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Vaping Basics

New to electronic cigarettes and vaping? If you've never so much as held an ecigarette, this is the place for you. These short guides will help you with some basic knowledge.

Vaping Basics


New to electronic cigarettes?

If you've never so much as held an ecigarette before, this is the place for you.

These short guides contain all the basic knowledge you need to begin living a life without smoke: no ash, no tar, and no more nasty smells!

Vaping basics


What's an ecigarette anyway? 

An electronic cigarette, or ecigarette, simulates the effects of smoking by converting a solution -- or eliquid -- into vapour. The vapour is a substitute for the smoke you'd inhale when smoking a traditional cigarette.

Broken down into its most basic components, an ecigarette is made up of a battery and an atomiser, which contains some form of wick and an electric resistance coil. The wick feeds juice (eliquid) into the coil, and the coil turns the liquid into vapour when heated

Vaping might be the closest you'll get to simulating the feeling of a traditional smoke. You get a throat hit, you get a source of nicotine (if you're using eliquid that contains nicotine), you can exhale the vapour just like cigarette smoke, and you get the physical sensation of holding something between your fingers.

However, because nothing is actually burning, you are not inhaling any tar or carbon monoxide, or any of the other 4,000 toxic chemicals that have been found in traditional cigarettes.

A word of caution: ecigarettes are sold as an alternative to smoking, and they are not considered a reliable 'quit smoking' aid. For smoking cessation advice, we recommend that you contact your GP. 


How do I use this thing anyway? 

There are generally two types of devices:

Automatic: An automatic device will behave much like a cigarette. It will power on as you inhale. This type most commonly comes in the form of a cig-a-like.

Manual: The majority of devices are manually powered, meaning they have a power button that you press as you inhale.

Ecigarettes tend to produce an optimum amount of vapour when you inhale slowly. If a good amount of vapour and throat hit is important to you, you can try a warmup inhale followed by a longer draw. This gets the coil warmed up and produces a lovely amount of vapour and a strong throat hit. It’s not essential that you do this, though. Just take a nice, long, slow inhale -- about 2-5 seconds. You can tailor this to your own needs as you get used to your device. 


A vaping habit is only slightly different than a smoking habit.

When smoking a cigarette, you don’t take a few puffs, put it out, and then go back to it. You smoke the entire cigarette, and then wait a while before you have your next one.

When vaping, you can pick up your ecigarette and put it down at will. Because you don’t have to worry about wasting half a cigarette, you can take 2 to 5 puffs at a time and then go back for more as you see fit. Many people continuously top themselves up, taking 2 or 3 puffs at a time, but the beauty of it is that you only take as much as you need to do the job.


The Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA) advises that you:

  • Always use the correct charger and follow the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Never charge a battery that has signs of damage, that has been dropped, or has been subjected to impact
  • Never plug a charger into a non-approved mains power transformer
  • Check that your e-cigarette battery has overcharge or overheat protection
  • Remove the battery from charge when complete – don’t overcharge
  • Never leave a battery on charge unattended
  • Don’t use if wet or exposed to water
  • Do not over-tighten the atomiser or when connecting to charger
  • Ensure that you dispose of batteries correctly

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