Vaping has become the new trendsetter in the world of recreational and medicinal cannabis and hemp products. Whether you’re a seasoned vaper or a newbie, this comprehensive guide will walk you through how to use a vape pen, focusing on CBD and THC (cannabis). We’ll dive into the world of vape cartridges, reusable 510 thread batteries, disposable vape pens, and dry herb vaporizers. Plus, we’ll troubleshoot common issues like clogs, dead batteries, and more. So, buckle up and let’s get vaping!
Vape Pens 101
Vape pens are compact, easy-to-use devices that heat up cannabis oil or dry herbs, converting them into inhalable vapor. They come in two main forms: reusable vape pens with rechargeable batteries, and disposable vape pens (battery and cartridge are essentially attached as one unit) which are used once and tossed.
A key component of reusable pens is the vape cartridge, which houses the cannabis oil (CBD, THC or both). This cartridge connects to a battery – typically a 510 thread battery – an industry standard due to its compatibility with a wide range of cartridges (virtually all of them thread onto a battery with a threading called 510.) Vape cartridges are sold in multiple styles and tank sizes.
Vape cartridges with no metal surfaces touching the oil are the cleanest and safest option. These are often all glass, or all ceramic. While most vape cartridges on the market have a metal post in the center, it has been proved via lab tests that metals can actually leach into the oil, which is not desirable in regard to safety. Choose an all glass CBD vape cartridge for purity and consistency.
VAPE BATTERY TYPES
PUSH-BUTTON VS. AUTO-DRAW
There are two types of batteries: push-button and draw-activated. Push-button batteries require you to press a button to activate the heating element, while draw-activated batteries start heating as soon as you begin inhaling. The only benefit to a push-button device is, in regard to thick THC oil, it can preheat the oil prior to inhaling, which can eliminate the chance of clogging.
Disposable vape pens, on the other hand, are all-in-one devices pre-filled with cannabis oil. They’re user-friendly, requiring no charging or button pushing. Once the oil is depleted, the pen is discarded. The same “metals theory” stands in regard to disposable pens – though it is a hard find, try to seek a disposable battery with no metal post in the interior.
DRY HERB VAPORIZERS
Dry herb vaporizers are a bit different. Instead of using oil, they vaporize ground cannabis flowers, offering a ‘real plant’ vape experience of the herb’s flavor and effects. If you are seeking a ‘close to the plant’ CBD vape experience with vape oils, live resin vapes preserve the terpenes, creating a real flower aroma and experience like no other extract.
Why is Vaping CBD and THC So Popular?
People often choose to vape CBD and THC over edibles for several reasons, with bioavailability being a key factor. Bioavailability refers to the amount and rate at which a substance is absorbed into the bloodstream. When vaping, the compounds are inhaled and enter the body through the lungs, bypassing the digestive system. This results in a higher bioavailability than edibles, meaning more of the substances are effectively used by the body. In fact, vaping can have a bioavailability rate of up to 56%, compared to 10-20% for edibles (source).
Onset Time & Convenience
Furthermore, the effects of vaping are typically felt within minutes, while edibles can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to kick in. This makes vaping a more convenient and desireable option for those seeking immediate relief or effect. The compactness and portability of vaping devices also add to their convenience, as they can be used discreetly almost anywhere. You can take a puff of a vape pen quickly, easily, and at your leisure. THC and CBD vape pens are also compact and fit in your pocket or purse making them a perfect companion for travel.
Using Your Vape Pen
Reusable Vape Pens:
- Charge Your Battery: First things first, ensure your battery is fully charged.
- Attach the Cartridge: Gently screw the cartridge onto the battery.
- Turn On the Pen: For push-button pens, turn it on by pressing the activation button five times quickly.
- Inhale from the Pen: If you’re using a push-button pen, press and hold the button while inhaling. For draw-activated pens, simply start inhaling.
- Turn Off the Pen: Press the power button five times quickly to turn off the pen.
Disposable Vape Pens:
These are ready to use right out of the box. Just inhale from the mouthpiece to get started. Once the oil runs out, dispose of the pen responsibly.
Dry Herb Vaporizers:
- Grind Your Cannabis: Your herb should be finely ground but not too powdery.
- Pack the Chamber: Fill the chamber with your ground herb, but don’t overpack it.
- Heat the Vaporizer: Turn on the device and select your desired temperature.
- Inhale the Vapor: Once your device reaches the set temperature, start inhaling.
- Clean After Use: To maintain optimal performance, clean the chamber after each use.
Vape Troubleshooting Tips
Encountering problems with your vape pen? Let’s troubleshoot:
Is it a Clog? If you’re having difficulty drawing air through the pen, it could be a clog. Try gently cleaning the mouthpiece and the cartridge.
Is the Battery Dead? If the pen doesn’t light up or produce vapor, the battery might need charging. Plug it into the charger and wait. If it still doesn’t work, the battery might be dead.
Is the Cartridge or Battery Broken? If you’ve charged the battery and the pen still doesn’t work, the issue could be a broken cartridge or battery. Try using a different cartridge or battery to identify the problem.
Is the Charger Broken? If the battery doesn’t charge, the charger might be faulty. Test it with another device, if possible.
Safety Tips for Using a Vape Pen
- While vaping can be an enjoyable experience, it’s important to remember a few safety tips to ensure you’re using your device correctly and responsibly:
- Avoid Overheating: Don’t leave your vape pen in direct sunlight or a hot car. Extreme heat can cause the battery to overheat, which could lead to malfunction or even explosion.
- Use the Right Charger: Always use the charger that came with your device. Using a different charger could potentially damage the battery.
- Don’t Overcharge: Overcharging your vape pen can also degrade the battery. It’s best to unplug the device once it’s fully charged.
- Keep it Clean: If you are using a rechargeable battery, regularly cleaning the contacts on your vape pen (where the cartridge screws on) can help prevent clogs and ensure the device works properly.
- Store Properly: When not in use, store your vape pen in a cool, dry place out of the reach of children and pets.
Understanding the Difference: CBD vs THC Vapes
It’s important to understand the difference between CBD and THC when choosing a cartridge or herb for your vape pen.
CBD (Cannabidiol) is one of the main compounds found in cannabis plants. It’s non-psychoactive, meaning it won’t get you ‘high’. CBD vapes are often used for their potential therapeutic benefits, including pain relief, reducing anxiety and improving sleep.
THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), on the other hand, is the primary psychoactive compound in cannabis. It’s responsible for the ‘high’ associated with marijuana use. However, like CBD, THC also has potential medicinal benefits, including pain relief and nausea reduction.
When purchasing cartridges or herbs, they will often be labelled with their CBD and THC content. Some products may contain only CBD, only THC, or a combination of both (such as full spectrum CBD products or CBD live resin). Remember, it’s always best to start with a low dose, especially if you’re new to vaping or trying a new product.
Vaping CBD or THC can be a fun and rewarding experience with the right knowledge and tools. It is definitely a versatile and convenient way to enjoy the benefits of CBD and THC. With a variety of devices and products to choose from, there’s something for everyone, whether you’re a seasoned vaper or a beginner. Always remember to vape responsibly, keep your device clean and maintained, and respect local laws and regulations regarding cannabis use. Remember, start slow, especially if you’re new to vaping or trying a new cartridge or herb. Try new options to see what works best for you, and enjoy the journey! Happy vaping!