Hookah tips: How to choose the right hookah coal?

There are two things that matter the most if you’re eager to a great hookah experience – the tobacco and the coal. Well, besides choosing the right hookah like Hekkpipe, of course. In this post we’ll talk you through on how to choose the right hookah coal and what to bare in mind in this vivid world. Let’s go!

 

In a nutshell, the hookah coals can be divided into two categories – instant and natural coals. Broadly speaking, we can compare them as following – choose the natural coal if you have time and you want to experience a fresh, all organic hookah. On the contrary, choose the instant coal if you want to be portable and if time is money. Please do note that instant coals smell a bit wierd when igniting. A must-know tip, too – let the instant coal sparkle until the end and fully ignite before placing it on the tobacco bowl!

By the way, did you know that hookah sessions with a natural coal rarely end with a headache?

natural coals instant coals
time to ignite long, 1-5 minutes short, 20-30 seconds
accessories needed oven or a big lighter match or a small lighter
cost cheaper more expensive
duration long, lasts for multiple sessions short, lasts one session max
headache probably no headache after the session might occur when smoking a lot

But now, let’s dive into this topic!

 

Tom Cococha natural hookah coal

Tom Cococha might be the most famous one in the natural coal family. If you’re looking for a great quality natural coal, this might be the right choice.

Tom Cococha natural hookah coal

The pros:

  • Lasts for a long time.
    Due to its size, the Tom Cococha natural coal burns for a long time. This is great because it offers you a great smoking experience that lasts a while. That means you can even use the coal for multiple sessions – comfortable if you own an additional tobacco bowl. Just replace the bowl and you’re ready to go!
  • Comes in a big pack.
    Tom Cococha comes in a 1 kg or 3 kg package, meaning that once you invest in coal, you don’t have to worry about the coal ending soon. This is comfortable if you’re a true hookah friend – the coal is always there to accompany you.
  • Cheaper than the instant coal.
    At the price of around 6 euros for 1 kg you get enough coal for tens of sessions, making the price per session ridiculously cheap. Keep that in mind!

 

The cons:

  • Igniting takes a lot of patience.
    Well, Tom Cococha is a classic natural coal, which means it takes a while before fully igniting. In fact, it’s quite impossible to ignite it with the regular fire matches or even with a original Zippo. Instead, you need a gas oven at home or a fire torch used at baking, for example. But hey, good things require time, don’t they? 🙂
  • A bit large for Hekkpipe.
    Yeah, the name Tom Cococha sounds as big as the coals are – they might be great for a big traditional hookah, but for an excellent hookah like Hekkpipe, they are a bit too large as the metal cone reflects too much heat. Which leads us to the next problem – it’s really hard to break them into pieces thus making it hard to regulate heat on your hookah. Leaving that aside, Tom Cococha is a great hookah coal to consider.

 

What’s the right size for Hekkpipe? 1 piece. If you can’t break it into pieces, let it burn for a while before placing it on the tobacco bowl.

 

Ecocha natural hookah coal

Another great hookah coal to consider if you’re looking for a natural option is Ecocha. Ecocha, made of coconut tree, is quite similar to the abovementioned Tom Cococha, but features some differences.

Ecocha natural hookah coal

The pros:

  • The size is fair enough.
    Compared to the Tom Cococha, the Ecocha natural coal is a bit smaller, thus making it the right choice for sessions with the Hekkpipe. It too is hard to break into pieces, but this isn’t really a problem in that case – the tobacco won’t burn and the session turns out great.
  • Reasonably priced
    Just like in the case of Tom Cococha, the Ecocha is a cheaper option when compared to the instant coals. The price range is roughly the same like with the previous one, but just think – you get around 100 pieces for around 15 euros – it’s a bargain!

 

The cons:

  • The coal burns unevenly.
    In our opinion, the Ecocha coal takes even longer to ignite than the Tom Cococha, even though its smaller. That means it’ll require even more patience to prepare the coal. Furthermore, it doesn’t burn well either. It has a lot of potential due its size, but in the end of the day the coal lets you down – it won’t bring the best out of your hookah nor the tobacco.

 

What’s the right size for Hekkpipe? 1 piece. If you can’t break it into pieces, let it burn for a while before placing it on the tobacco bowl.

 

Instant Lite 33mm/40mm instant hookah coal

Now, let’s take a peek into the instant coal world. The most famous one, at least here in Hekkpipe’s birth country – Estonia – is Instant Lite, both its smaller brother, the 33mm and the classic 40mm version.

Instant Lite 33mm/40mm instant hookah coal

The pros:

  • One size fits all.
    The Instant Lite 33mm version is just about the right size for both Hekkpipes and other hookahs. Choosing the 33mm version means that you don’t necessarily have to break it into pieces. However, we highly recommend you doing so – that enables you to control the heat and the tobacco bakes evenly.
    If you go with the 40mm version, you should know that it is super easy to break, even though you need to wash your hands afterwards.
  • Ignites brilliantly.
    Instant coals are hassle-free option for a hookah friends. Just take a fire match and you’re ready to go. Just around 20-30 seconds is enough for the coal to ignite, plus some more 20-30 seconds for it to fully burn.
    However, if you go with the 40mm version, bare in mind that it sometimes ignites with a small flame – no worries, it lasts for a couple of seconds max and isn’t really dangerous.
  • Both come in a handy package.
    No need to dig into the 1kg package – just use your hookah tongs to take the coal and that’s roughly. In the package, you’ll find 10 pieces of coal which is enough for some time or a month – depending on how many hookah hangouts you’ll participate. 😉

 

The cons:

  • They both last for only one session.
    Yep, one thing’s for sure – neither the 33mm nor the 40mm version last longer than one session. Meaning you have to replace and reignite the new coal after each session. Well, that really isn’t a problem, but a thing to bare in mind though.
    The 33mm version might even burn out before the tobacco will. So, you might discover that some of your carefully chosen tobacco is unused and thus wasted. You wouldn’t want that, would you?
  • Be careful with the 40mm version.
    If you decide to keep it clean and not break the coal into pieces, the 40mm version of Instant Lite will burn the tobacco and thus make you cough. Follow these simple tricks to make your hookah taste fresh to avoid it. Just about ¾ is far enough for the Hekkpipe.

 

What’s the right size for Hekkpipe? 1 piece (33mm) or ¾ pieces (40mm). Break the coal into pieces to regulate the heat better.

 

Forty Four instant hookah coal rings

Another really great instant coal is the donut-shaped Forty Four. Despite its large dimensions like the name suggests (44mm), it features a hole insite it which enables to experience a good hookah session.

Forty Four instant hookah coal rings

The pros:

  • Burns evenly.
    Due to its innovative donut-shaped design, the Forty Four instant coal heats the tobacco evenly and thus enables the tobacco to bake evenly. It is especially good for the Hekkpipe models with the new vortex-type tobacco bowl. Or any other traditional hookah.
  • Easy to break into pieces.
    If necessary, the Forty Four is really easy to break into pieces. Due to its size, the easy breaking might come handy if you’re a Hekkpipe owner.

 

The cons:

  • Expensive.
    Compared to its competitors its even more expensive than the Instant Lite. For around 3 EUR you get 10 pieces of coal rings which, well, isn’t the cheapest.
  • Too big for Hekkpipe.
    Hekkpipe’s are designed for a bit smaller charcoals. The Forty Four with its 44mm diameter is just humoungous! Sure, you can break it into pieces, but it’ll lose its main advantage then – the whole point of the donut shape.

 

What’s the right size for Hekkpipe? ¾ pieces.

 

CarboPol Crown 40mm instant hookah coal

CarboPol Crown 40mm instant hookah coal

Last but not least – yet another specially designed charcoal, the CarboPol Crown 40mm version. This especially known charchoal in Russia features a design where the area that actually touches the aluminium foil is minimal, offering maybe the best experience you’ve ever had.

The pros:

  • Doesn’t need breaking into pieces.
    Due its innovative crown design the area that touches the aluminium foil is minimal. That means the tobacco won’t burn so easilly and the air moves without obstacles. These features enable you to bring out the best of your hookah without making your hands dirty and breaking the coal.
  • Fair deal for this price.
    Even though the CarboPol Crown costs around 3 EUR / 10 pieces like the Forty Four, we suggest that paying this price in this case is reasonable. Just think – no need to break the coal into pieces. A hassle-free experience!

The cons? Well, we haven’t found any yet so far. 🙂

 

So, these were our thoughts on how to choose the right hookah coal. Let us know which one of them is your favorite and post a memory of it to Instagram using hashtag #hekkpipe.  

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