why do weed pipes have an extra hole

What’s the Purpose of a Carb on a Hand Pipe?

When it comes to methods of smoking, every smoker has their preferences. We all develop specific tastes as we puff over the years! People who smoke at home might favor bongs, because they filter smoke. Smokers who prefer concentrates might like to smoke a dab rig, rather than dry herbs. Some of us even smoke from fruit!

However, hand pipes are a simple method of smoking that every responsible smoker from a school nurse to your mama can appreciate. While there are several different styles of glass hand pipes with different features, each of them contain a carb. The carb is super important in helping the glass pipe to be simple, but also effective and enjoyable. Read on to learn more about the purpose of the carb, and how it improves the hand pipe experience.

What is the Carb on a Glass Hand Pipe?

As we mentioned before, the shape of bowls and hand pipes can vary by style. Some glass pipes are shaped like spoons, with a simple, flat design. Others are crafted in the recognizable style of Sherlock Holmes. Some smokers prefer hand pipes that are shaped in the standard tobacco style, with a long, straight pipe. Bubblers are slightly larger than the normal glass pipes, permitting water filtration in the same style as a bong. One of the major similarities between these glass pipe styles is the carb.

The carb is a small hole on the glass pipe. It’s located directly next to the bowl, which is where the dry herb is packed. Experienced smokers know exactly how to work their thumbs over the carbs to control airflow. However, it may also be on the front of the hand pipe. While the carb is subtle on some hand pipes, the carb hole can also be a crucial part of the design.

What is the Purpose of the Carb Hole?

Believe it or not, the carb hole on a glass hand pipe is extremely integral to the smoking process.

First and foremost, the carb allows you to introduce air at precisely the right moment. As you light your herbs and begin to inhale, you should be covering the carb hole with your thumb. Next, when you move your finger and continue to inhale, the air helps to direct the smoke into your lungs. Hand pipes with carbs make an excellent addition to a smoker’s road trip!

Clearing the Bowl

In theory, the purpose of the carb hole is to divide the smoking process into two steps. During the first step, you create the smoke by burning the dry herb. During the second step, you inhale the smoke.

The carb hole is what allows this process to work correctly. When you remove your finger from the carb hole, you should be able to inhale all of the smoke that was inside the bowl. Therefore, paying attention to the carb will help you to clear the bowl.

Cornering the Bowl

Cornering the bowl is one of the most important aspects of proper smoking etiquette. It may sound complicated, but cornering is actually quite simple. Instead of holding the lighter directly over the dry herb, you should place the lighter on the rim of the bowl. While doing so, you should be keeping your finger over the carb.

Control Over the Smoking Experience

Generally speaking, the carb hole is crucial in helping smokers to control the smoking experience. For seasoned smokers that understand how to use the carb hole correctly, this is important. The carb hole helps you understand when to expect the smoke!

Why Don’t Bongs Have Carb Holes?

In a way, bongs and water pipes are quite similar. Both of these smoking pieces rely on controlled airflow for the smoker to properly inhale. In fact, the difference between the two is that bongs offer advanced filtration, with both a water chamber and percolators. So, why don’t bongs have carb holes?

The answer is simpler than you might think. When smoking a hand pipe, the carb hole cuts off air from everything but the bowl. The same concept applies with a bong. When you remove the bowl after drawing smoke into the chamber, the airflow that you create helps you to inhale. So, in a way, the bowl area or downstem acts as the carb hole. This can help you choose the right bong for you.

High-Quality Glass Hand Pipes

Whether you’re smoking from a Sherlock pipe or a dab rig, you want to do it right. Paying attention to your finger placement on the carb can go a long way in improving your smoking experience.

At Toker Supply, we never stock any glass hand pipes created with low-quality glass. As smoking enthusiasts, we’re here to help you enjoy your dry herbs and the pipes you smoke them out of. If you’re looking for a new piece that will take you through the years, then check out our collection of glass pipes!

When it comes to smoking glass pipes, the carb plays an important role in providing the proper airflow and clearing the bowl. Read this blog post to learn about how to properly use the carb hole, and why doing so will improve your smoking experience.

Recreational Marijuana 101: How to Smoke a Pipe

One of the most recognizable smoking devices is a cannabis pipe. These pipes are categorized in two groups: carb and carb-less. Those with a “carb,” or small hole, allow for the clearing of smoke in the pipe.

Carb-less pipes are referred to as “chillums” or “one-hitters.” These are available in a variety of shapes, and are usually straight tubes that mimic the appearance of cigarettes or discrete designs.

Pipes with a carb are often called “bowls” or “spoons.” They’re generally spoon-shaped in form. Pipes with carbs are designed for larger amounts of cannabis, and they can generally go around a circle of friends for multiple puffs.

Pipe Smoking for Beginners

When compared to joints or blunts, the primary benefits of consuming cannabis with a pipe are increased smoke and less ash. While joints, blunts, and other rolled options may be seen as more portable, their combustion method involves a significant amount of ash.

Additionally, a clean pipe will be less harsh than a joint or blunt.

How cannabis pipes work

Pipes provide their function using three aspects of the device:

  1. The mouthpiece: where you put your mouth
  2. The bowl: where you put your cannabis flower
  3. The carb hole: some pipes have a carb hole to allow the consumer to “clear” the pipe of residual smoke.

The cannabis is heated and smoke is inhaled through the mouthpiece.

How to choose a pipe

Choosing a pipe is based on personal taste. Standard chillums may be made out of clear glass or cigarette-shaped, while more intricate one hitters and bowls vary in color, shape, size, and details. If you want something that can be discreetly held in the palm of your hand, a one-hitter may be your best option. They’re carb-less, small, and typically stored in a wooden “dugout”.

If you’re looking for a piece that will last a long time, allow for larger smoke sessions, and has a carb hole, then a bowl is likely your best option. While you won’t be able to test the pipe before you buy, you can hold it as if you were using it to see how it feels in your hands and whether you can easily use the carb hole.

How to pack a pipe

When it comes to packing your pipe, ground cannabis is always your best option. It makes for a uniform burn and airflow, which means you’ll get the most consistent hits. Grind your cannabis in a grinder if you have one, or use your fingers to tear the flower into tiny bits. Fill the bowl of your pipe with a few pinches of ground herb.

If it is a larger bowl, you may need to grind up more cannabis, whereas smaller bowls and one-hitters require a small amount to fill the bowl.

How to smoke a pipe

Once loaded, ignite the bowl of cannabis using a lighter or hemp wick, while inhaling from the mouthpiece. If there is a carb, be sure to cover the carb hole using your thumb or finger while inhaling the first half of your puff. Then release your finger and allow air to flow through the carb hole while you inhale the second half of your hit.

For cannabis beginners, be sure to start with small amounts in each bowl, and wait several minutes between inhalations. Cannabis varies in potency, so “go slow and low” until you’ve developed familiarity with cannabis products.

How to clean a pipe

The more often you clean your pipe, the easier it will be to maintain. While cleaning after every use may be excessive, a 2019 study by Moose Labs shows that even a 10-minute smoking session with four friends will more than double the amount of bacteria on the mouthpiece of the pipe.

Soaking in isopropyl alcohol and acetone are great options for cleaning your pipes. If there’s a bit of resin that is stuck inside, add a few pinches of salt (epsom salt is the best) and shake to agitate the residue and help remove any leftover remnants and bacteria

A three-minute isopropyl alcohol soak is the most effective way to reduce bacteria and other residuals.

How to store a pipe

If your pipe is made of a material that could shatter, such as glass, clay or crystals, you’ll want to store it in something protective, such as a padded case or bag to keep it safe from impact shocks and bumps. Pipes made of wood, metals like aluminium, silicon and other similar materials should be placed in their storage pouches once appropriately cooled and cleaned.

For added discretion, consider a smell-proof container that stays airtight to avoid the smells of fresh or freshly-burned cannabis escaping.

Try For Yourself

Now that you’re familiar enough with cannabis pipes to be able to choose one for yourself, give it a try on your own. Feel free to refer back to this guide when shopping for and using your new pipe for the first time. Once you get the hang of it, you should be able to enjoy your pipe and legal cannabis without much guidance.

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This pipe smoking guide for beginners walks you through everything from selecting a pipe to storing it after use.