We at BWG have a wealth of combined experience in cleaning glass bongs and hand pipes with the trials and tribulations that can come with it. Weather you're on a budget and want the home remedies or you have the cash to drop on some high grade glass cleaning solution we will tell you the proper way to clean your bong, rig or pipe out! Before shopping around for cleaner, there's really only 2 ingredients that make for one of the best solutions and that is Isopropyl Alcohol (the higher the percent the better) and Coarse Table Salt. We have a great selection of cleaning accessories but if you're on a budget and have store near you, you can have be taking clean rips in an hour or less!
To start, American Made glass is usually made from top US or German manufactured raw material which is the same material that Pyrex glass is made of. With that said, most people will say it's ok to wash your bong in the dishwasher but we honestly only recommend dish washing larger clear and basic bongs instead of your scientific, colored or artistic pipes and bongs. There can be too many unknown factors with dab rigs, bongs or hand pipes with numerous seals, carvings or colors that are common in more expensive glass that can cause your prized possession to crack! As far as Import Glass goes, we would not recommend putting any known Import Glass in your dishwasher at all. Most Import Glass is not properly annealed and can crack or even shatter in your dishwasher depending on how hot it gets or how powerful your water pressure is. When cleaning Import Glass in the sink be sure to use warm water and not hot water just to be safe. It's easy enough to feel and see the thickness of your pipe to see which method of cleaning you need to take.
When using a cleaning product you're definitely going to want to soak it in your glass over night for the best results, if you're cleaning a hand pipe then soak in a bag, glass or stainless steel bowl that you can clean after or dispose of. You can still get a quick clean with solutions like the 420 Natural Cleaner, Randy's and Agent Orange but for a serious deep clean you're gonna want to roll with Grunge off or Green Optimum Soaker and do an over night soak while you sleep, this goes for bongs and hand pipes. Getting some silicone plugs will be a very nice accessory for keeping the liquid inside of your bong. If you're quick cleaning a hand pipe it's best to use your cleaner of choice in an average zip lock bag and shake the pipe around in the bag to properly get the resin out of your pipe. Small pipe cleaners also help immensely with getting the resin out of tight and small corners. The best way to clean your bong in quick and cheap way is to grab some coarse medium grain salt and Iso Alcohol, all you do is add about a quarter of the bottle into your bong or bag, add about a Teaspoon to a Tablespoon at most of salt and shake away!
One thing that you want to keep in mind is that you're going to really want to rinse out the cleaner until you can't smell it anymore, you definitely don't want the residue to leech into the water that you smoke passes through! The same will go for a simple alcohol and salt wash but it will be much easier to rinse the alcohol than the cleaning solutions. The reason why this cheap method works so well is that Alcohol is a solvent that is thinner than water and will thin out the resin enough for you to wash out, the salt does an excellent job with scrubbing the the resin off even further so that your bong or pipe get's cleaner quicker! Plugs are great for keeping the liquid inside of your bong when shaking is around but paper towels will do just fine as long as they are wadded up thick enough to not fall into your bong.
The oldest and probably worst way to clean your pipe is to boil it and we don't recommend you using this technique at all. It will be very sticky, make your house smell and there's a risk of cracking your pipe or bong not to mention the hot resin water that will stick to the inside of your sewage pipes! With the info provided you will have a sparkling bong and/or pipe at your budget, even if you don't have one and need to use the boiling method!