Bong Percolators: What Are Percs & 10 Types of Water Pipe Percolators

on January 15, 2022

Have you ever used a percolator in your bong? Percolators are a great way to get an even smoother, cooler hit.

While they aren’t included in every bong, you might enjoy adding on a percolator when you smoke. Read on to learn more about what a bong percolator is, how it works, and 10 different kinds of percolators.


Located in either the base or tube of the bong, the percolator is a small glass — or sometimes metal or acrylic — contraption. It’s often spiral-shaped, includes a number of small glass tubes or holes, and acts as an additional water chamber.


“Percs” do double duty by cooling down the smoke even more than the base or water chamber already has, as well as filter the smoke.

With a cooler, more filtered hit, a percolator can help make bong smoking far more enjoyable, especially for new medical cannabis users.

While the smoke may be slightly less strong from additional filtration, many users would gladly trade this for the smoother experience.


Not all percolators are created alike; there are a number of different styles and types, each with their own unique effect.

Here are 10 different kinds of water pipe percolators to consider.

1. Downstems

The first percolator is a downstem, which is a simple — yet effective — kind of downstem. You’ll find several different kinds, including removable diffused downstems and natural percolator downstems. 

Located at a 45° angle in the base of the water pipe, downstems will connect to the bowl or nail. Forcing smoke from the bowl into the water in the bong’s base, it will help diffuse and cool the smoke.

2. Fritted Disc Percolator

The fritted disc is a disc-shaped percolator which is made up of a number of small glass particles. The particles create holes in the disc, which will help add even more bubbles to the bong, further filtering the smoke.

This percolator is regarded highly for more experienced and adventurous smokers, as the fritted disc can be more challenging to clean.

3. Honeycomb Percolator

Similar, but more simple than the fritted disc, the honeycomb percolator is also a disc-shaped percolator covered in small holes that resemble (you guessed it) a honeycomb. 

Smokers will often combine multiple honeycomb percs along the bong tube.

4. Inline Percolator

Perfect for even more diffusion, the inline percolator is well-loved by experienced medical cannabis users. 

Like all percolators, the inline perc varies in design. However, inline percolators are generally horizontal glass tubes with slits or small openings along it. The more slits, the more diffused the hit will be.

5. Matrix Percolator

These robust little percolators have compact, symmetrical, and cylindrical designs that allow for even distribution of bubbles in the bong. 

The matrix perc is relatively easy to clean and damage resistant, as they often aren’t made of glass like many other percolators.

6. Showerhead Percolator

A more common and simplistic version of the matrix perc, the showerhead percolator resembles a showerhead in that it only has slits along the bottom corners of vertical tubes.

7. Spiral Percolator

This visually appealing perc is also known as a coil percolator. As the names suggest, this perc brings smoke through a glass spiral or coil to cool it. The spiral perc gives users smoother, longer drags.

8. Swiss Percolator

This vertical disc is shaped like Swiss cheese (with plenty of holes) and allows both smoke and water to pass around the holes for a filtered, cool hit.

Many medical marijuana users like to pair the Swiss percolator with other percs for an even smoother experience. 

9. Tree Percolator

Next to the simple downstem percolator, tree percs are probably the most common type of percolator that you see. With high diffusion due to multiple “tree-like” arms and openings, the tree perc breaks up smoke for a filtered and comfortable hit.

Though more difficult to clean than the downstem due to all the vertical arms, cannabis smokers of all experience levels enjoy the benefits of the tree percolator. 

10. Turbine Percolator

Last, but certainly not least, the turbine percolator is another aptly-named perc. The turbine (or cyclone) percs are disc-shaped with multiple angled cuts around them. When a hit is taken and water is pulled through, the water creates a mesmerizing cyclone effect.

These percolators offer medical marijuana a unique perc, along with a unique experience while smoking.

Now that you have a better understanding of medical marijuana percolators, which one of these ten are you going to try?

At Hive Medicinal, we’d love to help with your medical marijuana needs as your local Maine dispensary. Take a look at our current medical cannabis products or, better yet, stop by in person!

Hive Medicinal

Hive Medicinal is a medical marijuana dispensary with two locations in Maine. You can visit us at 65 River Road in Chelsea, Maine or 210 College Ave in Waterville, Maine.