Top 5 Common Vape Problems

1. Leaking

  • Overfilled Tank: if you overfill your clearomizer tank, this can cause it to leak.

  • Ejuice in Air Hole: Most vapers know that gurgling sound they get when vaping. This means you likely have e juice down the center air hole. You can get ejuice in the air hole from a few different ways.
     

    • From Filling: One way E juice can get an air hole is when you are filling the clearomizer tank. if you pour too much too quickly, it can spill into the air hole. To fill the clearomizer tank correctly, you must make sure you pour slowly and against the edge of the tank.

    • Heavy Draws: Another way you can get e juice down the air hole is from taking too strong of a draw. This can force e juice between the rubber washers.

    • Hot Environment: Another common way that you e juice down the center air hole this from leaving it in the hot car.
       

  • Left in a Hot car: if you have your vape pen in a hot environment, it can cause you e juice to leak. The reason is because things expand in heat, and your washers that used to keep the ejuice confined in the tank now become too big and let ejuice fall through the cracks.

2. Vapor Has Burnt Taste

  • Your vape may be putting off a burnt taste. This, along with charging issues, are the most common vaping problems (also the most annoying) . If your vape is giving you a horrible burnt taste, you can do a few things to prevent it. Here are some common reasons why your vape pen may be giving you a burnt taste:

  • You need a new coil

  • You need to clean your tank

  • You vape too soon after filling a new tank

  • Variable voltage vape is set too high for the coil

3. Vape Device Won't Fire

  • Your vape's battery may be dead. Plug it in for a while, and then try again. 

  • If using a closed pod system, your pins may be stuck down due to juice build up. Keep your device clean to avoid this issue.

  • Battery might be damaged. Overcharging it, or letting it deplete too many times can damage your battery. Eventually, it may stop working altogether. Be sure to take your device off the charger when the battery reaches 100%. If you are not going to use your vape for a long period of time, give it a good charge before tucking it away. Leaving the device at 0% for too long may cause the battery to be unable to charge anymore. 

  • Your coil may have a short in it. Whether you built the coil yourself or it's just one you bought, it could be a dud. If your vape has a display, it may tell you this is the issue. If your device has no screen, you will have to troubleshoot by trying another coil on your device to figure out if the coil is the culprit. 

4. E-Liquid Is Getting In Mouth

  • You may be drawing on your vape too hard. Try taking more gentle puffs to avoid that. If you find yourself doing this frequently, try a coil with a lower ohm rating. That will give you a stronger puff, and you won't need to draw as hard to get your desired performance. 

  • Ensure you are not pressing the fire button on your vape too early. Sometimes people will fire their vape a second before they start inhaling. This causes e-juice to pool up in the coil, and sometimes squirt out. Always start drawing on your vape first, before firing.  

  • Depending on the type of vape you are using, you may need replacement O Rings. Those are the rubber rings in your tank that prevent juice from getting where it shouldn't be.  

5. Can't Taste Favorite E-Juice

If you have been using the same juice for a day or two and notice the flavor is weaker than usual, don't fear. Vaper's tongue is a condition where your taste buds get so used to the same flavor, that they don't recognize the flavor as much. To combat this, switch e-juices for a little bit and you will notice the full flavor profiles return!

Basic Vape Device Set Up

SMOK Nord

Voopoo Drag 2

UWell Caliburn

Aspire Breeze 2

STLTH Pod System

SMOK Nord AIO

SMOK Novo 2

SMOK Stick V9

 
 

Dry Herb Vaporizers

A dry herb vaporizer is a device used to vape dry herb or dry flower. They are in contrast to e-cigs that vaporize e-liquid. 

Also known as an herbal vaporizer, dry herb vaporizers are small, portable, and convenient to carry anywhere. These units are also very compact, thus making it easier for the user to change and maintain the parts such as the lithium ion battery and the cartridge tank system.
 

Whether they are the hand-held battery-operated systems, or the larger desktop versions, dry herb vaporizers are growing in terms of popularity due to the fact that there is no combustion taking place in the herbal vaporizers, so there is no smoke. Thus, there are no harmful toxins like tar and carcinogenic compounds entering the lungs, making it a safer choice. When using a dry herbal vaporizer, the user gets all the advantages of herbal medication that could be offered in the form of pure and potent vapor.

What Makes A Dry Herb Vape? 

The Battery

Batteries can either be built in or removable. If they are built in, then they are sealed inside the device and cannot be replaced. Removable batteries can be replaced and are usually either 18650 or 18350 rechargeable batteries.

The batteries of all portable vapes are rechargeable and the charge times and duration lengths vary from model to model. Desktop vapes don’t use rechargeable batteries, instead, they stay plugged into a wall outlet while they are being used.

The Chamber

The chamber is where the weed gets cooked or vaporized. It can be made from different materials such as stainless steel or ceramic. It’s important to keep the herb chamber clean if you want your vaporizer to work correctly.  

Heat times vary for each device, but on average, most herb chambers take about a minute to ninety seconds to reach vaporization temperature. Some vaporizers have granular control that allows users to choose from a wide temperature range. Others have a selection of preset temperatures from which to choose. Weed vaping is at it’s best around 190-200C.

The Mouthpiece

Mouthpieces can come in different sizes and shapes and can be made from different materials. Usually, longer mouthpieces are better because they help to cool down the vapor. Glass mouthpieces are also desirable because glass is a neutral material that does not affect the flavor of the herb. However, they are more fragile and less portable friendly than plastic or metal mouthpieces. A good mouthpiece is crucial to the vaping experience because it contributes to the airflow of the vaporizer. The better the airflow, the easier it is to inhale the vapor. 

The Process

The herb is placed in the chamber and once the device is turned on and the temperature selected, the herb gets heated and vaporized. The vapor passes through the air path and into the mouthpiece where it is inhaled by the user. After a set amount of time, the herb gets used up—or cashed—and the user opens up the chamber and empties it out. When the herb is cashed it is brown and crunchy.

During vaporization, the herb gets heated to a temperature below the combustion point so smoke does not get produced, only vapor. Since no smoke is produced during vaporization, the toxins and carcinogens associated with smoke do not get produced either, which means that vaping is a purer method of using marijuana than smoking it. 
 

During vaporization terpenes and cannabinoids get released from the marijuana plant. Adjusting the temperature also controls how many of those terpenes and cannabinoids get released. Marijuana begins to vaporize at a temperature of about 140°C and begins to burn at a temperature of about 230°C. All vaporizers have a temperature range in between those two extremes so users can enjoy the terpenes and cannabinoids of marijuana without worrying that it might get burnt. 

There are three different heating methods when it comes to dry herb vaporizers, and they are as follows:

3 Types of Heating

Conduction

This is the most common heating method and it is when the heating element comes into direct contact with the herb.

Convection

With this method, the weed and the heating elements do not come into contact with each other. Instead, hot air is passed through the weed in order to vaporize it.

Hybrid

This uses a combination of the two heating methods to provide rich-tasting vapor. You typically see this type of heating method in high-end vaporizers.

The Effects

When using a dry herb vaporizer, it is best to take long, slow inhales of about seven to ten seconds before exhaling. With this method, you can be certain that you will inhale all of the cannabinoids and terpenes in the marijuana plant. That is because vaporization preserves more terpenes and cannabinoids than smoking does. Some scientists think the combustion of weed destroys some of the cannabinoids present in the plant.

That is because there have been studies that compare people who vape weed against those who smoke it. In all cases, the people who vaped weed had a higher concentration of THC in their blood than the users who smoked it. That means vaping gives users a purer and more intense high than smoking weed does.

Dry Herb Vape For Beginners

Utillian 420

If you've never tried a dry herb vaporizer before, it is wise to start with an entry level device. Typically, good beginner dry herb vapes start at around $80+. If you go much cheaper than that, you will often be sacrificing quality and longevity. We recommend the Utillian 420 for a first dry herb vape. You can find it for $82.99 on uvapeshop.com.

This vape has 4 pre-set temperatures of 190C, 200C, 210C & 220C. The Utillian 420 features a digital display, which you usually won't find on a budget vaporizer, allowing you to monitor your battery level and temperature settings.

Dry Herb Vape For Experienced Users

Utillian 722

If you know your way around a dry herb vaporizer and enjoy the experience, this is a great choice for a higher end device, coming in at $199.99 on uvapeshop.com. The 722 boasts a bigger battery than the 420, a stainless steel chamber with convection heating, and 4 temperature presets at 180C, 190C, 200C & 210C. It also features a BOOST mode, enabling it to heat up to 225C for maximum vapor extraction. 

 

RBA Tanks

RBA (Rebuildable Atomizer) – a universal term used for atomizer units containing a deck upon which coils and wicks (also known as ‘builds’) are mounted. The word RBA literally denotes the property of physically wrapping the coil, affixing it to the system, and adding a wick to allow for smooth vapor production. The builds can be categorized according to RBA types and can be modified by the user according to their vaping preferences.

The main benefit of using these types of atomizers is the option of customizing the coil assembly to get the desired resistance. Users can calibrate their vape to their exact preference to maximize their vape performance. The other advantage is that building your own coils is significantly cheaper than buying pre-made coils.

RBAs can be divided into these sub-categories:

  • Rebuildable Tank Atomizer (RTA)

  • Rebuildable Dripping Atomizer (RDA)

  • Rebuildable Dripping Tank Atomizer (RDTA)

  • RTA (Rebuildable Tank Atomizer) – a type of rebuildable atomizer (RBA) with a posted deck which is enclosed by a sealed metal chamber cap. It is encompassed with a tank pool for containing the e-juice. The chamber cap is linked to a chimney which routes the vapor to the drip tip. Gravity, along with pressure, helps push the e-juice into the tank and down the chamber cap; and finally, up through the channels present around the girth of the deck. Ends of the soaking wick are placed in these channels, and by the process of diffusion, the e-liquid is passed from the wick on to the coil for vaporization.

  • RDA (Rebuild-able Dripping Atomizer) - a type of rebuildable atomizer (RBA) with a deck and posts(to fasten the coil and to provide a closed path for electric energy from the batteries that heat up the coil). The tank part to hold the e-liquid is omitted in this system, and instead, the liquid is dripped by the user directly onto the coil or the wick by removing the cap and replacing it before vaping.

  • RDTA (Rebuild-able Dripping Tank Atomizer) - An RDTA is a different beast for several reasons.  To qualify as an RDTA it has to offer a tanks convenience with the ability to still be used as a dripper.  If you have to take the device apart to reach the coils, other than removing the top cap (like a dripper), it does not qualify for this category.
     

Building Your Own Coils

Ever wanted to build your own vape coils? Coil building is the art in which you build your own coil put it in your Rebuildable Dripping Atomizer (RDA) or Rebuildable Tank Atomozier (RTA), wick it and thus create your own coil!

Building your own coils can save you $40-$50 per month compared to buying pre-made coils, but it takes practice and should not be attempted until you've learned the basics. You will absolutely need to understand OHM's Law to be safe. This part is very important.

To start, you will need:

  • An ohms reader

  • RDA of your choice

  • Coil wire (Kanthal recommended for beginners)

  • Small 2mm screwdriver

  • Another small screwdriver or Allen key that fits your RDA

  • Small butane or propane torch

  • Tweezers

  • Small wire cutters

  • Scissors

  • Wicking cotton

  • E-Juice

  • Knowledge (especially of the risks)

If you don't have an ohms reader, do not attempt to build your own coils. Before you start wrapping coils you need to figure out how many wraps your coil will need for it to have the desired resistance. We recommend the coil wrapping calculator at www.steam-engine.org. You can adjust variables like wire size (28ga), coil type (single), target resistance (1.2 ohms), inner coil diameter (2mm), & leg length (4mm). This calculator will tell you the right amount of wraps you need. For this guide we are using a 1.2 ohm single coil and this will require 8 full wraps. 

Oxidizing The Wire

To start, you will want to cut a piece of your kanthal wire. 3 inches is probably enough, but it's often easier for beginners to have a little extra to hold onto so we recommend cutting a 4-5 inch piece of wire. You will then want to hold the end of your wire with your tweezers. Light your torch and carefully heat the kanthal wire at one end until it glows orange then slowly move the torch down the whole piece of wire. Wait a moment for your wire to cool then grab the other end of the wire and repeat. Oxidizing the wire will make it less “springy” and easier to work with.

Wrapping The Coil

For this step, grab your tweezers, small screwdriver and your wire. You want to put your wire on top of the screwdriver close to it’s handle. Hold the end of the wire nearest the screwdriver firmly with your thumb. You then will start wrapping your wire around the screwdriver until you have reached 8 wraps. Be sure to keep the coils as close to one another as possible, without overlapping. It is important to try to keep the wire tight to eliminate as much slack as possible. Once you have made your 8 wraps, both leads should be facing the same direction. Double check your number of wraps by counting them on the side of the coil that is opposite of the leads. Once you are sure your coils has 8 wraps you can hold one lead firmly with your fingers and pull on the other lead with your tweezers or pliers then repeat with the other lead. This is to remove any extra slack your coil might have. DO NOT REMOVE YOUR COIL FROM THE SCREWDRIVER.

Installing Your Coil

Next we will want to take the build deck of your RDA and loosen the post screws most of the way. We do not suggest removing the screws completely because they are easy to lose and hard to put back in when your hands are already full. You will then take your coil (still on the screwdriver) and place one lead in your positive post hole and the other in your negative post. Using the screwdriver currently inside your coil try to position the coil towards the center of your RDA. Once you have it roughly positioned you can tighten your post screws. Be careful not to over tighten or you might cut the wire inside the post and have to make a new coil. Once your coil is mounted securely trim the leads as close to the posts as possible.

Testing Your Coil For Shorts

Next, take your RDA and screw it on to your ohms reader and turn it on to be sure the new coil on your RDA doesn’t have a short. It should measure close to your target resistance of 1.2 ohms but it is important to remember it is quite common and normal for coils to have a slight variance in resistance of up to 0.2ohms. If your coil displays the proper resistance within 0.2ohms you are ready to move on to the next step.
If your ohms reader is not reading your coil or displays a resistance more than 0.2 ohms different than your target resistance, there is a problem that needs to be fixed. Check to be sure your RDA’s post screws are tight. Check your coil's positioning to make sure it isn’t touching the deck or posts. Be sure your atomizer is screwed completely into the ohms reader. If these steps corrected your problem you are ready to move on to the next step. If those steps did not correct your problem try making another coil. If you continue to have an issue there might be a problem with your atomizer or with your ohms reader.

Test Firing & Eliminating Hot Spots

Now that your coil is installed properly and there are no shorts, you are ready to put your RDA on to your mod. Once your RDA is installed onto your mod you will want to briefly fire your mod until the coil begins to glow. Once your coils begin to glow stop firing your mod and gently squeeze your coil together with your tweezers. Repeat this process until the coil glows evenly starting from the center moving towards the outer wraps.

Wicking The Coil

There are different things you can use to wick your coil. Organic cotton, silica wick, eko-wool (silica braided around cotton) are all popular for different reasons. For this purpose we prefer organic cotton for its superior flavor and wicking abilities. You will want a piece of material just big enough to fit snug inside your coil, leaving about half an inch on either side. It sometimes helps to wet and twist the end of your wick to get it started. Push it in from one side of the coil and pull it out the other side. If It doesn’t go through easily you likely are using too much material for your wick. On the other hand if your wick is sliding loosely inside the coil there is not enough material. Once your wick is threaded though the coil, take the wick sticking out of each side and trim them so they are just long enough to be folded over to sit on the deck of your RDA. Once your wicks are trimmed, wet them with a few drops of e-juice and fold them on to the RDA deck, paying mind not to push them underneath the coil so air can reach the entire coil.

One More Test

After wicking your coils, it is likely they were pushed on or moved around a little. It is important to recheck that your RDA’s post screws are tight. Then recheck your resistance on an ohms meter. Be aware it is possible that your resistance might have changed slightly +/- 0.2ohms but this is normal. If everything checks out you are ready. If there is a problem you will need to recheck everything, working your way backwards until you find the problem.

Enjoy!

Congratulations, you've built your first 1.2 ohm coil! Just wet your wick, put the RDA cap on and enjoy.

Safety Note

It is important to note when building or rebuilding your own coils, it is absolutely crucial to know the limits of your device, hardware, and batteries. Never build at resistances that will exceed their safe operating capacity.
Exposed coils when installed and fired on your device are very hot. Please exercise caution. If you do not have an ohms reader, absolutely DO NOT try to build a coil. 

Mechanical Mods

Introduction

E-cigarettes and vape mods are diverse devices, and come in many different forms. Most users are familiar to the usual vape pens or box mods. There’s another type of mod that is becoming more popular though. It’s the mechanical mod, also known as mech mod. So, what are mechanical mods? 

The Basics

Most vapes are pretty easy to break down. They come with a battery, the device itself, and usually a tank. That tank has an atomizer that creates vapor from e-liquid. It is composed of a heating coil and wick. The electronic resistance is determined by the type of coil, the power of the device, and the temperature it creates. Most e-cigarettes, self-regulate all those effects and components.

Most devices on the market now are regulated mods and they offer wattage and voltage control. This is controlled by a computer chip. Users usually will have control of wattage and temperature, which affects how many watts are used and what temperature is generated. Most of these devices are also equipped with safety features to protect the user from potential dangers.

Typically there are 2 types of mechanical mods. One is the standard mech mod that looks like a vape pen and the second is the mechanical box mod. See below for examples:

Mech Pen Mod

Mech Box Mod

Regulated or Unregulated

With mechanical mods or mechs, you have an entirely different type of device. They are unregulated mods because they lack the chips that typically coordinate the relationship between atomizer and battery. As a result, these devices operate at a constant full output of voltage from the battery. There are no real electronics in these units, and they thus rely entirely upon the user to control their operations. That freedom offers many benefits but can pose unique risks as well.

Safety

If you're considering a mechanical mod, it's very important you understand the batteries and the risks involved. The horror stories in the paper you hear about vapes exploding are usually from using modified mechanical mods with batteries that can't handle the power.

Of course you can get hung up on all the health issues concerning vaping, like popcorn lung and the effects of becoming addicted to vaping, but these concerns are related to all vaping devices and not just mechanical mods.

Sub Ohm Vaping

Mech mods are mainly used and ideal for sub-ohm vaping. They can be used with basically any type of coil that you can imagine, as long as you know what you're doing, and you never need to worry about the device not working correctly. No matter how low the resistance is, a mech mod would be capable of firing it up.

Regulated mods don’t allow that customization because their safety features stop you from using custom components. If the resistance is too low with a regulated mod, their chips just refuse to operate. As you might guess, that flexibility enables mech mod users to truly customize their vaping experience and enjoy the results they crave.