How To Clean Your Shisha
3 min

How To Clean Your Shisha

3 min

Treating your shisha to a deep clean every now and then will infinitely increase the quality of your session and the longevity of your device. A clean shisha delivers the best flavours, allowing the nuances to shine through. Get your shisha fresh and shiny in no time with this guide, and expect to be rewarded with the finest hits.

Cleaning your shisha (also known as a “hookah”) properly and frequently is the best way to ensure a delicious smoke, and to make your shisha last. Read on for a step-by-step guide, and some insider tips, that will help you tackle this task successfully.

1. Disassemble your hookah

1. Disassemble Your Hookah

First, dismantle your entire shisha. Remove the hose(s), detach the bowl from the stem, remove grommets, the tray, unscrew the valve if possible, and detach adapters. Depending on the type of shisha, you might be able to separate the downstem from the upper stem, too. Basically, you want to end up with as many individual components as possible to prepare for the rest of the job.

2. Clean the hose

The two main types of shisha hoses need to be cleaned in different ways. So, make sure you know what type you’ve got and treat it accordingly.

Cleaning traditional shisha hoses

Most shisha hoses are made from pieces of metal or leather, meaning they shouldn’t be washed with water. We recommend simply airing them out. Make sure there’s no smoke left in the tube and swing it through the air to get rid of as many particles as possible. These shisha hoses are best for people who stick to one kind of flavour.

Cleaning silicone and soft touch hoses

These types of hoses are washable. To clean them, first run some warm water through the hose. Close one end with your thumb and add some lemon juice and a bit of water, then close the other end with your other thumb and shake it. After that, rinse it again with warm water, then hang it on a door handle with the ends facing downward to dry.

3. Cleaning the stem

3. Cleaning The Stem

This step might take slightly more time and effort than the other ones. To do it properly (and to make this job a lot easier), you might want to consider using a special long brush for this procedure. Alternatively, you can try using a twisted piece of cloth.

First, run water through the shaft for about 30 seconds. If it doesn’t fit beneath your tap, fill a glass or pitcher with water and pour it into the stem from there. Then, insert your brush and pour more water into the shaft with the brush inserted. Move the brush around, and pull it in and out about 10–15 times. Flip the stem over and repeat these steps from the other side.

Next, add lemon juice (2 tablespoons), baking soda (½ tablespoon), or a cleaning concentrate (1–2 teaspoons). Pour whichever one you choose into the stem and go back to scrubbing. Again, scrub from both sides.

4. Cleaning the small pieces

4. Cleaning The Small Pieces

Good job—you got your shisha disassembled in step one already. Now, we’ll get to cleaning the bits and bobs.


If there are any, remove tobacco and foil leftovers from the bowl, and throw them in the bin. Then, rinse your bowl with warm tap water. As you’re doing that, scrape off any residue using your fingers or one of our funky sponges.

Next, prepare a pot or bowl with simmering water and use your tongs to fully submerge the bowl in the water. After 3–5 minutes, remove your bowl from the water, again using your tongs.

Lastly, get some steel wool out and scrub your bowl. Use a towel or an oven glove to protect your hand.


If the ash left in your tray is loose, all you need to do is rinse the tray and use your fingers or a sponge to rub over its surface.

If you find any black, caked spots of ash, it’ll take slightly more effort to get your ashtray properly clean. Rinse it with hot water and use steel wool to scrub the ash off. Keep running hot tap water over it until the tray is clean. Then, dry it with a towel or leave it to air-dry.


Simply rinse all grommets with warm water and rub them gently with your fingers or a sponge. Then, dry them with a towel.


Rinse it with warm water and rub the surface with a sponge or your fingers. Then, leave it on a towel to air-dry.

5. Cleaning the base

5. Cleaning The Base

This can be done in a few easy steps. However, make sure you’re careful, as the glass base can break easily if you lose grip and let it fall.

First, get rid of the old water. Generally, try to avoid leaving old water in your base.

Wait until the glass is at room temperature, then add some hot water into it. Rub the top of the base with your fingers or a sponge and pour out the water.

Next, add one teaspoon of baking soda and two tablespoons of lemon juice to your base and mix them together by swirling the base around. Then, scrub the inside of the glass with a brush.

Add some hot water, use your hand to cover the opening, and give it a little shake. The entire internal surface should be covered with the mixture.

Now, fill the base with hot water and let it sit for no less than 60 minutes. For an even deeper clean, let it rest overnight. Lastly, empty your base and rinse it thoroughly with warm water, then let it dry.

If you want to go through this process as few times as possible, consider using Zamnesia’s Brilliant Bong Water to prevent your shisha from getting dirty.

6. Put the hookah together again

Finally, put all the pieces together as they were before. Don’t forget to check the airflow before using it again.

Let your hookah take over, kick back, and enjoy

Let Your Hookah Take Over, Kick Back, And Enjoy

If you care for your shisha, your shisha will care for you. Keeping it nice and clean will contribute massively to making your session a good and delicious one. If you follow our guide and use the right accessories, the process should be rather effortless. In any case, you’ll enjoy the fruits of your labour during your next smoking session, that's for sure. Have fun!

Zamnesia is an otherworldly expert in all things cannabis and psychedelic. Combining that specialist knowledge with hours of scrupulous research, Zamnesia creates outstanding content around the clock. Thanks to their divine personality, we're proud to say Zamnesia has become our ear-to-the-ground for everything to do with mind-altering substances.
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