Dab rigs can get pretty sticky, but cleaning them regularly helps prevent clogs and other problems. It also ensures optimal performance and a clean, enjoyable dabbing experience.
Clean the Nail or Banger
Regular cleaning of your dab nail or banger will help to prevent sticky residue buildup. It will also preserve the flavor of your concentrates and ensure your rig functions at peak performance.
The banger or nail can be torched for a quick clean until all residue is burned off. If there are many residues, an alcohol-soaked Q-tip can fine-tune the nail.
For a more thorough cleaning, the nail or banger should be soaked in a mixture of isopropyl alcohol and coarse salt. Then, the nails or bangers should be scrubbed with a brush and cotton swabs to remove any stubborn residue.
Heat the Nail or Banger
A dab nail is the base of a rig that holds and vaporizes concentrate. They come in various materials, but quartz is generally preferred for its ability to heat quickly and maintain a stable temperature.
Glass nails are usually clear but can be found in other colors and designs. Glass will produce a higher-pitched sound when tapped, while quartz produces a duller sound.
Regardless of the material, each banger should be heated until it glows red and then allowed to cool down before adding concentrate. This process involves trial and error, but using an infrared thermometer can simplify determining the appropriate temperature range for your banger.
After cleaning your banger, rinse it thoroughly with hot water to remove any remaining residue. Removing this residue prevents your banger from becoming dull or brittle and helps to keep it clean and hygienic for longer.
Using a high-quality dab tool is essential for maintaining the quality of your concentrates. Look for tools made from safe materials that are easy to handle. Also, use the correct amount of concentrate to avoid overflowing or spilling. Keeping your dab rig clean reduces buildup and residue, ensuring your concentrates remain fresh for the best flavor and potency. Rinsing your rig regularly can also reduce the frequency of deep cleanings.
Clean the Main Chamber
Once you’ve got the alcohol and salt ready, it’s time to disassemble your dab rig. Protect your hands and workspace, and gather your cleaning supplies (like pipe cleaners and cotton swabs).
The first step in the preparation process is emptying the water chamber of the rig. This will make it easier to access the insides and clean them thoroughly.
If a dab rig is not cleaned regularly, hazardous microorganisms that can endanger users’ health can accumulate, and residue can form over time. This will also help maintain the functionality and lifespan of your rig.
Dab tools exist in various forms and sizes, but they all serve the same purpose: to make extract handling easier. Some dabbers are made from glass, while others are made from quartz or stainless steel. Look for a double-ended tool with a scoop on one end and a pick on the other. These can save you some space in your rig’s atomizer cover.
Other dabbers have sharp edges that allow you to cut crystalline concentrates for more precise dosing. Then, carb cap dabbers combine the tool and carb cap in a single unit to regulate airflow and heat distribution.
Over time, residue builds up in dab rigs, leading to clogging and making it difficult for vapor to pass through. This can damage the rig and lead to a loss in potency and flavor. Cleaning your dab rig regularly can prevent this buildup and keep it functioning at its best.
Vinegar is a practical, natural, and non-toxic cleaner that can remove built-up residue from your dab rig without damaging it. You can use it to clean your rig by soaking all components in warm water and adding one part vinegar to four parts water for at least 30 minutes.
Acetone can also be used to clean your rig, but you must be careful not to damage your pieces and work in a well-ventilated area. Rinse the rig thoroughly after using acetone to neutralize any remaining residue and ensure it is scorched before storing.