Vaping seems like a beginner-friendly way to use cannabis. But, if you’re new to vaping, there are some things you should be aware to ensure you’re vaping safely and getting the best vape experience possible.
Unlike smoking out of a pipe or a joint, vaping weed can be cleaner and smoother. When it comes to vaping with cannabis oil vape cartridges, you don’t have deal with offensive odors and the mess of sticky fingers when rolling a joint for example.
Although vaping weed can be easy and enjoyable, vaping comes in many different forms, has a learning curve, and isn’t entirely foolproof. There’s vaping, and then there’s learning how to vape cannabis.
Here are a few critical vaping mistakes that could be damaging your vape rig, harmful to your health, or otherwise ruining your vaping experience.
Vaping Any Cannabis Oil
When vaping cannabis oil or other extracts, you want to be sure that what you’re vaping is good quality with safe ingredients, and that you’re using a compatible vaporizer.
E-liquid, e-juice or whatever you call typical cannabis vaping material is made from various ingredients using different extraction methods. Because of current cannabis laws and developing regulations, cannabis production and quality can be inconsistent.
When heated in the right way, active cannabis compounds reach their boiling points and are inhaled as vapors. Because vaporizers are able to heat cannabis at lower temperatures, combustion of plant material is avoided and should produce virtually no smoke. Inhaling pure vapors full of beneficial compounds provides a flavorful and effective vaping experience.
Most e-liquids and cannabis distillates are slightly amber in color and a bit viscous. There are dozens of other forms of cannabis extracts ranging from thick waxes to thin oils, and crystalized or isolate powders.
Some of these thicker extracts can be used in a dab rig while liquid cannabis oils are pre-filled in vape cartridges. Your vape may be equipped to work with only one of these types of cannabis extracts, or you may have a 2-in-1 combo vape that can use all types of cannabis. So, you will need to be mindful of the type of cannabis oil you buy.
Being mindful of the cannabis oil you buy is especially true considering the outbreak of “popcorn lung” or EVALI, which affects those who vape blackmarket THC juice in vape cartridges. This disease is characterized by shortness of breath, coughing, chest pain, rapid heartbeat and even nausea and vomiting.
Though many healthcare organizations advise staying away from all THC vaping liquids, the truth is that the most likely culprit is an ingredient called vitamin E acetate. Some unlicensed and untested blackmarket manufacturers add this as a stabilizing ingredient in their vape cartridges.
You should be careful to avoid buying a vape cartridge that contains vitamin E acetate. While you may find cheaper prices on the streets, it’s not worth the risk. Instead, buy your cannabis oils from licensed cannabis dispensaries and manufacturers. States with legal cannabis markets require lab testing of all cannabis products to ensure quality, potency and clean ingredients for consumer safety.
Aside from having clean ingredients in your cannabis oils, you need the right type of vaporizer to vape safely. If you want to start vaping hashish oil and other cannabis concentrates, you should talk to your local budtender about choosing the type of cannabis that works with your vaporizer or read our Vaping Cannabis 101 guide.
Vaping Isolates & Ignoring the Entourage Effect
Like oil, cannabis isolates don’t belong in most vaporizers — and for the same reasons, too. Isolates need to be heated in a specific way at specific temperatures to release their cannabinoids as vapor. Isolates are expensive and difficult to find. However, cannabis isolates are available at a particular Maryland medical marijuana dispensary as well as in states with large, legal cannabis markets like California and Colorado.
Vapes that are not meant to use e-liquids simply don’t function well when loading their chamber with a liquid or powder form of cannabis isolates. This is a sure fire way to break your vape rig and waste a ton of money on burnt-up isolates.
For example, the DaVinci IQ vaporizer won’t work with liquid CBD isolate as it’s designed primarily for vaping dry cannabis flower instead.
To use a CBD juice, you’re better off buying and filling your vape cartridges. You can buy cannabis oil kits that include both vape battery and empty cartridge.
Also, keep in mind that you won’t benefit from the cannabis “entourage effect” when using isolates. Unlike isolates, it is the whole plant, broad or full-spectrum cannabis products that contain the wide-range of additional beneficial compounds that are naturally present in cannabis.
Vaping Old Metal Cartridges
It might seem like a good idea to buy vape cartridges in bulk. But, doing so could actually cause you to waste money and harm your health. Vape carts that are made with metal components can leech harmful chemicals into the e-liquid over time, especially after they are repeatedly heated in your rig. Although rare, can lead to a rare lung condition in some cannabis vapers known as hard-metal lung disease.
Essentially, the disease is caused by particles of metal alloys like tungsten carbide and cobalt lodging themselves in lung tissues. You can mitigate this risk by always buying quality ceramic cartridges or other carts that use very limited plastics and metals.
Vaping at the Wrong Temperature
One of the most common vaping mistakes ics vaping at too high of a temperature. Regardless of what you are vaping, whether e-liquid, dry herb, concentrates, or isolates, etc. – you should keep a close eye on the temperature of your rig.
Cannabinoids are much more delicate than nicotine for example. Cannabinoids evaporate at lower temperatures which means they are remarkably easy to burn, rendering them essentially useless. Also, vaping at the wrong temperature is an easy way to get too high by taking a bigger hit than you thought.
Single-setting vape pens aren’t ideal for cannabis because they don’t allow you to manage temperature with fine control. It is worth it to buy a slightly more complex vape rig that can vape flower and extracts at controlled temperatures. This will allow you to have the best vape experience possible. There’s lots of options when it comes to temperature controlled or variable voltage vapes. Browse our reviews of weed vaporizers to find the right one for you.
Vape cartridge batteries like the Rokin Dial offer the widest range of voltage control. This allows fine-tune control over the voltage settings so you can be sure to keep your vaping temperature low.
Another great option for the beginner vaper is the updated Rokin Mini Tank. This vape uses Rokin’s wave technology to auto-tune the optimal vape temperature without needing any adjustments for your vape oil cartridge.
The Dr. Dabber SWITCH is an excellent vaporizer that is compatible with both cannabis extracts as well as flower. It uses induction heating technology which allows for precise temperature control. In fact, this particular vape has over 20 different heat settings
Vaping Too Much at Once
No matter how you consume your cannabis, whether you take an edible, smoke or vape, it’s always possible to accidentally get too high. It can be tempting to mindlessly puff away or chain-smoke on a cannabis vape, just like you would a cigarette or joint. But, THC and CBD vapor tends to be much, much more potent, especially if you’re dabbing or vaping concentrates.
Although you might not feel the effects of too much CBD, you definitely can overdo it with THC. Too much THC can induce anxiety, cause you to be too high for a quite a while, and ruin the experience.
It’s always a good idea to wait several minutes, even as much as an hour, between puffs. You should feel it out to get a better understanding of how the dosage of the vapor affects you.
One easy way to find your optimal dosage without getting too high is to start out using a THC vape with CBD oil or buying a pre-filled disposable vape pen. You can find vape pens with balanced ratios of THC and CBD which tend to make the high effect more mellow. If you don’t want a high effect from THC, CBD vaping is the way to go. CBD does not cause a high effect.
A disposable vape pen simplifies the vaping experience by combining cannabis oil and a battery, all-in-one vaping device. These type of vapes are widely available in dispensaries throughout California and other states where cannabis legal. Disposable vape pens are not just convenient, but they are designed to dispense consistent doses. The pre-filled oil is lab tested so you know the cannabinoid contents and can reliably predict the strength.
Vaping doesn’t come naturally to many stoners, but vaping is a cleaner, more sophisticated way to get high. With a bit of practice, experimentation and research, you can avoid these common vaping mistakes and start vaping like a pro.