Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong

The question is, how much is too much? Don't drown your bong with water!
14 April 2021
7 min read
Dos and Donts of Setting The Water For Your Bong

  • 1. Understanding the parts of the different types of smoking devices
  • 1. a. More complex bong devices parts
  • 2. How to fill up your bong or rig with water
  • 2. a. Filling percolator bongs with water
  • 2. b. Filling double percolator bongs
  • 2. c. Don't pour water too fast
  • 3. Make sure your smoking device is clean!
  • 4. How can you tell you've filled your device correctly?
  • 5. The bottom line

When it comes to smoking weed, there are different stages of becoming a stoner. In the beginning, most of us were probably quite naive, asking for a shaman stoner friend, who we trusted knew what they were doing, to guide us.

However, as we start growing as stoners and reach the shaman's level, suddenly we may come across a stage of stagnation in which we don't really know how to expand our knowledge on the subject, learn new things, or polish the skills we've been gaining. 


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: Learn how to fill your bong with water properly.

Learn how to fill your smoking devices with water properly.


Well, it's not that the stoner culture is a narrow one, in fact, quite the opposite, we just gotta learn where to look! There are amazing techniques even to roll a joint in expert mode as in the cross joint. Or perhaps other stuff, such as using bongs or rigs, which you thought was quite simple, is actually more complex than that.

While some may shrug everything off and just use them, there's actually a right way to fill your bong or rig with water. The two main and basic guidelines of setting the right amounts of water for your bong or rig are:

  • Don't underfill with water;
  • But at the same time, don't overfill!

Don't worry, we'll cover all the details ahead. 

1. Understanding The Parts Of The Different Types of Smoking Devices

Now, before we start explaining how you should or should not fill the water of your bong, we'll need to explain a couple of terms that we'll be using concerning the bong's parts. 

Since not every single one of these smoking devices looks exactly the same, we'll cover the main and basic parts of a bong first, and get into the different specifics later. 


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: We need to learn the different parts of a bong first.

Before we get started, we'll need to learn the different parts of a bong.


In the first place, we have the bong or the rig's base, which is the, most of the time round-shaped, part of your smoking gear where the water is meant to be placed. Then we have the bowl, which is the outer part where the grinded marijuana is supposed to be placed to burn. 

The bowl is normally attached to a part called downstem in the most common types of bongs, which is the stick-shaped part that connects the bowl and the smoke with the water so that it can travel into the water and up through the tube of the bong, which is its neck, and into the lungs. 

Now, depending on the type of smoking device you're using, it may or may not count with a carburetor. The carb is a small hole, also commonly found in pipes, that works as an airflow regulator. How? Well, you place your finger on top while you hit your smoking gear and then you let go as you're almost done smoking for that last bit of smoke. 


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: Some bongs come with a removable down stem that acts as a carb.

Some bongs come with a carburetor, others with a removable stem.


If your bong or rig doesn't count with a carburetor, then most likely it is because it comes with a removable downstem piece, which by removing it will act as the carburetor itself.

When it comes to more complex smoking devices, for the stoner aficionados, there are a couple of extra parts to enhance the experience. 

More Complex Bong Devices Parts

On one hand we have the percolator, which acts as a filtration device on the inside of your bong or rig. The percolator will make the smoke you're about to inhale cool down and it will filtrate it in order to provide a smoother smoke and a more pleasant inhalation.

You'll be able to find many different varieties of percolator shapes inside your bong, for instance, a mushroom kind of shape inside the tube, or fork kind of holes on the downstem piece or the inline, which is an ash catcher sideways type of stem. Other bongs come with an extra splash guard on top of the perc, to prevent water from going up. 


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: How you fill up the percolator can make or break the experience.

the way you fill up the percolator can make or break the experience.


Some water pipes or other smoking devices come with a fixed down stem, which is also called stemless. This piece is usually L-shaped and is attached to the bowl and the water chamber for a smooth smoke and air flow. 

Almost done now, we may also find a part called ice pinch, which consists of a couple of inward points on the tube where ice is kept inside to cool down the smoke. And lastly, there's the mouthpiece, which is simply where you're meant to place your lips to draw in smoke. 

2. How To Fill Up Your Bong or Rig With Water

Now that we're already informed about the different parts of these famous smoking devices, shall we continue? When it comes to bongs, rigs or water pipes, it doesn't really matter how complex or rudimentary your device is, as long as you can prove you know how to use it properly

And there's nothing that will scream "newbie alert" as making such a simple mistake as it is setting the wrong water levels for your smoking device. So here are some pretty basic linings you need to make sure you're following in order to do this right. 

The thing is, not many stoners take a moment to think about this aspect, they just do so the way they think it should be done, without any second thoughts. But what if it turned out you were actually doing it wrong all along? 


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: Make sure you're covering all the slits in your bong!

Make sure you're covering all the slits in your device!


Bongs, water pipes and rigs can vary a lot, so not every single device will follow the same steps. Firstly, the main thing you should keep in mind is the following:

Every single slit, a.k.a. opening, or hole, must be covered with water.

Now, if you have a simple bong, this is quite easy: fill your smoking device with enough water so that the end of the down stem is completely covered with it. But don't fill it up so much that water is going up as you smoke, that's a definite no-go. A couple of centimeters over the downstem and its opening end should be fine. 

Filling Percolator Bongs With Water

But what happens when you have a bong that comes with all sorts of extra gadgets, percolators, and smoke filters? The first rule is the same we've quoted above: make sure all the slits are covered in water. 

This means that the percolator part of your water pipe where the slits or holes are situated should all be entirely covered with water. Usually, this is around the middle point of your percolator(s). 


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: If there's a percolator, pay extra attention!

The number one rule is: if there's a percolator, pay extra attention!


Now, some people will usually fill their bong through either the downstem hole, or the mouthpiece. When it comes to percolator bongs, you should be filling your bong through the mouthpiece, to ensure that water reaches the places we want it to reach. 

Once your percolators are covered mid-way, or at least their holes are. If by the time you're pouring the water, you notice it isn't making its way all through the lower percs, try blowing into the mouthpiece to help it push through, or tilt the bong or pipe sideways, slowly, so that the water can travel. 

Filling Double Percolator Bongs

When your rig counts with more than one percolator, you'll need to repeat the same process of making sure all of the slits are covered. 

First, you should fill up the lower perc, normally through the downstem hole, and once this one has reached the desired water level, you can move onto the upper perc. To fill the upper perc without messing up the level of the lower perc, pour water in through the mouthpiece. 

Don't Pour Water Too Fast

One of the most common problems of filling up percolator bongs with water is that some users can't manage to get the percolator to reach the desired levels. Why is this happening? The answer is simple. 

If you pour water in too strong or too fast, then chances are that the pressure is not allowing the liquid to flow and get to these places. Therefore, the solution is to simply pour water but to do so slowlier.

3. Make Sure Your Smoking Device Is Clean!

One of the biggest mistakes stoners make when using these smoking devices is not paying attention to the importance of keeping your devices clean


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: Nothing is nastier than a dirty smoking gadget!

Nothing is nastier than a dirty smoking gadget! Clean before and after using it!


So, before you even start pouring water into your smoking gadget, you should most definitely clean it! There's nothing worse looking than a dirty bong or pipe, besides the nasty smell and taste of burnt plant matter, ash, and accumulated resin.

Related story
How To Clean Your Bong

Check out the article above for tips on how to clean your bong successfully 

4. How Can You Tell You've Filled Your Device Correctly?

If you've been following our advice and you're already set, with your water-filled smoking gadget wondering whether you've actually done it right or not there's only one thing left to do: hit it!


Do's and Don'ts of Setting The Water For Your Bong: The main sign you've set the water right is a smooth smoke.

The main sign you've set the water right is having a smooth smoke.


In order to realize if you've filled your rig or bong with the correct water levels, you'll just have to try it out bro! If the rips run smoothly, good job, you must have done the job right!

But if you're experiencing some issues such as water splashing or coming up through the mouthpiece, you may have gotten lost somewhere along the process.

Empty your device and try again!

5. The Bottom Line

While you might have thought that filling up a smoking device such as a water pipe or rig was easy, if you're here then it's most likely because you've encountered some issues along the way.

Hopefully, you've found the right guidance in this article and were finally able to overcome those inconveniences. It may be slightly hard to remember at first but hey, practice makes perfect! Keep it up!

Have fun taking your bong rips or dabs and don't forget to comment on your experience below!

14 April 2021