After a long, stressful day at the office, few things provide more joy than your favorite vape pen or device. You bring the mouthpiece to your lips and prepare to inhale the rich, intense and oh so delicious vapor. You’re just one inhale away from total relaxation… but then, nothing happens… or worse yet, something bad happens.
Don’t worry. While device malfunction isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time, it isn’t the end of the world either.
When your vape pen isn’t working properly, either from user error or device malfunction, it can be a real pain in the ass. At Loto Labs, we want to ensure you get the most out of your vape unit, so we’ve created this guide to help experienced users and new vapers alike navigate the often tricky world of errors and malfunctions.
1. User Errors
When your vape pen isn’t producing the relaxing vapor you desire, it’s important to ask yourself: Am I doing something wrong? For new users, this can often be the case. But don’t be too hard on yourself, even experienced smokers make their fair share of rookie mistakes from time to time.
Here are some of the most common user errors….
Dry hits occur when a vape pen has been fired up without any oils or concentrates in the tank. When this happens, the coil in the tank heats up and begins to burn any residue left from your last fill. This produces a strong, pungent, undesirable flavor. Inhaling any vape from a “dry hit” also isn’t the healthiest, so try to avoid making this mistake too often.
To avoid dry hits, pay attention to the taste of your vape every time you take a pull. The flavor of your vapor begins to change little by little as your tank begins to run low. As soon as you notice this change in taste, refill your vape pen.
Another way to avoid dry hits is to check your tank often. Glass or transparent tanks can be a real blessing with regards to keeping track of how much concentrate, dry herb or e-juice is left.
Sometimes, when you bring your mouthpiece to your lips, instead of inhaling vapor, you find that your oil or concentrate has leaked onto your tongue and into your mouth. This can be another unpleasant experience; concentrates and oils do not taste the same in liquid form as they do when vaporized.
To avoid spit back, make sure you don’t overfill your tank. Most tanks have a distinct marking to signal the maximum level of oil or concentrate it can hold. Overfilling your tank may result in leaking and spit back.
Spit back can also harm your device. When spit back occurs, the coils in your vape pen become drenched in liquid. When these coils become wet, they may not effectively heat and vaporize your oils or concentrates, leaving you with a less than optimal vaping session.
If you experience spit back, be sure to check your tank levels to ensure that you haven’t overfilled your tank. If you have, remove the coil from your device and let it dry. Once your coil is dry and your tank has been filled to the proper level, give it another go!
Kissing the Dragon
Kissing the dragon is a small, albeit painful, error that countless of vapers have made. On occasion, when vapers remove the cap of their device’s drip atomizer in order to refill the tank, they mistakenly bring the device to their lips without replacing the mouthpiece. When you forget to replace the mouthpiece, your lips come in direct contact with the hot coils found within your vape device. As you can likely imagine, this is extremely painful.
If you experience any serious burns, be sure to seek medical attention. Minor burns can normally be topically treated with a cool cloth, ice, or antiseptic.
Always exercise caution when smoking after you’ve taken your device apart. Make sure you have replaced the mouthpiece before your bring your device to your lips.
When charging your vape device, be sure not to let the batteries overcharge. Overcharged batteries may become swollen and have the potential to explode. If your batteries appear to have swollen, unplug the charger, allow the batteries to cool down, and dispose of them properly. We highly advise against reusing batteries that have been overheated and that have become swollen. Additionally, always use the type and/or brand of batteries recommended by the manufacturer of your device, and don’t “mix and match” batteries in your device.
It’s always a good idea to have backup batteries for when you need to replace the batteries in your device. Be sure to store any backup replacements in a cool, dry place. Do not leave them unattended in areas that are susceptible to extreme temperatures.
2. Device Malfunctions
As with life, sometimes you can do everything “right”, but something out of your control goes and messes things up for you.
Even when taking all the necessary precautions your vape device may, on occasion, malfunction. Below we cover some of the most common device malfunctions and the steps you can take to begin fixing your device.
If the screen on your vape device reads “Check Atomizer,” this often indicates the 510 connection on your mod is not registering your tank.
But what exactly does this mean? If your mod is unable to read your atomizer, it is unable to determine the resistance. If it cannot determine the resistance, it cannot send power to the coils in your tank. If the coils are not powered and heated, the oil or concentrate in your tanks cannot be converted to vapor.
If you don’t have access to tools, it is best to simply remove the tank and clean the 510 area. Be sure to clean the 510 areas on both the tank and the mod.
Some vape devices will have a manually adjustable 510 connector. If your vape device has an adjustable 510 pin on the atomizer, make sure this is not missing. If the 510 pin is intact, and you have access to tools, you’ll need to use a screwdriver to adjust the 510 pin up or down. The direction of the pin will depend on your atomizer and your mod.
Adjust the 510 pin only until you begin to feel a small amount of resistance. When you begin to feel resistance, this signifies that your tank has begun making contact with the mod. Reinsert your tank and try restarting your device. Remember not to over tighten your tank when you insert it back into your device.
In general, it is important to practice caution when inserting your tank back into your vape device. Over time, over-tightening your tank will damage the 510 connection on the mod. Over-tightening can also lead to damaged internal wiring.
If your vape device reads “Atomizer Low,” the coils you’re using might not be compatible with your device. Often, smokers will use coils that have a lower resistance than the lowest resistance the device allows. To prevent this from happening, always make sure that your atomizer is compatible with your mod.
It’s also important to note that variations in pre-built coils can differ up to a couple tenths of an ohm. Be sure that the coils in your device are not cutting it too close to the limit of your mod. If you think this is the case, try inserting an extra coil into the tank, then restart your mod and try again!
If your device is still malfunctioning, there may be a short in the coil, a loose coil, a poor resistance reading, or even a faulty 510 connection. Remember, different devices may have different error messages for the same malfunctions. If one solution isn’t working, try another! Through trial and error, you’ll likely find the root of the problem and can then begin to search for the proper solution.
Device Too Hot
This device malfunction has one of the easiest fixes! If your vape pen reads “Device Too Hot,” this means the internal temperature of your device has surpassed the highest supported temperature. This occurs when you’ve used your vape pen for too long without enough time in-between pulls to allow for proper cooling. When this happens, your device may shut off automatically as a safety precaution.
To fix this error, simply set your device aside and wait for it to cool down. Once it has cooled, turn on your device and give it another try!
This error message is another quick, easy fix! When your device displays a “Low Battery” message, be sure to recharge your batteries. If you find that your device is displaying this error message more frequently than you’d like, change the batteries. The batteries currently in your device may be nearing their endpoint.
First and foremost, it is important to know that the resistance reading on your ohm meter is a not a perfect calculation. Pre-built and handmade coils tend to have a variation of +/- 0.1. This means that if your resistance reading changes by a few tenths, you can rest easy.
If your resistance reading jumps more than a few tenths, there is a problem. If your mod believes you have a higher resistance coil, it will produce much more voltage than necessary. When your mod is producing excess voltage, the coil will begin to burn.
The best way to find the root of this problem is through trial and error. If you suspect your tank is causing the error message, replacing the coil should fix the problem. If this doesn’t seem to be working, your atomizer or mod may need replacing.
Remember to read your vape device’s manual. Reading up on your device will help you properly care for your device when malfunctions arise!