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Burned Wicks Ruin Vape Coils:

Here’s What to Do About Them

Nothing ruins a vape coil more quickly than a burned wick. Cotton is the most popular material for vape wicks, and while it is perfect for sub-ohm vaping in many respects, it also burns very easily when it’s dry. If that happens, you’ll taste a horrible burned flavor every time you vape. So, let’s learn how not to let burned wicks ruin YOUR vape coils!

Our product ROBO2020 is the world’s first fully automatic vape coil cleaner. It cleans and dries vape coils in just 30 minutes using nothing but water. It can remove the blackest, stickiest e-liquid residue and restore your coils to like-new performance. It can even remove manufacturing residue from new coils, eliminating the “coil break-in” period and giving you flawless flavor from the very first puff.

The one thing ROBO2020 can’t fix, though, is burned cotton. Once something is burned, it’s burned forever. Cleaning the coil may help a little if the wick is burned, but the only real fix is to replace the wick or throw the coil away and start using a new one.

You have a very strong incentive, then, to ensure that you don’t burn the wicks of your coils – and this article will explain how to prevent that from happening. First, though, let’s learn how to diagnose what’s happening when one of your coils is “burned out.” Have you burned the wick, or is the problem something else?

How to Tell if Your Coil Has a Burned Wick

So, let’s say that you notice an unpleasant burned flavor when vaping. You’ve tried lowering your vaping wattage and adding e-liquid to your tank, and nothing is working; every puff tastes burned, regardless of what you do. Is the problem coil gunk – something that ROBO2020 can fix – or is it a burned wick?

A Discolored Heating Surface Means You’ve Got Coil Gunk

The easiest way to diagnose the problem is by removing the coil from your tank and examining it. If you look down through the top of the coil assembly, you’ll see the wire or mesh heating coil. The metal was white and shiny when you first installed the coil. Does it now look brown – or maybe even black – and sticky? If that’s the case, then the problem is most likely coil gunk. Coil gunk is a dark residue that comes from the ingredients in e-liquid – most notably the sweetener sucralose – that do not vaporize cleanly.

Identifying a Burned Wick With a Rebuildable Atomizer

If the metal is still white, it’s highly likely that the coil’s wick is burned. If you’re using a rebuildable atomizer, it’s very easy to confirm that; just pull the wick out. You’ll probably find a burned spot right under the coil. The wick may even split in the middle when you try to remove it.

Identifying a Burned Wick With a Vape Tank

If you’re using a tank with pre-built coils, you can disassemble a coil to determine whether the wick is burned. That’s usually done by pulling the pin out of the bottom of the coil assembly and pushing the heating wire and wick out through the top of the assembly. Unravel the wick and take a look at it; you’ll probably see at least one dark spot where the wick touches the heating wire. If you have a sensitive palate, you’ll find that even a tiny burned spot affects the flavor that you experience when vaping.

How to Avoid Burning Your Wick When Vaping

Since there’s no way to fix burned cotton, the only real solution for burning your wick when vaping is to prevent it from happening in the first place. These three tips will help to ensure that you always keep your wicks in good shape.

Prime Your New Coils Before Using Them

Burning your wick the very first time you use a new coil is one of the most unpleasant things that can happen when you vape. You can prevent that by being certain that your coils are completely wet before you use them. Before putting a new coil in your tank, use a bottle of e-liquid to wet all of the openings on the side of the coil. You should also wet the wick through the large opening at the top of the coil. This primes the wick and helps to ensure that it’ll quickly become saturated when you install the coil and fill the tank.

Even though you’ve primed the wick, you should still wait several minutes before using a new coil for the first time. Fill the tank and give the wick plenty of time to become completely wet.

Don’t Allow Your Coils to Dry Out or Overheat

Taking care of your coil is a process that never really ends. Some people really like to push their vape coils hard. They like their vapor warm, and they like their clouds big. If that sounds like you, remember that using your vaping device at a high wattage means that your coil will vaporize the e-liquid held in the wick very quickly and will almost always be on the verge of drying out when you vape. Using your device at a high wattage will require you to watch the length of your puffs to avoid singing the wick. Is your preference to vape with longer and deeper puffs? You’ll probably need to keep your vaping device on the low end of your coil’s recommended wattage range.

Regardless of your vaping wattage, you should avoid the temptation to vape constantly without ever giving your coil a chance to rest. After each time you use your device, wait several seconds – or even a few minutes – before vaping again. That gives the coil a chance to cool down, and it gives the wick time to absorb more e-liquid.

Try Using Your Mod’s Temperature Control Function

Did you know that almost all vape mods have the ability to limit your vaping temperature if you’re using the right type of coil? To use your mod’s temperature control function, you need a coil that’s made from nickel, titanium, or stainless steel. The first two metals on that list aren’t particularly popular for vaping at the present, but stainless-steel coils are fairly common. If you install a stainless-steel coil and turn temperature control mode on, you can set a maximum operating temperature for your coil. If the coil reaches that temperature, the mod cuts its power, thus preventing the wick from burning.

Jason Artman

Jason Artman is the owner and author of eCig One. A full-time freelance writer for more than a decade, Jason’s clients have included corporations such as Intel and eBay. Jason’s online articles have been viewed hundreds of millions of times. After quitting smoking and switching to vaping in 2010, Jason turned his professional attention to the vaping industry and now works with some of the world’s largest vaping and CBD brands.

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