Ganja Guides

How to Clean a Grinder: Metal, Plastic, and Acrylic

dirty grinder

A grinder is an essential accessory for anyone who likes to smoke weed. No matter the shape or size, with just a few twists you can break up your cannabis flower into whatever consistency you want. When put to good use, a weed grinder will eventually require cleaning as plant residue builds up inside the chambers. Follow these steps and you’ll know how to clean a grinder, even one that is so dirty it seems beyond repair!

Photo: Unsplash

How To Clean A Weed Grinder 

Getting your grinder to sparkle like it’s brand new is not too difficult. Whether your grinder is made of metal, plastic, or acrylic, they should be cleaned every few months. When the grinder residue builds up so much that it worsens the grinding abilities, it’s usually a good sign that your gadget needs a nice, deep clean. 

Cleaning Supplies 

  • 1 metal grinder
  • Freezer
  • Toothbrush or makeup brush
  • Isopropyl alcohol
  • 4 ziplock bags or containers
  • Hot water 
  • Paper or cloth towels 

Best Way to Clean A Grinder 

The most common type of grinder is made of metal, and for good reason. The device is way more sturdy than a plastic grinder and breaks up cannabis flower with a good amount of force. With the supplies above, you’re more than set to begin cleaning your prized hash crusher. 

1. Take apart your metal grinder.
These usually contain four chambers – the top grinding pieces, the flower chamber, and the kief catcher. Some metal grinders vary in the number of chambers, but you’ll want to make sure they are all separated.

metal grinder pieces
Most metal versions have four chambers like this one (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

2. Put the pieces of the grinder into the freezer for at least one hour.
This helps solidify and break off the kief and cannabis debris on the grinder, so you can save those THC-dense granules on the grinder rather than letting them go to waste 

3. Take out the metal pieces from the freezer.
Grab your clean toothbrush, makeup brush, or paintbrush to brush off all of the marijuana debris. This is also the best way to clean the grinder screen, which is the most delicate piece. Now you have a good amount of kief to save for later! 

4. Soak remaining pieces in isopropyl alcohol.
Submerge each metal portion in separate ziplock bags or containers. Give them a soft shake every once in a while, and leave the parts out to soak for a few hours or even overnight, just make sure to let the the water get very murky.

5. Rinse the pieces under hot water.
Dry all of them off, and your grinder is clean! Put the pieces back together and immediately it works like brand new! 

How to Clean a Plastic Grinder 

If your grinder is made out of plastic or acrylic, it’s important to avoid using isopropyl alcohol so the material doesn’t warp or break down. However, you can still deep clean your favorite stoner tool with just a few different supplies. Here’s what you’ll need: 

  • Plastic grinder (and acrylic) 
  • Toothbrush, makeup brush, or paintbrush
  • Hot Water
  • Dish soap 
  • Sponge
Plastic and acrylic grinders usually have two chambers instead of three or four. (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Scrubbing Steps

1. Take apart two plastic pieces and place them in the freezer.
Just like with a metal grinder, this helps break off all the kief so that it doesn’t go to waste.

2. Grab a Cleaning Brush
Use your clean brush to get off all of the cannabis residue that has built up in your grinder – save it for a rainy day!

3. Run the grinder under hot water.
Scrub the plastic with dish soap and a sponge to clean it like you would with other kitchen supplies.

4. Dry off your plastic grinder
You’re ready to start crushing up some weed again!

Gunked Up No More!

Now you know how to keep your favorite cannabis crusher looking brand new. The steps are easy and intuitive, plus using a grinder helps bring out the best flavors and textures from your favorite weed strains. These little containers with small spikes and holes remove the hassle from picking marijuana apart with your fingers. Check out these unique grinders out there to choose from, and find one that speaks to you so you’re motivated to keep it squeaky clean! 

how to grind weed
With a clean metal grinder at the ready, you can break up weed to the freshest extent (Source: Pexels)

About Olivia

Olivia, our Oakland-based cannabis guides writer, graduated from the University of California Berkeley with a Bachelor's degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. She's an independent writer, cannabis enthusiast and Sales Lead at her local dispensary. She's also a recent grad, history buff, and has a passion for animals. You can reach her at [email protected].