I get asked all the time about the best ways to clean a dab rig, and I would say there are three different, yet effective styles to cleaning a dab rig. The best way simply depends on your level of comfort. Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of all three methods, and also some pro tips and tricks to ensure your dab rig will be looking its best. Let’s get started!
• Stove, Kettle, or Microwave
Intermediate and Advanced Method:
• Isopropyl Alcohol (85-99%)
• Stove, Kettle, or Microwave
• Rock salt
• Small microwave-safe container
Steps to Clean a Dab Rig
- Preparation: Using a stove, kettle, or microwave, heat up about 2 cups of water. It’s okay to bring to a boil, but let it cool a bit before working with it! You can also hold the piece over the steam to help loosen up the gunk. For the advanced method, use a microwave-safe container to carefully heat up ISO (4oz. = 15 seconds)
- Adding Liquid: Carefully add warm water to the piece, or if following the intermediate or advanced methods then add the ISO and some rock salt.
- Shake it up: Covering the mouthpiece and nail space, shake vigorously! If particularly dirty, keep at it a while and you’ll be sure to see the gunk start to come off.
- Discard & Rinse: Pour out the dirty solution, and rinse with cool water. Repeat steps 1-4 if necessary, and enjoy!
Cleaning a Dab Rig the Easy Way
The first and easiest way to clean a dab rig, is to simply use hot water. My pro tip is to use the steam that rises while the water is boiling to loosen the gunk on the piece. Hold the piece over the pot or the neck of a kettle (which can reach into where your banger attaches), and use the steam to loosen the reclaim. I recommend you bring the water to a full boil, remove from heat, and then let it sit for about one minute.
Of course, be careful when handling glass and heat! As long as you’re using decent quality tempered glass you should be fine. Now, add the hot water to the piece and shake it vigorously. Shaking the piece takes a little finesse` as you’ll need to cover both the space where the nail goes as well as the mouthpiece. When dumping the water out try to do it in one swift motion while the oil is sitting on top of the hot water. If you do a slow pour the oil can get caught on the glass and you will have to re-boil water to release it from the side
Salt & Alcohol for more Dab Rig Cleaning Power
The intermediate cleaning option also involves boiling water and letting it sit for about a minute. While it is resting add some cold ISO (aka isopropyl alcohol) to your piece. Anything above 85% ISO should do the trick efficiently. To take it up a notch add some pieces of rock salt as well. Shake vigorously then add the hot water to the piece.
The ISO combined with the rock salt will help if you have a bunch of reclaim built up in your piece. The rock salt helps cover surface area and the ISO helps the hot water remove the reclaim from the side. The rock salt also helps to take the reclaim out of the piece when you do the fast pour. We don’t want you to be stuck trying to clean a dab rig out twice to make it crystal clear. Finally, rinse with cool water.
Clean Dab Rig: Achievement Unlocked
The most advanced method of cleaning your rig would be to lightly heat the ISO. This is the most advanced method because overheating the ISO in the microwave can cause the ISO to mildly explode (which we encourage you to avoid). I would heat no more than 4 fluid oz. for 15 seconds. If you use less than 4 fluid oz, please be sure to halve the time in the microwave. Add the mildly hot ISO to your piece and swish it around.
If your rig is super coated with reclaim, use rock salt as mentioned in the intermediate method above. This will be the most efficient for instantaneous removal of reclaim build up. The warm ISO seems to work great. I usually rinse my dab rig out with this method twice and have it sparkling like brand new. Finally, don’t forget to rinse the ISO out of your glass with cool water before putting it back to use.
If you’re thinking about getting into dabbing we recommend checking out our blog on selecting the right dab rig for you by clicking here!
Written by: Dylan Buhl, Educator/Asst. Store Manager at our South Renton location
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