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Dialing in Airflow Control

The meteoric rise in the popularity of sub-ohm vape tanks has resulted in a lot of new vapers stepping right into these advanced devices. But to fine tune the perfect experience for your particular tastes, you're going to need to do a little more than just fill up with e-liquid and go.


We've already talked about priming your coils and selecting an ideal wattage, but there's another feature to customize your vape experience. Let's examine your airflow control dial.


These days, the near-universal standard in tank construction features a coil near the bottom of the tank, which is screwed into a base that's then attached to the tank itself. On that base, your tank will have a spinning ring that, as it moves, will expose or close off holes that direct air into a chamber underneath the coil.


Why are these important? Depending on the style of vape you're going after, and the resistance of the coil you're using, you'll need to select an airflow setting that helps you achieve vape bliss.


You're probably sick to death of hearing "This is a personal preference thing, you'll have to experiment to see what works for you." Yes, like many things in the vape world this is another case in which that oft-repeated advice is true. But we've got some suggestions to get you started off right.


If you're using a higher-resistance coil (say 1.0 ohm or more), you're probably using it at lower wattage. Because of this, your coil isn't going to heat as fast, and drawing a large volume of air over the coil will both cool it and limit vapor production. Try starting out with the airflow just barely open, then gradually adjust if you find the draw too tight or at the first hint of burnt taste from your juice. It may be best to experiment with your wattage set a few clicks below where you typically vape.


Mouth-to-lung vapers, or those who use their vaporizers in the same fashion as a cigarette by drawing vapor into the mouth before inhaling, take note: tight airflow is going to be your best bet for delivering the small, yet dense and flavorful clouds you're seeking.


Moving on to high-power users, things become a little more subjective.


If you're chasing clouds, the equation is simple - apply as much power as you can to the coil, pass as much air as possible over it, and vape all the vape juice you can. You don't need to play with your airflow settings - open that sucker up all the way and start cranking up the power until you or your mod says uncle.


For flavor chasers, or others looking to strike a balance, it's a little trickier. You probably don't want to set your air wide open, as too much air diminishes cloud density (the thicker the cloud, the more intense the flavor is likely to be) at mid-range wattage settings and too much heat means you'll lose some of the nuances of complex flavors. We recommend trying the mid-range airflow setting first, then going up and down a bit to see how the flavor and cloud density changes with your favorite liquid and power setting.


As usual, all of this advice comes with a caveat: every tank (and every vaper's style) is different. The Kanger Subtank, for example, has a much tighter airflow that could encourage everyone who's not mouth-to-lung vaping to run wide open. But with a tank like the Uwell Crown or Smok TFV4, flavor chasers vaping even at moderately high power might find their best setting just a click away from closed.