10 Things You Should Know About Vape Pod Systems
A new type of vape system has emerged from the murky depths of the vape market: a sleek, relentlessly efficient, low-maintenance vape. Introducing: The vape pod system.
What is a vape pod system? Vape pod systems are great for beginners. These no-fuss, grab-n-go vape systems are so discreet you won’t even know they’re in your pocket. Instead of having to clean your tank, change the coil, and choose the right wattage for your tank, all you have to do is replace your pod.
To help you search for the best vape pod system, we’ve compiled a list of 10 things to consider.
Vape pod systems are portable and easy to use—but they’re also high-use devices. And the bane of high-use is battery life. Ideally, look for a battery with at least 350mAh. mAh stands for “milliampere-hour,” which indicates capacity, or how long a vape pod lasts before it dies. (A typical vape pen has a battery of only about 180mAh.) The higher the mAh, the longer the battery life.
Tip: When you see “18650 battery,” it’s not referring to the mAh, it’s the name of a type of rechargeable battery. While these batteries claim to have a large capacity, there are a lot of fakes out there, in part because the manufacturing of 18650 pod system vapes hasn’t been standardized yet.
Compact, sleek, lightweight. Nowadays it’s all about being able to throw all the things you need in one hand: phone, wallet, keys, vape. The cartridge, or pod, in a pod system kit, has a built-in coil, wick, and depending on the system, e-juice—meaning the whole system consists of just the pod and the body. No tank or atomizer means no bulky device that makes you look like you have six golf balls stuffed in your pocket.
It’s no secret that a vape with a cheap coil might bust your left nut every few days when it burns out after only a few uses. To avoid this, find a vape whose coil distributes heat smoothly and saturates continuously. The key to smooth heat distribution is the material of the coil, which acts as a conductor. In addition, coils are traditionally surrounded by an absorbent material—typically cotton—to hold vape juice in the coils. As an alternative to using cotton, an up-and-coming material for coils is ceramic, which doesn’t require cotton. Ceramic coils last long, dissipate heat evenly and deliver fewer dry hits than sub-ohm coils.
In contrast to mods, which allow you to adjust your wattage, most vape pod systems have an automatically set wattage. This means that you won’t have any problems with your coil burning out due to overpowering your device. With vape pod systems, your wattage is already set to a suitable wattage for the coil.
Pods are not sealed (unless you choose a closed system pod), so many poorly-engineered pod systems will be very leaky. The remedy for this, and what to look for in a vape pod system that doesn’t leak, is good airflow. Air holes on the top and bottom sides of the pod allow for more air to flow, lowering the temperature of the vapor, and creating a smoother inhale. Also, big clouds.
Not all vape pod systems have adjustable heat settings, which lets you control how strong of a drag you get without having to customize the hit every time. The adjustable settings are usually pre-set to up to three hit strengths. In mods, users often have to manually preset the temperature themselves. The benefit of temp control pods is those heat settings are usually preset to the temperature suited to the coil. Temperature control also prevents the coil from burning out.
Higher Nicotine Content
Nic salts, the buffed-out twice removed cousin of fruity e-juice, have a much higher nicotine content than conventional vape juices, are often flavorless or mint-tinged—and yield a stronger, deeper hit. Preferring low temperatures, nic salts draw better in vape pod systems than in mods, which are higher-powered, higher-temperature systems. Who should try nic salt pod systems? Those looking to quit smoking traditional cigarettes, and those missing that throaty rush when hitting a cigarette.
Draw-Activated Fire (vs. Button Fire vs. Hybrid)
The fire dictates the type of drag experience you get. If you want a hands-free, puff-only drag resembling that of inhaling a cigarette, go for the draw-activated fire. The plus-side of draw-activated is that there’s no danger of accidental firing. If you like that tapping motion—which acts like a reward center that releases vapor when punched—then go for the button fire. Some vape systems have a dual-operation system, activating the vapor in both ways.
Pre-filled Disposable Pods vs. Refillable Pods
Open system vape pods use refillable pods that allow you to choose any e-juice, within the recommended viscosity. The downside is that coil function and cartridge replacements might be more irregular. A closed system vape pod comes with pre-filled cartridges. The plus to the closed system is that you don’t have to mess with the coil or refill your pod. The downside is the potential for weaker draws. However, with a cleanly-engineered vape pod system, neither system should be problematic.
Lastly, aside from performance, what sets some pod systems apart from others is their minimalistic design. You don’t have to look far to find vapes in flashy colors and gawky patterns—which is far from desirable. An understated and discreet vape is a Devils Hole pupfish among guppies. Plus, a vape brand that curates a vape’s construction and the aesthetic look is much more likely to custom-engineer the way it operates.
Final question: Are pod vapes better? Only you can decide. Ready to browse? Let’s get you started.