Here’s a scenario – you put a pan on the hob in the kitchen heat it up. When it is over 100 degrees, you drop a few drops of water into it. What happens? It spits that water straight back out at you. And that’s a little like what happens with spit-back on electronic cigarettes – a tiny amount of hot liquid spits into your mouth when you first inhale. But how can you avoid this?
It is true that it is uncomfortable to experience, but is spit back really dangerous? Like many things in the world of wholesale e-liquid and vaping, there are lots of stories and myths. One of them is that this spit-back is dangerous.
However, research and evidence including from Public Health England state this isn’t the case. The reason people think it is dangerous is due to the idea of nicotine poisoning, but tests have shown that the amount of nicotine in spit-back is so low, there’s no risk of this.
Another reason it is said to be dangerous is the heat involved. But again, tests have shown that the saliva in the mouth instantly cools that little drop of liquid when it enters the mouth so there’s little risk. If the spit-back was to hit your face instead, there is a slight risk of a very small mild burn – but less than received by that frying pan example.
Of course, the best option is to simply avoid spit back when you vape – but how do you do this? Spit-back happens during the first milliseconds when a coil fires up so the simplest way to deal with the problem is to point the tank away from your face during those first few seconds. Then if there is any spit-back, it will not come into contact with your mouth or face.
Another option is to use a device with adjustable power and if you notice that the spit-back happens at a certain temperature, simply adjust it down a little. By heating the liquid a little more slowly, this should reduce the risk of the problems.
There are some other ideas on how to handle spit-back that come from other vapers. One idea is to reduce the airflow to draw more liquid through the wick and therefore prevent the spit-back problem. The issue here can be that you could oversaturate the wick and flood the coil which will not produce the desired vaping effect.
Some newer e-cigarettes are even including a spit-back protection feature. This can either partially or fully block the path between the coil and the mouthpiece so that spit-back cannot happen. One example uses a perforated area above the coil.
Finally, if the e-cigarette you use has an adjustment mode for slower heating of the coil, this could also work well to try variable ramp-up times. This means you can find the perfect balance between speedily heating up the coil and avoiding spit-back on your device.
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