How to Choose the Best Sub-Ohm Tank
With so many tanks out there, it can be hard to buy the best sub-ohm tank for your needs. This straightforward guide walks you though the process by explaining the qualities that differentiate vaping tanks.
Are you looking for a quick way to enhance your vaping experience? Here at Vapester, we carry a wide selection of sub-ohm tanks that can instantly turbocharge the vapour production and flavour quality of your e-cigarette. Buying a new sub-ohm tank, though, is one of the most difficult decisions that you can make as a vaper. How can you possibly choose the best sub-ohm tank on the market without actually using any of them? You can read reviews online or watch them on YouTube, but there’s only so much that you can learn from someone else’s subjective opinion. It’s far better to understand the qualities that separate sub-ohm tanks so you can choose the one that fits your needs. In this article, we’ll help you do exactly that.
Number of Coils per Atomizer Head
If everything else is equal, a coil with greater surface area produces more vapour. To maximize the surface area for vapour production, some tanks – such as the SMOK TFV12 Prince – use large atomizer heads with several individual heating coils. Tanks with that design produce large, thick and flavourful clouds – but using a tank with several heating wires means that you’ll need to compromise in some areas. If you use a tank that generates very large vapour clouds, you’ll use e-liquid quickly. A tank with high coil surface area also requires a higher-wattage e-cigarette. The atomizer heads for the SMOK TFV12 Prince, for example, have suggested operating wattages ranging from 90-200 watts. If you use a device with a maximum output of 40 watts, you’ll need to upgrade your device or choose a tank that demands less power.
Size of Atomizer Heads
Companies that sell vaping products in the UK must comply with the Tobacco Products Directive. One requirement of the TPD is that vaping tanks cannot be larger than 2 ml. Because some sub-ohm tanks have many individual heating coils, they have large atomizer heads – and a tank with a large atomizer head will store less e-liquid than a tank with a smaller head. It’ll also use e-liquid more quickly for the reasons described above. You’ll therefore need to refill the tank more often. If refilling your vaping tank isn’t high on your list of favourite things to do, you may want to choose a sub-ohm tank with smaller atomizer heads.
Width of Tank
Do you use a smaller e-cigarette? If you do, you should pay close attention to the width of any sub-ohm tank that you’re considering buying. Some sub-ohm tanks are very wide, and you may not like the look of a wide sub-ohm tank sticking out from the end of a narrow vape pen. There’s also a practical reason to choose a sub-ohm tank with a width that your vaping device can accommodate. Suppose you’re using a large tank that hangs over the edge of your mod. If you drop your mod – and the edge of the tank hits a table or the floor – you could end up with damage to the threading of your mod. Sub-ohm tanks vary greatly in size. The SMOK TFV8 Baby, for example, is 22 mm wide. The Aspire Cleito 120 is 25 mm wide. Some tanks are even wider.
Compatibility With Other Drip Tips
Do you have a favourite drip tip that you like to use when vaping? Drip tips come in standard sizes. The 510 size is popular, for example. Some sub-ohm tanks, however, have very wide mouthpieces for maximum vapour production and do not accept third-party drip tips. If you need a tank that accepts third-party drip tips, you should check for that feature before buying a tank. Some sub-ohm tanks are popular enough that companies have created third-party drip tip adapters for them.
Solution for Spitback
A sub-ohm tank can generate massive vapour clouds – but all of the vapour doesn’t actually reach your mouth. Some of it condenses inside the tank’s chimney and runs back down to the atomizer. The condensed e-liquid forms large droplets that rest on top of the coils rather than soaking into the cotton. When you vape, the vapour pushes through the condensed droplets and creates an audible “pop.” When that happens, the tank may even spit hot e-liquid into your mouth. Atomizer spitback is annoying and sometimes painful – and it tastes awful. Some sub-ohm tanks prevent spitback by using wide chimneys that help to deter the condensed vapour from forming large droplets. Other tanks block the vapour path with screens or spiral inserts to stop spitback. If atomizer spitting is a serious problem for you, it’s wise to buy a tank with a design that mitigates it.
Do you like a flashy vaping setup that can serve as a conversation piece, or do you prefer something a bit more understated? From rainbow snakeskin patterns to plan stainless steel and gunmetal, you can find sub-ohm tanks with every type of design that you can possibly imagine. Some companies – such as SMOK – manufacture mods in a variety of distinct colours and offer tanks with designs that you can mix or match. Other companies are more utilitarian in their aesthetics. The physical design of a sub-ohm tank is one thing that you don’t need to watch a YouTube review to appreciate; just look at the pictures right here at Vapester. You’re certain to find something with a look that works for your style.
MTL vs DTL Inhaling
There are two ways to inhale e-cigarette vapour. You can inhale from the mouth to the lungs – as if you were smoking – or you can inhale directly to the lungs. If a sub-ohm tank has a wide mouthpiece, a wide chimney and large airflow holes, it’s designed for direct-to-lung inhaling. Most sub-ohm tanks fit that category. There are, however, some sub-ohm tanks designed for mouth-to-lung inhaling. The Aspire Nautilus 2 and the Innokin Zenith are two such tanks. Look for a tank with a narrow mouthpiece and smaller air holes if you prefer to inhale vapour from the mouth to the lungs.
Compatibility With Your Device
Virtually all vaping devices released within the last few years support sub-ohm vaping. If you purchased your device recently – and it is a variable-wattage device capable of reaching the suggested wattage range for a tank’s coils – your device should support that tank. If you have an older device with a built-in battery, though – or you’re using removable batteries purchased more than a few years ago – you should check to confirm the amperage load that your device or batteries support. Some older batteries and devices only support loads of a few amps – so they won’t support a sub-ohm tank. A modern battery such as the Samsung 25R supports a continuous load of 25 amps. A mod using two such batteries wired in parallel supports a continuous load of 50 amps. That’s more than enough headroom to support virtually every sub-ohm tank on the market.
If you’ve never heard of the razor-and-blades business model, get ready to learn that model when you buy a new sub-ohm tank. Sub-ohm tanks typically don’t cost very much because the manufacturers earn most of their money from the replacement coils. A new atomizer head for a sub-ohm tank costs about £2-3 depending on the complexity of the design. If you’re thinking of getting one of those fancy new sub-ohm tanks with many heating wires packed into each atomizer head, you’ll pay more for replacement coils. Choose a tank with a coil replacement cost that you can afford – especially if you prefer sweet e-liquids. Sweet e-liquids leave residue that kills coils quickly.
Every sub-ohm tank includes at least a few accessories. Although accessories alone may not greatly influence your buying decision, it’s wise to compare the included accessories if you’re on the fence about buying two different sub-ohm tanks. Some of the typical accessories that a sub-ohm tank may include are spare coils, replacement glass, spare o-rings, silicone caps and extra drip tips. Spare coils are particularly valuable because a few extra coils can allow you to use the tank longer before you’ll need to buy a box of coils. Most sub-ohm tanks include at least one replacement coil.
A sub-ohm tank should have a glass enclosure. Glass resists heat and can tolerate an occasional bump without breaking. Unlike plastic, a glass enclosure can also support any type of e-liquid. Some plastic tanks crack after extended contact with cinnamon or citrus e-liquids. Ideally, you should choose a sub-ohm tank made with borosilicate glass. Some manufacturers and vendors may use the term “Pyrex” to refer to borosilicate glass. Although Pyrex doesn’t actually make glass for vaping tanks, you can be fairly confident that a tank labelled “Pyrex” does use borosilicate glass. The main benefit of borosilicate glass is that it doesn’t expand and contract due to changing temperatures as standard glass can. Since a sub-ohm tank can become very hot during use, borosilicate glass can help the tank retain its structural integrity and not crack during periods of heavy vaping.