What are cannabis vapes?
When it comes to ease of use, portability, and functionality, one cannabis product stands tall above the rest—vapes. You may know them as vape pens, vape carts or pre-loaded cannabis oil vape cartridges, and they have quickly become the go-to concentrate-based product for both cannabis novices and enthusiasts.
However, when it comes to choosing the right vape pen, various factors come into play. Many of these products seem similar at first glance, but there are many nuances that distinguish them. Understanding the differences between these disposable products can help you make an educated decision on which product is right for you.
The different types of cartridges
Familiarize yourself with the many types of oil vape cartridges on the market so you can purchase the one that best fits your needs or preferences.
Most products typically come with a standard 510 thread that a battery screws into. The exception is a pre-loaded cart designed by a specific company to be used with their own vaporizer/battery systems—an example is PAX Era Pods. Alternatively, some vape pens are available as “disposables,” which contain a pre-charged battery designed to support the device until the cart empties. These pens require no charging and are meant to be disposed of after use. They contain no threading and are not meant to be separated from their battery.
A 510-thread cartridge is the most common type of vape cartridge. 510 describes the type of threading that is used to screw the bottom of the cartridge to the appropriate vape battery.
For a vaporizer cartridge to function properly, its contents must have the proper viscosity, otherwise the oils will either be too thick or too thin to properly vaporize within the device. Depending on the starting material used, cartridge manufacturers use several methods in order to create the perfect oil for their pens.
CO2 oil. Certain high-grade winterized CO2 oils are uniquely compatible with vaporizer cartridges due to the fact that they do not require additives of any kind to meet the viscosity levels needed to vaporize in an atomizer. If made properly, these oils are able to retain modest levels of plant-based terpenes, which act as natural thinning agents as well as give the oil their signature strain-specific flavor.
Distillates. A cannabis distillate cart is a highly refined oil containing pure cannabinoids and almost nothing else. The upside to using distillates in vaporizer cartridges is that the oil can be produced from a range of starting materials. Virtually any cannabis oil variety from CO2 to BHO and everything in between can be purified into a distillate with the right equipment.
Although many oil vape pens are labeled by flavor or effect, some focus on cannabinoid concentration. Aside from the typical high-THC product that most pens offer, some manufacturers offer products containing elevated levels of cannabidiol (CBD).
High-CBD pens may or may not contain added flavors, but they do guarantee a ratio of THC to CBD that can range from 2:1 all the way to 20:1 and greater. These types of pens offer great wellness benefits for those looking for CBD in an easy-to-consume product.
The pinnacle of oil vape cartridges in terms of overall quality rests with full-spectrum extracts. These products are created using the entire spectrum of bioavailable molecules found within a given cannabis strain. A full-spectrum oil does not add, reintroduce, or remove any active compound within a strain and offers flavors and effects with more depth than most other products.
Full-spectrum cartridges are hard to come by and their price tends to reflect their rarity as well. If you’re fortunate enough to have the opportunity to try these products, we recommend paying the extra to give one a try. In terms of strain comparability, the flavor of a full-spectrum cart is incredibly similar to what you would experience with flower.
How to use a vape cartridge
It’s pretty simple: Just attach your cart to the battery and start puffing. If there’s an On/Off button, use it.
Here are a few quicks tips to remember when smoking an oil vape cartridge:
All in all, there are many types of oil vape cartridges and batteries to consider, each one with pros and cons. If you’re interested in learning more about these types of products please reach out to our personal care team
Get to know your vape
Discover THC vape cartridges
Vape cartridges work in conjunction with vape pen batteries. The vape battery will power an atomizer in the cartridge that heats up the oil, activating the various chemical components in it. You then inhale the vape smoke, which produces the effects of cannabis. Some vape batteries have multiple functions that enable temperature customization and dose management.
Benefits of vape cartridges
Vape cartridges take the guesswork completely out of the equation. Contrary to other methods of consuming oil, such as a dab rig and nail setup, carts require little to no effort—just press a button and inhale.
Oil vape carts are the easiest method of enjoying cannabis while on the go. Their sleek and minimalist design allows for discreet vaping, free of the distracting traits of larger setups, and they don’t produce noticeable smoke or odor.
For uninitiated cannabis concentrate consumers, dosing can be a major concern. Nobody wants an overwhelming experience when attempting to enjoy cannabis. Unlike dabbing, using a pre-loaded vape pen allows for a highly controlled dose with each inhalation, giving you more control over how much or how little you consume.
The drawbacks of vape catridges
Vape carts can be pretty pricey, with costs between $20-60 or more per half-gram or gram of hash oil, depending on the producer and extraction method. When you can get a gram of flower for a lot cheaper than a one-gram vape cartridge, it makes it a little tougher to choose the latter.
Vape cartridges tend to provide a shorter-lasting high than other methods like joints, dabs, and edibles because you consume them in smaller doses. However, while the effects may last shorter, they can also hit harder if overconsumed, so make sure to monitor dosing appropriately.
Having to monitor a vape battery’s usage and power levels can be pretty annoying as frequent usage can drain them pretty quickly. To avoid this nuisance it’s best to charge your vape battery each night before bed or have a backup on hand that’s fully charged.
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