cleaning a chillum

How to Clean A Chillum in Less than 5 Minutes

Chillums are excellent one-hitter pipes that are fun to use. However, the fun stops when they’re dirty. Here’s how to clean them!

What do I need to clean a chillum?

You can clean a chillum using all-around materials that you can easily find your home or pharmacy. You’ll be needing:

  • 95% alcohol or a higher concentration; you can also use your favorite bong cleaner for this.
  • Coarse sea salt or kosher salt with grains that can go through the chillum
  • Q-tips
  • Mini pipe cleaners (either chenille or miniature brush tip ones are okay)
  • Ziplock bag

Alcohol will serve as your solvent, while salt will be the aggregator or scrubber. In case you’ve got a stain that’s hard to remove or reach, you can use Q-tips and/or pipe cleaners to take them out.

Yes, you can restore this chillum to its former glory. Image source: Reddit

How to clean a Chillum Pipe

Cleaning a chillum pipe is easy and simple. The best time to clean a chillum is after each use.

  • Soak the pipe cleaners in alcohol for 5 minutes.
  • Take out the ash from the bowl of the chillum. When it’s cold enough, put the chillum under warm running water. Let the water take out as much debris as it can. Use the Q-tip to sweep out any dirt.
  • Turn off the tap inspect the chillum. If there are still some stains left, use the pipe cleaners and push them through the chillum, scrubbing as you go. Alternate scrubbing and rinsing until it’s clean.

My chillum is really dirty and clogged, how will I clean it?

If regular scrubbing and cleaning won’t work, it’s time to soak the chillum.

  1. Get the Ziplock bag and place your chillum inside. Add a good amount of salt, and then cover the chillum with enough alcohol until it’s fully submerged.
  2. Seal the bag and hold the chillum firmly with one hand. Shake the chillum and let the alcohol-salt solution do its work.
  3. Leave the chillum to soak for 15 minutes.
  4. Take out the chillum run it under warm water. Use pre-soaked pipe cleaners to take out any dirt or debris.
  5. If there’s still some resin blocking the airways, use a really narrow wire to gently poke and scrape the blockage. Do it layer by layer to prevent breaking your chillum.

Use pipe cleaners to clean hard-to-reach areas.

Now you’ve got a clean chillum that you can use for your next session!

Should you boil a chillum?

The general advice here is: don’t. You’ll see some sites giving you tips on how to boil a chillum to get all those black, nasty bits out, and they seem to work well – if you know what you’re doing. However, we don’t advise such practice because boiling shortens the lifespan of your boro glass. This is because of the thermal stress you’re subjecting your chillum. No matter how tough the boro glass used for your chillum, it’s no match for thermal shock. Boiling a glass chillum pipe will increase its risk of cracking and breaking.

Can I use solvents?

That is another big, resounding no. Solvents like paint thinner, xylene, and MEK are highly toxic. They may be effective in cleaning certain materials, but they tend to stay longer on any surface. You’ll still smell the solvents weeks after using. Imagine hitting smoke that tastes like solvent. That’s pretty noxious and can end up with you landing in the hospital. Smoking a chillum is for recreation, not to have you hospitalized.

Regular cleaning of your glass chillum pipe ensures that you have a smoking tool that is safe to use. Resin can cause bacteria to grow inside your chillum and cause serious health problems. It may be tedious since chillums tend to get dirty easily – which is all the more reason to clean it. Regular maintenance ensures you have a beautiful chillum that will give you the pure, clean taste of your herbs.

Do you want to have a chillum or add another in your collection? Click here now and check out our chillums for sale!

Got a dirty chillum in your hands that gives off nasty smoke flavor? We’ll teach you how to clean a chillum easily within minutes!

How To Clean A One Hitter or Glass Chillum

Not Feeling a Long Read? Just Tap a Link Below to Jump to a Section😉.

Understanding How a One Hitter Gets Clogged in the First Place

If you want to know the best way to clean a glass one hitter pipe and why it’s important, you need to understand how to smoke out of one first. Like anything else, once you grasp how something works fundamentally, then everything else just sort of falls into place.

You will only ever ask how to clean a glass one hitter after you have smoked out of your glass chillum a few times and suddenly it stops hitting right. It’s a major bummer leaving you looking at your pipe like it’s betrayed you. Then you remember that it’s just a glass pipe, and it really meant no offense.🙄

You can checkout our article on how to use a one hitter to get all the little details, but here is a quick tutorial.

Short Tutorial on Smoking a Glass Chillum

How to Load a One Hitter

Make sure you grind up your stash really well before you load a one hitter pipe. It’s awful seeing lazy tokers just stuffing little buds into the small bowl of a glass chillum. Want to know the quickest way to clog a pipe? Just jam buds in and see what happens. It’s like stuffing a cork in your wine glass and wondering why it’s not sipping. It also just wastes your stash.

So whip out your metal grinder and make sure your dry herb is broken up really well. Then just pinch some with you fingers and start pushing it in without over packing it. If you have a bat with a dugout, just push the bowl into the ground up stash and that can load the pipe quickly and inconspicuously if you are at a show or something.

Lighting a One Hitter

A smoker needs to know how to light a one hitter pipe. Proper cleaning of a glass, stone or metal one hitter starts with preventative measures. It is very important if you are going to make the most of your Me Time Box Products pipes.

When you go to light a metal one hitter pipe, remember the cornering trick. Just hold the flame on the side of the bowl while you are inhaling and you will see that your inhale pulls the flame into the bowl and will only burn the very edge of your medicine. In this way you will be able to preserve your stash to make the most out of it and save your money.

When you light the bowl, the heat softens the medicine and the resin already caked inside your one hitter pipe. If you find you are always lighting the same side of your bowl, you will find that is where the resin has become the hardest when it cools down. You can try rotating your glass smoking pipe to reduce the probability that you will have one place on your glass chillum that is harder to clean than others.

The Butane Lighter/Pipe Cleaner Method to Clean One Hitters

The first and most commonly used method to clean a glass or metal one hitter is to use the paperclip method. Really, hard bristle pipe cleaners work the best, but hey, grab what you got.

I would recommend using your lighter to heat the outside section of your glass pipe that you are cleaning to soften up the resin. You then take your unfolded paperclip, or pipe cleaner, and begin scraping the inside of the bowl. You should start seeing a ball of resin form as you drag the edge of the metal paper clip around the edges of the bowl.

Be careful scraping too aggressively where the hole leading into the stem is, as that tends to be one of the weaker places in your glass pipe and where the one hitter is most likely to chip.

Now, when you move onto the stem, also be careful as the mouthpiece can be a weaker part of your one hitter as well. Use the lighter around the edge of the stem once the bowl has cooled down so you can hold onto it. Now take the paperclip and scrape out the stem of the glass one hitter.

You should see clean glass shining through in no time and if you have a cool show to watch on tv, the time will fly by. However, you will find that cleaning a glass one hitter pipe can get kind of messy. If you’re not careful, it’s akin to taking a syrup shower, just stickier.

Resin is super sticky and so you might want to invest in a strong soap like lava to clean your hands afterwards. It is also helpful to keep a paper towel nearby to wipe your paperclip clean. Otherwise, you find you have resin stains on your coffee table or on your clothes.

Sometimes scraping a bowl or scraping an artisan glass chillum just won’t cut it. Sometimes you will want your one hitter to look as good as new. Here are a couple of methods of cleaning your glass pipe so that it looks like you just bought it. Nothing makes a smoking kit a very happy kit like having clean pipes.

The Boiling a Glass Chillum in Water Method to Clean One Hitters

Whatever you do, don’t boil a metal one hitter pipes. They’re metal, they rust. You can boil your glass one hitter pipe though with some salt. If you elect to boil your glass one hitter, be careful not to boil the water too hard as the tumbling could break your glass smoking pipe. A nice low simmer will get it done.

Just like using a lighter to soften the resin when you scrape a one hitter pipe, the heat from the boiling water will soften and loosen the resin away from the glass.

Physics Lesson

When done cleaning your glass one hitter pipe with a solid boil, make sure to rinse it well after it cools down so that the resin does not harden again. If you rinse it in cool water when it is still hot, that could shatter the glass.

The Rubbing Alcohol Method to Clean One Hitters

Another way to clean your 1 hitter, and probably the most full proof, is to use isopropyl alcohol. Your standard rubbing alcohol will work. Simply immerse your glass one hitter in the alcohol making sure there is no air trapped inside.

The alcohol will quickly pull the resin away from the pipe, but it is okay to leave it in the alcohol for a while. In the end your clean glass one hitter pipe will look as good as new. Just rinse it to get rid of the alcohol taste and you will be good to go.

The Vinegar Method to Clean One Hitters

Vinegar is great. Who doesn’t like a pickle, especially spicy ones? But, we aren’t talking about pickling one hitters. You can use vinegar to clean og chillums!

If you have a big jug of white vinegar in your cupboard collecting dust, then pull it out and pour some in a bowl and add some salt. Then carefully place your smoke pipe in the vinegar and let it sit overnight.

You should find the hard resin has softened after some time in the vinegar. Grab a hard bristle pipe cleaner and clean it out. The vinegar smell will go away with a good fresh water rinse.

When All Else Fails

Alright, so you’ve tried everything. Either your pipe is still so clogged that it is just no fun to smoke, or you broke it while you were trying to clean it. Hey, it happens. None of us are ever as smooth as we want to be all the time.

But, here is the good news. One hitter pipes are CHEAP! Do yourself a favor, buy more than 1. If you hadn’t noticed, a smoker’s subscription box typically includes a glass chillum and metal one hitter for this exact reason. People lose them, break them and sometimes want to preload a few glass chillums before heading out for the evening.

How do we know this? Because we are one of you too. Been there done that!


Well those are our best tips for cleaning a one hitter. Now you can add it back into your Me Time Box smoking kit and show it off to all of your friends. It’s all about not being wasteful and keeping things clean!

Make sure you read up on the best way to how to pack a one hitter, so you don’t load the wrong end! If you know of any other ways to clean a glass or metal one hitter pipe, we would love to hear from you. Don’t forget to read up on our Me Time Stories about the idea of packing a one hitter in public.

We are always striving to find ways for you to enjoy life, every day.

Looking for the easiest way to clean a one hitter? Look no further! Me Time Box Products breaks down multiple ways to clean your glass chillum to keep it fresh. Learn the best way to pack a one hitter after your glass chillum is clean. ]]>