Priming, checking resistance and more: how to care for your coil
Yes, there’s a plethora of bits and bobs that go into making up a decent, reliable and efficient e-cig device, but one of the absolutely essential components is undoubtedly the coil. Fitting into a device’s tanks, a coil’ll crop up in all manner of devices; from small starter vaping kits all the way up to large sub-ohm monsters. In essence, it’s a wrapped wire and a cotton wick, the latter being deployed when the tank’s filled with e-liquid by becoming soaked in the stuff; the wire and wick then heat the fluid so it can transform into vapour and inhaled by the vaper. Unfortunately, though, as they’re essential but not so well looked after, coils tend to get replaced an awful lot – here then are some tips for caring better for your device’s all-important coil…
The importance of priming
Priming the coil is essential for its effective upkeep. Fundamentally, this is because priming maintains it, lengthening its lifespan, as well as staving off the chances of burnt coils and dry hits. There are two ways to prime a coil. First, install the coil in a vape tank (checking the latter’s both clean and dry), fill up the tank with e-liquid and then leave it upright for around 10 minutes, enabling the wick to become soaked by the e-fluid; second, install a new coil in a clean, dry tank, then drip the fluid directly on to the coil’s cotton (visible through the small holes on the coil’s exterior), before leaving the tank for a minute or two, filling up the tank and leaving it upright for around 10 minutes.
Breaking it in
Many newly purchased products require what’s referred to as breaking in, a pair of shoes or a new car, for instance; the same goes for a new coil for e-cig devices, whether vape pens, cigalikes or vape mods. It’s necessary because it’ll most likely improve the thing’s long-term performance. To go about breaking in a coil then, you’ll need to prime it (see above) then, having set the e-cig at a relatively low wattage/ temperature, use it for a short while before increasing the wattage/ temperature to a setting you want to use it. A good rule of thumb for a 40-80W coil is to fire it, first off, at 30W and then work up to higher, preferred power levels by increments.
Keep your tank topped up
It may be appealing to run the e-liquid level in your tank down, so you don’t overuse fluid and don’t overspend on the stuff; yet it’s also crucial for the health of your coil to keep the tank filled up. This is because, even with tanks that are designed for rookie devices, if the e-liquid level’s allowed to drop too low the coil’s cotton will inevitably start drying out, which will lead to burning, burnt hits and a damaged coil in need of replacement – completely the opposite of saving you money then. For best performance, ensure your tank’s about two-thirds-full (or more) all the time.
Control your e-cig’s temperature
If your device is an advanced e-cig and especially one bestowed with sub-ohm capabilities, then it should come complete with a temperature control mode; use it. The reason being that this mode enables the setting of a maximum temperature at which the coil can be safely used; if used in ‘TC mode’ accordingly, when the device is set at a temperature beyond this, it won’t fire. And so won’t be able to harm the coil due to overheating and drying out. Bear in mind, though, that only some coil materials can be used with TC mode, namely those made from stainless steel and NiChrome.
Resistance is not futile
A coil’s resistance is also important; when you fit a new coil in your device you need to be aware of its resistance and make sure you adhere to it. Measured in ohms (Ω), this resistance level will, to a large extent, define what wattage/ temperature the coil’s device should be fired at. So, again, too high a temperature (for the coil’s resistance) and the thing will likely dry out and burn. Most coils nowadays come with an advised resistance/ power level printed on them.