Vape-Ology: The Ultimate Guide to Vaping Lingo

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Vapes are sophisticated little pieces of engineering with a special lexicon all their own. So special, in fact, that they should come with a glossary…

510 – The most common style of threading available for electronic cigarettes. Male threaded.

808/KR808 – A style of threading available for e-cigs.


901 – A female style of threading.

18350/18650/22650 – Used to classify sizes of lithium-ion batteries.

APV – Advanced personal vaporizer. Also referred to as mods, these units are larger, have replaceable batteries, and can be mechanical, variable-voltage, or variable-wattage.

AFC – Airflow control. A small dial or screw found in atomizers and clearomizers/tanks to adjust the drag of an e-cig.

Airflow – The amount of air sucked into an atomizer or tank. Looser airflow results in more vapor, while tighter airflow results in less vapor but more intense flavor.

Amps – Short for amperage, this is the flow of energy along a circuit. Batteries with higher amps can better handle atomizers with lower resistances without overheating.

Atomizer – Also called “atty,” the part of an e-cig that houses the coil and wick that is heated to produce vapor from e-liquid.

Battery –The term usually refers to vape pens and cig-a-likes that don’t have replaceable batteries. The two types are manual and automatic. Automatic are switched on by inhaling, while manual require the user to press a button found on the side.

BCC – Bottom coil clearomizer. The coil atomizer sits at the base of the clearomizer tank.

BDC – Bottom dual coil. Similar to BCC, but the heating element is two coils instead of one.

Blanks – Cartridges and cartomizers with a dry wicking material that are filled with e-liquid.

Box Mod – A personal vaporizer that comes in a square or rectangular shape.

Bridge – The part of a disposable atomizer that holds e-liquid; usually coated in steel mesh.

Cartridge – A small mouthpiece filled with Poly-Fil to hold e-liquid, it’s attached to an atomizer and usually comes pre-filled.

Cartomizer – An atomizer and cartridge in one, cartomizers are longer than regular atomizers, hold more e-liquid, and are disposable. Available for use in tanks and with dual coils.

Coil – The part of the atomizer used to heat or vaporize e-liquid.

Conduction – In older-generation vaporizers, a heat transfer method using a heating element, normally a metal plate of some sort, that makes direct contact with blends to produce the vaporization process. Mostly replaced by convection.

Convection – The most common type of vaporizers. The heating element, typically ceramic or aluminum, does not make direct contact with the blends. Instead, hot air is pulled or pushed from the heating element and transferred over the blends for efficient and effective vaporization.

Cutoff – The amount of time one can take a drag from an e-cig before it cuts off power to prevent overheating. Cutoff times typically range from ten to fifteen seconds.

DCT – Dual coil tank. Usually a large tank with a replaceable dual coil cartomizer.

Dripping – Vaping by dripping e-liquid directly onto the coils of the atomizer.

Dual coil – Atomizers, cartomizers, and clearomizers with two coils instead of one. Dual coils produce more vapor at the expense of battery life.

E-cigarette/e-cig – Common name for personal vaping devices.

E-juice/e-liquid – The solution that’s vaporized; available in a variety of strengths and flavors.

Genesis atomizer – A type of atomizer or tank that uses steel mesh instead of silica or cotton.

Heatsink – Fins or layers protruding from an atomizer, drip tip, or e-cigarette, designed to dissipate heat more quickly.

High resistance – A high ohm reading; used for high-voltage vaping.

Hot spot – Area of excess heat on an atomizer coil. Known cause of dry hits.

Hybrid – A battery and rebuildable atomizer combined into one unit. Also, a direct connection between a standalone rebuildable atomizer and the battery via the atomizer’s contact pin.

ICR – Lithium-ion cobalt rechargeable battery.

IMR – Lithium-ion manganese rechargeable battery.

Knucklehead – A rotatable drip tip that can be adjusted to any angle.

Li-Po – Lithium-polymer rechargeable battery; made of different material than li-ion batteries.

VapesLithium-ion batteries (li-ion) – Considered the strongest and most powerful batteries in the electronic cigarette market. Available in many different sizes and shapes.

LR – Low Resistance. An atomizer/cartomizer/clearomizer with a low ohm rating.

mAh – Stands for Milliampere Hour, or one-thousandth of an ampere hour. Used to describe a battery’s capacity and the charge it will hold.

Mechanical/mech mod – An electronic cigarette that has no electronics or wiring.

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Micro coil – One of many different types of coils.

Ohm (Ω) – The standard unit of electrical resistance. The lower the number, the lower the resistance. Lower-resistance coils heat faster.

Passthrough – A micro-USB outlet, usually located on the side or base of a device, that can be used to charge the unit while it’s in use.

Pen style – A type of e-cig that’s shaped like a pen; usually the kind found in starter kits.

PV – Personal Vaporizer. Another name for e-cigs, particularly for mods and nontraditional cig-a-like units.

Rebuildables – Tanks and atomizers that let users rebuild the coils and wicks.

Resistance – The measurement of ohms that allows users to calculate the right amount of voltage to apply to get the best wattage.

Regulated mod – A type of e-cig battery with a circuit board to regulate the current.

Sensor – The part of the e-cigarette battery that detects when the user has taken a drag.

Stacking – The practice of taking two batteries and stacking them atop one another, usually in a mechanical tube mod.

Sub-ohming – A practice used by experienced vapers to produce massive clouds of vapor by building coils with ohm readings below 1.0.

Tank – Clearomizers with larger-capacity enclosures made of glass or plastic, which can hold larger amounts of e-liquid.

Triple coil – Seen in cartomizers and rebuildables, triple coils produce massive amounts of vapor, though battery life is reduced because of the added draw on power.

Tube mod – E-cigs or PVs that come in a tube shape about the size of a small flashlight.

Vaper – A term used to describe anyone who uses e-cigarettes.

Vapor – The result of e-liquid atomization; inhaled and exhaled as (primarily) water vapor.

Vaporizer – A device that generates a particular substance in the form of vapor, especially for medicinal inhalation.

Voltage – The amount of kinetic energy that, when paired with resistance, creates wattage.

Watt (wattage) – The amount of raw heat atomizer coils use to vaporize e-liquid.

Wick– Used to deliver e-liquid to the coil in electronic cigarettes, wicks are usually made from silica; other materials used for wicks include stainless steel mesh, organic cotton, and ceramic.