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A Guide to Vaping as Learned by Team Redux

by Jennifer Frank February 01, 2016

A Guide to Vaping as Learned by Team Redux

Why make the switch?

You are only consuming 3-4 ingredients with electronic cigarettes instead of 4000+ known chemicals plus 60 known carcinogens contained in traditional cigarettes.

Vaping tastes so much better! There is a large spectrum of flavors available in today's market that provides consumers with a completely unique and unparalleled vaping experience that traditional cigarettes will never be able to offer all while getting optional nicotine to help curb the cravings.

Traditional cigarettes let off an offensive odor when smoked. Electronic cigarette vapor is lightly scented, but may still be unwelcome. Combat the negativity by vaping responsibly and be conscientious to others around you.

Vaping is effective because of the physicality behind it. You get that craved hand-to-mouth action of smoking traditional cigarettes with the added bonus of inhaling and exhaling a physical vapor. Visual satisfaction of seeing the vapor is a welcome bonus to those who have tried other smoking cessation products.

You can use vaping as a cessation tool or as an alternative. The biggest thing to remember is that our industry boasts harm reduction, not harm elimination. You will still take a risk inhaling a foreign substance, but it is better than staying on the stinkies.

Public Health England (PHE) did the research on vaping and endorses it as 95% Safer than traditional cigarettes. Check out the study for a more in-depth look at vaping.

What is Vaping?

How Does It Work?

Most devices have a battery and a tank.

Inside the tank is an atomizer (or coil) and this is what actually does the vaporization. Atomizers can be manufactured, others can be built by wrapping the wire and putting in the wicking material (known as re-buildable coils).

On either side of the atomizer is the wick. The wick is what draws the e-liquid to the atomizer from the tank. Inside the atomizer is a wire that is wrapped around the wick. This wire is heated up from the battery, which in turn heats the e-liquid and creates the vapor you inhale.

Wicks and Wire

The wick can be made from silica, organic cotton, wire mesh or ceramic.

The most common wire used, called Kanthal A1, is a composite metal made out of 3 elements: iron, aluminum and chromium.

The thickness of the wire and the number of wraps with the wire will determine your resistance (ohms). Resistance allows you to control the amount of vapor. Low resistance on an unregulated device typically means more vapor.

Types of Mods (battery device)

An unregulated battery or mod is a device that does not allow you to control the device settings such as watts, volts or temperature. As the battery dies, you are restricted to the devices output and it will gradually decrease the amount of vapor you are getting.

Variable voltage devices allow you to control the battery output to your atomizer and works with the resistance of the wire to customize the amount of vapor produced. These devices typically range from 10W to 200W.

Temperature control devices are used in the same manner as Variable Voltage devices, but are used with low/no resistance wires such as Nickel or Titanium. These devices can range from 200°F to 600°F.

Battery Safety Overview

Be sure to use the charger manufactured for your battery and never leave a charging battery unattended. The average lifespan for a rechargeable battery is 6-12 months when cared for properly.

Always store your batteries around room temperature - extreme temperature changes can negatively affect your batteries.

Store and carry your batteries without loose items or change, preferably in a container designed to carry loose batteries. Your device can turn on or batteries can vent and cause you danger. Lock your device when carrying them in your pocket or purse to prevent auto-firing.

For external batteries (18350, 18650, etc.), always make sure your contacts remain undented and the plastic wrapping is in pristine condition. Exposed metal is hazardous as this can cause shorts and venting. Do not drop your batteries as this can also cause instability. This is especially important with lithium polymer (LiPo) batteries.

Check out our other blog on Battery safety by Nick Morrissey for more useful info!

E-Liquids

E-liquid is comprised of three main ingredients: Propylene Glycol (PG), Vegetable Glycerin (VG), and natural or artificial food grade flavoring. E-liquid can be made with or without Nicotine.

Propylene Glycol (PG) is a low viscosity liquid. It's an organic compound that is colorless and almost completely tasteless. It can be found in approved oral and topical medications as well as inhalers as a suspension agent and in hospital air sanitizers.

Vegetable Glycerin (VG) is a high viscosity liquid. It's an organic compound that is colorless and sweet tasting. It is commonly found in food used as a sweetening agent and some medications. Corn Syrup commonly contains VG.

E-liquids are offered in a range of PG/VG ratios. PG controls the throat hit and lowers the viscosity of the e-liquid. Most flavorings are also PG based. VG controls the amount of vapor produced by the e-liquid and has less throat hit. There are different combinations of these mixes you will see 50PG/50VG, 30PG/70VG - its up to you to see what you prefer most!

Nicotine can be added in doses (or milligrams [mg]) to the e-liquid. Typical doses are 3, 6, 12 and 18 mg. 0 mg is no nicotine, 18 mg is equivalent to a cigarette puff for puff when used in a clearomizer.

Be sure to store your e-liquid in a cool or room temperature place away from direct sunlight.

Notable Side Effects

Minor Dehydration

Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerin are hygroscopic liquids. This means they draw out water from the surrounding areas. Be sure to drink lots of water when vaping.

Minor Dizziness, Nausea or Headache

This is typically cause from getting too much nicotine. Decrease your dosage (mg) or vaping frequency to combat this.

VG or PG Intolerance

Some people have been known to have an intolerance to VG or PG. This usually surfaces as mild reactions such as itchy throat, mild tightening or rashes. Get an e-liquid with a different VG or PG ratio to combat this.

Increased Smell and Taste

Why is this a side effect you ask? Well, increased smell and taste can be both good and bad. Take caution when changing diapers and garbage and eating spicy food.

Troubleshooting

Burnt Taste

Can be caused from improper liquid ratios, old e-liquid in your tank, improper voltage or temperature setting or you need to change your coil.

Gurgling in Your Tank

Condensation in your mouthpiece will cause an excess of liquid. Use a cotton swab to clean out your mouth piece or "whip" it out.

Not Enough Vapor

Can be caused from a dying battery or a bad connection to your battery. Clean your contacts to troubleshoot this.

Leaking

Changes in temperatures or atmospheric pressure can cause leaking. You can also check the o-rings and seals on your tank. E-liquid that is too thin (or, high PG) can cause leaking in larger wicking holes.

Getting Started:

Draw slowly and inhale slower than you would smoking a cigarette - it's a whole different sensation than the burning combustion you would get from cigarettes. Once you are used to the sensation you can adjust your inhale to your own liking.

Keep your devices and connections clean by wiping away any juice or debris on the battery contacts or threading. E-liquid is water soluble so rinsing your tanks with warm water to clean out old e-liquid is safe. We do not recommend rinsing your coils as most are made with Kanthal wire which contains iron and can start oxidizing (creating rust). Ensure all your parts are completely dry before reassembling and using your electronic cigarette.

Calgary has applied the smoking by-law principles to vaping so if you can't smoke there, you cannot vape there. We have received exemption for vape shops so that we can give you the best service possible in safety and flavour testing.

Store your electronic cigarette at a normal indoor temperature, avoiding either extreme highs or lows - same goes for your e-liquid. Have spares or back ups with you or places like work to avoid the temptation of relapsing if your coil or batteries die or you run out of e-liquid.

Conclusion:

Vaping is a very personal experience and there is no right or wrong way to go about this journey. We are always here to help with any questions. For some people the transition from smoking to vaping is immediate and for some it takes a few weeks or more, just know that it’s about every cigarette you DON’T have, not the ones that you do have. If there is pressure to ‘conform’, you will be less successful. So, transition at your own pace and make choices you are comfortable with and you WILL succeed.

The best way to start is on a starter kit that will best get you introduced to the world of vaping. This can be a pen style, a tank and mod, or any combination therein. We recommend Kanger or Aspire starter kits as they have been around the longest and are tried, tested and true.

Ask around and don't be pushed into "you must buy this" or "you're only using that?!". We all started somewhere and whereas some people stay where they started, others look for other devices and options. There are so many options and finding what works for you is half the fun!

You will notice that Vaping has its own language and with time you will get to know these terms - don't worry about knowing them right out of the gates. You will hear about VV/VW, Box mods, DIY juice, cloud chasing, rebuilding coils, the possibilities are endless - there is no set process for "graduating" to the next option - stick with what you are happy with and do some research.

Rebuilding is not as "scary" as it may seem - there is a lot to learn about safety and really understanding your device - but if you are interested in learning more, come by the shop and ask us to help!

Remember… Redux is always here to help!




Jennifer Frank
Jennifer Frank

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