What Is A Percolator?

percolator bongs

Bongs are no longer just a straight water pipe that you smoke out of, today they are completely different than they were before. Bongs today have all sorts of different shapes, builds, sizes, accessories, and functions that give the smoker an ideal smoking experience that they won't get with a pipe or blunt.

Most people who smoke out of bongs prefer the bong because it is considered one of the safest ways to smoke, as it keeps all of the chemicals out of your lungs and the water chamber cools down a hit which makes for a smoother hit.

One of the most popular accessories that help diffuse and give you a flavorful hit is called a percolator. What is a percolator? Great question, stay tuned to find out what a percolator is and more, such as how a percolator works, the different types of percs, how to use one, and even the pros and cons of a perc.

What Is a Percolator?

Bio Honeycomb  percolatorDab Rig

A percolator is a device that is commonly used to infuse cannabis concentrates or dried buds with flavorful smoke. Typically consisting of a cylinder or bowl, percolators are often equipped with multiple chambers and perforated plates, which work to diffuse the smoke to create a large surface area and produce a smooth, satisfying experience.

Some percs also have special features such as water filtration systems, which further cool and purify the smoke for an extra-enjoyable bong hit. Whether you prefer smoking weed flowers or are more into vaping concentrates, a perc is sure to elevate your smoking experience to the next level.

How Does A Percolator Work?

Percolators work by filtering and diffusing the smoke through a series of small holes in order to make each hit smoother and more flavorful. This process begins as the smoke is drawn up into the percolator through the water chamber at the base of the bong. As it enters the percolator, the smoke moves through a number of filtration holes, where it passes through multiple layers of small water droplets.

These tiny water droplets act as diffusers, breaking up the larger smoke particles and allowing them to better infuse with the clean water. In this way, the perc functions to both clean and cool each hit, making it smooth and enjoyable for even heavy smokers. So whether you are vaping concentrates or just enjoying a little bit of dry herb, adding a percolator automatically enhances an experience, it's something you feel almost immediately.

Types Of Percolators


One of the easiest and most convenient percs is the downstem percolator. A vertical tube of the bong, it sits in the chamber and enables air to enter for better airflow.

Downstems are a popular addition to bongs because you can replace one with an upgrade easily, and it is simple to remove and clean. This type of glass perc has up to three holes on the side to diffuse the smoke easily.


This type of perc is becoming increasingly popular among cannabis smokers for its ability to diffuse and cool smoke, as well as its unique appearance.

A honeycomb percolator consists of a water chamber with several tiny holes, or "cells," arranged in a honeycomb-like pattern. Smoke from the cannabis is drawn through the water and diffused by the cells before it reaches the user. This process not only cools the smoke, but also increases THC absorption.


Matrix percolators are a popular choice due to how they work overtime to provide a smooth hit. Matrix percs are made in a cylindrical shape, centered in the base of the bong.

These percs have horizontal and vertical slits, which provide a high volume of diffusion due to the smoke circulating in all directions, almost like having an extra water chamber. The matrix percolator bong is a popular choice for those who want less cough and more of a flavorful hit.


Similar to a honeycomb perc, the showerhead percolator diffuses the smoke through many small holes, giving you a smooth hit with less coughing. Unlike the honeycomb, the showerhead holes or slits on the bottom of a flared vertical tube instead of in a disc shape.

This perc is also great for concentrates. By applying heat to the bottom of the percolator, the concentrate will vaporize and diffuse through the small holes. This allows you to inhale the vapor without having to deal with the harsh smoke.


The Inline Percolator gets its name simply due to its design. An inline perc is usually found in smaller bongs due to its inability to filter a lot of water but it does the job of filtering and diffusing the smoke just as well as any percolator on this list.

The single long glass rod and holes lined up along the rod diffuse the smoke in different directions, so as you inhale, you get a smoother hit.


Named for it's tree-like appearance, the tree percolator bong is usually built with a perc with a central tube acting as a "trunk" and several branches. Smoke comes up through the main trunk to the top, and then is dispersed through the branches and through the water in a bong.

These branches can also have additional diffusers, which enhance the experience even further and give you an even smoother hit.  Tree percolator bongs are usually among the most complex but will also be the least harsh on your lungs.

Will A Percolator Enhance Your Smoking Experience?

Do percs make your smoking game better? In terms of making your experience better, yes. In terms of getting you more high? yes. Percolators allow you to take more hits as you go through your session and they make them less harsh on your lungs which means you enjoy smoking a lot more.

Whether you use a bong, a dab rig, or a straight tube water pipe, a percolator is definitely worth the investment if you want to take your smoking sessions to the next level.

How To Clean A Percolator Bong

Maintenance on your bong is an underrated but necessary process to get the best out of your bong. The only difference between cleaning a normal bong versus cleaning a percolator bong is percolators are going to be tougher to reach so you would need pipe cleaners to make sure you scrub the gunk off the percolators.

Using isopropyl alcohol does the job just like it would on any other bong and the process might be a little more tedious but definitely worth it if you want to smoke out of the bong for years to come.

Pros & Cons

Like all things in life, its always good to weigh the pros and cons when it comes to deciding if something is right for you. We wouldn't be doing our job if we didn't fully educate you on percolators and how they worked with your bong.

Some pros to percolators is that they use water to disperse the smoke over a larger surface area to remove large contaminants. They also contribute in giving you smooth flavorful hits that you couldn't get with a normal glass bong.

Some cons to percolators is that you can have too much. Adding more than a couple percs can diffuse the smoke too much and you'll be puffing on more water vapor than anything. Most percs are also attached to bigger bongs so you'll only be able to use the bongs at home. They are also hard to clean and maintain so it might be considered a hassle for some smokers.

Where To Find Percolator Bongs

Finding a good quality bong can be tedious with pot being legalized throughout the US. Since more people have access to smoking devices, it can be hard to find a trusted seller or site that will give you a good perc bong that will last you for years to come.

One trusted seller is Slyng.com. Working with some of the best sellers and glass blowers in the smoking industry, you'll be sure to find a quality perc bong on our site. Search from hundreds and even find discount codes on the site to your favorite brands.

Final Thoughts

Percolators are sure to make a difference on your smoking sessions and can elevate how you consume cannabis or concentrates. With a perc, you won't ever want to go back.

Don't let your lungs work overtime, add a perc to your bong and enjoy the flavor and the brews of the bubbles.