How to Clean a Rig -- The Right Way
We all want the ultimate smoking experience, but with all the talk about torches and nails, it's easy to forget what the real key to great tasting hits is: cleaning your glass concentrate rig!
Most of us understand the importance of a good rinse, but here's what we get wrong...
We don't clean regularly!
Even if you are cleaning often, you’re most likely not using the proper techniques and supplies.
Don’t worry, we're here to help.
Here's an easy step-by-step guide on how to clean a rig and get the most out of your concentrate using everyday household items, featuring the Higher Standards Heavy Duty Rig Kit. If you’re looking for a convenient and efficient cleaning experience, the all-in-one Higher Standards Supreme Clean Kit features innovative supplies that will give your rig a sparkling and fresh transformation.
Here's What You'll Need:
1x Pipe Cleaner
1x Bottle of Isopropyl Alcohol
1x Container of Rock Salt
1x Ziplock Bag
2x Rubber Plugs (or Paper Towels & Rubber Bands)
1) RINSE WITH HOT WATER
Before deep cleaning your glass rig, we recommend a thorough rinse—don't be afraid to turn up the heat.
Most people use sink water, which works fine, but here's a better idea:
Try boiling the water. That's right, boil it. The boiling water will break down residue more effectively than the hot water from the sink. Boiled water may damage a concentrate rig made of cheap glass, but high-quality rigs, like the Higher Standards Heavy Duty Rig, are made of borosilicate glass that's resistant to heat—so you don't have to worry.
Here's an expert tip: Boiling water can crack your rig if the glass is cold. We highly recommend you warm your rig up in the sink beforehand to prevent shock to the glass.
2) ADD ISOPROPYL ALCOHOL & ROCK SALT
Now it's time to fill your glass rig at both ends with isopropyl alcohol and table salt.
Sometimes table salt is too fine to thoroughly break down residue, so try a thicker, more effective rock salt like Higher Standards Salt Rox. The granules are big enough to scratch off more buildup but small enough to fit into hard-to-reach places.
Now if you really want to upgrade your cleaning process, mix your rock salt with some strong isopropyl alcohol.
Most standard formulas are made up of 91% alcohol, but there are even stronger solutions out there. Higher Standards ISO Pure, for example, is 99% alcohol. That extra strength loosens residue better than other solutions.
3) SCRAPE THE SURFACES
A toothbrush is a fairly good tool for rig cleaning, but the handle isn't flexible enough, making it impossible to reach around the curves and remove all the residue.
If you want your rig to come out completely spotless, we've got the perfect tool—pipe cleaners! They are bendy enough to hit all the unreachable spots, and firm enough to scrape them clean.
When it comes to pipe cleaners, it doesn't get any better than the Higher Standards Pipe Dreamz. It’s the extra-fine bristles that separate this innovative pipe cleaner from the rest; they attach to particles almost like a magnet, and are hard enough to break down buildup, but they won't scratch your glass.
If your rig's airways are clogged, you'll need something firmer. We've got you covered with the Higher Standards Pipe Stix. These cotton-tipped swabs have dart-shaped tips that effectively penetrate blockage. The handles are wooden sticks that don't bend, giving you a steadier grip and a faster cleaning process.
4) SHAKE VIGOROUSLY
Now it's time to seal the openings so you can shake your glass rig.
You can use paper towels with rubber bands, but we're going to show you a better way...
Rubber plugs like the Higher Standards Tube Tops create an airtight seal so there's NO spillage.
Once all the openings are sealed, carefully shake your rig so the salt and isopropyl alcohol have an abrasive effect, gradually removing residue from the walls of the rig.
Now let your rig sit for a while—preferably overnight. For extra dirty rigs, you can repeat this process twice.
5) SOAK THE NAIL
It's time to shine the spotlight on nails. Without regular maintenance, nails can get extremely dirty. You've worked so hard to clean your rig and get the best taste possible, so why not cover all the bases?
Here is a HUGE tip for cleaning the nail…
The perfect time to clean the nail is when it’s still fairly warm, and the concentrate is loose and easier to remove. Easily swipe up the concentrate using the Higher Standards Resin Rags or Pipe Stix.
If the nail is still grimy, fill a large ziplock bag with isopropyl alcohol and salt—the same formula used inside your glass rig. Now shake the bag around, allowing the mixture to saturate the residue.
Let the nail soak overnight.
If the nail doesn't appear clean after a few soaks, it may be time to replace it.
At the end of the day, if you want to avoid the trouble of having to deep clean your nail, clean it regularly with a cotton swab after each use.
6) RINSE & ENJOY
In the morning, pour out the alcohol and salt, rinse your rig with warm water, and wipe it down.
You can remove the nail from the ziplock and scrub it using a toothbrush, pipe cleaner, or both. Any residual buildup you see will burn off next time you torch the nail; Don’t scrape the nail with a tool because it can damage it.
After you rinse your rig with warm water, inspect the glass to make sure all the residue is cleared away. If you need to, repeat the cleaning process over again.
Now that your rig is as good as new, you can sit back and enjoy clean, flavorful, and full-bodied rips.
7) HOW TO CLEAN A GLASS RIG & GET RECLAIM
We’re going to show you an efficient way to clean your rig for reclaim, so you can vaporize it or make delicious edibles.
First, boil some water and pour it onto the outside of your rig. This will heat up the glass, which will soften the reclaim that has collected on the walls of the airpath. You can also do this in a bathtub or sink to avoid burning your hands.
Next, pour a little bit of isopropyl alcohol into your rig and shake it up. Make sure you only use just enough alcohol to collect all the reclaim off the walls of your rig.
Pour the alcohol/reclaim mixture into a glass dish. Cover it with plastic wrap and poke some holes in it so the alcohol can evaporate.
Now let the dish sit next to a mild heat source, like a light bulb, until all the alcohol has disappeared—leaving nothing but your reclaim behind.
8) HOW TO KEEP YOUR RIG PIPE CLEAN
Deep cleaning your rig is a hassle, but it can all be avoided with regular cleaning after each use. Just like cleaning your nail regularly, it's important to do the same for your rig so the residue doesn't have a chance to build up over time.
Just pour out the water, wipe down the inside of the chamber, rinse it out, then fill it with fresh water next time you take a hit. That way, you'll always keep your rig sparkling and fresh.
KEEP IT SIMPLE: The simpler the design for the concentrate rig, the easier it is to clean. That's why it doesn't get any better than the Higher Standards Heavy Duty Rig Kit. There are fewer hard to reach places, which means less buildup and better performance.
CLEAN REGULARLY: The more often you rinse after use, the easier each rig cleaning session will be. Just empty after each session, fill with fresh water, swish around, and empty again.
WIPE THE NAIL: If you clean the nail while it's still warm, the concentrates will still be soft and easy to wipe away. Just don't wipe it while it's too hot! Give it a few minutes to cool before cleaning.
TRY ROCK SALT: Table salt is great, but a premium rock salt is much better. Rock salt is thicker than your average salt, and will scrape away tougher grime without scratching your glass rig.
FIND STRONGER ALCOHOL: Most standard solutions are 91% isopropyl alcohol, but using an even stronger formula like 99% isopropyl will break down residue more efficiently.
USE BENDABLE TOOLS: For hard to reach areas, use a pipe cleaner. You can bend around corners inside the rig's air path to scrape away every bit of residue.