When it comes to cleaning your hookah you should always do it after you smoke anytime. First you should give your hookah some time to cool down. Placing a hot bowl in water could cause damage and injury so I suggest letting everything cool down first. The bowl is where I like to start when I clean my hookah because it is the messiest and easiest part to clean. If you take your bowl off it can leak molases everywhere so I do this in my kitchen sink. I take the foil off and immediately rake all the burnt shisha out into the trash can. Next I run hot water over my bowl while cleaning it with my fingers. I do not suggest using any soap to clean it because soap can settle in the bowl and the next time you smoke you will get an awful soap flavor in your smoke. Next I take the shaft and stem out of the base and disassemble the hookah completely cleaning the ash tray, bowl grommet and bowl stem, carb and bearing, hose grommet and finally the shaft and stem. If you cannot clean the shaft for it being too tall to clean in the sink you can grab a cup and pour water down it the best you can to clean it. There are pipe brushes specifically designed to clean theses parts as well and I suggest using them when you can. Next you can clean the base by running hot water into it and rinsing it out a few times to make sure you get all the stale water, smoke, and molases out. Make sure your hose is washable and safe to run water through before you try to clean it. What I do to clean a hose is grab a cup of water and suck some water into the hose and then point the mouthtip down into the sink and let the water run through a few times to make sure to get all of the stagnant smoke out. If I ever smoke a flavor that has mint in it I usually clean the hookah with a coffee wash. Make sure you are careful if you do this. Add coffee grounds to hot water and clean the hookah the same way as previously instructed but be sure your base isnt a painted base because coffee is very abrasive and will strip the paint from your hookah and damage parts. Finally you want to let your hookah dry out before storing it.