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What Is a Percolator Bong? The Science Explained

What Is a Percolator Bong

A percolator bong is any water pipe that can help you cool the smoke before inhaling it. It does this by moving the smoke through some water. If you have ever used a bong and heard a bubbling sound, it is the sound of the percolator. If you have used both a regular and a percolator bong, you may have noticed that you have a smoother experience when using a percolator. What makes a hit good is diffusion. This is the movement of a substance from a higher concentration area to a lower concentration one. It happens with liquids and gases since the particles move around randomly. 

How Percolators Work

It is a good idea for you to have an understanding of how bongs work. The smoke will move through the water and is pulled through the tube of the bong. Then you can place your mouth over the mouthpiece and inhale. 

If you have used bongs without percolators in the past, you may have gotten a scorched or a dry hit. But once you throw a percolator in there, there is a filtration system that can give you a better hit. 

There are many percolators available today, but each one works by breaking up the water flow to help the smoke cool down as it goes through the chamber. A percolator is often shaped like a dome, but you can find many percolators in different shapes today. 

The percolator often goes into the tube of the bong. It has water in it, and it is another process to filter the smoke. When you take a pull, the smoke will interact with the water in your bowl. Then when the smoke goes up the tube, it will interact with the water again in the percolator.

There are two reasons that this can help to filter and cool your smoke. First, there is another chance for your smoke to contact the water, and this will allow it to cool better. There is more surface area for your smoke to enter the water, which can help you cool it even more. Plus, it breaks down the bubbles even more; the bubbles getting smaller because of the pressure the percolator places on it. This will give you a smoother experience. 

Types of Percolators

Types of Percolators

There are many kinds of percolators to choose from, and each one has its advantages.

Downstem Percolator

This one has a tube that goes into the main water chamber, allowing air to enter your chamber. This is a popular thing to add to your pipe since you can easily swap it out for an upgrade later on. They are also more manageable for you to clean. There are around three holes for dispersing the smoke.

Honeycomb Percolator

This is a common, easy to recognize percolator. It has its name since it has a disc shape that has holes in it. It does not result in that much resistance, and it can filter the smoke well. It might get clogged now and then, but it is more manageable to clean. 

Tree Percolator

You may have noticed that this percolator is named for the limbs that go downward, allowing the smoke to filter through them. This allows for a significant amount of diffusion, and the more limbs this one has, the more diffusion will take place. 

Matrix Percolator

This is a popular type of percolator since it can be aesthetically pleasing. It is similar to a showerhead since it filters in a similar manner. There are many holes, but the top row is what filters your smoke. The rest are often for the benefit of the design. But these holes can make it harder to clean the percolator, so it is not very efficient. 

Showerhead Percolator

This percolator’s simple design makes it popular among many people. This type of percolator forces your smoke through several tubes that send the smoke to the body of the main piece. This is often used with other kinds of percolators to provide a better diffusion experience.

Inline Percolator

Inline Percolator

As with many other kinds of designs, this type of percolator has many holes to provide a better diffusion experience. It is named because of its basic structure, which involves one long glass rod. There are holes along the length of the rod. Smaller devices often use this type of percolator bong since it does not filter high levels of water that well.

Pros and Cons of Using a Percolator

As your percolator disperses your smoke over a greater surface, the water can remove larger contaminants in it. That might include cytotoxins, which could attack your body’s immune cells. The percolator will not help you to get rid of smaller contaminants, but you might notice this difference when you use a percolator.

The main goal of using a percolator is to enhance your experience. The cooler smoke is less likely to hurt your throat on the way down. Since you are not inhaling something that is quite as hot, you might not be as likely to cough. That might mean you are able to take more hits.

One of the few cons of percolators is that they can make the cleaning experience a bit harder. But if you get some pipe cleaners and rubbing alcohol, you can make the process easier. Often, it is hard for you to bring a percolator bong when you are out and about. However, you can still find smaller bongs designed for going out. 

Closing Thoughts 

If you do not like the idea of having a dry throat and coughing each time that you use your bong, consider getting a percolator bong. It can give you a smoother session since it can cool and filter your smoke before it enters your lips. When it cleans the contaminants out of your smoke, you might get to enjoy the terpenes in the smoke more. In short, percolator bongs can give you a better experience overall.


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