An All-Around Guide to Sub-Ohm Vaping

For starters, the vaping industry has grown larger throughout the years. A variety of vape juices and devices have been developed and are continually developing to this day. In general, there are two styles of vape devices you can choose from direct-to-lung vaping and mouth-to-lung vaping. 

Direct-to-lung vaping or sub-ohm vaping allows you to inhale the vapor directly or to breathe the vapor into your lungs, then exhale a large cloud. The mouth-to-lung inhaling allows you to put the vapor in your mouth first, then into your lungs. This type of vaping lets you exhale a smaller amount of vapor, just like when you are smoking. 

sub ohm vaping
Photo by Itay Kabalo on Unsplash

There is no difference between the two vaping styles, and it all boils down to your preference. I like producing bigger clouds, so I use sub-ohm devices to help me do it.

What is Sub-ohm Vaping?

You don’t need to be a scientist to understand what Sub-Ohm means. To understand this concept, you first need to know Ohm’s law. It follows a mathematical equation that relates to the current, voltage, and resistance of a system. 

ohms law
Ohm’s law

This equation means that the voltage is directly proportional to the current and resistance of the system. You can manipulate the equation to get the values for the current and the resistance. Based on Ohm’s law, the current in a system is directly proportional to the voltage given to it and inversely proportional to the total resistance. 

With the introduction of what sub-ohm means, sub-ohm vaping is the use of pod vape or mod with a coil having a below-one ohm resistance. For regular devices, they fall in the range of 1.5 to 3.0 ohms, which is higher than the sub-ohm. The below-one ohm resistance allows you to heat the vape coil faster and create more flavor and larger vapor clouds.

Sub-ohm devices are typically used with a direct-to-lung vaping style, but it is not always the case. We think that beginners should not use sub-ohm vaping devices. Since these devices have lower resistance, you can easily burn your coil.

What are the factors to consider in Sub-Ohm vaping?

  • Coil Resistance

For a sub-ohm device or tank, the first that you will consider is its actual coil resistance. A vape coil with larger surface areas allows more electricity to pass through since it has lower resistance. If your vaping device has coils with small surface areas, have less current because of higher resistance. 

  • Wattage

Wattage is the power converted from the electricity that passes through the device and into the coil. The wattage determines how much heat is put into the vaping coil, which eventually turns the vape juice into vapor. In a sub ohming vapor cloud’s flavor and size largely depend on the wattage generated.

  • Battery Voltage

The voltage of the vaping device’s battery determines how much power it generates. Since there is a directly proportional relationship between the voltage and the current, expect a higher amount of electricity passing through the coil with a high-voltage. 

Three Types of Sub-Ohm Device

Not all devices are suitable for sub-ohming, especially with the coil resistance that it requires. The sub-ohm devices can be classified depending on the vape tank that it uses. Here are the three options of sub-ohm atomizers you can choose from.

1. Rebuildable Dripping Atomizers (RDA)

Commonly known as Drippers or RDA, early vape users used atomizers slightly smaller than a tank that attaches to a mod. The vape user needs to drip juice to the wick every few puffs. They are commonly seen with a coil and a cotton wick attached to it. They are still popular with hardcore vape device enthusiasts up to this day. 

rda sample
Hell vape passage RDA

2. Rebuildable Tank Atomizers (RTA)

RTA‘s are basically, clearomizers that have a built-in deck. You don’t need to do the dripping process a few puffs every time, which saves you from the hassle. You only need to fill the tank with the vape juice that you are using.

rta tanks example

RTAs offer its users the most amount of vapor amount than other vaping devices, and the best flavor you can taste compared to others. However, new vapers often lean to convenience than the experience. 

3. Sub-Ohm Tanks

Before sub-ohm tanks were a thing, you have to buy the parts and assemble them before using one. With the appearance of sub-ohm tanks, the vape community now has a much easier life. Sub-ohm tanks can be attached to almost any mod working at 30 watts and above, and you may start puffing out huge vapor clouds. 

sub ohm tank example

They seem like RTAs but with a removable and disposable coil. It gives you the experience of using RTAs but without undergoing the work of building the vape coil.  

Is it Safe to Do Sub-Ohm Vaping?

A general answer that you are looking for is yes and no. The ordinary sub-ohm device does not have any risk factors attached to it, so it is good for you to sub-ohming. However, with the release of many vape tanks and mods, the risk of vaping accidents increases. 

As we mentioned above, you also have to be familiar with Ohm’s law and how it affects the amount of current that passes through the coil.  

Like other electronic devices, there is a risk of battery overheating without proper care. Substandard vape parts can also put you at risk since a vaping device made from such parts could let you inhale particles from the metal coil. The best thing to do is to choose quality products that vape users have trust on. 

A variety of coils, wick, and e-liquids are available in the market. We recommend using a regulated box mod that is of high quality and safety conditions instead of a mech mod. If you want to try a mech mod, buy a mech mod with enough vents on it that allow the cooling down of the battery

What is the Best Vape Juice for Sub-ohm Vaping?

As a vape user, I know that vaping experience also depends on the ratio of vegetable glycerin (VG) and propylene glycol (PG) on the vape juice. For new vape users, the PG is a thin liquid that produces a stronger flavor and nicotine and hits the throat well. For VG, it is a thicker liquid than PG and lets you puff thicker vapor clouds. 

best vape juice for sub ohm vaping
Photo by Thiago Patriota on Unsplash

The concept of sub-ohm vaping allows you to intake an increased level of nicotine due to lower resistance that powered the vaporization process. The best e-liquid that you should use for sub-ohm vaping should have low nicotine content. It should be at around 12 mg/mL of nicotine in a vape juice or lower. 

The ideal and right amount of lets you enjoy a smoother and better vaping experience. The vapor is thicker, and the taste is more flavorful.

What are Some Battery Precautions for Sub-ohm Vaping?

Fellow vape users who have tried sub-ohm vaping are mainly concerned about the condition of the battery. It determines the reliability and performance of the whole sub-ohm system that you’re using. As its user, you should get familiar with the dangers, capabilities, and limits. 

Most importantly, you should know the battery’s discharge rate. Some batteries have a safe discharge rate at seven amperes, while some are still safe at 30 amperes and above.

The battery’s discharge rate goes up as the resistance of the coils goes down. So, with sub-ohm vaping, you will be using batteries with higher discharge rates. With this, you could be spending more money on vape juice. A burnt flavor is not a pleasant experience for a vape user, so you have to find the middle ground with the battery’s discharge rate and resistance of the coil. Here are some of the tips you have to know.

1. Internal batteries offer advantages.

Devices with built-in batteries such as box mods and tube mods offer some advantages. You don’t have to buy batteries for your vaping device separately because it already has one. Removing damaged batteries could be risky for you, so with internal batteries, you get to avoid them.

2. Most common sub-ohm vape batteries are 18650s

Other sub-ohm vape box batteries that are used are 20700, and 21700. With these batteries, you need to have an external battery charger available to recharge these types of cells. 

vape battery example image

What are the Pros and Cons of Sub-ohm Vaping?

As a vape user, I have experienced the different pros and cons of sub-ohm vaping. This might not be the case for other vapers, but these are the general pros and cons that you will experience as a beginner. 

Pros

Thicker and larger clouds

Some vape users prefer having large clouds of vapor every time that they puff. Some vape users just want to have a strong hit of nicotine every time they puff. But for you, who likes having larger clouds when puffing, sub-ohm vaping is your way to go. 

Stronger flavor

Unlike regular vape devices, you can taste a stronger vape juice flavor every time you inhale it. This is because of the lower resistance of the vape device that allows more of the juice to vaporize. 

Stronger hit

Sub-ohm vaping should not be recommended to new vape users because of its stronger hit. Due to lower resistance of the device, more of the nicotine is inhaled by the lungs every time you take a puff, so be careful every time that you use it. 

Cons

Sub-ohm devices are more expensive.

A lower resistance conductor for a vaping device has higher prices than regular vaping devices since the parts of sub-ohm devices are more customized than the standard ones. 

Replacing coils

Since more current passes through the coil, it gets burnt much easier compared to higher Ohm vaping devices. You need to undergo the hassle of rebuilding coils more frequently than having a regular one. 

Other parts are expensive.

Considering the strength of every nicotine hit and vape juice used, you will be buying vape juice and coil more often compared to regular vape users. This could cost you a lot of money and time when assembling the new coil. 

Conclusion

With the presence of new and improved sub-ohm vape tanks, sub-ohm vaping has been popular for the vape community. You can enjoy tricks with the clouds that you can create and enjoy the flavor of the vape juice. 

You don’t need to undergo the hassle of rebuilding the coils every time it gets damaged, and you only need to replace it now and then. 

With the resistance of sub-ohm atomizers not exceeding one Ohm, there are many conditions to consider, which is why it is not recommended to new vape users. 

Sub-ohm vapers tend to have a direct-to-lung style of inhaling. Sub-ohm devices use more VG vape juice since it has a lower nicotine content than PG juice. 

Sub-ohming has its disadvantages, but sub-ohm vaping could be beneficial with the right knowledge to back you up. Remember the tips and tricks that I mentioned above since those are the things that got me through when I first tried sub-ohm vaping. 

Did you enjoy reading the article above? Write down some of your comments below and share it with your fellows and see their insights. After reading the article, try the rich, flavorful, and robust vaping experience with sub-ohm vaping! 

Samuel Roberts

Sam is a vaping enthusiast and professional writer from London, UK. After smoking for 15 years he took up vaping in 2015 and hasn't looked back once. There is a lot of disinformation around e-cigarettes these days, and Sam is dedicated to debunking the many myths and falsehoods about vaping that populate the internet. When not geeking out on the latest vape tech, Sam can normally be found cooking, camping or on the BJJ mats.

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