Thursday, September 13, 2018

How Old Do You Have To Be To Vape?

Vaping and electronic cigarettes has been gaining popularity as an alternative to burning tobacco leaves and combustion. Vapers who were former smokers say they like the fact that they do not smell like ashtrays and they no longer need to go outside to smoke. But a big question to some who may not be familiar with the laws regarding e-cigarette usage is, “How old do you have to be to vape?”

This is where you will need to know your state laws regarding smoking and tobacco use. Most states follow the same guidelines with e-cigs as tobacco cigarettes.

How Old Do You Have To Be To Vape: The Legal Vaping Age in All States

The FDA has mandated that it is illegal to sell vapor products to those under the age of 18 in most states. Some states have tried adopting the T21 Initiative which would push the legal smoking and vaping age to 21.

In 42 states, the legal smoking age is 18. In 3 states it is 19, and the remaining 5 states, they have raised it to 21. Check out the vaping state laws to determine the age for your state.

But E-cigarettes Aren’t Tobacco

No, technically they are not. But since nicotine is derived (sourced) from tobacco leaves, the FDA has categorized it as a “tobacco product” even though nicotine comes from a variety of sources other than tobacco.

What is the Reason Behind the FDA Regulations?

Despite how vapers feel about the benefits of vaping as an alternative to cigarettes, there are some people who think vaping is as bad as smoking because it contains nicotine and because of some concerns about the long-term effects of vaping 20 or 30 years from now.  Studies have been done on this but the positive reports about vaping don’t seem to make national headlines, only stories of exploding vapes and teenagers buying vapor products from shops that did not check their ID.

Vaping RegulationsBecause of these negative reports and a bunch of misinformation published on the Internet, the FDA regulations came from anti-vaping proponents pushing for stricter laws regulating who can buy them and how much nicotine can be in e-liquid. The current regulations have been delayed until 2022 that requires all new vapor products to go through an application process and extensive testing for every new product to be released. This will be expensive and a lot of smaller manufacturers may not be able to keep up financially with the new demands.

One Reason We Agree with the 18+ Ruling

Vapor products were intended for adults with the ability to understand Ohm’s law and battery usage. Many vapor devices have the ability to put out 220W of power or more and should never be used by kids or teens. Even if you are the parent of a child who smokes cigarettes it may be tempting to just let them use it as long as they’re not smoking. Be advised, it is illegal for anyone under 18 (in most states) to buy or use vapor products.

What About Nicotine-Free E-liquid

Whether an e-liquid has nicotine or not is the law still applies. It applies to all vapor products including e-liquids, vape gear, and accessories. The law doesn’t stipulate “e-liquids containing nicotine only”, it applies to all vapor products as well as tobacco.

The best thing to do is to find out the laws as they pertain to your state. It’s better to know the regulations and abide by them than do something you may regret later because you didn’t take the time to find out. You can read all the License to Vape guides here and make sure you check out our beginner guide. The LicensetoVape beginners guide has a lot of resourceful information that can help you with the transition from smoking cigarettes to vaping and leading a healthier life. 

The article How Old Do You Have To Be To Vape? See more on: homepage of License to Vape

All About E-liquids

The following article All About E-liquids was originally published on HonestVape product reviews for License to Vape

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Why Does My Vape Taste Burnt?

Does your vape taste different than it used to? If you get a burnt flavor when you inhale on your vape you have either a burnt coil or burned your juice with too much heat. If you find yourself asking, “Why does my vape taste burnt?” the answer may be in one of the reasons listed below. Here are a few reasons why this happens and how you can avoid it in the future. Also make sure you check out our entire beginner vape guide to get expert and pro tips on vaping.

 

Some reasons why you may get a burnt flavor or dry hit:

  • You didn’t prime the coil before vaping
  • Your heat was too high
  • Your juice is too thick for your atomizer
  • Your coil is too old
  • You have a hot spot (in DIY coils)

 

What is a Coil Head Made Of?

Coil heads (or atomizer heads) are comprised of a coil with cotton wicking wrapped around it encased in a metal cylinder. The cylinder has feed slots for the juice to wick in through but often times it doesn’t get (a) enough time for the juice to saturate the coil, or (b) the heat may be set too high for the resistance of the coil. If the coil doesn’t get enough juice to wet it properly it can burn from being too dry, and if there is too much heat it can also burn ruining the cotton wicking leaving a bad flavor (from burnt cotton) that stays until you change the coil.

The remedy for a burnt coil is to change out the coil head. Once the cotton is burnt there is no fixing it. For RDAs and rebuildables, just replace your cotton wicking.

Here are a few tips for avoiding dry hits and burnt coils in the future:

The first thing to remember is always when using a new coil, prime it before vaping. It only takes a few minutes to drip a couple of drops of e-liquid in the center of the coil (where the cotton is) and onto the feed slots. After installing the coil and filling your tank with e-liquid, let it sit for roughly 5 minutes to allow the cotton to wick properly.

When it comes to wattage, higher ohms need lower wattage and vice versa. A tank or clearomizer that uses a standard 2.2 or 2.4 atomizer head uses a lower heat setting (between 10 - 30 watts) than low resistance coils. These coils are easy to burn so start off at the lowest setting for your device and work up until you get flavor and vapor with no burning.

Higher resistance coils, or tanks with a top wicking system may not be able to use higher VG juices. Liquids high in VG are thicker and may clog up your atomizer. You can opt for a lower VG e-liquid like a 50/50 blend or switch to a tank with a bottom coil feed.

If you get a weird flavor from a tank you use frequently it may just be that your coil is old and the juice in your tank has absorbed the flavor from it. Old coils get gunky over time and need to be changed. How often to change them will depend on your device and the wattage settings you use. If you use a lower heat (30 - 50W) and vape daily a coil should last you between 4 - 6 weeks. Most retailers say between 2 - 4 weeks, but you can make a coil last longer if you are careful. This is just an estimate though, your actual usage may be different.

Another reason for getting a burnt taste, especially in RDAs, is when you have a hot spot. A hot spot is when one coil isn’t glowing at the same rate as the other. When building coils for RDAs you want both coils to glow at exactly the same time as the other when you press the fire button. If one isn’t glowing the same as the other it is not generating enough heat to vaporize the juice and it will burn, even though your wicks are completely saturated. A good way to tell if this is the problem is to remove your wicks and look at the center of the cotton. If it's dry or burnt in the center, you have a hotspot.

Press the fire button and glow your coils while the cotton is out of them and see how they look. If one isn’t glowing the same as the other you may need to strum it a little with a small tool or edge of the tweezers. Check again and repeat until both coils are glowing the same.

For RDAs another common reason for burnt flavor is using too much cotton. Your wicks should be just thick enough to slide through the center of the coil with just a hint of resistance. If the cotton gets stuck or you have to wedge it in, you’re using too much. Getting just the right thickness in wicking takes practice.

Don’t be afraid to pull it out and start over if you think you have too much. Likewise, if your wicks are too long or you find yourself stuffing them into your juice well, you probably need to trim them shorter. Too much cotton can cause inefficient wicking, which in turn, leads to burnt or dry hits. Check out all the License to Vape guides and expert vaping advice.

The blog post Why Does My Vape Taste Burnt? Read more on: LicensetoVape (US)

Monday, September 3, 2018

Davinci IQ Dry Herb Vaporizer Review

Vaporizers have come a long way since the early days. From the first desktop models, to the smaller portable units, these devices pack a lot of power into smaller packages with technology that uses conduction heating and the ability to customize your heat settings via phone app. The Davinci IQ is a dry herb vaporizer that utilizes a “smart path” technology combined with a ceramic heating chamber to create some of the best vapor production I’ve had from a vaporizer of its kind.

 

Davinci IQ Testing and Performance

 

I was so excited when this finally arrived in the mail. I heard about this vaporizer from friends and couldn’t wait to try it out. It is the first of its kind with smartpath technology. I installed the app on my phone and connected it by Bluetooth, set my heat settings and waited while the unit heated up. When it reaches the desired setting it vibrates (and beeps) to let you know it is ready to use.

I tested and reviewed this device for a period of two weeks and found it to be easy to use and very enjoyable. I’m not a person who likes to fiddle with menu settings and some of it is a little confusing to me.

Eventually I just chose to use the second smart path and just left it there. You can choose between “smart path, precision, and boost” modes. Precision chooses a set temperature, while the smart path modes let you set your heat to a range that increases slowly as you vape.

Choosing the range of heat deepens the flavor of your vapor as the oils in the dry herb are vaporized more slowly and evenly producing a very satisfying vape.

Boost mode is great for when you don’t have the time to do a full session, but you just want a couple of good strong hits at maximum heat. Press and hold the power button down to enter boost mode. It keeps the device at the maximum temperature as long as you keep pressing the button. When finished release the button and it will return to the previous settings.

 

Build Quality and Design

I very much like the design of this unit. It is small and fits in the hand well with a very comfortable grip. I have the “Gunmetal” version and prefer to use the extended mouthpiece with it. The quality is very good and it is sturdy. All of the pieces and parts to it are of a high-quality and it works just like it says.

 

Discreetness

If you did not use the longer mouthpiece you could completely conceal the unit in your hand for discreteness. If you wanted something to vape on the go, this will work perfectly. You could very easily stealth vape and have no one even notice.

 

Durability

The device is very solid and well-made. Nothing rattles and all the parts work like they should. When I opened the box and was setting the device up the first time, I accidently dropped the little metal piece that goes on the top of the aroma chamber down inside of the opening for the chamber itself. The little piece had turned sideways as it went in and it took me a while to get it out. I thought for sure that I would end up ruining the device trying to get it out but eventually it did come out and with only a few minor scratches.

 

Power

The 3500mah 18650 Li ion battery lasts about 90 minutes of continuous vaping. It takes 2 - 3 hours to fully charge, depending on how much was left in the battery from your last session. You can also use it while charging (pass-through).

 

Vaping Experience

I have to say that it took me a few tries to get it working right. It wasn’t the device, it was me (user error). As with all devices, sometimes you need to read through the instructions a few times to get a better understanding of the menu system. Also, I had to get used to using a MTL draw again to get the proper amount of vapor production. I think I was just pulling to hard, when I went back to a “sipping” motion I was able to get more vapor.

Some vapers have reported that the device gets really hot, but for me, I find that it gets warm enough that you can tell its working. I have had no instances where it was too hot to hold in my hand, even on the highest heat setting. The zirconia used for the mouthpieces also keep heat away from your lips. It stays nice and cool.

What We Liked

+ Easy to clean
+ Good flavor
+ Heats up quickly
+ Great vapor production
+ LED grid display
+ The ceramic oven, aroma chamber, and pearl
+ Ground material is completely vaporized

What We Didn't

- Confusing menu system, bit of a learning curve to using at first

 

Value

This vaporizer is priced at $279.99, which is a really good price for what it does. The Smartpath technology, the Bluetooth App, ceramic oven, zirconia mouthpiece and flavor chamber are all selling points for this device. The technology for this device and how it does what it does, makes it well worth the asking price. It’s easy to use and easy to clean, unlike some similar devices for much less.

 

Final Verdict:

While it did take a bit of practice for me to get the settings down, I find that the way I like to use this device is just to set it and forget it. If you like to customize things then play around with the settings until you get it the way you like. I would recommend this device to any vaper looking for a high-quality dry herb device that is easy to use and requires little upkeep.

The blog post Davinci IQ Dry Herb Vaporizer Review was first published on License to Vapes

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Clearomizers, Cartomizers, and Tanks

You have probably heard these terms before and wondered, “What the heck are Clearomizers, Cartomizers, and Tanks?"

Well, today you’re going to get a lesson in vaping history about the very earliest of vaping atomizers, the clearos and cartos. Experienced vapers are familiar with these because many of them started out with these atomizers on stick batteries before moving onto more advanced vape gear.

The examples below were the options available to vapers in the very beginning of vaping popularity. The options increased over time to what we have now, but some older vapers still use some of these options because they are affordable and the devices are simple to use.

Let’s Start from the Beginning

In the beginning, there were cartomizers. These early atomizers were cylindrical tubes that encased the coil and wicking material and often came in stainless steel or a colored finish. There are actually two styles of cartomizers, which we will get into as well.

The first type of cartomizer is a short tube filled with a single coil and wicking material rolled up inside. This piece screws into the 510 connection on a stick battery and maybe a yellow color to simulate the familiar “cigarette butt” or maybe a variety of different colors depending on the manufacturer of the device. For example, Halo G6 cartomizers come in white, black, purple, green, burgundy and so on. The stick battery colors are the same as well for customization. These come “pre-filled” with Halo e-juice or as “blanks” you can fill with your own e-liquid.

These cartomizers are usually a standard resistance of 2.4 - 3.0 for older devices that are not for sub-ohm use. These include stick batteries, eGo-style batteries, and any device that works with variable voltage/wattage (twist batteries) in the range of 1 - 12W.

These are great for use in an emergency when you accidentally break a tank and have no access to a replacement right away. Just pop one onto your eGo twist and set the voltage between 3.8 and 4.2 and you’re good to go.

These also come in single or dual coil options. The single coil cartos are in the resistance range of 1.5 to 3.0 ohms. The single coil produces a cooler vape with less throat hit, while the dual coil produces more vapor and throat hit and is meant for devices with variable voltage/variable wattage.

The Second Type of Cartomizer: The Carto Tank Cartomizer

These are pretty much the same type of atomizer, the difference is that they are made to go inside of a cartomizer tank. They have a flat, flanged bottom and pre-drilled holes on the side for wicking juice from the tank. These cannot be used in place of the other cartomizers and vice versa.

Carto tanks are a glass tank with a top and bottom that is hollow in the center (which is where the cartomizer goes) the atomizer soaks e-liquid in through the holes ( or slots) in the sides of the tube. These are older style tanks and not used much anymore. They were prone to flooding and gurgling because there was no way to adjust the juice feed to keep too much juice from getting in at a time. They were also very messy to fill because the metal tube had to be pulled down from the center to allow for refilling which often resulted in juice leaking from the bottom of the tank.

Pluses and Minuses

Both of these types of cartomizers have their good points and their bad points. Their good points are that they are versatile, easy to find from known vendors and some online retailers, blanks can be filled with your own e-liquid flavors, and will last a week or two as long as you prime them before use and don’t let them go dry.

The bad points of these are that they only hold 1 -2 mils of juice, you cannot tell how much liquid is in the tank, can get gunky pretty fast, and sometimes you will get the flavor of the polyfill wicking for the first few uses. You can clean them but it is a pain, so just buy a box of 5 and discard them as needed.

The Next Evolutionary Step: The Clearomizer

The clearomizer was the next step up when moving from stick batteries to eGo-style batteries. Clearomizers are plastic tanks with an atomizer (heating coil) and wicks. You would fill them by removing the drip tip and dripping juice down the sides of the tube. The plastic tanks were more attractive and came in a variety of colors to match your device battery. The only drawback to some of these is that citrus and acidic juices like pineapple and cinnamon would cause them to crack. Also, too much pressure when opening or closing could also cause the tank to crack at the bottom where it screws onto the battery.

Disposable and Replaceable Coil Clearos

The very basic clearomizers which are the CE4 style are disposable and meant to be thrown away when the heating coil burns out or the tank cracks. These are priced around $1 or so and are easily replaced by a variety of retailers. Can also be purchased in packs of 5.

The clearos with replaceable coils are the eGo CE4+, CE5, and H2. They hold 1.6 mils of e-liquid and come with a tiny coil head that can be removed and replaced as needed. They are also compatible with all types of eGo batteries. The tank is easy to clean and can be used over and over until it needs replacing. This is a very affordable way to vape when you have a small budget. These also come in either plastic or glass and are priced between $2 - $3 each.

Moving On to Tanks: The Glassomizer

The earliest tanks besides carto tanks and before sub-ohm tanks were the glassomizer tanks. These tanks had a standard 510 connection and could be used on eGo batteries and some low wattage mods. These tanks often had long wicks like the Vivi Nova that sat on top or were at the bottom of the atomizer tube. The ones with the coils at the bottom tend to last longer and don’t get burnt as often as the ones with the coils and wicks at the top.

The glassomizers hold 1.5 mils of e-liquid, are made from Pyrex glass, and come apart for easy cleaning. Examples of glassomizers are: Aspire K1&K2, Aspire BVC Vivi Nova, Any Vape Davide BDC Mini, and Aspire Triton Mini.

 

That Brings Us Up to Current Day

Our options as vapers are more varied and equipment has improved over time. Tank options now include modern vape tanks, sub-ohm tanks, rebuildable tanks, and rebuildable dripping atomizers. The previous options are still available for those who want to try them out and work their way up to more advanced gear slowly. The License to Vape guides are designed to help new people understand what vaping is, the terminology and even help experienced vapers find reviews on some of the more advanced gear.

If you are new to vaping and want to learn more, make sure you check out the License to Vape beginners guide here. It is packed with a lot of information for all new people switching over to vaping and why the switch makes sense.

Now that you’ve had your history lesson for the day, go and pass on your newly acquired knowledge. Share with your friends and family and let’s make it a priority to get everyone we love off cigarettes.

The following post Clearomizers, Cartomizers, and Tanks was first seen on License to Vape News

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Uwell Valyrian Sub-ohm Tank Review

Sub Ohm Uwell Valyrian Tank Review

The Uwell Valyrian is a sub-ohm tank very similar to the TFV8 Baby Beast. In fact, it looks very much like it and performs just as well.

I wasn't really too impressed with previous Uwell tanks like the Crown and Crown 3, but the Valyrian is a horse of a different color altogether. It has a nice big juice tank ( 5 mils, can be upgraded to 8 with a replacement tank sold separately) for all day vaping which I really like. Plus, I am a fan of top-fill tanks which this is also.

It has a flip-top fill design that allows you to open it with one hand and avoid accidentally unscrewing the glass from the base, which happens with other tanks when trying to refill. It is so easy to fill, just flip the top open and squeeze the bottle nozzle down one of the two juice openings and that is it. Snap it closed and you're ready to vape. It doesn't get any easier than that.

 

Uwell Valyrian Tank Testing and Performance

I got this tank over the weekend and couldn't wait to give it a test drive. I spent about a week getting familiar with it and several hours of testing and reviewing the features and quality of the tank itself. Below are the highlights of my experiences with it.

A few things about the Valyrian that you should know if you're planning on buying one is that it has really good airflow. There are 3 airflow holes that are adjustable. You can open it all the way or close it down halfway for a more restricted, more flavorful vape. The tank comes with what the manufacturer calls "airflow pins" to allow you to customize your vaping experience with this tank. 3 pins are included: 1 x wave pin, 1 x spiral pin, and 1 x unrestricted pin. At first, these pins were thought to improve the flavor, but what they actually do is change and modify the airflow coming into the coil head. They do not affect the flavor at all, but if you want more flavor simply close down the airflow a little until you find the sweet spot. Here are a few specification and features of the tank:

Build Quality and Design

This tank boasts a unique design perk: Airflow Pins. The included airflow pins change the airflow in the coil head to improve the vapor production. It was originally advertised as for "improving flavor and vapor production" but I didn't notice any real change in the flavor. It was good but did not drastically change. What did change slightly was the airflow, it was smoother and created more vapor. Another feature for this tank is a fill-line measurement on the coil head. It is a visual reminder not to vape the tank below this line to avoid dry hits and burning the cotton wicking of the coil.

Durability/Reliability

Constructed out of stainless steel, the tank section is resistant to scratches and nicks, even when dropped from a table. I used it over a period of five days and a couple of times it was knocked over and rolled off onto the floor. The Pyrex glass tank resists cracking from acidic juices. I tried a citrus blend in it and it had no problems whatsoever. It is a well-made tank.

Ease of Use

The tank is really easy to use. Just fill it with e-liquid, attach it to your mod, and vape. That is all there is to it. Coil changes and cleaning are easy as well.

Vaping Experience

I really enjoy using this tank. In fact, it is one of the few I have that I will use. I have had issues with tanks leaking in the past and gave up using them. But this one changed my mind and I keep it in my collection for times when I will be away from home and don't want to be bothered with dripping.

Filling

The flip-top design of the cap makes it really easy to refill the tank. No more twisting or unscrewing the top to fill. It can actually be done with one hand. There is a little button on the front of the cap that you press and it flips right up. Fill it with juice and snap it closed. Because of this design, there is no possibility of unscrewing your tank and juice leaking out.

Leaking

The tank holds 5 mils of e-liquid as it is but can be upgraded to 8 mils with the replacement tank. It sells separately for $4.95. The two juice fill holes are wide enough for large bottle tips to fit for easy filling. The is tank had been great and I have had no issues with it leaking or flooding.

Cloud

The vapor production on this tank is phenomenal. The airflow is smooth and produces plumes of vapor. This is a good tank for cloud chasers because it chucks them. The vapor production on this tank is slightly better than the clouds produced by the TFV8 Baby Beast, the slightly smaller version of the big Cloud Beast.

Flavor

I did find that although the pins didn't directly affect the flavor, the improved airflow in combination with adjusting the airflow control allows the flavor to be customized to where you want it.  For more flavor close down the airflow holes, and for more vapor open them all the way.

Value

This tank is currently priced at between $25 and $30 dollars. This is a good price for a quality sub-ohm tank.

What We Liked

Unique airflow pins
Flip-top cap for easy filling
Fill line imprinted on the coil as a visual reminder
0.15-ohm dual coil heads rated for 95 -120 watts
4 Juice slots in the coil improve saturation and eliminate dry hits
Insulated drip tip doesn’t absorb heat
Hold 5 mils of e-liquid (8 mil tank sold separately)

What We Didn't

No variety of coil heads
Vaping at high wattages will consume juice quickly
No O-ring on the drip tip
No RBA section

Final Verdict

If you are looking for a well-made tank with good airflow and great vapor production, this is it. And priced at less than $30, it's a real budget-pleaser as well. It's easy on the wallet if you need to replace an old, outdated tank and don't want to spend a lot of money. It's a great tank for the money and you'll love how well it performs.

Uwell Valyrian Sub-ohm Tank Review is available on License to Vape Blog