Do you like to sub-ohm – to try to get the absolute most out of your vaping experience with a mechanical mod purchased and/ or built specifically for the purpose? If so, are you using a sub-ohm tank and coils (that is, e-cig device coils with resistance lower than 1.0 ohm)? If that is the case then, you need to consider some basics points so you avoid e-liquid getting into your mouth or leaking out of airflow channels.

And, while it’s imperative to get your vaping technique right, you also need to ensure the battery in your device can operate at a low enough resistance that your sub-ohm-friendly coil requires; using the wrong battery with such coils isn’t clever; in fact, it’s dangerous, potentially leading to overheating, an explosion or even a fire so. But there’s no need to scare-monger; there’s a need to understand the sub-ohming basics, so you do right and safe and get the most out of it.

What’s it all about?

Sub-Ohm vaping fast become very popular with e-cig users who want more vapour and/ or flavour from their e-cig hits. Now, the point of using or building low resistance coils is so you abide by and leverage the principles of Ohm’s and Joule’s (electricity) laws; they dictate that a non-variable voltage source (e.g. the battery in an e-cig device like a mechanical mod) increases the power output (wattage) via decreasing electrical resistance (ohms).

What happens when sub-ohming’s done correctly then? Well, when the electrical resistance is decreased the amperage (of the power output) increases – the customised mod or device bought from a vape shop uses more amps to supply the required current – so more is asked of the battery, thereby increasing the power supplied to the coils and the heat they get to and the temperature at which they, in turn, heat the e-liquid, transforming it into vapour, thus producing more vapour and a potentially fuller, rich vapour flavour too.

vape flavours


From a safety aspect, it’s imperative users understand exactly what they’re doing before they undertake sub-ohming (hence the schoolroom science lesson above). As mentioned above, there are dangers, indeed, should you not follow safety advice and sub-ohm recklessly.

It’s also necessary that the power you ask your device to generate, whether you’re measuring it in wattage or voltage, is within the feasible range of your coil. This range ought to be plainly printed on the coil you affix in your mod; although sometimes it’s printed so small it’s not easy to read (an average 30-35W is generally a good guide to the sort of range you’ll require).

E-liquid and technique

Be sure too that the e-fluid you’re using when sub-ohming is of a reliable or, at best, high quality; it ought too to be heavy on vegetable glycerin (VG) rather than propylene glycol (PG), as the former tends to be thicker than the latter so more likely to result in more vapour and a reduced hit. A good guide to opt for is a liquid with an 80%/ 20% VG/ PG ratio for very low-resistance vaping; definitely a liquid with 50% or higher VG in ratio terms.

Technique-wise, it’s all about direct-to-lung inhaling (DTL); indeed, sub-ohming is specifically known for this inhalation technique rather than the more traditional mouth-to-lung (MTL) inhalation, which is favoured by many vapers, especially rookies. After pressing the fire button, give yourself about four to five seconds on your draw and don’t let unused juice remain in/ on the coil before you do so because the latter’ll just boil; potentially jeopardising the whole sub-ohming experience. If this is happening you’ll hear a crackling or popping noise as it boils; it’s easy to recognise then and rectify.

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