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Important Things To Know About Downstems

A downstem is that longish glass piece linking up the bowl with the water chamber. It’s a critical part that facilitates the filtration and cooling of the smoke.

Without a downstem, the hot smoke would flow from the bowl piece into the bong, and the experience would be akin to a dry pipe.

When you take a bong rip, the smoke is cool and free of impurities, thus you cannot get choked. The downstem plays an essential role in the cooling and filtration of smoke.

Downstems are typically long, and when you are buying a new one, it must be the right size else it won’t be usable.

How to Choose a Downstem

The main thing is that your downstem must fit with your bong and bowl piece, and so, you must get the joint size and the length correct.

The joint size is the size of your bong stem. The perfect downstem forms an airtight seal and allows smoke to travel from the bowl piece into the bong.

Downstems are usually long to ensure that they reach the water chamber and facilitate smoke filtration and cooling.

They can be made from different materials, but borosilicate glass appears to be the standard. These downstems can give you service for so long provided that you take good care of them.

What are Diffuser Downstems?

For those that want their smoke to be super-cool and free of impurities, they may have to use diffuser downstems.

Diffuser downstems have slits that divvy up the smoke as it reaches the water chamber, thus causing the smoke to come into contact with a greater volume of water; the result is super-cool and super-filtered smoke and you can take the biggest bong rip with no choking sensation.

If you want to improve the filtration capabilities of your bong, you can’t go wrong with a diffuser downstem.

What’s Better: Fixed or Removable Downstems?

When you buy a bong, it may contain a fixed or removable downstem, and either of these two can be the best option depending on what you want.

Fixed downstems cannot be detached from your bong. They are easy to deploy and you never suffer any trouble with setting ish up. You simply crowd your dry herb into the bowl piece, spark it, and smoke away.

On the downside, if a fixed downstem breaks apart or wears out, it’s not easy to replace it and your only option might be getting a new one.

Most bongs have removable downstems, and as the name suggests, they can be easily detached from the bowl.

Most cannabis consumers prefer removable downstems to fixed downstems because of their ease of replacement and hygiene reasons.

What’s best between fixed and removable downstems is what accomplishes your needs, but from an objective standpoint, removable downstems offer more convenience than fixed downstems.

How to Clean a Downstem

You have to observe great hygiene or else you’ll ruin herb flavor, diminish the effectiveness of the bong, or put yourself at risk of health complications.

Removable downstems are easier to clean as all you have to do is soak the downstem in a cleaning solution for a few hours before scrubbing and rinsing it.

You cannot provide localized cleaning to a fixed downstem as you would a removable downstem for obvious reasons.

Start with giving your fixed downstem the best care by e.g. flushing water through the bong after using it and also wiping off the resin lodged in the downstem.

Soaking the downstem in isopropyl alcohol and giving it a good shake goes a long way in keeping the downstem in great condition.

Downstem Styles

Some of the styles for downstems include:

  • Metal downstem
  • Tree perc downstem
  • Fire cut downstem

Downstems facilitate the passing of smoke from the bowl into bong water. Indirectly, it’s thanks to downstems that you can take a massive bong rip and not get the soft tissues of your throat scorched.