Vaping is, at its most basic level, the inhalation of vapor rather than smoke. There are many ways to vape, all of which serve this simple goal. To best understand how to vape, it is essential to have a firm grasp on a few key concepts; the anatomy of a vaporizer, the different styles of vaporizers, and the various breathing techniques involved.
Anatomy of a Vaporizer
Virtually all vaporizers utilize the same basic components. Although every individual device will have its own features and utility, they will still incorporate batteries and atomizers.
Like smoke, vapor is created by heat. Where cigarettes and cigars use a flame to create heat, electronic vaporizers use the electric current of a battery. This is the primary appeal of vaping since the erasure of flame also means the removal of the carcinogens and smog that comes with it.
These batteries can be either internal or external components of the vaporizer. For more information on the safe handling of external lithium-ion batteries, click here.
The single most critical component of a vaporizer is the atomizer. The atomizer (often referred to as the coil) is the heating element responsible for receiving the electrical current from the battery and then using its heat to convert e-liquid into vapor. These atomizers consist of two parts; cotton and conductive wire. Cotton pulls e-liquid in and serves as a barrier while the conductive wire receives a circuit and heats the e-liquid to the point of vaporization.
There are two different inhalation approaches to vaping, Mouth to Lung (MTL), and Direct to Lung (DTL). Either of these breathing techniques can work on any device; however, most vaporizers are designed to complement one or the other.
a) Mouth to Lung (MTL)
Mouth to Lung vaping occurs when the vaper uses suction created by their mouth to pull the vapor in, holds, and then inhales it into their lungs. This form of vaping is most comparable to the drag from a traditional tobacco cigarette. This technique is usually utilized with smaller devices that produce less vapor as opposed to larger devices that produce more vapor.
b) Direct to Lung (DTL)
Direct to Lung vaping occurs when the vaper inhales the vapor directly into their lungs instead of holding it first in their mouth. This technique is more comparable to how an inhaler is used. Larger devices that produce large amounts of vapor will typically cater to this technique.
Different Types of Vaporizers
There are thousands of different vaporizing devices on the market that offer this alternative to smoking. Answering the question of “how to vape” depends entirely on which of these devices is being used. These devices are largely separated into two categories, Pod Systems, and Sub-Ohm Kits.
a) Pod Systems
Pod Systems or Pod Devices are relatively new to the vaping market and capitalize off Mouth to Lung vaping and Salt Nicotine (for more information on Salt Nicotine, click here). These devices are usually small, produce minimal vapor, and are designed to simulate the draw of a cigarette.
Sub-Ohm Kits are the most common vaporizers on the market and are known for their large vapor production. These devices are typically larger than their Pod System counterparts and are staples of the Direct to Lung technique.
How to Use a Vape Mod
Every vaporizer has its own unique ways of operating. There are thousands of different devices; however, sub-ohm mods have a semi-universal user interface. Almost all vaporizers share the following traits:
Turning a Vape Mod Off or On
Virtually all vape mods are turned off and on with five quick clicks onto the firing button. These clicks must be done quickly and will either render the device inactive or active. It is important to remember to always deactivate a vaporizer before storing it in a pocket or purse.
Adjusting the Wattage of a Vape Mod
Most vape mods that utilize a sub-ohm tank will also have the capability to adjust the wattage (or power) settings. Typically, a vape mod will have wattage increase and wattage decrease buttons located near the usually larger firing button. These buttons are used to increase and decrease the power output of the device to its user’s preference or to the atomizer’s recommended wattage range.
Temperature Control Settings
The majority of vape mods offer what are known as temp control settings. These settings are intended exclusively for users who are using rebuildable devices such as RDA’s, RTA’s, and RDTA’s (for more information on rebuildable devices, please click here). The vast majority of vapers will never encounter a need for temperature control and should toggle back to the standard “wattage” setting.
Commonly Asked Questions
The vaping industry is a massive one with constant innovation and nearly unlimited variety. It can certainly be challenging to find the right answers for common questions in this atmosphere. For additional information, visit the Vapor Lab’s FAQ page.