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What Is the Perfect Water Level for a Bong?

What Is the Perfect Water Level for a Bong?

The water level in a bong is of utmost importance. Excess water will make your session more tedious and less rewarding. On the other hand, insufficient water won’t serve as an effective filtration medium. Also, inadequate water will fail to cool the smoke to the desired extent.

Therefore, you must get the water level right for your bong. However, there is no universal rule to determine the quantity or level of water because a few variable factors make a case unique. So, let’s dive into the technicalities and a practical approach to decide the water level for a bong.

How Much Water Should I Put in a Bong?

Bongs have different sizes and shapes. You are definitely familiar with straight tubes and beaker bongs. Also, you are probably aware of percolator bongs. Then, there are scientific bongs with a few more features, such as multiple percolators. 

Thus, there is no specific quantity of water that you can use for every type of bong. The quantity or level depends entirely on the bong type, size, shape, and features. That said, you can always rely on a thumb rule that has been proven to work for all types of bongs, as well as hookahs.

Fill a bong with water to a level that submerges the downstem. Now, like bongs, there are many types of downstems. You may have a downstem with slits. Some downstems don’t have slits, so you cannot use them as a guide. Also, there are downstems with diffusers. 

Hence, you should use these design elements or features to determine the water level. Here are the practical approaches:

  • A downstem with slits: fill up the bong to the level where the slits are submerged.
  • A downstem without slits: fill up the bong to around half an inch above the downstem.
  • A downstem with a diffuser: fill up enough water so that the diffuser is fully submerged.

When I say the diffuser should be fully submerged, it refers to only this feature. The approach is not for bongs with percolators. Likewise, the submerging of downstems with or without slits do not account for percolators or multiple chambers.

What Is the Appropriate Water Level in a Percolator Bong?

Percolator bongs require these additional features to be submerged in water. The concept is the same as submerging the downstem, slits, or diffusers. A percolator facilitates filtration, so it must have water circulating through the chamber to filter the smoke.

If you have one percolator, ensure there’s enough water to fill up to its opening. Similarly, if you have more than one percolator, water should fill up all those openings or tips. However, ensure that you don’t have more water than necessary. Else, you will have splashes when you draw.

How To Fill a Bong With Water?

There are two ways to fill a bong with water. You may pour water through the mouthpiece. Or, you can use the downstem opening or stem of your bong. Both methods work well. However, if you have a bong with multiple percolators, you will have an easier time using the mouthpiece.

Having said that, filling a straight tube bong is simpler than loading a scientific variant with just enough water. Pouring water into a straight tube or beaker bong is as simple as filling up typical jars, cups, and glasses. That simplicity doesn’t exist if a bong has percolators and chambers.

Thus, pour some water into a percolator or scientific bong through the mouthpiece. Allow gravity to do its work. Watch as the base fills up. You’ll notice how much of the percolators are yet to be filled. Accordingly, you can pour more water until the percolator opening is submerged. Repeat this gradual filling up process for bongs with multiple percolators and filtration chambers. 

In case you have excess water, you can pour a bit out to get the perfect level. If you see uneven filling inside the bong, slowly tilt it sideways or give it a gentle shake to let water flow through the percolators and load the chambers properly. These teething issues won’t be cumbersome. 

Should I Top Up or Refill a Bong With Water?

Bongs need a refill or top up if you find the water level dropping below the desired mark. If you are planning a long session, the water level will dip in due course. You cannot have a percolator or filtration chamber filled with only air. So, add some water to restore the initial level in a bong.

However, you shouldn’t refill or top up a bong that has dirty water from a long session.


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