Acrylic bongs are popular among smoking enthusiasts and bong users due to their affordability, strength, and portability. However, some people are concerned about their safety and wonder if acrylic bongs are a safe option for smoking. In this blog, we'll take a closer look at acrylic bongs and answer the question: Are acrylic bongs safe?
What Type of Plastic are Bongs Made of?
Firstly, what actually is acrylic? Acrylic, also known as polymethyl methacrylate (or PMMA), is a type of plastic famous for its transparency, low weight, and shatterproof properties. Acrylic is often used as a cheaper alternative (as acrylic pieces are often mass-produced) to glass in various applications, including bongs and pipes, all sorts of smoking accessories really, as well as other countless appliances and tools you'll use in your day-to-day life.
Potential Risks of Using Acrylic Bongs
One potential risk of acrylic bongs is the release of harmful chemicals when heated. Acrylic bongs can release toxic fumes when exposed to high temperatures, which can be harmful to your health when inhaled. It's important to remember though that when using plastic bongs you won't actually be heating the bong itself but just the drop pipe and the bowl which is often made of steel, aluminium or glass.
When cleaning your plastic bongs it is also important not to use solvents or isopropyl alcohol cleaning solutions, but rather something less powerful such as Dr Green Bong Cleaner or even some hot soapy water when only a light clean is needed. In addition, the use of certain cleaning agents can also be harmful to your health. Acrylic ones are often cleaned with isopropyl alcohol or other solvents, which can break down the acrylic and release toxic chemicals. It is important to use only safe and non-toxic cleaning agents when cleaning your acrylic bong.
Another potential risk of acrylic bongs is their durability. Acrylic is less durable than glass and can crack or break if dropped or mishandled. Cracks or fractures in an acrylic bong can compromise the structural integrity of the bong and potentially cause injury to the user. In contrast, glass bongs are more durable and less likely to crack or break, making them a safer option in terms of durability. Top tip: Once your acrylic bong shows signs of wear and tear such as cracks and heavy abrasions it's time to invest in a new one.
Before you start worrying about harmful substances and chemicals infecting your smoking sessions it's important to remember; how often do you actually expose your acrylic bong to high temperatures? Not often, if ever. The only elements that are exposed to heat are your drop pipe and bowl which are often made of stainless steel or aluminium, so it's all good, just ensure your drop pipe and bowl protrude out away from the bong as they both conduct heat.
Advantages of Acrylic Bongs
There are many advantages to using acrylic bongs. For one, they are typically more affordable than glass bongs. This makes them a popular choice among budget-conscious smokers who are looking for a cost-effective option but also a smoking tool that will have a long lifespan. Additionally, acrylic bongs are more lightweight and portable when compared to glass, making them easier to carry around and travel with.
Aside from functionality, acrylic bongs are available in many cool shapes and sizes. Not only are these different styles appealing to cannabis enthusiasts all over the globe but the bends and warps also serve the purpose of cooling the smoke as it travels through your bong, couple this extended smoke path with bong water and other fancy features such as ice traps and you'll have an amazing smoking appearance whilst not having to worry about affordability.
Another advantage with Acrylic bongs that might seem a bit farfetched is you'll never have to worry about broken glass, whilst glass bongs are a little bit more durable they pose the danger of broken glass so take care when handing your glass pieces to those clumsy friends.
Disadvantages of Acrylic Bongs
Whilst there are of course a whole plethora of advantages that come with acrylic bongs there are a few disadvantages when comparing acrylic pieces with glass bongs. Acrylic bongs will eventually inhibit unpleasant odours and a bad taste, this is easily fixed by getting your acrylic bong squeaky clean again, we promise it isn't as boring and time-consuming as you may think cleaning your bong really is, just check out our cleaning guide.
Acrylic bongs can also break easily (well, relatively easily, but they are still to be considered very strong), but we all know how important it is to take great care of our smoking devices, even silicone pieces have some components such as glass bowls and glass drop pipes that are fragile. Acrylic waterpipes don't exactly have the best taste, but they don't have the worst taste either when compared to other materials, it's all about keeping your bong clean which may entail regularly changing bong water and giving it a good soak and scrub.
Safe Smoking: Tips and Tricks for Using and Maintaining Your Acrylic Bong.
So, are acrylic pipes safe? The answer is yes if you take the right precautions and carry out regular maintenance. While acrylic bongs can be safe when used properly and maintained well, they come with some potential risks you should be aware of. If you decide to use an acrylic bong, there are some steps you can take to minimize the risks:
- Use safe and non-toxic cleaning agents when cleaning your acrylic bong such as Dr Green Bong Cleaner or warm soapy water if a lighter clean is needed. Avoid using solvents or other chemicals that can break down the acrylic and release harmful chemicals such as isopropyl alcohol, in fact, don't add alcohol to your cleaning procedure at all when dealing with acrylic.
- Do not expose your acrylic bong to high temperatures or flames. This can cause the release of toxic fumes and potentially harm your health. This one's really simple, ensure your downstem isn't too far into your bong and protrudes a little so that when you light your bowl the heat stays away from the acrylic material.
- Handle your acrylic bong with care. Acrylic is in some ways less durable than glass and can crack or break if dropped or mishandled. Be gentle when handling your acrylic bong to avoid any potential injury.
- Consider investing in a glass or ceramic bong instead. Most acrylic bongs tend be a more affordable option, glass and metal bongs are typically more durable and less likely to release harmful chemicals, that being said is anything 'safe to smoke'? A glass bong has many advantages over an acrylic bong, for a full breakdown check our Every Kind of Bong guide.
Conclusion: Are Acrylic Bongs Safe to Smoke From?
In conclusion, an acrylic piece is safe when used properly, treated with care & respect and well-maintained. However, they come with some potential risks you should be aware of. If you decide to use an acrylic bong, make sure to take the necessary precautions to minimize the risks and ensure a safe smoking experience. Ultimately, the decision to use an acrylic bong or not is up to you, but it is crucial to weigh the risks and benefits before making a decision.
Still Unsure about your Bong? Ask the Experts
With over 30 years in the smoking business, you'd be hard-pressed to find anybody more experienced than Ali Bongo. Whether you have questions about your percolator bongs, dab rigs or grinders, we'll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have and give our honest recommendations, just get in touch with us.
We also offer free shipping on acrylic bongs if you've made an order of £40 or over with other delivery options available including a next-day courier service. All your orders are dispatched with absolute care from our dedicated packing team, ensuring you get your goods on time, in perfect condition and wrapped in discreet packaging.