Kind of a scary sight isn’t it?
In case you can’t tell what it is, that’s a blown up mechanical mod (that’s what’s left of the battery up in the top left). You know, all of those stories you hear about on the internet about someone building some sub ohm coil and blowing up their device…this is the aftermath. Occasionally that aftermath can include some pretty gnar face carnage. Luckily that isn’t pictured here because the original poster on a Reddit thread stated this happened to someone once they set the mod down then it shot across the room. While it couldn’t really be explained why it happened when it was not in use, your best bet is that the user set it down and it continued to fire. So use your lock rings, get a stiffer spring, or upgrade to magnets (make sure you use enough) to make sure that your device doesn’t fire when you set it down.
Alright, so you hear all these horror stories about this happening and it spooks people away sometimes. Don’t let it. Not blowing yourself up when you vape kind of follows the same rules as not blowing yourself up when you do anything else…just use a little bit of common sense. That’s something else you hear all the time…I used to. I also used to think “how can I use common sense if I don’t even know where to start?”. Well, we’ve got you covered on it.
Yes, safety is important and you should know what you’re doing. What you shouldn’t do is let it become an inconvenience and take away from the joy of the activity you’re participating in…in this case, vaping.
So what’s all the fuss about? Why do batteries blow up?…and why are people so worried? Well, people are going to always worry. There’s always those so don’t let it get to you.
There are a few reasons why batteries go “pop”. We’ll keep it simple.
Remember this much if you stop reading here: Your coil is made of resistance wire. That wire does just that, it provides resistance to the electric current you are pushing through it when you fire your device. That resistance is what makes the coil heat up and vaporize your juice. If that coil does not have enough resistance, what it is essentially doing is connecting the positive and negative terminals of your battery and causing a short circuit. When that happens, it’s bad news bears. If you want to get a better idea, bend a paper clip into a “U” shape and stick it into a wall outlet to see what happens……no, we’re kidding, don’t do that but you get the idea.
Your battery discharged too much and you’re trying to pull too much power out of it. How do you avoid that? Easy, monitor your battery to make sure the voltage doesn’t drop too low. When you get around 3.5 volts, swap it out. This is when having multiple batteries comes in handy, just grab a fresh one. How do you know if your battery is too low? Use a multimeter to check it. Do this when you first get rolling on a regular basis as you vape at home. Every so often, take the battery out and check it until you learn to gauge where it is based on your vape habits. Once you learn you can “eyeball” it and know when it’s time to blow the whistle and call for a battery substitute. This holds true for whatever ohm coil you’re running. If you’ve ever used a regulated or “protected” device, it does this for you. If you’ve ever wondered why those devices shut themselves off when you still have voltage in your battery, that’s why…because it’s getting too low to safely pull from the battery.
Alright, got it so far? Good. So what’s the other big reason?…amp draw. This is where the fear of sub ohm builds comes from that you hear everyone talking about. Any battery you have has a safe amp draw limit. Some batteries will have this limit right on them but pay attention when you buy to make sure. The higher this limit the better. Now keep in mind that the relation between your battery charge and the amount of ohms you’re pulling out of if directly affects your amp draw. The combination of ohms and voltage has to be below your battery’s safe amp draw limit.
Now keep in mind that on a regulated device where you can set the voltage you’re firing at, it’s pretty easy to know and not to mention that if you set it incorrectly, the device will fire but it will ignore your settings and fire at the lowest safe setting programmed into it. On a mechanical device, you don’t have such protection because there is no circuitry. This is where knowing your voltage and using that multimeter to learn where about it is at comes into play.
There are a lot of charts and calculators out there to help you out though, so don’t get concerned. Check this one out…super simple and easy to use. You’ll know exactly where you need to be to keep you mug nice and shiny.
What you want to do is plug in your voltage (use your multimeter to check your battery charge) then plug the ohm level of your attached device (use your multimeter, resistance checker, or a regulated mod that has the ability to check ohms to find this out). Once you get those two figures filled in, the calculator will spit out your amp draw. If than number is higher than the safe amp draw limit of your battery, you might want to stop and build a higher resistance coil.
You can find that calculator HERE!
…and most importantly, the simplest piece of common sense even if everything else seems to check out fine. If your device starts getting hot at any time, discontinue use immediately, set it somewhere where if it does pop it won’t hurt anything and wait for it to cool down before pulling the battery and diagnosing the problem.
There are more in depth explanations out there but if you’re looking for a quick 411 and want to get started, this should help you not blow your money maker off. If you have any of your own tips, we’d love to hear them!