A common question that many new pipe smokers have is whether or not it is okay to smoke the same pipe on a daily basis. There are a couple of differing opinions about this within the pipe smoking community. One school of thought is that pipes should be rested between smokes. Some smokers will smoke out of a pipe once, clean it and then let it rest until the next day. Others will smoke several bowls of tobacco and then let the pipe rest for two to three days before using it again.
It is believed that letting pipes rest between smokes will allow the pipes to last longer. Pipes that are smoked every day, several times per day tend to wear out faster. They may crack, burn out, get hot spots or cake unevenly; all of which can lead to a poor smoking experience. Resting between smokes also allows the bowl and stem to dry completely, particularly if the person is a wet smoker. Wet pipes can cause a bad smell and sour the tobacco.
Another school of thought is that a person can smoke the same pipe every day. However, the person may need to take extra precautions with the pipes to prevent permanent damage. For example, the person may need to limit the number of bowls he or she smokes in a day. Cleaning the bowl thoroughly after each smoke will also be important, as this will prevent too much cake from building up and ruining the experience.
In general, though, it is a good idea to rotate pipes. There are a couple of reasons for this, but the primary one is that the pipes will last longer. Heat and moisture from the tobacco puts stress on the bowl. As with anything, daily use increases the rate of deterioration and the risk of breakage. A piped that is used every day will simply have a shorter lifespan than one that is used more irregularly.
The type of tobacco used will also make a difference in how often it can be smoked. A person can smoke a pipe a lot more often when using dry tobacco than when using wet. Smoking wet tobacco can make the pipe swampy after a while and ruin not only the taste but can make the pipe go sour. If the bowl becomes too wet due to the absorption of moisture, it is probably a good idea to let the pipe rest for a few days to dry out.