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Wicks and Wires: Vape Coils Explained!

Vape devices have come a long way since their inception in 2003, and Mi Vape Co. has seen innovation on innovation ever since we joined the vaping industry! While there is still a community who shares our love for early vaping styles and the ways to enjoy old-school vaping, most brands and vapers have kept up with the changes that have advanced the vape world. The most convenient change to vape to hit the mainstream is here to stay: prebuilt coils! 

Prebuilt coils may be the most common way to vape now, but this wasn’t always the case! Before our favorite manufacturers started producing coils, building your own coils could be time-consuming, labor intensive, and requires a level of expertise to do so safely. Those days are behind us– it’s hard to find a vape tank that doesn’t provide its own coils for use now! Brands can offer both industry-standard sized prebuilt coils that can be used between brands, or proprietary sizes to fit a custom pod or tank. Regardless of design or maker, all prebuilt vape coils are made equal in the sense that they are made up of the same three components: a casing, and within that casing, Wicking Materials and a Heating Element

Most coil casings have the same structure, even in pod systems, and consist of a metal fitted casing that keeps the other two components of the coil in place and simplifies installation. Without coil casings, it would be down to the user to assemble the rest of their coils, which can be a hassle and difficult to maintain over time. By simplifying the design of its construction, prebuilt coils keep it easy to use and replace any coil that fits your device!

Tucked inside the coil casing is one of the more active gears in our vaping mechanism: the wicking materials. When you vape, you expose your coil to a level of heat put out by your device, which heats up the material saturated in your eliquid to create vapor. Wicking materials need to be absorbent to be flavorful and provide clouds, but also able to withstand high wattage temperatures to get the best out of your juice! Most coils are made up of materials that can handle these requirements, and come in cotton, flax, hemp, ceramic, and silica, with cotton and silica being our most popular options! Cotton is popular for sub-ohm or freebase vaping on account of its high performance capability, heat capacity, and accurate, flavorful puffs! With Silica, the more durable material offers a good combination of flavor and performance resilience to tolerate higher strength nicotine. While most coils have a lifespan of two weeks of usage, all coils burn when these materials wear down from the heat they are exposed to and will lead to the replacement of your coil.  

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Working hard behind the wicking materials is the most vital element to producing vapor, and that is the heating element. At the center of any coil is resistance metal wire, that is wrapped in a coil-shape (its namesake!), or made from wire mesh. The coil is what makes contact with a vape battery to heat and produce vapor with the wicking materials surrounding it. The coil is also constrained to an output of heat it can tolerate, called the resistance. The lower the resistance is, the less restraint is put on its output, resulting in hotter wattages, bigger clouds, and higher battery consumption. The inverse can be applied to high-resistance coils, which restrict coils to have draw-like vapor pulls and lower, even wattages. The resistance, styling, wire material, and mass all play a factor in altering a coil's behavior in many ways, but most coils can be easily categorized as MTL (mouth-to-lung) or DTL (direct-to-lung) coils. 

MTL coils are the popular choice for salt-nic or pocket device vapors. Designed to offer mouth-to-lung vaping to simulate cigarette smoke, MTL coils are typically made with round wattage, with high restriction to offer tighter airflow and lower battery usage. These coils operate best with silica wicks to handle the high strength nicotine it is designed to burn, and are not intended for high-wattage use. With a small mod like Vaporesso's XROS 2, their 1.2 MTL Coils provide the best features of MTL coils wrapped in a discreet pod! If you vape with a pocket-style device or use salt nicotine, we recommend MTL coils! 
DTL coils are capable of withstanding hotter wattages, lower restrictions, bigger clouds and better flavor! Made for sub-ohm or freebase eliquid, DTL coils are typically constructed with mesh coils and cotton wicks for maximum usage, but are subject to quicker deterioration than its synthetic silica counterpart. Our favorite DTL coil in shop is the 0.15 Mesh Zeus Coil for the Geekvape Zeus Tank, which can be enjoyed on a variety of devices to get full flavor on any battery! For those looking to have the highest cloud production and hottest flavors, we wouldn’t go without our DTL coils.

As the vape industry grows and changes, so will the potential selection of coils at your disposal. Across brands, we offer the best variety to vape your flavors your way and keep those cigarette cravings at bay! Shop in-store or online to find coils for your favorite mod or something new today!

Further Readings!

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