Don’t drink your bong water. Seriously. Just don’t do it

Look, we get it. We’ve all been there. You’re already super-high, and your bong is just sitting there. Drink me, it seems to be saying. What harm could it possibly do?


No matter how tempting it might be when you're already stoned, we urge you to refrain from drinking the water in your bong. Photo by monkeybusinessimages/iStock/Getty Images Plus.


Look, we get it. We’ve all been there. You’re already super-high, and your bong is just sitting there. Drink me, it seems to be saying. Just a little sip. What harm could it possibly do? Indeed, a lot of people seem to think that drinking bong water is an okay idea. Is it true? Here’s all you need to know.

There’s a semi-popular theory going around that if you drink bong water, you’ll get stoned. But can you really get high from drinking bong water? The theory suggests there’s a moderate amount THC in the water leftover from the weed. Therefore, the thinking goes, drinking this water will indeed get you high.

We’re here to tell you that this theory is riddled with faults and incorrect assumptions. The straight-up answer to whether or not you can actually get high from drinking bong water is a loud “Hell, no.” Not to mention that the very act of drinking bong water is ludicrous in itself. Have you ever tasted bong water? It tastes rancid. Like something died in that water. It’s not meant to be consumed, so why would you ever drink it?

Science backs up our answer. For starters, THC isn’t even soluble in water. Research suggests that even if the “THC in bong water” notion were true, and you wanted to get high off of bong water, you would need to drink over 2 thousand mL to even get buzzed. Please, for the love of God and/or Tommy Chong, don’t try to do this just to prove us wrong or something. You won’t get buzzed, and you’ll end up with some sort of infection or poisoning. At the very least, you’ll be projectile vomiting everywhere and likely ruin your liver.

Another way we’ve debunked this theory is to analyze the actual process weed goes through when smoked from a bong. When cannabis goes through bong water, it has not yet reached the stage where it releases THC. This means that there is no THC in the water, and you can’t possibly get the psychoactive effects of a regular chronic high.

Despite all the evidence pointing to the contrary, there are still those who insist that you can actually get high from drinking bong water. “Trust me,” they’ll say, “I’ve done it myself.” To these people, we’d like to say that all you’re experiencing is what’s called the placebo effect.

Some people even go as far as to suggest putting peppermint and other flavours into the bong water to make it taste better. Needless to say, the water will still taste horrible. You’re still going to throw up like crazy, and you’ll probably need medical attention.

Change your bong water

Now that we’ve gotten all that out of the way, we want to highlight the fact that we know some people are still going to drink the bong water. No amount of evidence can change some minds. If you’re one of these people, we recommend you constantly change the water in your bong. Not only will it be less horrible to drink, but when taking an actual hit from the bong, you’ll notice the weed tastes better and has stronger effects.

Changing out your bong water is a necessary act because it takes very little time for dangerous bacteria to build up. Not only will drinking the bong water become that much worse, but inhaling the smoke also puts you at risk of breathing the bacteria into your lungs. Overall dirty bong water can lead to infection.

You’ll notice that when bong water isn’t changed out regularly, it turns a dark brown or even black. The bacteria and toxin buildup essentially turns the water into sewage. At this point drinking the water could turn deadly. You absolutely do not want to drink the water at this point. In addition, the water will ruin your bong over time. The glass will be stained, for example, and the components will wear down.

Another reason to change out your water is to make cleaning up easier. If you’ve ever spilled bong water, you’ll know the process of cleaning up is very difficult. Dropping water that hasn’t been changed for a while is like dropping sewage onto your carpet. There’s no chance it’s ever coming out! Might as well sell the carpet or rip up the floor. It’s the best you’ll be able to do.

Cleaning your bong

When it comes to cleaning your bong, you’re going to need several items. First and foremost, you’ll need salt and a lot of hot water. Next, grab yourself some cotton balls. Make sure you have plenty. You’ll also need several hand towels, a dozen or so cotton swabs (you probably don’t need a dozen but better safe than sorry, right?), and a bottle brush. If you don’t have a bottle brush, something like a pipe cleaner will work.

Take your old bong water and dispose of it. In case you haven’t been paying attention up to this point: Do not dispose of it by drinking it! Next, take apart your bong. Organize all the pieces so that they’re easy to identify. Remember, take everything apart. Don’t leave complex parts assembled. You want to clean it as best as you can, and you can’t do that if you haven’t taken it fully apart.

A lot of people prefer to rinse each and every piece in hot water for a little while. This makes the process of cleaning them much easier. To begin the actual process, put on rubber gloves. Scrub each and every piece. The process of scrubbing each piece works to remove the built-up resin from their surfaces. Once you’ve done this, put each piece into a plastic bag. Make sure each piece has its own bag! The only piece that should not be in a bag is the main part of the bong. If you don’t have enough plastic bags, you can use a plastic container. Just be sure that the containers you use all have lids.

Now, take your rubbing alcohol and pour it into a measuring cup so that you have about a quarter of a cup. Take this amount of water and pour it into each piece bag. Follow this with a tablespoon of salt into each bag. Time to shake the bags! The salt and alcohol mixture will help to break down any bacteria and resin that wasn’t destroyed by the earlier scrubbing. You’re going to want to shake each piece for up to five minutes. Then let each piece sit in its own solution for a further 15 minutes.

You’re now going to want to get a large container. Put the main part of the bong in this container. Fill the container with hot water until it completely submerges the piece. Next, put in three tablespoons of salt, and half a cup of rubbing alcohol. Plug the holes of the piece with either cotton balls or the hand towels you gathered earlier. Once you’ve done this, shake the bong for several minutes.

All you have to do now is dispose of the solution (not by drinking it!), and let each piece dry. If you need to, rinse each piece afterward in lukewarm water to get rid of any remaining grimy spots.

Final thoughts

We hope this article convinced you that drinking bong water is a very bad idea. Not only is it disgusting, it is also likely to create a whole lot of trouble for you. Drinking bong water is not going to get you high. Rather, it’ll make you violently ill. Chances are you’ll be throwing up, your poor tummy will be in incredible agony, and you run the risk of liver failure. Hell, you could even die depending on how much you drink. The act itself is just ridiculous, and—in case we haven’t mentioned this already—it will NOT get you high.

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