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4 Ways to Clean Your Pipe As Good As New

Cleaning a pipe can be difficult to do well, and often, you end up with residue in the hard-to-reach parts of your pipe. That’s why we’ve created this definitive guide to show you the four best methods to clean your pipe as good as new. Created with HØJ.

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Nobody wants to be passed a dirty bowl—it can be hard to hit and can ruin the flavor of the delicious bud you just packed in there. If you’re a true cannabis enthusiast, you know the value of a clean pipe. It means better flavor, a smoother hit, not to mention avoiding consumption of dirty leftover residue. But cleaning a pipe can be difficult to do well, and often, you end up with residue in the hard-to-reach parts of your pipe.

This leftover gunk is easy to avoid with the right pipe. Take the KØL pipe from HØJ, for example. With this revolutionary pipe, you need no more than 15 seconds to clean your pipe completely. Just split it in half using its magnetic core, wipe the inside with a paper towel or cloth, and reattach the pipe. Simple as that.

Photo courtesy of HØJ.

But for everyone else with a lower quality glass, metal, or wood pipe, we’ve created this definitive guide to show you the four best methods to clean your pipe as good as new. 

How to Clean a Pipe

We’ve all had a pipe get gummed up with that foul-smelling black resin, but restoring your piece back to its original glory may seem like a difficult or even impossible endeavor. How do you clean a pipe correctly? How do you get all that sticky gunk out of those hard to reach crevices? Lucky for you, we’ve compiled the best methods into this handy pipe cleaning guide. Use this knowledge to keep your favorite pieces in pristine condition.

Picture courtesy of HØJ.

Method One: Isopropyl (Rubbing) Alcohol and Salt

The salt and rubbing alcohol method is a tried and true technique that will keep your pipe sparkling clean. You’ll just need a few things to get started:

  • Isopropyl alcohol (the higher the percentage, the better—look for 90%)
  • Salt (the coarser, the better. Look for Kosher or sea salt) 
  • A plastic bag
  • A pipe cleaner or q-tip (a paperclip will do in a pinch) 

Step 1. Start by clearing out any big chunks of resin or pieces of herb that may be stuck to your pipe. You can do this by turning your pipe upside down and giving a firm tap into your hand, or by blowing air into the mouthpiece. Use the pipe cleaner to help dislodge any stubborn pieces, but be gentle so as not to damage the piece. 

Step 2. Combine rubbing alcohol and salt in your plastic bag.

Step 3. Place your pipe into the bag with the alcohol solution and shake shake shake. The more you shake, the better it will work. Plan on gyrating that bag for at least 2 minutes. It’s tedious but worth it. 

Step 4. Dump and repeat as needed. After shaking your pipe around, the cleaning solution will turn a nasty black/brownish color. Dump that gross liquid and repeat steps 1 and 2. For the really dirty pieces, you might need to soak your pipe for a few hours, or even overnight.  

Step 5. Bust the pipe cleaner back out and use it to buff away any leftover residue. Voila, you’re ready for the final step!

Step 6. Reward yourself with a fat bowl.

Method Two: Boiling Water

The boiling water method is a good one to use if you’re short on household supplies. You’ll just need a pot (the boring kind) and some water. Note: when using this method, make sure your pipe is at room temperature before dropping it into the boiling water as the rapid temperature change may cause it to crack or shatter. 

Step 1. Dislodge any excess pieces of herb from your bowl. Use the same technique from Method One. 

Step 2. Fill your pot with enough water to completely submerge your pipe by at least two inches.

Step 3. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Start at high heat, then once you start seeing lots of bubbles, turn down to low medium. 

Step 4. Add your pipe. Usually, you put pot into your pipe, but now we’re going to put your pipe into your pot.  

Step 5. Let your piece soak in the boiling water for around 30 minutes. If you’re working with a particularly dirty pipe, you may need to soak it for longer. 

Step 6. Carefully remove the pipe. It’s going to be HOT, so make sure to use some oven mitts. It may be tempting to rinse it in cold water, but DO NOT do that. The drastic shift in temperature will likely cause your pipe to splinter into a million little pieces. 

Step 7. If you have a pipe cleaner or q-tip, you can use it to remove any excess residue. Now you’re ready for the final step.

Step 8. Reward yourself with a fat bowl.

Method Three: Denture Cleaning Tablets

Denture cleaning tablets aren’t just for your grandfather’s fake chompers—they can also be used to polish up your pipe. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Denture cleaning tablets (Any brand should work. You can find them at your local drugstore)
  • A large bowl or Tupperware
  • Water
  • A pipe cleaner or q-tip

Step 1. Remove any excess herb bits from your bowl using the same technique from the previous methods.

Step 2. Place your pipe into your bowl or Tupperware. You’ll want a vessel with plenty of room.

Step 3. Fill with warm to hot water. No need to boil the water, straight from the sink will be fine for this method.

Step 4. Drop 2 or 3 denture cleaning tablets inside. The tablets should start fizzing immediately after making contact with the water.

Step 5. Let it soak. Leave the pipe for at least half an hour—maybe longer if depending on how dirty your piece is.

Step 6. Use your pipe cleaner to remove any excess stains or residue. Congratulations, you’re ready for the final step.

Step 7. Reward yourself with a fat bowl.

Method Four: Use The KØL from HØJ

Cleaning your pipe can be a difficult and arduous task that often makes a mess of your sink and hands. Wouldn’t you rather spend your time smoking herb instead of mixing solutions and scrubbing stubborn resin with a flimsy pipe cleaner? Well, now with the new KØL pipe from HØJ, cleaning has become as simple as snap and wipe

The KØL isn’t like any pipe you’ve ever seen before. Its design, inspired by the scales of majestic mako shark, forces air into a vortex that traps herbal impurities before they reach your lungs, making for a smoother hit every time. Pretty cool, right?

But here’s the best part: the KØL is held together with hidden heat resistant rare-earth magnets that grip firmly during use, but can be easily opened by snapping its pieces apart—allowing for direct access to the inside of the pipe.

Step 1. Snap open and wipe down

Step 2. Reward yourself with a fat bowl.

No more fishing clogs out of hard to reach spots, no more laborious cleaning methods that require specific materials and lots of time. Skip straight to the best step with the new KØL.

May 09, 2020 — Last Updated October 13, 2020
Written by Vinnie Sarrocco

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May 09, 2020 — Last Updated October 13, 2020
Written by Vinnie Sarrocco

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