How to Use a Percolator Bong

Bongs, much in the same way as other curious contraptions in the glass industry, can look imposing and complex at first glance. These bongs use what is called a percolator, which assists in creating great flavor from dried herbs and wax concentrates by diffusing smoke through water.

Users report great results with bongs, and once you get the hang of it, bongs are great options for dried herb or concentrate fans who want to enjoy a cleaner, smoother form of both.

We will give you a simple, easy to understand overview of a bong and its parts, particular the percolator. 

How to use a percolator bong?

The same way you would use any bong, really. Once you know what it is, there is nothing overly mysterious about the world of percs; you will understand their simplistic function when you see it in action. 

Bongs: Smooth Hits, Smooth Flavor

Bongs play a significant role when it comes to enjoying dry herbs and wax concentrates. The reason for this is simple: smoke that filters through water is significantly different from that of a regular joint or vaporizer.

Getting started with your percolator bong

So, the first step is to know how to fill a bong with water. How to fill a bong with a percolator is no different; a bong with a percolator vs. without one still gets treated the same way. Simply pour some water down the top of your bong, via the neck. 

Water level should be deep enough so that your smoke can pass through it, but not excessive to the point where splashback occurs during your session. If you are unsure, do a few test bong rips before including dry herb. If you get any splashback, reduce the water line.

If you do not see much bubbling, the water line is too low; be sure to add some more.

Loading your bowl or nail 

After this, add your dry herb, ground to a consistency of your liking, into the bowl. Do not overpack here, otherwise you will obstruct airflow. 

If you are using wax concentrates, you will first need to have a mini-torch on deck. Heat up the nail/wax bowl with the torch for about 30 seconds, let it cool off for another 30 seconds, and then add your wax concentrate.

After you have done the above with your wax or dry herb, take a slow, deliberate inhale from the mouthpiece, and enjoy. 

What Does a Percolator Do? 

Bong percolators are responsible for properly filtering your dry herb or wax concentrate through the water. When you take a bong rip, the bubbling sound you hear is the percolator doing its work. It agitates the water, ensuring that you get a good, lovely hit of smoke.

There are multiple kinds of percolators. The diffused downstem, the most common, is the most simplistic looking, but just as effective percolator. It extends down from the bowl piece into the water, bubbling from submerged slits in the bottom part. 

After that you have the tree, shower, honeycomb, matrix, and swiss percolators to try. 

Different Types of Percolators for Bongs

Tree Percolator

A tree percolator is pretty similar to what it sounds like: this style of percolator is equipped with multiple branches that lead to a main trunk. Smoke comes through the trunk and is then diffused through the branches and through the water to produce a smooth, clean hit.

Shower Head Percolator

This percolator is a tube shaped style with a flared bottom, which will either contain holes or slits. Smoke will be drawn up through the holes/slits, diffused further through the tube and into your lungs for a cooled off, easy hit.

Honeycomb Percolator

These percolators are typically disc shaped with dozens or hundreds of holes at the bottom. The bubbles pass through these tiny holes and increase the dilution of your smoke, for terrific flavor and smoothness. 

Matrix Percolator

Vertical and horizontal slits are what dominate this tube shaped perc. Because of the several directions the smoke can travel, this makes for a very efficient way to maximize flavor and hit quality.

Swiss Percolator

Named because of its resemblance to swiss cheese, this perc is defined by its welded holes that force smoke bubbles to form, making for a hit as smooth as butter and a great flavor.