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How to Use a Hookah?

Traditional tobacco consumption techniques are regaining popularity, and a hookah is probably the most popular of them all. Today, it appears that everyone is a hookah connoisseur, with people queuing for hours to sample a new flavor that has just been released. However, if you’ve never smoked tobacco from a hookah before, it may seem frightening at first. But most individuals who are unfamiliar with the idea are unsure how to use a hookah.

The hookah parts to know before using:

  • Bowl holds the tobacco inside the hookah;
  • Stem – it joins the bowl, the base, and the hose;
  • The hookah’s long, flexible body is known as the hose;
  • Bowl stem – a section of the stem that connects to the bowl;
  • Coal tray – a resting spot for burning coals, as well as a catchment area for falling ash;
  • Stem heart – the stem’s bulky portion that links to the base. The hose port and release valve are included;
  • Hose port (adaptor) – this is the part where the hose is inserted;
  • Release/purge valve – releases smoke from the hookah’s base when you blow into the hose;
  • Ball-bearing – when you are inhaling, it prevents air from being pulled through the valve;
  • Downstem is the part typically submerged in water;
  • A diffuser disperses bubbles for a more tranquil smoking experience;
  • The base of a hookah holds the water;
  • Hose connector – connects into the hose port;
  • The handle of the hose is the mouthpiece;

2 common methods to use a hookah

1) Foil-covered hookah bowl

The first technique uses a foil-covered bowl to heat a hookah. This method is also known as the most conventional way to smoke a hookah.

You’ll require:

  • Wrap aluminum foil firmly around the bowl and pierce lots of tiny holes in the top for ventilation. Some hookah foil items come pre-poked;
  • Charcoal is placed immediately on top of the foil;
  • Tobacco is put inside the bowl;

2) Using an HMD (heat management device)

Using an HMD is the second method to heat the bowl of the hookah. HMDs are a new technology that eliminates the need for foil. The design of such gadgets also helps to prolong the life of charcoals by shielding them from wind and air draft.

You’ll require:

  • There’s no need for foil since the HMD rests right on top of the bowl. HMDs are compatible with certain bowls;
  • Charcoal is inserted into the HMD;
  • Then tobacco is inserted into the bowl;
  • To ignite the coals, an electric charcoal burner is used;
  • To transfer burning coals securely, hookah tongs are used;
  • A foil poker is a specialized instrument that is used to punch precise holes in foil;

How to use a hookah (with aluminum foil)

Setting up the hookah

Make sure the hookah is clean. Before using the hookah at first, and anytime it becomes filthy, wash it with water and a gentle brush. All components should be disconnected and washed first, with the exception of the hoses, which should be assumed to be water-safe unless otherwise stated. Before continuing, wash it with a towel and allow it to air dry.

Cleaning after each session is preferable, but cleaning anytime you notice residue on the vase or the smoke doesn’t taste good is also recommended. You can reach inside lengthy portions with a long, thin brush. Brushes for hookahs may be found at hookah shops.

Fill the vase with cold water. The big glass container at the bottom of the hookah is this. Fill it up to 1 inch (or slightly more) above the metal stem. It’s critical to provide room for air to dilute the smoke and make it easier to pull on the hose.

The metal tip of the central shaft’s bottom is known as the stem. To see just how far down the stem goes, place the shaft on top of the vase. Most smokers think that water filters out tobacco and other substances, but this is not the case. Adding some water to the hookah will not make it safer.

Add ice to the mix (optionally). Although hookah smoke is not unpleasant when pulled correctly, a lovely cool temp will make it much more enjoyable. To get it to the right level, you have to drain out part of the water.

The hookah shaft should be inserted into the glass base. Lower the stem into the water by lowering the shaft into the base. To make the base airtight, a silicone/rubber component should fit around the top. The smoke will become thin and hard to pull if the fit isn’t airtight. Wet the rubber piece with a little water or some dish soap if it won’t fit.

Connect the hoses. The hoses are inserted into holes on the shaft’s side. These holes, like the foundation, should have airtight fittings. If there is no hose connected, certain hookahs close the hole. Even if you’re smoking alone, you’ll need to connect all of the hoses to other models. Before connecting, double-check your water levels. The water may damage your hoses if the water level is too close to your hose connectors.

Examine the airflow. To prevent air from entering the hookah, place the hand on top of the stem. Inhale via a hose, if possible. If you can breathe through one of the connections, it’s because it’s not airtight. Check for tight fittings and rubber/silicone seals on all of them. If your seal is gone, search for “hookah grommets” to replace it. Tightly wrapped sports tape may create a mostly airtight seal that lasts for a short time.

On top of the shaft, you should put the metal tray. When hot embers and extra tobacco fall, this tray catches them.

Smoking the hookah

Shake the shisha. Shisha is just tobacco that has been soaked in liquids to give it flavor and thicker smoke. Because these liquids have a tendency to sink to the bottom, give it a short stir to distribute them evenly. If this is your first time using a hookah, try practicing with tobacco-free molasses. If you make an error with tobacco, the consequences may be severe. Shisha comes in a variety of tastes, each of which alters the experience considerably. As a new hookah smoker, try a few to discover what you prefer.

Place the shisha in the bowl after breaking it up. Fill the basin with shisha bits that have been fluffed up. To create a flat layer, gently press down without compressing the tobacco. It should be loose enough to allow air to flow freely through it. To prevent the tobacco from burning, fill the bowl almost to the top but leave at least 3/32 inch (2mm) of room above it.

The heavy-duty foil should be used to cover the dish. Stretch a piece of dense foil over the hookah’s bowl and secure it. To keep it secure, crimp the edges. Use 2 layers of standard foil if you don’t have other options. You may also apply a charcoal screen that is marketed for this purpose, although most people prefer foil.

Place the hookah bowl on top of the shaft. For an airtight fit, this should fit snugly into another rubber piece.

Puncture numerous holes in the foil. Poke 12-15 holes in the foil surface with a toothpick. While doing so, pull on the hose to test airflow. Add more holes if you’re having difficulty drawing air. Some individuals prefer to push their fingers through the shisha to create heat and air channels.

Then 2-3 coals should be lit. For hookah, there are two kinds of coals. Hold coals with tongs over a non-flammable surface to quickly ignite them. Use a  lighter, then you should wait 10-30 seconds until the ash is light gray and the fire is burning orange. These are handy, but the smoke is weaker and lasts less time. Some individuals even get headaches, as a result, of smoking them. Natural coals heat immediately in a stove flame/electric burner, but never use a gas stove, where ash may fall into the gas line. The coal is considered ready when it glows orange, which takes around 8–12 minutes.

Move the coals to the foil and set them aside. Place the coals around the edge of the foil, evenly circling the edge or even slightly overhanging it. Stacking the coals in the middle is a frequent error that may quickly scorch the shisha and produce harsh, short-lived smoke. Many smokers like to wait 3–5 minutes for the shisha to warm up before lighting up. This allows you to smoke while taking slow, deep breaths, which enhances the taste.

And, finally, you should inhale. Inhale via one of the hoses after the bowl is heated — or right away if you’re eager. Air is drawn past the coals by your breath, which causes them to warm. If you draw too forcefully, the air will get too hot for the shisha to burn, and you’ll cough up a lungful of foul-tasting smoke. Pull with regular, brief breaths. Smoke slowly and deliberately, stopping to allow the shisha to cool. To ignite the tobacco, inhale a few quick, sharp puffs if no smoke emerges in the vase.

FAQ

How to clean a hookah after smoking?

The majority of hoses in hookahs can’t be washed. Water should never be run through the hose since it includes a metal coil that may corrode. Simply hang it in a cool, dry location to ensure the longest potential lifetime. If your hose is designated as washable, a simple rinse with hot water would suffice. Avoid placing hoses in the washing machine or dishwasher. Because their exteriors were not designed for such circumstances, they are likely to fall apart.

You should at the very least rinse the clay and ceramic bowls. The black staining is very tough to remove. Clean out the neck and holes of the bowl with a rinse or even tiny pipe brushes.

Consider using a cleaning solution, such as lemon juice or dish detergent, to clean your hookah. There are a variety of cleaning products available for a quick and easy clean. Use vinegar to clean the stem, vase, and head. Some individuals choose to immerse the vase, stem, and head in a cleaning solution overnight. Another reason to use a cleaning solution is to avoid the transitory tastes of hookah tobacco.

What should you smoke with a hookah?

Flavored shisha contains a flavoring combination of cane fibers, molasses, sugars, and additives. This “tobacco” does not contain any nicotine, which implies it does not include any additives.

Your combination will last much longer if you use coal, and it will be prepared to smoke in seconds. If you gently dampen the tobacco, it will last much longer, enabling you to enjoy your smoke for a longer period if combined with the tobacco.