Whether you use it medicinally or recreationally, your collection of devices that you use to toke ganja isn’t complete without a water pipe. Sure, joints, bowls, and blunts are great, and they’ll certainly get you high, but if you really want to get an awesome buzz and have some fun while you’re getting to your sweet spot, a water pipe is the best choice.
Colloquially known as a bong, a water pipe offers a number of benefits. It really lets you experience and appreciate the flavor of your dank bud, it’s a whole lot smoother on the lungs, and it creates one hell of a high; not to mention the fact that it’s just a whole lot of fun.
If you’re new to the water pipe scene or you’re a long-time user, head to your nearest local head shop, do a quick search online – or heck, even stop by the corner convenience store – and you’ll find a selection of bongs to choose from. However, not all water pipes are created equally, and if you really want to maximize your enjoyment, however, you don’t want to use just any water pipe; you want to use the best.
Do it right once and don’t have to worry about it every again is a mantra that can be applied to most things in life, including your smoking accessories.
How can you do that? Well, you’ve come to the right place! After investing a lot of time into researching, including reading through the product descriptions and customer reviews of dozens of different options – and testing them out first-hand – our editorial team has narrowed down the list of options to what, in our opinion, are the best water pipes on the market right now.
Water Pipe Definition & Buying Guide
For those of you who are experienced bong users and already know what they are, you can skip this section if you want (or read it, because hey, you may learn something cool that you never knew before), but before we jump in and explore the best water pipes, we wanted to take a moment to review what these smoking apparatuses are.
A water pipe (aka, a bong) is a filtration device that is used to smoke cannabis, though tobacco and other types of herbals can be smoked out of them, too. It’s designed to cool smoke, which creates a smoother hit that’s a lot less harsh on the lungs. Bongs can be made of a variety of materials, including glass, plastic (water bottles even!), bamboo, metal (with lasers!), and ceramic. Of all the different materials, glass is considered the best because generally speaking, it creates the smoothest hit.
In addition to different materials, water pipes also come in different styles, including:
- Carburetor: Perhaps the most popular style, a carburetor bong has a hole in somewhere in the center of the pipe. This hole is known as the carburetor, so if it doesn’t have a hole, it isn’t a carburetor water pipe. The hole isn’t vital to the design of this style of bong, but a lot of people say that the carburetor allows for a hit that’s much more intense. The hole has to be covered up with your finger or hand when you’re taking a hit. When you uncover the hole, fresh air flows into the pipe, and you continue to inhale, clearing as much of the smoke that collected inside the pipe as possible. The air forces the cannabis smoke into your lungs a lot faster, and makes inhaling the contents of the pipe a lot easier, smoother, and more enjoyable.
- Straight-tube: Of all the different designs that are available, straight-tube bongs are the simplest. As the name implies, they’re comprised of a basic tube that is sealed at one end, and there’s a stem and a bowl that sticks out of the side of the tool. Fill the base of the pipe with water, pack the bowl, and take a hit; that’s it! A lot of smokers prefer this design for its simplicity which makes cleaning the bong a breeze.
- Beaker: This style is similar to the straight-tube water pipe, but it bottom is flared out into a cone shape, which makes it look like a beaker; you know, the kind that you would use in a science lab. The flared-out bottom increases the stability of the beaker bong, as the base is larger. Using a beaker bong is just as easy as using a straight-tube bong.
- Rounded-base: The rounded-base water pipe is similar to the beaker bong; however, the base is wider than both the tube and the mouthpiece. Rounded-base bongs are more stable than straight-tube water pipes, but not as stable as the beaker-style bong. Using the rounded-base bong is the same as using the straight-tube and beaker-style water pipes.
- Percolator: Also referred to as a bubbler bong, a percolator water pipe can feature a straight-tube, beaker-style, or rounded-base design – or pretty much any other shape you can picture. The percolator par is a piece of glass that dissipates the cannabis smoke prior to passing through the water, and this creates a bubbling effect inside of the pipe, which spreads the some out, improving its filtration.
- Multi-chamber: Referred to as a recycler bong by some, the multi-chamber glass pipe is a variation of the straight-tube design, as it features a straight tube that’s divided into two separate chambers, which are joined together by a tube or a third chamber. Water sits in the upper and lower chambers, which filters the cannabis smoke two times. Thanks to the double filtration, the smoke is a lot smoother than the smoke that the straight-tube, beaker, or round-base water pipe produces. Due to the complex design, multi-chamber bongs are harder to make, and thus, they tend to be more expensive; plus, they’re harder to clean. That said, the smooth, double-filtered smoke is worth the investment.
What are the Benefits of Smoking Ganja from a Water Pipe?
Bongs have been used for a long, long time. In fact, people have been using bongs for hundreds of years; however, in recently years, they’ve become a lot more popular, and the increased popularity is largely due to the many innovative features that have been created that make the easier and more enjoyable to use.
So, what are the benefits of using a water pipe? Here’s a look at some of the top reasons why – if you aren’t already – you should seriously consider adding one to your collection.
1. Smoother More Comfortable Rips
The water filters the smoke, and that filtration cuts down on the harsh compounds and contaminants, such as carcinogens, ash, tar, and toxins, as well as heat, which makes for a smoother hit; much smoother, in fact than the hits that joints, bowls, or blunts produce. If smoking bud tends to irritate your throat, you will definitely appreciate taking the smoother hits from a bong.
2. Enhanced Terpene Flavors
That delightful, mouth-watering odor that your dank bud emits? You probably notice that it doesn’t taste as great as you thought it would when you smoke a joint, bowl, or blunt, right? Well, when you smoke it from a water pipe, you’ll actually get to experience a lot more of that flavor.
Why? Well, because the smoke is a lot purer, and so it retains a lot more of that flavor, which means that when you take a rip off of a bong, your taste buds will be saturated with more of that flavor. If you want to have a more flavorful smoking experience, a bong is definitely the way to go.
3. Faster, More Powerful Rips
When you smoke from a water pipe, you’ll get a faster, much more powerful hit. It can take about 15 minutes or so to feel the effects when you smoke marijuana from a blunt, a joint, or a bowl. When you smoke from a bong, you’ll inhale significantly more smoke in a single hit, and hence, you’ll feel the effects a whole lot faster.
In addition to feeling the effects faster, you’ll also get a much stronger hit when you smoke from a bong, which is because you get the chance to inhale way more smoke in a single pull. When you use a bong, you need to percolate and gather as much smoke as you can with each hit.
4. Cost Effectiveness & Maximizing Your Flower
It might seem like smoking out of a bong would cost you more than smoking out of a joint or a blunt; however, in reality, a water pipe is a much more cost-effective way to smoke your bud. Why? Well, just stop to think about how much bud you have to use when you roll a joint. A blunt requires even more weed.
Plus, because rolling papers and cigar wraps are one-and-done, you have to constantly re-purchase, and depending on how frequently you smoke, the cost can really add up. With a bong, while the initial cost may be higher, as long as it’s well-maintained and properly cleaned, you can use the tool over and over – and over – again, for years and even decades, so in the long run, you’ll actually spend less.
Furthermore, you won’t burn through as much bud, which means that your weed will last you much longer. Given the high cost of good weed, smoking from a bong can translate to some significant savings.
5. Bongs Are Just More Fun
Last but certainly not least, smoking weed from a bong is just a fun! Watching the pipe fill up with smoke, and if you’re using a carburetor, clearing the smoke out, is quite enjoyable and even satisfying. Add to that the fact that bongs come in so many different shapes, sizes, and styles – and the fact that you’ll experience more of the flavor, you’ll get a smoother, more powerful hit, and you’ll experience the effects a lot faster – and smoking from a water pipe is just a plain old fun!
The Best Water Pipes On The Market For Cannabis Connoisseurs
Now that you have some background knowledge about water pipes, let’s take get down to the reason why you’re reading this article in the first place: to find out what the best water pipes are. The following brands and styles are the options that our editorial team found to be the best of the best.
Considered the “Rolls Royce” of water pipes, Heir’s bongs are top-of-the-line. Available in 11 and 13 inches, and made of a combination of soda-lime glass, stainless steel, and alumina ceramic, these pipes are built to last. An ergonomic mouthpiece and a removable glass chamber makes it easy to use and clean. Seven holes in the bowl and an 8-slotted percolator creates a super-smooth hit. Though pricy, Heir Waterpipes really are worth the investment.
This water pipe is super cool, as it’s designed to look just like a water bottle, so it’s super discreet, but it functions just like a bong, making it the perfect choice when you’re out and about. Just fill the bottle to the fill line, which sits at 420 milliliters, open the top part, flip the mouthpiece up, and set the ceramic bowl into the air hole. The only downside is that it’s made of plastic.
The brainchild of Sam Freedman, his “half-baked” Bento Bong, which he was able to make and market along with friends, is made of BPA-free Tritan TX1001 plastic, so it’s more durably than a standard silicone bong. It can be disassembled in a matter of seconds, it’s dishwasher safe, and it delivers great hits.
Session Goods Bong
The Session Goods Bong is the most aesthetically pleasing water pipe on our list. It’s more than just a functional bong; it’s a functional work of art! In fact, it’s so appealing that you can leave it out all the time and it will literally look like artwork. There are two different bowls sizes to choose from, and the four millimeter borosilicate glass is super durable, so you can have peace of mind knowing that it will last a long, long time.
Jet Filtration Systems SubZero Water Pipe
Made of impact-resistant materials and a minimalistic design, equipped with an ash filter, and featuring a water fill line, the Jet Filtration Systems SubZero Water Pipe is an outstanding choice! It’s durable, long-lasting, easy to use, and the different colored percolators can be purchased separately, this really is a cream-of-the-crop gardening crop.
Herb CEO Summary
Every water bong above is a solid option, especially when compared to non-water filtered smoking devices like hand pipes where the hot smoke flows directly from the bowl to your lungs.
Don’t get us wrong, there’s a time and place for everything. On the go and outdoors hand-rolled joints are our favorite consumption method. When chilling in the comfort of your own home though nothing beats a water-filtered smoking experience in our humble opinion.
Of the above mentioned water pipes our favorite is the Heir with the 13″ tall glass. The thing is heavy because it’s built entirely of quality materials. The upper neck is solid thick ceramic. The glass is thick ass hell and provides a sturdy base to support the rather heavy neck and bowl.
The Heir is fully functional and provides big rips via its very fairly sized bowl, plenty big enough to get us lit and flying high for the evening.
What about you? Do you have a water pipe that you consider so high quality that you want to tell the world about it? Let us know in the comments as we’re always looking to help promote quality brands to our readers!
MyRon W Smith Sr
Hello’ I would like to know if you have a water pipe that can be used by a person with lung conditions. ?
If you have lung conditions I’d look at vaporizers over water pipes. PAX makes great handheld ones but if you’re looking for an in-home solution the mighty Volcano might be best.