The water level in your bong plays a significant role regarding filtration, temperature, and hit. Getting the optimal water level means getting the most of your bong.
Look closely at your downstem. If it has slits, you need to make sure that your downstem and the slits are completely under water. No slit or gills? Submerge the downstem should be two inches above the opening for big bongs, or at least half an inch for mini bongs.
The level of water affects your smoking experience with your bong. There are three types of water levels and their effects on how your bong functions.
The water level goes over the downstem almost up to the neck. This is good for those who are after huge amounts of filtration. The great amount of water lowers smoke temperature, giving you a hit that is cool and smooth to the throat and lungs. Downside is that you have to put much effort to pull in the smoke. There’s also a greater chance of you getting bong water in each pull. Others are partial to this because it forces the lungs to expand, allowing the smoke to diffuse deeper in a cellular level.
The water level barely covers the slits or gills of the downstem. What this does is that you get more flavor with each drag. Reason is, there is not enough water to filter the smoke going through the stem. Others say this negates the use of the bong since you’re just getting smoke like you would a pipe. This leads to low filtration, which can increase the chance of irritation in your throat and lungs.
The gills or slits are covered just right. You get to enjoy both filtration and flavor. You enjoy the taste of your concentrates because it’s not filtered too much. However, you still get to experience a good hit because you drag in the smoke just right.
There are also some things you need to consider when filling up your bong with water.
Perc bongs can have a perc or two. It’s important to make sure that all the percolators in your bongs are submerged in water. Percs help filter and cool smoke, but they cannot do their job if they are not filled with water.
How the ice is added/used in a bong is crucial to the water level. Some bongs have ice holders/pinchers/catchers above the base or water chamber. As this melts, the water level at the base increases. However, if ice is added to the water chamber, the water level remains the same.
The action of the bubbles lets you know the level of the water. Experienced users rely on the bubbles when determining water level, especially if their bongs or downstems are tinted, or if they have multiple percs added to their bongs. There is a distinct, gurgling sound produced by the bubbles when the level of water is just right.
The optimum water level in your bong gives you the perfect balance of flavor, temperature, and hit. It also makes cleaning and maintaining your bong easier. Study your bong, know its anatomy. Look closely at how it works with every hit. The more you use your bong, the easier it will be for you to know the right water level for that perfect hit.