So you’ve purchased your first box mod and a set of batteries and have been told or heard it’s a good idea to purchase an external battery charger. You might be wondering if you really need it and if it’s worth shelling out the extra 20 or 30 bucks since your mod already has a USB charger. Well, the answer is most certainly yes, and here are 7 simple reasons why you should use an external charger. 1. Faster Charging Depending on the brand, the latest external chargers are capable of charging your battery up to 3 amps. Some manufactures are claiming a depleted 18650 battery can be fully charged in just a little under 1.5 hours. The majority of vape mods on the market only have a 1 amp charge rate with only a handful capable of 2 amps. This means a dual battery mod with 2500 mAh batteries can take up to 6 hours to fully charge! Although external chargers have the ability to charge at higher rates, it is not recommended to do so all the time and only when you're pinched for time. Doing so may decrease the life of your battery. 2. Charge Multiple Batteries Battery chargers currently on the market range from a 1-Bay all the way up to an 8-Bay. Swapping in freshly charged batteries will keep you vaping all day without the hassle of recharging. This is also a plus for vapers with several multi-battery box mods. 3. Reliable Chip and Accuracy External chargers hands-down have a much more reliable chip when compared to box mods. You want your batteries to reach a maximum 4.2 volts capacity or slightly below, but the key here is accuracy and consistency. Overcharging is potentially dangerous and bad for the long-term life of your batteries. This is why they will automatically detect and stop charging once the batteries are fully charged. Good external chargers have a large LCD screen to display anything from battery voltage, settings, charging current, temperature, and other parameters. You’ll also be able to monitor the batteries and their health. Some chargers are capable of charging Li-Ion, NiMH, NiCD, and IMR batteries, which is a plus for versatility. The user can customize each individual bay to a specific setting. Box mods with micro USB internal chargers are fragile and can get damaged with day-to-day usage while your external charger is safely stowed at home. 4. Even Charging Many older box mods do not have balanced charging and are not capable of applying independent charges to the individual battery cells. Basically, if you have a two or three battery mod – the cells are only treated as a single unit and a single charge is applied in series to the positive and negative terminals. In addition, box mods have been tested to show a drop of up to 20% in current flow with the second or third batteries. Newer mods such as the Smok Alien Kit have balanced charging but should not be used as a primary source of charging. The internal charger has a much higher chance of going faulty with regular usage when compared to a standalone external charger. It's much easier and more convenient to carry an extra set of batteries when traveling instead of having to wait for your mod to charge. As a safety feature, non balanced charging devices will stop charging when one of the cells reaches the maximum safe voltage, leaving one battery fully charged and the others partially. 5. Charge Different Sized Batteries Many chargers on the market have the ability to charge multiple sized batteries, ranging from 16340s all the way up to 26650s. Their versatility allows users to charge batteries for other applications such as tools and flashlights. 6. Safety Overcharging batteries is dangerous and could potentially cause harm. This is why it’s so important to have a charger that will automatically stop charging once the batteries reach maximum capacity. Over discharging is equally as important and can be dangerous. Chargers such as the Efest LUC Series will apply a trickle charge when the voltage is below 2.9 volts. Once the battery reaches a safe voltage, a normal charge current will be applied. A well-built charger is constructed out of a durable and fire retardant PC and ABS plastic. Unlike box mods, your batteries will not be enclosed during charging. External chargers are designed to dissipate heat and are crucial to keeping your batteries cool and safe. Some external chargers will also monitor the temperature of your batteries and will cut-off if they become too hot. In addition, they also offer reverse polarity protection. The batteries will not be charged if inserted incorrectly and won’t cause harm to them or the charger. 7. Increased Battery Life Having the ability to set specific charging settings for your batteries can help extend its life. Not allowing the batteries to overcharge not only keeps the battery healthy but keeps them lasting as well. Charging at a slower rate such as 0.5 amps instead of 2.0 amps also increases their longevity. Heat is another enemy for your batteries and is the biggest cause of damage and reduced lifespan. Your external charger's ability to temperature sense along with its heat dissipation properties will ensure your batteries will age slower. When it comes to purchasing an external battery charger, there are many different types and brands you can chose from to best suit your vaping needs. The most important factors to be mindful of when selecting one are its features, safety parameters, speed, and accuracy. Nowadays chargers also have bluetooth connectivity and even double as a charging bank for USB devices. The external charger is one of the most essential tools for a vaper and you shouldn't go cheap for both safety reasons and convenience. Here are some of the most popular and best chargers currently on the market: 2-Bay Chargers Xtar Rocket SV2 Nitecore D2 Digicharger 4-Bay Chargers Efest LUC V4 Nitecore D4 Digicharger 6-Bay Charger Efest LUC V6 8-Bay Charger Enova Gyrfalvon All-88
There’s a ton of box mods to choose from with all sorts of features and capabilities. So, which one should you buy? Vape mods are either powered by an internal or external (replaceable) battery and come in a variety of sizes and functions. Choosing the right one can sometimes be a daunting task with so many available on today’s market, but we’ll be addressing their primary differences in hopes of helping select what’s best for you. Internal Battery Mods Internal battery box mods have the battery cells built into the device itself and are not removable. Much like a cell phone, the lithium polymer or LiPo battery is charged via a USB cable. They range anywhere from beginner eGo pens all the way up to sophisticated and high-powered DNA chip devices. The internal battery has a fixed amount of charges before it essentially becomes useless and doesn’t hold a charge. Once its’ natural life cycle has expired or becomes defective, the mod is no longer usable or doesn’t last long enough to satisfy your nicotine cravings. Vaping on a Budget Initial start-up costs for built-in battery mods are cheaper and may be a good choice for new vapers with a limited budget. They come ready to use right out of the box and do not require the purchase of batteries or a charger. At first glance, this may seem convenient, but e-cigarette users should realize that if your battery life depletes, you must charge the mod before using it again. You can definitely vape while you’re charging it, but you won’t always be in an environment that makes this possible. This is a big limitation of built-in battery devices. Unlike mods that use external batteries, you won’t be able to swap the battery out for a fresh one, and these devices usually sacrifice maximum battery life in favor of a smaller form factor. Since you can only charge them by using a micro USB cable, if something happens to the charge port and gets damaged, the device will no longer work after the battery is depleted. With external battery devices, you can simply charge the batteries with an external charger and swap in freshly charged batteries to continue vaping. Portability or Power? Size does matter when choosing a box mod. Internal battery mods come in smaller and more compact forms when compared to external battery mods. It allows for companies to be more versatile with the shapes and sizes of the vapes. Many of these mods even offer temperature control suites and safety features such as the Snow Wolf Mini and Wismec Reuleaux RX Mini. They are great for traveling light and fit discreetly in pockets or purses. However, smaller mods do equate to less power and battery life. This will limit the range of available atomizers you’ll be able to pair with the device. Choosing the right mod that falls within the operating range of your sub ohm tanks or builds will help maximize its full potential. For tanks that perform best at 90 watts and above, you wouldn’t be able to get optimum performance using it with built-in battery devices, since they usually only go up to a maximum of 80 W. Even the larger, more powerful Sigelei J150 Box Mod has less battery life than many of the popular dual battery mods. Internal battery devices simply can’t output as high of wattages as their counterpart. Sub ohm tanks and rebuildable atomizers these days are cranking upwards of 300 watts; which would require a dual, triple, or even quad battery mod. Mods with internal batteries are popular among new vapers, and it’s easy to see why. Just plug and charge them and you’re ready to vape: no hassles with separate batteries or chargers. However, what vapers need to understand is that you have no control of the quality of the internal battery cells. What’s in the mod is what you’re stuck with. If the qualities of the cells are low, the vaping experience and battery life is drastically decreased. This is why choosing a mod from reputable companies such as Smok, Joyetech, Sigelei, and Joyetech is so important. Here’s a list of popular box mods for 2017: Council of Vapor Colt Volt 80 W Mod Wismec Reuleaux RX Mini Mod Laisimo Snow Wolf Mini Plus Council of Vapor Mega Volt 80W Sigelei J150 Mod External Battery Mods Many different battery types ranging from 26650s to 18650s power replaceable battery mods. The versatility makes these devices a popular choice among vapers. You have the option of choosing a single or up to a quad battery mod for higher wattage outputs and increased vaping time. Once the battery life has depleted, freshly charged batteries can be swapped instead of having to wait for the device to charge. This is especially convenient when you don’t have access to any outlets. Choosing a high-powered device with extra battery life does come at a price: they get substantially larger in size and become difficult to transport in pockets or purses. Dual battery mods such as the Smok Alien 220 W and Sigelei Fuchai 213 Plus are a favorite due to its balance between size, power, and features. Battery Safety High amperage batteries are available in Lithium Manganese (Li-Mn), ICR Lithium Ion (Li-Ion), Lithium IMR, and IMR/Hybrids. The Lithium IMR is the most popular due to its higher tolerance to heat, while IMR/Hybrid batteries are recommended for builders wanting increased maximum load current and life. A critical aspect to consider when purchasing an external battery mod is learning about battery safety. Since you have total control of the brand of batteries you’ll be using, picking the right one with suitable specifications will ensure a better experience and safety. These batteries have the potential to explode or catch fire when handled improperly or used beyond their capacity. They should always be transported in carrying cases, kept out of contact with metal objects, and away from extreme heat. The battery should be disposed of or re-wrapped if any signs of wear or tear are observed on the protective wrapping. They should also never be overcharged or over discharged, and it is recommended for beginners start with regulated devices over mechanical mods. Mech mods are a whole other topic and require a much steeper learning curve including Ohm’s Law and battery outputs. Manufacturers these days engineer regulated devices with a multitude of protection parameters to ensure safety while used at high wattages. Some safety features to look out for: Low and high voltage cut-off Reverse battery protection Damaged battery sensing Overcharge and over discharge cut-off Short-circuit protection Over-heat protection Heat ventilation ports Battery Marriage The term “married batteries” means the batteries stay together their entire life. They can be used in different mods but can never split up. They should always be discharged and recharged at the same time. If a new battery and old battery are used together, it is possible for the old battery to discharge below 3.2 volts, potentially causing damage to the mod or battery itself. That’s why it’s so important for the device to be draining the batteries at an even rate, which is only possible if the batteries are the same in all aspects, including age, charge, model and brand. If the mod is designed in series, the batteries should rotate position with each recharge. This is because the first battery will take the majority of the discharge before the second one. How Much am I Spending? When purchasing an external battery mod, you also need to factor in the added expenses of batteries and a charger. They average between seven to eight dollars per battery and from twenty to thirty dollars for a charger. The 18650 is the most popular battery due to its high compact power density and large quantity manufacturing. They are used in flashlights, laptops, power tools, and even in the electric automobile industry. Today’s market offers high quality Japanese or Korean batteries designed to withstand 500 charges without deteriorating. Some of best batteries on the market today include the LG HG2, LG HE4, and Samsung INR 25R. For added convenience, many of the external battery mods are now chargeable via a micro USB port and are a must-have for many vapers. They even offer a pass-through option that allows for vaping while charging. It is recommended to keep this charging method to a minimum or when an external charger is not applicable. External chargers offer better heat ventilation, faster and more accurate charges, and higher quality chips to ensure battery health and longevity. In addition, not all mods with a micro USB port are used for charging and instead used solely for firmware upgrades. Companies such as Nitecore and Efest offer a wide variety of premium chargers at an affordable price. Things to Consider Does it have Temperature Control? Virtually every new regulated device on the market comes with temperature control and VW/VV mode. The regulation of temperature when using nickel, titanium, and stainless steel heating elements gives users the ability to dial in the perfect vaping experience. You’ll be able to vaporize the e-liquid at its optimum temperature for better flavor and prevent burning. It also helps extend the battery life and coils as well as giving a consistent vape with every hit. Box mods on the market have an average temperature control range between 200 and 600 °F and even include memory modes when switching atomizers. Another feature to consider when purchasing a box mod is its resistance range. Some are now capable of reading resistances as low as 0.05 ohms for generating huge amounts of vapor. Plastic or Metal? You should not be selecting a box mod made of plastic – whether it utilizes internal or external batteries. There are many devices on the market made of plastic that have little to no security. High-end devices are primarily constructed out of a zinc alloy casing due to its durability, lightweight, and anti-corrosive properties. Metal offers a much stronger protective barrier as well as better heat dissipation. Ventilation holes also allow the batteries to vent and lowers the chances of explosion during a malfunction. Vapers will be able to tell if there is a malfunction and gain the much-needed time to save the mod or yourself. OLED Screen Electronic cigarettes used to be simple with nothing more than a single operating button. Devices nowadays contain large OLED screens for displaying anything from wattage, voltage, amps, temperature, battery life, atomizer resistance, and even puff count. Purchasing a mod that has all these displays not only looks cooler but also serves a safety purpose. Understanding what all the values mean keeps the mod and battery in good health. Here is a list of the best external battery mods for 2017: Single Battery Mods: Sigelei Fuchai 213 Mini Smok AL85 Mod Sigelei Evaya 66 W Mod Eleaf iStick Pico 75 W Mod Dual Battery Mods: Smok Alien 220 W Mod Sigelei 213 Plus Smok G-Priv 220 W Mod Pioneer4you IPV8 Aspire NX75-Z Joyetech eVic VTC Dual (compatible with single or dual battery) Triple Battery Mods: Sense Blazer 200 W Mod Wismec Reuleaux RX2/3 (compatible with dual or triple battery) Sigelei Snow Wolf 218 W Council of Vapor Tempest 200 W Mod Smok Marshal G320 Mod Quad Battery Mods: Smok GX350 Mod (compatible with triple or quad battery) Wismec RX300 Box Mod (compatible with triple or quad battery)
What is Steeping? Steeping is a general term for a process to extract flavor from something, by soaking a solid in liquid (normally water). A common example is tea, by introducing hot water to extract the flavor into the liquid. The more appropriate term for "steeping" e juice is actually aging, since e juice is already in a liquid form and not a solid, but the term steeping is so commonly used for aging e liquids that we'll continue to refer to it as steeping in this post.There are three common steeping methods often used. Removing the top of your e juice bottle and letting it sit for a period of time introduces air and oxidizes different elements of the juice, evaporating some of the alcohol based flavors. Storing the bottles in a cool and dark area with the top on let the flavors naturally blend and enhance the flavors, much like the natural aging of wine. The third method is applying heat with either warm water, or microwaving the bottle for a few seconds. This allows the flavors to mix together more easily. Do All E Juices Need Steeping? Not everyone finds the need to steep their e juices and are completely satisfied with the flavor right out of the bottle. Most of the premium brands that we carry have great flavor straight from the bottle. Juices that commonly need steeping are cheaper e juices, because most are mixed at the time you place an order and are not steeped. Premium E Juice companies typically have equipment that are able to thoroughly mix the ingredients, which eliminates the need to steep in most cases. Steeping does require some effort, so some might think its not worth the time. Since flavor is subjective, it varies from vaper to vaper. You might like a flavor straight from the bottle, but be thinking to yourself, "this is good, but...it would be better if the flavor were stronger." Also, there are instances where you find a particular flavor of an e liquid overwhelming and find it hard to enjoy the other flavors in the bottle. Steeping in this case MIGHT help. Some vapers find that steeping e juices with a single overpowering flavor balances all the flavors together, making the e juice more enjoyable. Lastly, you will undoubtedly come across an e liquid flavor that just doesn't suit your taste or is unbearable. Don't be so quick to throw the bottle away! It can be saved! It's not a guarantee, but bad e liquids can turn around and be enjoyable if you steep them. How to Steep your E Juice There are a few ways to go about steeping your e juice, but we'll cover the three most common ways. It's hard to say which method produces the best results, but depending on how much time and effort you want to put into it, one method might better suit your needs. You can always try all three and see which you like best. Storing in a Dark Area, Top Cap On This is a simple process, but can take some time. You're essentially letting the e liquid naturally age and for the flavors to come together on their own. You'll notice a slight color change, and the longer you let it age, the more noticeable it becomes. Remove the plastic wrapping off the top of the bottle, and shake for a few minutes. Store in a cool place away from sunlight, like a show box, cabinet or the back of any shelf. Shake the bottle of e liquid every couple days or so, and leave it stored for as long as you'd like the bottle to age. A week or two should be enough for most e juices, but a few weeks to months is not uncommon. Storing in a Dark Area, Top Cap off The steps for this method are exactly the same as the one above, except you remove the top cap off the bottle to let oxygen in. Distilled water or concentrated alcohol is used in the e liquid flavorings, so this allows the water and alcohol to evaporate. You don't need to leave the top cap off the entire time. There's definitely some merit as to unwanted things getting mixed in to your e juice. You can leave the top cap off for up to a few days or whatever you're comfortable with. The main thing is to give some time for the alcohol and distilled water to evaporate. Introducing Heat to Speed the Aging Process There are a number of ways you can go about adding heat to your liquid. If you're lazy and want to do as little work as possible, put the bottle next to a heater or even your laptop fan. A common way is to put warm water, almost to it's boiling point, in a container and letting the bottles sit until the water cools down. Repeat this process 2-3 times and give it a hard shake on your final round. Rice can be substituted for water, since rice can stay warm longer. Just put some rice in a microwavable bowl and microwave until its hot and insert your e juice bottle with the top cap off. If the flavor is still not up to your standards when the rice has cooled, repeat this step until it does. You can also use a slow cooker at the lowest settings, filled with water, for a few hours or until you've reached you're desired preference. Put the bottle in a plastic bag if you're bottle is plastic (this helps keep the bottom from melting).