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 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 pens can help you make an educated decision on which product is right for you.
Jump to a section in this article:
- What is a vape cartridge?
- How do vape pens work?
- Why choose an oil vape cartridge?
- What are the drawbacks of vapes?
- How to use a vape pen
- Types of vape cartridges available
- How long does a vape cartridge last?
What is a vape cartridge?
A vape cart is a glass cartridge pre-filled with a gram or half-gram of cannabis oil. This oil contain various combinations of cannabinoids and terpenes extracted from cannabis.
Most oil vape carts are high in THC, however, more and more CBD-dominant vape cartridges are entering the market, as are 1:1 THC:CBD products. Vape cartridges come in many forms: 510-threaded cartridges (the most common), as well as some proprietary forms like Pax Era Pods and Airo Pro oil cartridges.
How do vape pens work?
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.RelatedWhat are cannabis concentrates, oils, and extracts?
Why choose an oil vape cartridge?
Here are some of the benefits to using oil vape cartridges.
Ease of use
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.RelatedDabbing 101: What is cannabis dabbing and how do dabs work?
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.
What are the drawbacks of vapes?
While vape cartridges are great for ease of use, portability, and dosing, there are a few drawbacks over other consumptions methods.
Vape carts can be pretty pricey, with costs between $20-60 or more per half-gram or gram of hash oil, depending on the market 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.
How to use a vape pen
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:
- If your device has an On/Off button, chances are you turn it on by clicking 5 times. The same number turns it off.
- Make sure your cart is completely attached to its battery to avoid any oil leakage.
- Keep your vape pen upright to avoid oil leakage.
- Start slow with dosing as it is very easy to overconsume with vape carts.
- Monitor temperature to make sure your cart isn’t burning too hot, which could alter some of the oil’s chemical components—usually 3 clicks will adjust the temp.
Remember to always buy carts from a reputable vendor for the safest products!RelatedVape pen lung injury: Here’s what you need to know
Types of vape cartridges available
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.
Cartridge/battery combos vs. disposables
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.