They say that it takes an average new e-cigarette user a couple of months until they really become adept at using a personal vaporizer. I’ve told many people that and, as skeptical as they were about the statement, almost every one of them let me know a couple of months after getting their first e-cigarette that two months turned out to be a pretty accurate figure.
The problem is, everybody smokes differently, so what works best for one person may not work at all for another. Everybody needs to find their own way.
If you keep the following ten tips in mind when you get your first e-cigarette, though, you might be able to cut that learning curve down to just a couple of weeks and you’ll definitely have a better chance of ditching your traditional smokes:
1. Use Your E-Cig Out of the Box
More often than not, I see e-cigarette websites telling people that they need to charge their batteries for a really long time before they use them.
They state that if you don’t give them a really good, long charge the first time, the batteries won’t last very long between charges.
While it is true that e-cigarette batteries are frequently shipped with only a partial charge in them and that if it is a very small charge, the vapor may not be so great, there is absolutely no reason why you can’t use an e-cigarette right out of the box. You will not harm your batteries in the least if you don’t immediately throw them on a charger before using them!
2. Lithium Ion Batteries Don’t Have a Memory
If you ever hear someone telling you that you need to drain your e-cigarette batteries completely before you charge them or that they need a really long charge the first time, please ignore that advice. It is not based upon any valid electronic theory.
The whole “memory” thing pertains to nickel cadmium and nickel–metal hydride batteries only. Fortunately, your e-cigarette doesn’t use the same kind of batteries as your Dust Buster. E-cigarettes use lithium ion batteries.
Lithium ion batteries do not have a “memory.” It doesn’t matter if you charge them for a half hour or for four hours; a charged lithium-ion battery is a charged lithium-ion battery.
Once the light on the charger turns green, the battery is as charged as it’s going to get and it doesn’t matter how long it took to get to that point. It’ll last the same amount of time, no matter how long it sat on the charger.
It should also be noted that whenever possible, you should charge your batteries from a wall charger and NOT a USB charger. Batteries charge better and faster from an AC outlet than they do via a USB port. You should also NEVER leave a battery unattended when charging from a USB port.
WARNING: You DO want to remove a battery from the charger as soon as possible after it is fully charged. Although decent lithium ion batteries have an internal electronic cutoff that is supposed to keep them from being overcharged, electronics fail sometimes. Overcharging any lithium ion battery CAN affect its life and can even be a fire hazard if the internal electronics of the battery fail.
3. Prime Your Atomizer
Whether you are using an old style 510 or 901 atomizer or one of the new ones with replaceable heads or coils, you should ALWAYS prime a brand new atomizer before you use it.
If you have a 510 or 901 type of atomizer, simply place 3-4 drops of e-juice directly down inside of the atomizer onto the wick (that pointy looking thing that sticks up). Let it sit for 30 seconds or so and then you are free to vape away!
If you are using Type-C or C2 heads or one of the clearomizers with replaceable coils, priming your atomizer is even easier. Simply take five dry puffs on the e-cigarette without pressing the button on the battery. This will wet the atomizer head/coil and it’s good to go from there!
4. Tight is NOT Right
The number one reason that batteries fail is that people screw atomizers onto them too tightly or they screw the battery onto a charger much too tight. When you do that, it forces the post down inside of the battery where it cannot make proper contact with the contacts on an atomizer or the battery charger.
When you start to feel resistance, STOP! It’s not mandatory that your atomizer/clearomizer mesh perfectly with the battery. When charging a battery, the moment you see the light turn from green to red, proper contact has been established and you don’t need to screw the battery onto the charger any tighter.
How to Fix a Battery with a Loose Post: If the post does end up getting pushed into the battery, you’ll know it because it will never turn red when you put the battery on a charger. If you take a small screwdriver or paperclip and insert it into the end where the atomizer goes, between the inside edge and the post (the thing that looks like a metal nub or button), you can frequently pry the post back up by working side to side and gently wedging it up. Don’t go overboard; though, if you pry it up too far, the whole post will pop out of the battery. At that point, it’s definitely ruined!
5. PG-VG Mix is VERY Important
We are very picky about the e-liquids we carry. Taste is obviously important but even more important is the PG (propylene glycol) to VG (vegetable glycerin) ratio. We WILL NOT sell any e-liquid with more than 20% vegetable glycerin.
VG is definitely cheaper than PG and many websites have convinced people that high VG is better (it certainly is for THEIR wallets!). Vegetable glycerin is much thicker than propylene glycol and it will cut the life of your atomizers, heads or coils by 300% or more. The more vegetable glycerin there is, the less time you can expect your atomizer heads and coils to last.
In fact, the reason we offer longer warranties on our atomizer heads and coils than most other websites do is because we do not sell e-juices with high concentrations of VG, meaning your parts last longer with our e-juice. It’s also why our atomizer warranties are void if you use someone else’s e-liquid!
While it may be true that VG produces a little bigger cloud of vapor than PG does, it is what we call “fake vapor.” It looks more impressive but has no throat hit. Having some degree of throat hit is what makes vapor feel like smoke to your throat and lungs. If it doesn’t feel like smoke, it’s not a very good substitute for a cigarette, is it?
6. Nicotine Level Affects Throat Hit
While it is true that the PG to VG ratio in e-liquid definitely affects the amount of throat hit, the level of nicotine in your e-juice also affects how much throat hit you get. The more nicotine there is, the more of a throat hit you will get.
7. Light Draws Mean More Vapor
We frequently hear from new customers that they aren’t getting much vapor from an e-cigarette. They say that they are sucking on it as hard as they can. That’s the exact opposite of what you should be doing if you want to get more vapor!
In order for vapor to occur, the battery creates power that causes the atomizer coil to heat up. That heat turns the e-liquid into vapor. If you are creating too strong of an airflow by sucking too hard, the air rushes past the atomizer and liquid faster than it can effectively heat it.
In order to get the maximum amount of vapor, draw on your e-cigarette as lightly as you can in one long continuous action. That gives the atomizer the maximum amount of time to heat the e-liquid and creates the largest amount of vapor!
8. Keep Extras With You
The worst thing that can happen to a new vaper who is trying to eliminate cigarettes is to be out somewhere and run out of e-liquid or have their atomizer or battery fail. Always carry more e-liquid than you think you might need as well as AT LEAST one extra battery and atomizer. It doesn’t hurt to have an extra charger in your car or at work, either!
It’s hard enough breaking away from regular cigarettes. Don’t give yourself an excuse to buy a pack because your e-cigarette isn’t working!
9. Backup, Backup, Backup
Not only should you make sure you have backups when you leave home, you should always have at least two extra batteries and atomizer/heads/coils stashed away, ready to go.
No electronic cigarette component lasts forever. Your batteries will eventually get to the point where they don’t hold a decent charge (and both batteries in a kit tend to fail at about the same time) and, all depending on how much you vape, you may need to replace your atomizer heads or coils every 7-30 days.
Other things you should have extras of are cartridges/tanks and even an extra battery charger is not a bad idea. Your batteries aren’t much good if your charger fails, after all!
10. Throw Away Your Regular Smokes
If you decided to purchase an e-cigarette just so that you could use it in places where regular smoking is prohibited, you can ignore this rule.
On the other hand, if you got an e-cigarette because you ultimately want to ditch the cancer sticks, the best advice I can possibly give you is to simply stop buying tobacco cigarettes.
If you don’t have a pack of cigarettes that you can grab, you can’t smoke them; you’ll HAVE TO use your e-cigarette, instead. I think you’ll find out that sometime between day 3 and 5, you’ll no longer feel the urge to have a real cigarette. In fact, usually, those who try one after a week of using an e-cigarette exclusively find regular smokes to be absolutely disgusting!