🇺🇸 Retired veteran, father, rock-climbing expert & rosin connoisseur
Keeping your water ice cold makes for a more efficient extraction. So what can you do to maximize your ice water and keep it colder for longer?
#1 Water Chiller
Water chillers are vessels that cool and hold large amounts of water for use during ice water extraction. Water chillers allow the extractor to consistently draw cold water during the entire process of washing hash. At the start of the process there’s an initial quantity of cold water needed, and then more water is introduced during the extraction. For example, cold water is used to spray down the sides of bubble wash bags before collecting the hash from the screen. Some extractors like to use a fresh batch of water after 2 or 3 runs of the same material as well.
Water chillers are the best way to cool and store large amounts of water for a continuous supply during extraction.
#2 Use The Right Amount of Ice
The purpose of using ice while making hash is to keep the water cold. Without ice, the water will warm too quickly and diminish the effectiveness of the wash. However, too much ice crowds out the cannabis material and can inhibit the creation of a vortex in the water during agitation/mixing.
So the trick is to use enough ice to keep the water as cold as possible, without crowding the wash bucket and preventing a vortex from forming in the water. Use just enough ice to keep the water nice and cold, while still allowing for the water and cannabis to flow freely during the agitation phase.
#3 Neoprene Insulator
Neoprene is an ideal material to use for insulation. Designed to fit snugly around wash buckets, neoprene insulators for washing hash are a great way to keep water cold during the extraction. Neoprene insulators provide an extra layer that maintains the temperature inside the mixing bucket or agitator, keeping the ice water colder for longer.
Neoprene insulators are like beer koozies for washing hash, and they are very effective. Try to find insulators that are as thick as possible, since the thicker neoprene will have more insulative capability.
#4 Bucket in a Bucket Set Up
The bucket in a bucket set up is an expansion of the neoprene insulator concept, but it does an even better job of keeping the ice water cold during extraction. Rather than using a layer of neoprene material to insulate the wash bucket or agitator, the wash bucket is placed inside of another bucket that’s filled with ice. This creates a layer of ice around the wash bucket, which keeps the water colder for longer.
You can use a plastic or metal tub and place a layer of ice at the bottom. Then place the wash bucket on top of the layer of ice, and fill in the empty space between the two containers with ice. Throughout the extraction, you can add more ice around the work bucket as the existing ice begins to melt.
#5 Wash in a Cold Environment
The last tip to help keep your water cold during ice water extraction is to work in a cold environment. The colder the air temperature in your wash room, the longer the water will stay cold. Warmer environments speed up the melting of ice and the warming of the water.
Washing in the winter time can make it easier to achieve a cold environment. Using an air conditioner or even working inside of a commercial walk-in cooler or freezer also works.
Continuously adding more ice to the water during extraction isn’t the best way to keep your water cold. While ice is needed, too much ice will crowd out the cannabis material and inhibit the creation of a vortex in the water while mixing. There are other things you can do to optimize your ice water, and these tips can even be used in combination. For example, you can create a cold room for washing hash, use a water chiller, and place a neoprene insulator over the wash bucket.
The colder the water, the more efficient and effective the extraction process will be. So keep these tips in mind!
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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is neoprene?
Neoprene is a type of synthetic rubber that's used in wetsuits and other items where insulation is required. Neoprene is the perfect material for insulating wash buckets to keep water cold during ice water extraction.
Why do you need cold water for making bubble hash?
Ice cold water is needed to freeze the trichome heads so they can effectively break away from the stalks that attach them to the plant material.
How cold should the water be for washing hash?
Water should be as close to 32 degrees Fahrenheit as possible, while still remaining in liquid form.
How much ice should you use when making hash?
The only advantage of ice is that it helps keep the water cold. Ice by itself doesn't help the trichomes break free from the plant material. Therefore, use as little ice as possible to maintain very cold temperatures. Don't crowd out the wash bucket with too much ice.
What happens if you use warm water for making hash?
Warm water isn't conducive to trichome isolation and collection. Warm water doesn't enable