How Much Water Do You Put in a Bong?

Posted by Thomas Young on

So you've purchased a new prized piece and are ready to christen the thing. But wait—first, you have to add fresh, clean water to fully filter any particulates and make the most out of your smoke sesh. If you're reading this, you are most likely new to the world of bongs. Water pipes come in a variety of standard designs: straight tubes, beakers, and with a mix of percolator shapes. How much water to put in a bong differs from shape to shape. This simple guide shows just how much water is enough for your very special piece. 

Purpose of the Water

As mentioned above, water can catch unwanted toxins and debris coming from the smoldering dry herb. In addition to filtration, water can also cool the smoke, which feels more comfortable on the user's throat and chest. Water is the only recommended liquid to use with water pipes. So don't let beer or Mountain Dew give you any bright ideas.

How Much Water to Put in a Bong

No matter what size or shape of your piece, you always want to add enough water to completely submerge the downstems and slits in water. If there are no slits, make sure the downstem is at least a half-inch, usually three-quarters of an inch, in the water. If the smoke still feels harsh, you probably should add more water. But there is no need to drown your piece with a flood of a thousand storms. Hydrate your bong just enough without it spilling out of any openings, like a carb.

How Much Water to Put in a Bong with Percolators 

To properly take advantage of your piece's percs fully submerge them in water. So whether you bong has one inline perc or multi-chambered with six percolators, be sure to cover them all. It's like the famous Charles Shultz quote, "Life is like a 10-speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use."  Always utilize all your percs. Make the most of your bong.

How Much is Too Much?

Your bong shouldn't have to build an arc and acquire two of each animal on the planet to survive. Just submerge your downstem, slits, and percs. Plus, adding too much water can result in an unpleasant backsplash that can fly into your mouth like an unpredictable gnat. And overwatering can make the drag more difficult because the smoke has to travel through more liquid before making it to the mouthpiece or even spill out. It's physics. 


What Else is There to Know?  

Where to Fill

Now that you know how much water to put in a bong, you might be wondering where to put it in. It's simple: fill your bong through the mouthpiece. The mouthpiece is the largest opening on a bong and will make it much easier than filling through the stem. 


You should change the bong water once a day or between each smoke for your health and the enjoyment of your bong. A dead giveaway of dirty bong water is the color. Whenever the water starts to brown, it's time to flush it down. In fact, you shouldn't let yellow mellow either. Make sure the water is always clear before you use it. 

Adding Ice

If you want to cool your smoke even more, many pieces incorporate an ice pinch. If you fill a bong up to the perfect water level, the ice will add more unnecessary water after it melts like the polar ice caps flooding the planet. Always consider the ice melt when filling your bong. 

What About Other Pieces?

Bubblers and dab rigs also require water. If you know how much water to put in a bong, you know how much water to put in a bubbler or rig because the same rules apply. Cover your downstem and percolators. Test out your piece after filling to make sure the water level is just right. 

If you'd like to find out more about Glass City Pipes' bongs and other pieces that utilize the cooling power of water, take a look around our store and contact us if you have any questions.

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