Let’s imagine that you have already bought the hookah you like and are going to test it for the first time. So, how to set up and prepare a hookah?
How to set up a hookah
- Install the water vase and fill it with clean water. The metal stem of the shaft should be covered 2-3 cm with water.
- Insert the hookah shaft on top of the water base. Depending on the design, the shaft can simply be put on the base (the tightness is provided by rubber pieces) or screwed onto it (if the connection is threaded).
- Connect the hose to the base firmly and air-tightly, and the mouthpiece to the hose, accordingly.
- Put on the top of the shaft the so-called ashtray or plate (if any). The plate is designed to protect the surface on which the hookah stands, from falling hot embers and ash from the bowl. The tightness of the mounted plate is not very important, but, of course, it should not hang loosely.
- Place a bowl directly above the plate. The bowl is also put on the shaft from above, and now it should be connected very tight – because it provides burning and smoke processes. Do it with easy pressure, but do not overdo it – because if the bowl is made of clay, it can crack.
How to prepare a hookah for smoking
So, the hookah is assembled and ready for the first test. The “launch” of the hookah also consists of several consecutive stages.
- The choice of tobacco. If you are a novice hookah smoker and do not know what to choose, start with the traditional “Two Apple” tobacco from Al Fakher. More experienced gourmets can make their own mixes from different varieties of tobacco and other ingredients, combining various flavors in different proportions.
- Hookah dropping – i.e. placing hookah tobacco in a bowl of hookah. Tobacco should be laid evenly and not too tightly.
- Screen placement. In order hot coals not to touch tobacco, the bowl is covered with a dividing screen. It can be a foil that is tightly pulled over the bowl. After that, a number of holes are poked through the foil, which ensure the flow of heat from the coals to tobacco. You can also use a special factory-made block – kaloud – with ready-made holes. Unlike foil, which, after a smoking session, becomes worthlessness, kaloud can be used repeatedly. The distance between the screen and tobacco should be at least one millimeter, otherwise the tobacco will begin to smolder.
- Coal lighting occurs outside the hookah – on some source of flame or an electric spiral stove.
- Coal placement. When the coals are hot enough, they are transferred and placed on the screen. To protect the coals from the wind and perfectly warm up the tobacco, the bowl can be covered with a special cap.
- The first puff. As soon as the tobacco warms up, you can take the first puff. Puffs should be even and deep. Otherwise, the tobacco may burn out and the smoke will become bitter.
- Maintaining the heat. Throughout the entire smoking process, coals can be occasionally moved (in order to keep the heat even) and add new ones.
- Blowing. If the smoke in the bowl is seemed to become stagnant and bitter, you can take a break to blow the hookah. For this, the most models of hookahs have a special purge valve. When you blow into the mouthpiece, the valve will open and let out the “old” smoke.
- Hookah cleaning. After smoking, it is advisable to disassemble the hookah, pour out the water, and clean the shaft and bowl.
So, in general terms, now you understand how to set up and prepare a hookah. And how the whole process of hookah smoking looks like. You can read more about each stage of hookah preparation in separate articles on the HOOKAH website.