With vaporizers gaining increasing popularity, it is important to know how vaporizers work, and it is essential to dispel the myths and clear the doubts surrounding this smoking alternative. Recently, questions such as “how do vaporizers work?” and “do vaporizers produce smoke?” have been frequently asked because many people are worried that vaping has the same health effects as smoking, and they (naturally) want to stay away from it if so.
In order to begin to understand more about vaporizers, and what exactly they produce, let’s dive into how they work, their heating methods, and let’s tackle whether or not they produce smoke. In this way, you can make an informed decision about which vape is best for you!
Combustion vs Convection & Conduction Heating
Combustion, in simple terms, is what happens when something burns. A good example of combustion is when you light a cigarette and pull the smoke through the filter. The result of combustion is smoke -- but that’s not all. When something combusts it creates thousands of new chemical compounds in the smoke that were not initially in the substance.
Not only does smoke smell pungent, permeating clothes, hair, and everything else it comes into contact with, but it's also very bad for you, for a number of reasons. Not only that, but it also produces a plethora of health complications such as a higher risk of heart disease, lung cancer, and dental complications to list a few; and risks for both the smoker and people around them (secondhand smoke).
Convection and conduction heating, on the other hand, is very different from combustion. A great example of these two heating methods is when you vape through a vaporizer. The result of convection and conduction heating is vapor. When something is vaporized at temperatures lower than its critical point, it transforms into a different state, but it does not create any new chemical compounds -- meaning the vapor contains the same exact chemicals as the substance which is vaporized.
Vapor has little to no odor, and therefore does not stick to your clothing or your body. It is also considered safer for those who inhale it (as one does when using a vaporizer) since there are no extra chemicals in the vapor, as there are in cigarettes. Another point to consider is that secondhand vapor has not been found to be harmful to others, unlike secondhand smoke which has been linked to many health complications like increased risk of cancers, cardiovascular and lung diseases, cognitive impairment and premature birth.
Do Vaporizers Produce Smoke?
There are two answers to this question. The main function of a vaporizer is to produce vapor by heating e-liquid (vape liquid) or dry herb through conduction or convection heating. Therefore, vaporizers are designed to only produce vapor. So, should they produce smoke? Absolutely not.
However, since vaporizers do deal with fairly high temperatures, there is a slim possibility of them producing smoke. But if this happens, which is quite unlikely, there is something wrong with your vaporizer. So, could they produce smoke? In very rare cases, yes.
One thing that could cause your vaporizer to produce smoke is if it gets too hot. When a vaporizer gets too hot, it could begin to combust either the e-liquid or dry herb inside or an actual component of the vaporizer unit. And, if the vaporizer has a piece of debris near or on an important part of the heating system, and that piece of debris gets heated to high enough temperatures, that piece of debris could combust and begin producing smoke.
Avoiding this type of occurrence is very easy, and there are many things you can do to prevent it from happening. One of the most important things to always make sure to do is to use a vaporizer which you know is reliable and trusted. This ensures that there is nothing wrong with your unit, and you will not experience combustion. Another thing you can do is keep your vaporizer unit clean. This will ensure that there is no debris stuck in your vaporizer, and will therefore prevent it from combusting and producing smoke unexpectedly.
You should not be worried about your vaporizer producing any smoke under normal circumstances. It is a very rare occurrence, and it only happens when something is wrong with the vaporizer (i.e. when it heats the contents to such a high temperature that they combust). Therefore there is little to no chance of you inhaling smoke at any point throughout your vaporizing experience.
Of course, keeping an eye on the vaporizer will benefit you greatly, since you will be able to spot overheating sooner, and you will know when the vaporizer needs a good clean. As long as you do that, you stand a very slim chance of ever being at risk. In addition to this, always make sure you buy original vaporizers that you know can be trusted, You can do you research online or speak to a friend who uses a vaporizer to get advice and guidance.