Proper Vape Tank Filling Tips
Filling your clearomizer is one of the common points where new vapers can feel a bit of confusion. Luckily, tank tech has advanced tremendously over the last year or two, so there’s no need to fret - we’re here to walk you through one of the most basic forms of vape maintenance there is.
Before filling your tank the first time, or when making a drastic change in flavor, it is important to properly clean it. Start by removing the tank from your mod (or unboxing it if new). Break the tank down into as many components as are removable - usually this will be a mouthpiece (called a drip tip), a top cap, center glass, center metal tube, coil, and bottom cap (with an airflow ring that usually doesn’t come apart). Rinse the tank under warm water, using a mild detergent if your tank is new or particularly dirty, and allow it to fully dry.
Note that you don’t need to wash your coil head (and you definitely shouldn’t use soap if you do, it’ll get in the wicking and never come out!). If you’re making a drastic flavor change, say from a bold menthol to a mild berry, chances are that the old flavor will stick with your coil. If the coil is still functioning properly and you don’t want to waste three or four bucks, consider popping it into a ziploc bag and marking what flavor it was used with - when you go back to a similar flavor, you can reinstall the old coil and continue to vape until it wears out.
Keep in mind that when switching from a strong flavor like as coffee, menthol, or anything involving cinnamon additional cleaning may be needed. Strong flavors can linger and blend with the new e-liquid you are filling your tank with, even with a coil change. Sometimes this overlap in flavors creates a new blend, other times, it creates a mess of incompatible flavors. The best way to avoid this overlap is proper cleaning.
If you like to change flavors often, there are ways to keep you vape game strong, while still getting the best bang for your buck. Want to change your flavor every other day? Don’t fill your tank to the top when using your e-liquid. Fill it enough so that you can vape as much as you would like with that flavor without getting an dry hit. Run out of juice once, and you’ll learn your lesson about dry hits. A safer method is to use a smaller tank. Larger tanks require more liquid to keep the device properly working. A smaller tank will require less e-juice to keep running properly. Also, choose your flavor changes wisely, as some of your old liquid will always remain in the wicking and the bottom of the tank unless you’re meticulously cleaning and swapping out coils constantly. Switching from strawberry to apple might provide an interesting, enjoyable transition - jumping from chocolate cake to cranberry juice cocktail not so much.
Most tanks these days have transitioned to a top-fill system. This means that you can remove the top cap from your clearomizer and drip juice directly down into the reservoir. Back in the day (going back as far as mid-2015), you’d have to remove your clearomizer from the mod, flip it upside down, and unscrew the entire bottom section to get at the reservoir. Be thankful - modern tanks have cut refill times in half (even more if you’ve got a hinged top cap that doesn’t even need to be unscrewed). Still, if you’re using an older tank that requires disassembly the whole process can be completed in two minutes or less.
Your tank has a center tube, make sure keep the e-juice out of it and in the fill holes or you’ll end up with a gurgling, popping, spitting mess. This is the airflow channel. You do not want to get any e-liquid in there.
To get started, close the airflow holes on your tank completely. If you’re removing the base and filling from the bottom this step doesn’t matter, and depending on the style of tank you’re using it may or not make a difference, but for some devices this step is crucial to avoid leaks which are particularly prevalent with rebuildable tank atomizers (RTAs) that rely on a vacuum seal. Tilt your tank slightly and slowly begin to fill. If your tank has a line to fill to consider that your target, otherwise fill almost, but not quite to the top. If you’ve been top-filling, flip your tank upside down, move the airflow ring to wide open for a few seconds (this re-establishes the vacuum that keeps vacuum-reliant tanks from leaking), close it, turn your mod right-side-up, and reopen the airflow. Reattach your tank to your device (if you’ve removed it for bottom-fill), assembly is the reverse of disassembly.
While it may see intimidating at first, filling up your vape tank can be easy with proper knowledge, and it’s going to be the one most common bit of maintenance you’re ever going to perform. Following these tips can help make tank filling much easier. However, if these tips haven’t boosted your confidence in tank filling, or if you are looking for a more time conscious method, you can always opt for a pod mod device. These utilized a pre-filled pod to swap out vape flavors, cutting down on time and effort - be aware, though, that the nicotine content in these devices is dramatically higher than in e-liquid used in “open” systems, so if you’re the type that likes to vape throughout the day it may be worth putting in a little time to develop a technique that works for you.