We’ve all been there. You’re looking forward to the next hit off your vape, you inhale, and…it tastes disgusting. You start coughing and hacking, like you’ve just inhaled fumes from the bowels of Hell itself. Why is this happening? What have you done to deserve this pain?
Don’t worry. We’re here for you. There are a few places where you might have gone wrong; we’ll start with the most common, and move to some of the rarer cases from there. First, though, a bit of terminology is in order.
Burnt Hits and Dry Hits
Burnt hits are the foul, nasty, destroy-the-back-of-your-throat hits we described above. Dry hits, on the other hand, aren’t nearly as bad – just flavorless. A dry hit occurs when the wick of your coil is starting to dry up – there isn’t enough liquid. Burnt hits, on the other hand, often happen when there’s no liquid saturating the wick, and the wick itself starts to burn.
Chain Vaping and Burnt Hits
A lot of vapers got their start because they wanted to stop smoking cigarettes. In the world of cigarettes, chain smoking is quite common; a few quick puffs off your dart in succession is nothing to be afraid of. In the vaping world, however, chain vaping leads to burnt hits. When you take repeated hits from the vape in quick succession, your wick doesn’t have enough time to absorb more juice, and it ends up dry and burnt.
This problem is easy enough to solve; just wait about 20 seconds between hits. You might find that this is hard to do – one possible solution is to get two devices going at once, and to cycle between them. When it’s nicotine you’re after, consider switching to salt nics so you can get a higher quantity in every hit. Looking for a really nice throat hit? Look for high PG juices.
A second common reason for burnt hits is that your vape isn’t properly primed. This means your wick won’t be saturated with enough juice. When you have a coil, the process is a bit complex. It looks something like this:
- Saturate the wick by dripping a few drops of juice into the coil holes
- Fill your tank with juice
- Assemble everything and leave it for about 10 minutes
- Inhale without lighting to get the juice flowing
- Start at the lowest wattage and increase the wattage slowly
When you have a refillable pod, this whole process is quite a bit easier. Just fill your pod with juice and wait for 10 minutes, and you’ll be good to go!
Vaping at high wattages can lead to some excellent hits, but you’ve got to be careful. When you vape at a wattage that exceeds the limit of your coil, it may start popping and failing. The juice is also liable to evaporate much more quickly, so chain vaping becomes an even riskier proposition. If you’re experiencing a lot of burnt hits, and you’ve addressed the two points above, consider vaping at a lower wattage.
You’re Running Low
This one is probably obvious, but if you’re running low on juice, you’re going to end up burning your wick. There’s some temptation to keep vaping even though you barely have any juice left in the tank – sort of an “every last drop” mentality. This, however, leads to more problems than savings, because you end up burning through your wick. Keep your tank topped up with the same juice that you’re using. When you’re running low on juice, don’t hesitate to get new e-juice delivered. When it’s time to change juices, clean out what’s left of the residual juice and add the new stuff in. We know it can feel like a waste, but trust us – it’s worth it.
Blame it On the Juice
When you’re vaping juices that are high in VGs or sugar, it can lead to problems. You can check VG content on the label – when it comes to sugar, you can generally tell by how dessert-y the juice is. These liquids tend to be thicker, and that makes it hard for them to saturate the wick. You can remedy this by waiting a while longer before taking a hit, or by upgrading your system to one with a better wick. Of course, you can also choose low VG and low sugar juices.
There can be a few other other causes of burnt hits, from defective coils to coils that haven’t been cleaned properly. When you’ve looked at and tried to remedy all of these problems, consider posting about it on your favorite forum or subreddit. You know the vape community – we’re all eager to talk about problems and brainstorm solutions.
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