Bongs vs Bubblers

- Jul 12, 2018-

To those who do not smoke, bong and bubbler may look like alien words, but to connoisseurs in the world of smoking, bongs and bubblers are devices that allow them to smoke herbs, tobacco, and cannabis through water pipes. For the uninitiated, bongs and bubblers are similar, and many feels they are one and the same. However,  there are differences between the two and also in the quality of experience of smoking. We try to take a closer look at the two smoking devices.

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It is a bottle that contains water in small quantity and has a tube attached to it where herbs, tobacco, or any other smoking products is heated so that their vapors reach the water. The smoker inhales from the opening at the top. Bong is not something that is new as it is similar to hookah which has been used since ancient times in many Eastern countries.

For an outsider, it may look like plain smoking, but the difference lies in the fact that the smoke reaches the smoker after passing through water. Bongs are made of glass or plastic, and the smoking product is placed in the bowl and ignited while the stem takes the vapors down to the base of the bottle where there is water. People place their mouth at the top of the bottle, and inhale causing water bubbles to be formed. Water acts as a filtration device in a bong which has become very popular among young smokers in the west.

Today there are many designs and shapes of bongs available in the market. The word Bong has been derived from a Thai word Baung that stands for a section of bamboo. The main parts of a bong are the mouthpiece, the chamber, the water chamber, the stem, and the bowl where tobacco is ignited to create vapors.


A bubbler, as the name implies, is a smoking device that uses water to make bubbles and to act as a filtration device. In fact, a bubbler is nothing but a small bong that a smoker can hold in one hand and smoke easily. The smoke does pass through water, to get cooled and cleaned. However, the size of a bubbler is so small that it does not look like a bong. The appearance of a bubbler bowl is like that of a bubble, hence the name. The stem in a bubbler reaches the base of the water chamber and one can actually see bubbles forming and coming out of water, and which is inhaled by the smoker.

What is the difference between Bong and Bubbler?

• Bongs are water pipes and operate upon the same principle as hookahs in many eastern countries for centuries

• Bubblers are similar to bongs except that they are very small in size and can be operated with a single hand by the smoker

• The internal water chamber in bubbler is very small and hence needs frequent cleaning unlike bongs that are large in size

• Bubblers are cheaper than bongs

• Youngsters prefer bubblers because of their compact size as they can be carried and hidden easily

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