Learning More About Coils Will Change Your Vaping Experience Forever
Coil replacement, best vape coil, how long do vape coils last, and more in our guide to vape coils and wires
Understanding when to change a vape coil and how to change a vape coil is one of the most important, but tricky parts of learning to be a skilled vaper. Even the terminology itself can be hard to nail down, with the term atomizer being used to describe the actual wires heated to create vapor, as well as the entire device that powers the coils; For example a rebuildable drip atomizer, or RDA.
The truth is that the term “atomizer” technically refers to any device that turns a liquid into a fine mist or vapor. That means that technically speaking spray bottles are atomizers. But as vaping has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry, the term atomizer has become more and more synonymous with vaping among the general public.
These vapor coils are made from one of several types of wire, such as stainless steel, nickel, kanthal, and titanium. They also require the use of some wicking material that holds the e-liquid so it can be heated properly. But to truly understand everything you ought to know about vape coils and wires, you first must understand the two major types of coils, premade vape coils, and do-it-yourself coils.
The king of convenience will always be premade coils. Not only are they tailor-made for your specific device, ensuring a consistently perfect experience, but once they’re past their prime you can pop in a brand new coil in an instant. You can find replacement vape coils for sale on the home website of most brands, but the coil pack price will often be a bit higher than the coil pack cost bought using a great deal somewhere else. For the best deals on vape coils for sale, check out our deals section. We’re always adding new products, so be sure to check back.
There are some serious benefits to premade coils. As mentioned above, they’re the king of convenience because of just how easy they make it always to have a perfectly clean and fresh vaping experience. Another big plus of being premade and designed for your specific vaporizer is that they’re consistent, so you always know what you’re going to get. This makes them ideal for beginners who are still learning about proper battery safety and don’t want to worry about making a dangerous mistake.
That being said, they are far from an ideal solution. For starters, they don’t last very long, with most brands of coils only lasting about a week of consistent use. That means the relatively low price of coils can still add up quickly if you’re a heavy or even moderate vaper. Not only that, but most premade coils are unable to be re-wicked, so you’ll want to stick with the same flavor or risk cross-contamination. If any of these issues feel like dealbreakers to you, then you should seriously consider building your coils.
Understanding DIY Coils
While it can be a bit challenging for beginners, building your coils offers vapers the most control over their experience. Once you learn how to make vape coils as well as how to change coil in vape, the possibilities are endless. It can be a rewarding experience to slowly learn precisely what type of coils and setups offer you your ideal experience. With that in mind let’s first go over the different types of wires used in atomizers as well as their specialty:
One of the most popular types of wire used in vapor coils is known as Kanthal, and it’s not hard to understand why. It’s relatively cheap compared with other materials used and readily available both in-store and online. It’s extremely easy to work with and even retains its shape very well when re-wicking. That being said, it has a glaring flaw that keeps it from being the go-to choice for advanced vapers. It can’t be used with the temperature control devices that have become popular in recent years. Others note that it has a slightly slower heat up time than most other materials, but regardless Kanthal is an excellent option for most vapers.
Nickel has been the traditional choice for temperature control devices. But they should only ever be used in TC devices due to significant concerns about the heating of nickel over 600 degrees Fahrenheit. It has a very fast heat up time that is significantly faster than Kanthal. Like Kanthal it’s also relatively inexpensive and easy to find, making it a favorite choice of budget-conscious vapers. It’s also known to be a particularly suitable material for facilitating robust flavor. But it’s not all good, in addition to the TC only concerns, it’s also a very soft metal and can be challenging to deal with when re-wicking; Although newer tempered nickel wire has improved this issue slightly.
A potentially controversial entry on our list is titanium wires. The source of this concern is the fact that when titanium is heated over 1130 degrees Fahrenheit, it releases titanium dioxide which is a very toxic substance. That being said, any properly functioning temperature control device wouldn’t get the wire anywhere close to the danger zone. People enjoy titanium wire because it’s durable and easy to work with, but facilitates a crisp flavor in the same way nickel does. Other than the toxicity concerns, the only real drawback of titanium wire is that it can be expensive as well as hard to find. It should also be noted that fires started with titanium wires are a bit harder to put out than other critical failure fires.
Stainless steel wires are probably the most versatile wires on the list because they’re the only ones that can function with both wattage and temperature control modes. The pros list of SS wires is long, given its strength and fast ramp-up time paired with a clean flavor and low price. But that being said it can be surprisingly difficult to find specific gauges of SS wire. Also, some types of these wires contain a high level of nickel, making them more difficult to re-wick with.
The last wire type on our list is an alloy made from nickel and chromium. This wattage vaping wire is the king of heat up times, with many people swearing by its speed. Most people find that nichrome wire behaves quite a bit like Kanthal, being easy to work with and very cheap. But it does have a lower melting point than Kanthal, so if you’re used to using Kanthal be careful when dry-burning. It’s also a bit harder to find, as many vape shops don’t carry it so you’ll likely have to buy yours online.
A Word On Wire Gauges
The next thing you must understand about coils is the different gauges they come in and what it does. The gauge of the wire is simply referring to the size, or diameter of the actual wire. The most popular gauges for vaping are generally between 32 and 22 in steps of two. The most important thing to remember is that the larger the number, the thinner the physical wire is going to be. Meaning a 30 gauge wire is smaller than a 24 gauge wire. The other thing to keep in mind is that the larger the wire, the lower the resistance and therefore longer heat up time.
How To Make Vape Coils
Once you’ve selected your type of wire and gauge it’s finally time to begin making your vape replacement coils. You’re going to want to have a few tools before you start, such as an ohms reader, small 2mm screwdriver, clippers, tweezers and wicking material. Before doing anything, you should consult an online coil wrapping calculator to determine precisely how many loops you need to make to ensure the correct resistance. Just input your wire type and gauge along with your target ohms and viola it figures out how many loops you need.
We suggest that you consult one of many online tutorials before trying it yourself, but we’re going to briefly go over the steps you would take to make vape coils.
Cut a longer than necessary piece of wire off your spool and begin wrapping it around the screwdriver, using your thumb to hold it in place. You want the loops to be as close together as possible without overlapping. Once you’ve wrapped the wire the proper amount of times, DO NOT remove it from the screwdriver. First, you’re going to want to use your ohm tester to make sure your coil is working as it should.
To do this take your RDA or whatever houses your coil and attach it to the ohm reader. Use the screwdriver to help get the coil inserted into the correct spot and tightened before removing it. It’s not uncommon for the resistance of your coil to not perfectly match what they were supposed too. But if your coil tests within 0.2 ohms of where it was supposed to be, you’re likely okay. Now, all that’s left is wicking your coil and installing it in your vaporizer.
You can take things a step further by eliminating hot spots while its still on your tester. Merely take ceramic tweezers and gently press the ends of your coil together once they glow red while firing. Do this a few times, and you’ll help facilitate an even vape every time. But be sure only to use ceramic tweezers. If you use metal ones, you risk injury or at the very least shorting out your coil, requiring you to start over.
Changing Coil Vape
The last thing you’ll want to understand is how to change a vape coil. But luckily making them is the hard part. After about a week of consistent use, you’ll want to replace your coil, which only requires removing the pieces and starting the process all over again. In between these full coil changes, you can remove the wicking material and use fresh stuff to help facilitate a clean taste.
It’s probably clear by now that finding precisely the best vape coil for you can be a tricky proposition. There is so much variety and nuance in the different types that it requires a trained pallet as well as desire to get things perfect. Regardless, it can be a fun and rewarding experience to learn to build your coils or even just buying and using new premade coils. After all, the reason we change our coils is to ensure the best possible vaping experience, and tasting that vapor from a brand new coil is exceptionally satisfying
If you have any questions or think we forgot something important, don’t forget to leave us a comment here or on our Facebook and Twitter pages.
And as always, Vape on!