6 ways to get the most from your vape cart

vape pen next to cannabis leaf get the most from your vape cart

Cannabis vape cartridges have become increasingly popular over the years. A quick and convenient way to consume, vape carts now account for more than 23 percent of overall cannabis sales in the US.

The system may be exceedingly simple—screw the cartridge onto a 510-thread battery, press the button, and inhale—but issues can arise. Nothing is worse than spending your hard-earned cash on a cart only to have it fail you. 

In honor of 5/10, here are six ways to get the most from your vape cart. Follow these tips and tricks to ensure your vaping experience is all it can be.

Go low and slow

One of the biggest mistakes people make when using a vape cart is “pulling” (aka inhaling) too hard. These devices can be tricky since you do not always know how big of a hit you’re getting while in motion. Suddenly, your lungs are filled with vapor, and a coughing fit ensues.

When inhaling from a vape cart, go low and slow. Pull gently, and try counting to two or three. This will help you avoid aggressively large hits as well as clogs in the hardware.

Use the right voltage

Another common mistake people make is selecting the wrong voltage on their vape battery, which controls the temperature. The majority of 510-thread vape batteries have three settings that indicate the level of power used. Typically, it’s blue for low, green for medium, and red for high.

Many people assume they should use the highest setting because it creates the biggest clouds of vapor. However, this may actually scorch the oil inside the cart—and your throat too. Lower settings allow you to get a more flavorful hit as it brings out the terpenes in your concentrate and prolong the life of your cartridge. Don’t forget to power your battery off after every use; not only will you save power, but you’ll also prevent accidentally manipulating the button and frying your oil.

Avoid extreme temperatures and direct sunlight

Vape carts combine cannabis and electronics—two things that should be kept in cool, dark places. Exposure to high heat or super cold temperatures could damage your cartridge and battery. The same goes for UV light.

Store your vape cart and battery at room temperature and out of direct light. And if you have kids at home, make sure you’re putting your hardware out of their reach.

Keep the cart upright

On the subject of storage, keep the 510-thread cart upright. This will ensure the oil doesn’t pool on one side, preventing the cart from working properly. If it does, you have to wait for the oil to slowly move back to the bottom before you can get a proper hit.

The VapeNprop is one way to ensure your carts and batteries stay put. Available in a variety of colors and designs, these slick holders prevent clogs, breaks, and leaks. They also help you differentiate one cart from the next.

Take care of your hardware

In addition to proper storage, make sure your carts and batteries are always in tip-top shape. Residue can build on the mouthpiece of the cart, the bottom thread, or on the battery itself. 

When this happens, you’ll need to clean your hardware. Remove the cartridge from the battery. Then dip a cotton swab in isopropyl alcohol and gently wipe away the sticky substance. Do not submerge a cartridge or battery in liquid, as this can damage the hardware. Allow everything to air dry completely before reassembling. And while it goes without saying, always keep your battery charged. Nothing is worse than having to wait for a hit!

Use a blowdryer to get every last drop of oil

It’s an all too common sight: the oil in your tank gets lower and lower until there are only a few drops left. Oftentimes, the extract will pool on one side, even if the cart is kept upright. If this happens, it is possible to get the oil back in place so that it doesn’t go to waste.

You should never expose a cart or battery to high heat, but using a blow dryer on the lowest setting is acceptable. This will heat the oil enough to get it to move but will not damage the hardware or put you in danger. Direct the airflow toward the oil blob, and once warm, you can move the cart to get it where you want it to be.

Consider a refillable vape cart system

The vast majority of cartridges on the market are disposable, causing both environmental and budgetary concerns among consumers. Fortunately, it is possible to refill a vape cart if you have the right equipment. 

Refillable carts have a removable mouthpiece. Once the mouthpiece is off, you can use a syringe to place oil inside. Pre-filled syringes are available at certain dispensaries, or if you have bulk oil, you can use your own. However, it’s important to note that not every extract will work in a cartridge. The oil needs to be viscous enough to move through the cart’s wick system. 

Get the most from your vape cart

Vape carts are an easy and discreet way to consume cannabis, but they do require regular maintenance. As long as you do your due diligence, your vaping experience will always be top-shelf.

Rachelle Gordon

Rachelle Gordon is a cannabis journalist and Editor of GreenState.com. She began her weed writing journey in 2015 and has been featured in High Times, CannabisNow, Beard Bros, MG, Skunk, Cannabis and Tech Today, and many others. Rachelle currently splits her time between Minneapolis and Oakland; her favorite cannabis cultivars include Silver Haze and Tangie. Follow Rachelle on Instagram @rachellethewriter