The term ‘percolator’ may not sound familiar to many people, and it’s not difficult to see why. Although it is used in many everyday items, such as coffee makers, you rarely hear the term used in conversation. A percolator is a type of device which forces liquid, gas, or steam through a filter to produce a smoother, more concentrated result.
Percolator bongs works by breaking up your smoke as you pull through it and forcing it through a series of chambers with holes. Each chamber forces the smoke to move slower and slower until it finally reaches the last chamber, which is usually filled with water.
The water cools the smoke significantly and makes huge amounts of bubbles. The bubbles are forced back up into the chamber you’re pulling from, breaking up the smoke even more.
When it comes to smoking cannabis, a percolator bong – more popularly known as a perc bong – has become increasingly popular as a way to get the most out of your cannabis experience. It works similarly to traditional bongs but with an added filter that makes a world of difference.
But does it really make a difference as to whether or not you should get a perc bong? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of using one.
Percolator Bong Types
Before we jump into the pros and cons of percolator bongs, it’s important to note that there are various types of percolator bongs available.
While they work under the same premise, each type of percolator bong has its own unique features that can provide different levels of filtration.
Honeycomb Percolators – possibly the most common type of percolator bong; this type has multiple small tubes to provide smoother and more concentrated smoke. The smoke is filtered several times through the honeycomb percolator, making it cooler and smoother.
Tree Percs – these are relatively simple; a tree-shaped piece of glass is added to the bong, which works as a filter and breaks up the smoke into smaller bubbles. This allows for better diffusion and, therefore, a cooler, smoother smoke.
Showerhead Percs – these bongs have multiple tubes that connect the smoke tube with a larger, tubular, or dome-shaped chamber which serves as another percolator. This allows for much more filtered smoke, with the drawback being that it takes a bit more effort to pull the smoke since there’s an extra chamber involved.
Spiral Percs – a relatively simple type of percolator bong, the spiral perc is a single spiral tube, similar to those used in some coffee makers, which spins the smoke around and breaks it up into smaller bubbles.
Inline Percs – another simple yet effective percolator type. Inline percs are long tubes with small slits near the bottom where smoke can pass through – coupled with another percolator on top makes a great filter for smoother, cooler smoke.
Of course, this list is by no means exhaustive, but it does provide a good overview of the different types of percolator bongs and their features. Now, let’s take a look at the pros and cons.
Percolator Bong Pros
The bong itself was invented as a form of a smoking device, with the goal being to filter and cool down smoke to make it more pleasant. While traditional bongs do this well enough, percolator bongs take it a step further. Here are the pros of using one:
Improved Filtration – as we’ve already discussed, percolator bongs provide more filtration than traditional bongs, thanks to a less direct path for the smoke to take. As a result, the harmful components of the smoke are filtered out, leaving you with a much smoother and better-tasting experience.
Cooler Smoke – as the smoke filters, it also gets cooler. Thanks to this, you can avoid the burning sensation in your throat that you may get with a traditional bong. Instead, you can enjoy a cool and refreshing smoking experience.
Better Flavor – since the smoke is filtered and the unwanted byproducts are removed, the flavor is much better with a percolator bong. This means that you can get more out of your cannabis experience by actually tasting the flavors and terpenes in each strain.
Healthier Smoking – as a result of all this filtration, you can also enjoy much healthier smoking – the water-soluble particles such as cytotoxins and tar are removed. This isn’t to say that smoking is healthy (especially with many other administration methods, as seen among CBD wellness products), but percolator bongs are certainly a safer option.
Percolator Bong Cons
While there are many advantages to using a perc bong, there are also some drawbacks that you should be aware of.
Higher Price – since percolator bongs come with more components and features, they tend to cost a bit more than traditional bongs. This is especially true for more complex models such as showerheads and tree percs, which can be quite expensive.
More Maintenance – due to the added filtration, perc bongs need to be cleaned more often than traditional bongs. This is due to the fact that resin and other byproducts can build up in the filter over time, making it less effective and affecting your smoking experience.
Lower Flow Rate – since the smoke has to pass through several chambers and filters, it takes more effort to take a hit from a perc bong. This means that it can be difficult for beginners or those who don’t have strong lungs to use one.