Introduction: How to Clean Your Pipe

Picture of How to Clean Your Pipe

Do you have a pipe? Then you know that after smoking Tobacco or other LEGAL things such as Saliva. After a couple uses the pipe can get full of resin and other things. This instructable will show you who to clean it.

Step 1: Parts

Picture of Parts

You need:
A pipe to clean
Rubbing Alcohol
Something to get the screen out
A new screen

Step 2: Pull Out Old Screen and Disassemble

Picture of Pull Out Old Screen and Disassemble

Use a pointy object to remove the old screen, then disassemble as far as u can.

Step 3: Bag It

Picture of Bag It

Put all the pipe related parts in a bag then fill with the alchol leaving some room.

Step 4: Shake

Picture of Shake

Shake and leave to sit over night, but not to long. mine leaked.

Step 5: Finish

Picture of Finish

Wipe up, reassemble and put in a new screen, and you're done.

Here are the twins, as Bender would say "Make new friends and keep the old, because one is silver and the other is gold."

Step 6: Other Ideas

If you are smoking a certain green substance and you want to keep the resin, pour the bag into a bowl. Then leave it in the sun to evaporate.


keaghanz (author)2015-04-30

i need to know how to clean a mushroom keychain pipe mine is so clogged with rez i cant even smoke out of it anymore

SideSh0w (author)keaghanz2015-11-03

Or use a Bobby pin or something similar and scrape it if you plan on smoking it.

SideSh0w (author)keaghanz2015-11-03

Add some sea salt in with it and shake, the grains scrub the sides. Or you could buy cleaning fluid from a headshop and follow the directions in the bottle, some don't work very well if it's caked full.

mclaybaugh (author)2013-11-25

I think u meant salvia

jlynch771 (author)2013-06-06

If you add coarse salt to the bag and shake hard for a min or two it really helps alot. It acts as an abrasive. The salt will not dissolve in the alcohol.

x3n0c1dal (author)2012-06-18

Nice instructible. I have an instructible series coming out about kinds of smoking apparatuses and how to make them. by far, I only have one about making a bong, or "water filtered pipe" and I would strongly appreciate if anyone could view it and comment on it. Thank you.

kittyplatekate (author)2011-07-07

You know salt causes metal to rust, right? I wouldn't use salt on anything metal.

Goodhart (author)kittyplatekate2011-10-13

Not "rust" exactly. Rust normally refers to iron oxydation. Salt causes corrosion for sure, especially sodium salts, but any salt that is electrolytically active will do the same thing.

BUT, if the salt is not left on it for any length of time (days or longer) it will help remove some oxidation.  An overnight soak and rinse shouldn't hurt it at although I might not do this with copper parts.  

nocturnaltofu (author)2011-06-27

alchohol and salt. you dont need anything else. get 90% iso- it works better(less water) and is clean disolving. all of the cleaners you could use or detergents or whatever are going to leave residue. residue that could react to heat, you dont want to breathe that in. even some chemicals that work well are generally industrial grade- not medical and the ingredients listed do not have to be 100% pure. when using something like napathol, try leaving some out on a glass dish for a few days before trying it on your piece and see what is left behind.
if you dont care about your piece or pan i suppose boiling is a good way to clean, but putting the stress on the glass all over from the heat is bad. it puts stress on any faults in the glass or tiny cracks and chips. this could result in a premature break. while heating is inevitable of some parts of the piece with use, why put undo stress on good pieces?
maybe im just a connoisseur

Hey guys and gals, I have found a really cheap and simple way to clean a whole pipe. No matter what type or brand. If you go to a beauty shop or whatever (the way i found this was my wife was helping me clean pipes and she made the suggestion) buy some of the nail buffer, shiner and one of the rough ones. Then use long strokes and use the rough one to sand away any gunnk or residue left on the stem of the pipe. Then use the buffer to get any scratches off of it. Finally scrub as hard as you can with the shiner and watch your pipe shine.

Tylermonn (author)2009-03-18

you mean salvia, not saliva. smoking saliva would suck.

chriskarr (author)Tylermonn2009-08-02

Well, some people would do it. Ancient cultures that worshiped the Fly Agaric mushrooms found that there was a scarcity at one point, so the priests began to be the sole people that ingested the mushroom alone. Since the toxins in the fly agaric don't get absorbed, for the most part, by the human body, the next lower social class would drink the urine of the priests in order to get the high that they desired, since it made them feel closer to 'God'. It kept going like this until the lowest social class.

mcaliber.50 (author)chriskarr2011-01-20

that brings a whole new meaning to "piss-poor".

chriskarr (author)mcaliber.502011-01-21, it doesn't.

Where do you think the term was derived..?


mcaliber.50 (author)chriskarr2011-01-22

good point.

biofueljunke (author)Tylermonn2009-12-19

ill bet it would taste like SPIT!

Kashtray (author)2010-10-28

Boiling your pipe is another good way to get it clean. It's healthy for you and the environment, not so healthy for the pot you use though.

To keep your pipe clog-free between cleanings, check out this thing.

applesupnorth (author)2009-04-26

Hey all, I have found something to add to this method of pipe cleaning. Once you add the rubbing alcohol, also add a couple table spoons of Epsons Salt. It REALLY helps!!! Not sure if it's the grit or if it make a chemical reaction, but it is easily 2-3 times more "potent" than alcohol alone. Try it! It works great! Also, another method I use is EASY OFF oven cleaner. It also works awesome! Just make sure to rinse the parts well after with water.

xACIDITYx (author)applesupnorth2010-07-01

Yeah, it's the grit. This works especially well in glass pieces, where you can add some salt and then shake it around.

xACIDITYx (author)2010-07-01

In reference to step 6, you should not put it in a ZipLoc bag, but rather pour out the dirty isopropyl alcohol onto a plate or cooking pan and leave it to air dry over 24 hours. If you did it right, you will have a brownish substance left on it. Scrape this off; it is smokeable "QWISO" hash.

servechilled (author)2010-05-10

My ziploc leaked as well, so I put a small hole in the top of the bag with pliers and hung it from the ceiling over the sink in the bathroom. As you can possibly tell from the picture, I have never properly cleaned my pipe in the 2 years I've had it.

qballcat (author)2009-11-22

thans, you have the exact same pipe as me

Vulcanator (author)2009-11-08

or you could scrape up the resin and smoke  some resin hits :D

Ragnar_Svardfri (author)2009-10-20

Salvia isn't illegal everywhere.
Why would you say Salvia instead of Marijuana?
Marijuana is more illegal that Salvia.

AlaXul (author)2009-09-01

This works equally well with your glass pieces. Granted you can't take them apart but if you have a few cotton swabs to run in and out a few times Voila.

drummertay (author)2009-08-13

its SALVIA not spit

baneat (author)2009-06-12

I have that knife. It needs major modifications to prevent it falling apart whilst flipping.

DonTron (author)2009-01-12

Another interesting solvent, though often requiring much more apparatus commitment, is liquid C02. Sometimes soda water will do. CO2 is perfectly polar. HOH is profoundly non-polar. Between them both, one can dissolve nearly anything. 'Cept maybe zwitterions. The problem is that ordinary conditions are not on the liquid part of the phase diagram for CO2. This is good and bad. Its inconvenient and perhaps a little dangerous. Residue issues are practically nil, 'though. If the pipe is all metal, super-heating it is a possibility. Whatever method employed, be careful!

acorneman (author)DonTron2009-06-05

If you're going to throw in a term like zwitterions, learn your chemistry. Carbon dioxide is NONPOLAR and water is POLAR.

PetervG (author)2009-05-24

What is that top part of your pipe? The screw on hood with the hole in it?

DonTron (author)2009-01-12

If your pipe is wooden, one option is to obtain a drill bit roughly matched to the bore of the pipe and run it through the pipe manually. This will deposit the resin in the grooves, then you can clean the bit using the previously delineated methods. Careful, use a rag, very, very sharp! Pardon my using 'you' when 'one' would represent better use of the Queen's English. Don't want to harsh anyone's buzz with bad grammar!

DonTron (author)2009-01-12

Propanol tends to leave a nasty taste. Ethanol, though expensive is less unplesant. Boiling water works okay, so if the high (darn gov't) price is problematic, use a two-step process starting w/ boiling water. One can make little hangers w/ paper clips, pencils and twist ties, then soak in a ball jar, if one wants to monitor progress. It is less unhealthy if you keep your pipe clear. Watch out for pipe-cleaners, some brands contain glass and other untoward materials.

Rectifier (author)2008-12-09

Hmmm, did you know that you shouldn't actually smoke tobacco from a glass/metal pipe? It will burn very hot, won't stay lit, and burn the hell out of your mouth. Recommended materials for tobacco are briar wood or meerschaum (a strange type of semi-porous rock). Also you will look pretty dumb! For the record metal pipes kinda suck for other greens too. You should go glass, much nicer and much less need to clean.

FKINGLAG (author)2008-10-20

What if your pipe is wooden??

envertigo (author)2008-10-04

NIce tip on the evaporation front there. If you want to speed up the cleaning process, put a whole bunch of salt in there with the alcohol and shake it. Salt/Alcohol works great for waterpipes too. /depending one how much space there is, rock salt can work better //no salt?!? try rice (work fast) or small gravel... it's the grit. ///if saving resin, salt is probably not a good idea and rice is clearly a bad idea

CaffeineHouse (author)2008-09-04

you smoke SALIVA? tell me, how does that work?

its a drug

I think you mean SALVIA? lol

turnerfromdh (author)2008-09-29

lol nice balisong looks really cool

cas6767 (author)2008-09-04

Haha, nice!!! I just did this to my bowl earlier today except I use sea salt as an abrasive. I have a glass pipe and what I do is put it into a freezer bag roll said bag up, removing excess air, seal the bag and shake it or try to kind of pump the solution through the bowl from one side of the bag to the other. Keep agitating it until the solution turns black then dump it, rinse it through in hot water and then you can probably get away with just using alcohol for the soak but I put fresh alcohol and salt back in a fresh bag. Then the next part is folding the bag up, it's kind of hard to explain but what I do is fold the top of the bag over a few times and then, holding it by one top corner, fold the corners down to make sort of a diamond shaped flat cone with the bowl in the bottom, take the pointy end of the diamond and tuck it under the flap your folds just made. The folds will make it relatively secure and that way you can use a smaller amount of alcohol because it makes the bag a lot smaller. For good measure I leave it in my bathroom sink otherwise I would say leave it on a plate if you have to hide it. I usually do it in the morning, smoke joints (filled with tobacco since that is WAY better for you than that evil weed) for a day and rinse it out the next morning. On glass this seems to work as well if not better than formula 420 or purple power. I'm no scientist but I think the salt does some kind of chemical goodness on the resin along with being a good abrasive for the shaking part.

grimlyforming (author)2008-08-19

you should think about getting a glass pipe, they are much easier to clean and work like a million times better. other than that, instead of using a baggy, use a Tupperware container or something like it, they have them at like schnucks for cheap. also formula 420 actually works really well however expensive.

tyedyedsoul (author)2008-08-05

water, pan, stove, boil, stir,boil ,stir,rinse carefully. no residue.

SKINZ (author)2008-08-02

i heat mine up and blow down it to get the resin out then put it on a rizla with sum other tobbaco lol and let the good times roll watch ya lips iv been burnt to fu+k befor

ths (author)2008-08-01

The best way to clean your pipe, oxy clean and hot water, try it, you will be impress (I tried alcohol and hot water, but oxy clean was the key to bring my pipe like it was when I first buy it.

icanryme2002 (author)ths2008-08-01

Also if you have time and space you can add salt of the alcohol as an abrasive.

pyro13 (author)2008-08-01

Very good instructable. Mine needs a good cleaning.

lasersage (author)2008-08-01

Sounds like a good method to me, nice instructable too with good pics. If I clean any of my equipment I always make sure to flush thoroughly with water afterwards, I'm not sure of the exact chemicals produced from heating the remnants of the alcohol but I get paranoid about what I might inhale. I know I know, the tobacco etc is probably far worse for you but I like to know what I breathing. If stuff is really stubborn a soak in bleach can shift stuff well too, definitely rinse well after that for the same reasons. As for drying out/stilling off what you get out the bag to be left with resin, I disagree. What is left are all the heavy tars that are bad for you and very little active ingredient. Check the principles behind things like the bush buzzard bong to prove this, it cyclones the air in a hurricaney manner, supposedly whirling the heavy tars to the outside of the chamber leaving cleaner smoke to inhale. Can you suggest any other cleaners? I used to use motorcycle chain cleaner on my glass pipe, its pretty much pure solvent, cut through brown deposits amazingly.

Sandisk1duo (author)2008-07-31

*certain* green substance, lol
it might be lawn clippings for all i know!

icanryme2002 (author)Sandisk1duo2008-08-01


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