closeup snapshot of a hookah

How to clean a hookah: Full guide by Tuah

1. Disassemble your hookah:

  • Detach the hose connected to the hookah. Gently twist the hose from side to side until loose.
  • If the hose is lodged, do not pull with force to avoid damage. Quality hookahs don’t have this problem. You can see it in the best selling section.
  • Remove the grommet from the hose port and the bowl from the top, and underneath the grommet.
  • Take the tray and dispose of the ashes.
  • Set aside all the parts ready for cleaning.
  •  Soak the individual parts in the suggested water/baking soda/lemon solution overnight to soften residue.
  • Arrange the parts into groups to easily identify them.

2. Clean the base:

Use hot water to clean the base and shaft thoroughly. For stubborn stains, you can use a cleaning brush or a bit of steel wool to remove any built-up oxidation.


3. Clean the shaft, hub, and downstem:

  • Use a brush and your cleaning solution. Brush back and forth until you have cleaned the stem’s full length. 
  • Repeat this process until the stem is completely clean.
  • Run hot water through it. Insert your fingers into the hose port to make sure no debris has accumulated. 
  • Let it dry on a towel or lean it against a wall.
  • More covenient hookahs that are on sale can be found here.

4. Clean the hookah base:

  • Using your fingers, rub inside the top, reaching as far as possible inside.
  • Pour out the water.
  • Add your cleaning solution and scrub it with a soft bristle brush or sponge.
  • Pour in additional hot water and shake the base while covering its opening with the palm of your hand. Repeat if stains are stubborn.
  • Let it rest for an hour or overnight.
  • Rinse it with hot water 2-3 times before letting it dry on a towel.

5. Clean the purge valve:

Rust can build up in this valve if not cleaned regularly, which can cause your BBs to become stuck. If your BBs are sticking, you won’t be able to purge smoke from your hookah base if you ever need to.


6. Clean the hose:

  • First, blow through your hose to get rid of any stale smoke inside. 
  • Ideally you should do this after each use.
  • If it is not washable, hold both ends and try to whack it against a soft surface to get rid of any debris. Then hang it in a cool, dry area.
  • If it is washable, run the hose under the tap. Place one end under the running water and let it flow through the other end. Hang the hose and let it completely dry.

7. Clean the tray:

It’s nice to have a shiny tray before each hookah session, but it doesn’t have to be spotless.


8. Clean the Bowl:

  • With a sponge or towel, remove any residue on the bowl. 
  • Run your bowl under the tap, while rubbing off debris with your fingers.
  • Immerse your bowl in a pot of water, and allow it to come to a simmer.
  •  Leave to simmer for 3- 5 minutes. 
  • Remove from pot, rinse, clean off any remaining debris, and allow to dry.

9. Clean other compartments (if any)

  • Now it’s time to clean the grommets, release valve, and ashtray. 
  • Run your tap over the grommets and release the valve. Using your fingers, and a little pressure, remove any unwanted waste. 
  • Follow the same process for your ashtray if there’s only loose ash. For stuck tobacco in the hookah, use hot water, and steel wool, to remove the waste. Rinse and allow to dry.

what is the purpose of cleaning your hookahs?

This is to ensure that the apparatus is clean to safeguard your shisha flavours to make it crisp and delicious during your sessions.

what happens if i don't clean it ?

Without regular cleaning, the components will become clogged with previous old-used flavours, which may also have become stale. This results in your session tasting awful and non-satisfying.

what are the Cleaning Supplies that you will need ?

A natural mixture of warm water, lemon, and baking soda will do to help deep clean your hookahs. You can also use mild dishwashing soap if you prefer. You will also need a brush to scrub any built-in residue in your shaft, and base.

when exactly should i start cleaning ?

It actually starts when your first unbox your new set. Not only will you be removing any dust or other debris, you’ll be teaching yourself how all the components come together. 

It is advisable your set be thoroughly washed, sanitised, and allowed to completely dry, after each session. Creating a cleaning routine will ensure your shisha will always tastes fresh and true to its flavour.

should i clean it before or after a session ?

It is advisable your set be thoroughly washed, sanitised, and allowed to completely dry, after each session. Creating a cleaning routine will ensure your shisha will always tastes fresh and true to its flavour.

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