Benefits of Cleaning Your Pipes
We cover how to quickly clean your pipe after a smoke. We recommend you should also do a more periodic cleaning around every month or every two to three months for the occasional smoker. After you finished off your bowl you usually want to do a quick clean to keep your pipe in optimal smoking order. It only take a few minutes and will keep you pipe in great shape for the years to come.
Removing your Tobacco Pipe Stem While Warm
First, do not remove the stem of a pipe while it is still warm! This will cause the fit of the stem to loosen, and can cause you to crack the shank or break the tenon of your pipe.
Building Up Cake
Allow the pipe to cool, and then stir up any ash and dottle left in the bottom of the bowl. Placing one finger or the palm of your hand over the top of the bowl, shake the pipe for a few seconds to evenly distribute the ash along the inside walls of the bowl, which will greatly speed the formation of "cake," a protective layer of carbonized tobacco and ash inside your pipe.
The Benefits of Cake in Your Tobacco Pipe
Cake acts as an insulator, greatly extending the life of your pipe and guarding against burn outs. Dump out the remaining ash and dottle, and run a pipe cleaner through the stem until it is just barely visible in the bottom of the bowl.
Remove it, and either turn it around or use another pipe cleaner, repeating this process until the pipe cleaners come out clean. Moisten a pipe cleaner with saliva and rub the mouthpiece with it to remove any buildup there. Blow gently through the stem of the pipe to dislodge any leftover ash and wipe your pipe down with a soft cloth.
If you wish, you may insert a regular pipe cleaner into the stem of the pipe before placing it back on the rack, in order to absorb any residual moisture, but if you are diligent in using your pipe cleaners, this is not necessary.
Place the pipe back on its rack or stand and allow it to rest for a few days before smoking again.