A Guide to Sub-Ohm Vaping
In the vaping world, there are two different “styles” of vaping and they are either Mouth to Lung vaping or Direct to Lung Vaping. MTL vaping is normally associated with using smaller devices like AIOs or Pod systems to replicate the throat hit sensation people get when smoking a cigarette.
DTL vaping is normally associated with larger devices where you inhale directly down to the lungs and produce large clouds of vapour. This style of vaping is also known as “Sub-Ohm” vaping which is what I’m going to discuss in this article!
I’m going to explain exactly what sub ohm vaping is, the benefits of sub ohm vaping, what you need to be able to sub ohm vape and what vape juice you’ll need to use.
What is Sub-Ohm vaping?
Let’s get straight in to answering the question in topic here. Sub-Ohm vaping is a style of vaping that people convert to after trying mouth to lung vaping, me included, but this isn’t always the case as some people will go straight to Sub Ohm vaping.
It’s called sub ohm due to the sub-ohm coil used within the vape tank is always a coil with a low resistance of below 1 ohm, hence the term “Sub-Ohm” and the device is normally run at a higher wattage to make the coils function to their maximum potential.
Why do people Sub Ohm vape?
This is quite an open question that has a lot of answers, which I’ll try and detail below.
- Evolving on their vaping journey – As mentioned above, sub ohm vaping is essentially the end game of vaping before giving up completely. Most Sub-ohm vapers would have started on a basic beginner MTL kit to help them stop smoking and used that for a period of time before wanting to try something different like Sub Ohm vaping. This means they no longer vape to scratch the itch of needing to replicate smoking, and maybe just vape to enjoy the flavours of the vast selection available on the market today with a very low or non-existent nicotine addiction compared to when they first started out on their journey.
- Chasing the flavour – Using a sub ohm kit at high wattage will definitely provide the user with a rich full flavoured vape on every inhale. The e-liquid flavour options are much broader when it comes to DTL vaping as the vape juice used in Sub ohm tanks is always a higher VG to PG ratio, which means the flavour concentrate used will react better with the VG and when heated up produce a strong flavoursome vape and plenty of dense clouds of vapour, which leads me onto…
- Cloud chasing is also popular – You’ve probably seen people in the street or at the pub inhaling on a vape and blowing out clouds reminiscent of a steam train. This is something people love sub ohm vaping for is the ability to blow massive thick clouds of vapour from within their lungs. There are even competitions held at vape expo’s on who can blow the biggest clouds!
- It’s a hobby to some – Hobbyists collect anything from coins to postcards and even sub-ohm vape kits! Some of the devices bought out on to the market are absolutely stunning in design, and these are something that people enjoy collecting and use and show off at the above mentioned vape expo’s.
Explaining coil resistance for Sub-Ohm Vaping
As mentioned above, you’ll always want to use a coil with a resistance that is lower than 1.0ohm if you want to sub ohm vape. This is because they can be run at a higher power output from your vape device to produce a strong direct lung hit, and you’ll be able to get a lot more vapour production. The simplest way to remember is the lower the ohms, the higher the wattage!
Coils will always have a recommended wattage range on them which you should always stick to, so you ensure they function properly. If you use lower wattage than recommended, your coil will not heat up properly and will likely flood from excess vape juice not being heated up correctly. And if you use it above the recommended wattage then you’ll just overheat the coil which will burn the cotton too fast and you’ll end up with a not so delightful burnt cotton taste in your mouth.
If you’re entering the world of unregulated vape mods, then you must ensure you have full extensive knowledge of Ohms law and battery safety as if these are used by some inexperienced with either of those things, it will not end well!
What vape juice and nicotine strength is best to use in a sub-ohm device?
As I mentioned earlier, you’ll want to use High VG (Vegetable Glycerine) vape juice, normally a 70% ratio of VG to PG (propylene glycol) when opting for DTL vaping. This is made specifically for sub ohm tanks, so it absorbs properly into the cotton of the coil and is heated up to produce the thick clouds of vapour you may be wanting to achieve. Anything less than 70% VG will likely leak through your coil cotton and out of the airflow on your tank and could cause your coil to pop and spit back hot vape juice into your mouth, not fun!
With Sub ohm kits being ran at high watts, you’ll only want to use a lower nicotine strength Vape Juice like 3mg or 6mg and nothing higher. If you’re running your kit on a high wattage with a high nicotine content, you are then prone to potentially having some adverse side effects like headaches, nausea and dizziness, this is nicknamed getting “Nic sick” and it’s not a lot of fun!
You can read my article that explains 100ml Shortfills in more detail to give you a bit of a better understanding if you didn’t know about them already!
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100ml Shortfill Hi-Zen 0mg£4.69 — available on subscription
100ml Shortfill Blackcurrant Ice 0mg£4.69 — available on subscription
Building your way to the next level of sub ohm’ing!
With sub ohm vaping, people may tend to go on to using rebuildable coils that go inside vape tanks, or “dripper” tanks, which takes a premade coil, or a coil made by the user themselves, and has cotton threaded through it, and screwed onto the deck of the atomiser and left exposed for vape juice to be dripped on to it. The top cap is then popped back on (Remember to put the top cap back on before you put it to your mouth to vape it, I speak from experience that it hurts A LOT if you forget this) and you can vape away to produce some serious clouds!
RDA/RBA’s are only advised for people with a lot of vaping experience due to the nature of understanding coil resistance and ohms law. This is especially crucial if you want to also use a mechanical mod as these do not have any circuit boards on and are effectively “unregulated” so please make sure you’re fully educated and are an experience vaper when using something like this.
I hope this article has answered any questions you may have had on sub ohm vaping, and helped you know what you need to get set up if you’re looking at entering the world of sub ohm vaping!