Glass Cleaning 101: Taste the Terpenes, Not the Resin


With today’s tasty strains abundant on dispensary shelves, it should be considered a slap in the face to modern breeders when consumers spark up their genetic creations in a dirty pipe/bowl – particularly one that’s encased in resin.

While your beautiful glass pipe was once young and pristine, delivering appetizing hits of terpene-rich taste, after time, the glass becomes clogged with flavor distorting resin. Turning the tasty flavor profile of that $50 1/8 into something that resembles poorly-cured dirt weed.

Though most in the smoke circle understand the value of a clean pipe/bowl, few do much to correct it. Thinking it’s time-consuming, messy, and scarcely worth the effort to clean their daily driver, they smoke bowl after bowl through their resin-clogged pipe. And while there are several different techniques that adequately clean today’s glass pieces, I prefer the simplest and least messy.

Needed Household Items

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 8.34.19 AMWith the shake-n-bake method, cleaning your glass has never been quite so easy or fast. First, you’ll need to gather three common household items: a Ziploc baggie, 91% isopropyl alcohol, and kosher salt. As a general rule of thumb, I prefer using kosher salt to regular table salt for one basic reason – it’s more abrasive and cleans better than regular table salt. The same is true for the 91% isopropyl alcohol, the 70% will work with a little more effort, but the 91% removes stubborn resin much faster. And while you could do this in an open container, the baggie reduces waste and allows you to reuse the mixture at the end of your next smoke sesh.


With the requisite items gathered, it’s time to shake…then bake. Holding the baggie in hand, add approximately 1 tablespoon of Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 8.45.57 AMkosher salt, and a half-cup of 91% isopropyl alcohol. Caveat: Depending on the size of your pieces to be cleaned, more rubbing alcohol and salt may be necessary. Once the ingredients are in the plastic Ziploc baggie, simply place your glass piece into the salty mixture and shake vigorously. While the more stubborn resin globs may require some serious soaking time, these basic steps generally produce crystal clear results.

Rinse, Dry & Bake

Provided the glass piece now meets your impeccable standards for cleanliness, simply remove it from the Ziploc bag and thoroughly wash it off in warm, soapy water. Once thoroughly cleaned, you can either responsibly dispose of the Ziploc baggie and its resin infused mixture, or simply store it for later use. Either way, your daily driver is now good as new and ready to deliver a satisfying hit, just like the day you brought it home from the head shop.

Photo courtesy of Ryan Kyles

About Author

Born in Long Beach, raised on the central coast: I surf, dab, burn, and blog – though not necessarily in that order. I'm a husband, a father and a lifelong consumer of connoisseur grade weed. I don't drink alcohol or consume any other "drugs." I consider myself to be living proof that weed is not a gateway drug. If it were, I'd be in some serious trouble. Instead, as a 50-year-old ex-realtor that has been smoking weed for nearly 80% of my life (just did the math) ... I can only say, marijuana is safer than prescription pills or alcohol could ever hope to be for calming what stirs the savage beast.


    • It sure will. Soak your parts in ISO for 5-10 minutes, add salt and shake. If you run into any really hard-to-remove gunk you can use a toothpick for a final scrape.

  1. The absolutely best way to clean any glass device is to soak it for 2 days in full strength SimpleGreen in a container that will allow it to be completely submerged. Take it out and rinse with hot water and you are DONE. No scrubbing at all. Try thisand you will never use another method!

  2. Patrick Hanania on

    I’ve been using Mile High Cleaner for about 6 months and it’s been amazing for me. Prevents resin in my bong and cleans up my scissors after a harvest at a cheaper price than alcohol. And safer

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