar and resin from your smoke using Moose Labs MouthPeace

What You Will Need to clean your bong bowl:

  • Salt
  • 50% or 91% Rubbing Alcohol
  • Hot Water
  • Zip Lock Bag
  • Q-Tips

Step 1 : Grab a zip lock bag and place your bong bowl inside

Step 2: Fill the bag with a sizeable amount of salt (obviously not so your bong bowl is swallowed by it, just enough to go past 10% of your bong bowl)

Step 3: Fill the bag with 70% or 90% rubbing alcohol to about 50% of where your bong bowl is and zip it back up and begin to swirl the bag around so the rubbing alcohol can mix with the salt.

Step 4: Now begin to shake the bag a bit more to help the salt to scrub against any stubborn stains. Once all the residue has come off take out the bong bowl and rinse out with hot water. 

How to Clean a Bong Without Alcohol

There are many bong cleaning solutions on the market, but many of them contain isopropyl alcohol. Health professionals recommend avoiding isopropyl cleaning methods for bongs so as not to accidentally ingest any isopropyl left behind. For those looking to avoid rubbing alcohol in their cleaning regimen, read on and learn how to clean a bong without isopropyl alcohol.  

How to Clean a Bong with Vinegar

Vinegar is not as strong as alcohol, but you can still get the job done. You can add salt with your vinegar and shake your bong to break off all the stubborn resin inside of your bong.

Repeat the steps a few time and if there is still any stubborn residue than empty out your bong and rinse with hot water. Empty the hot water out and now squeeze a full lemon inside the bong with hot water and begin swirling this around. Use a brush pipe to help clean any remain stubborn residue.

Rinse your bong out with hot water and let it dry.

How to Clean Resin out of a Bong

How to clean resin out of a bong

Cleaning out resin is the main objective when cleaning out your bong. Times have changed and many people now opt to use new cleaning solutions custom created for cleaning bongs. Resolution Colorado Cleaning Gel is a popular cleaning agent and the best part is it is reusable.

The most powerful method to keep your bong clean is using Res Gel with a MooseLabs MouthPeace. It’s a no-fuss method where you get your bong sparkly clean and also the MouthPeace reduces bacteria by 5,924% when sharing bongs with others.Not only do you want to keep your bong clean you also want to make sure you aren’t inhaling resin and tar each time you are taking a pull from your bong, and that is exactly what MouthPeace was designed to do.

This is by far one of the best combinations there is when cleaning your bong and keeping your bong clean in the future!

When it comes to bacteria build-up and mold forming in your bong, Moose Labs did ample research in finding out just how much bacteria is on your bong and why it’s so important to clean your bong and prevent bacteria spread by using a MouthPeace.


The average Cannabis pipe has …

  • 1304% more bacteria than the average dog food bowl
  • 530% more bacteria than a cell phone screen
  • 92% more bacteria than an ATM Keyboard
  • 90% more bacteria than a trash dumpster
  • 49% more bacteria than a toilet seat

Bacteria on bong pipe experiment

Imagine all of that bacteria growth sitting inside of your bong and on the bong mouth peace. That’s why it is important to use a MooseLabs MouthPeace when sharing pipes with others. Using a MouthPeace helps to reduce bacterial spread by as much as 5,924% when sharing pipes with friends and smoking. It’s that powerful!

Whatever cleaning method you choose to polish up your bong, make sure you also are being proactive and protecting your lungs by using a MouthPeace filter to filter out the harmful resin and tar.

Leave a comment below and tell us any other ways that you enjoy cleaning your bong clean and your lungs or check out other ways to help disinfect your bong.

Search our shop