Are you shopping for your first vaporizer? Then questions like ‘how much weed can you put in a vaporizer’, or ‘what is the best vaporizer to start off with’ are sure to be running through your head. There are big differences in quality and therefore in price as well. But is it just about the quality of the vaporizer? No, not at all. There are lots of factors to consider when setting out to buy a vaporizer. Fortunately, we have listed the key questions and answers for you at a glance.

cannabis vaporizer

The sixty-four thousand dollar question: how does a Vaporizer compare with a Joint?

In the Netherlands, smoking a joint is by far the commonest method for using weed. A joint is a combination of weed and tobacco. If you want to vape weed in a vaporizer, you don’t add tobacco to it. This is the key difference between joints and vaporizers:

  • Vaporization not combustion – A vaporizer vaporizes volatile substances in weed at the boiling point of those substances. The combustion of weed occurs from upwards of a temperature of 232°C and in the presence of sufficient oxygen. If you keep below that temperature, you won’t inhale any solid particles.
  • Vapour not smoke – Vapour is less dense than smoke. So the thin cloud you breathe out may take some getting used to. So don’t expect to blast out enormous clouds of vapour after taking a drag from a vaporizer. You won’t see a lot of vapour but you will feel the effect.
  • No tobacco just pure weed – Unadulterated weed is what goes in the vaporizer.
  • Fewer harmful substances – No nicotine, tar or carbon monoxide. Pure weed contains no nicotine and the temperature remains low enough to not ingest the other harmful substances.
  • Reduced feeling in the throat and airways – Because the temperature of the air breathed in and the substances is lower when vaping, you experience a less sharp feeling in your throat. If you’re used to joints, this is a complete about-turn. ‘I don’t feel anything’ is the reaction that someone who is used only to joints may have. However, if you take long relaxed drags directly across the lungs then after five to ten minutes you’ll catch it as the THC does its work! And without any coughing.
  • Less sluggish and drowsy – Tobacco makes you relaxed. When used in combination with weed, it’s likely to produce couch lock: the phenomenon where the only thing you want to do is chill on the sofa against the light-headedness.
  • Just as high* – THC is what determines 90% of weed’s effect. This substance vaporizes already at 157°C. The remaining 10% is attributable to the entourage effect in which CBD in particular (180°) inhibits the paranoid feelings of THC.

*depending on your experience, weight and your limits.

The 15 Most Frequently Asked Questions about Vaporizers

1 What’s the best way of inhaling with a vaporizer?

It’s tempting to handle a vaporizer like a joint: short, powerful drags. But that’s exactly what you mustn’t do! With vaping, you take long, deep and relaxed drags. This does a good job of drawing the air through your weed. Also try not to suck on the vaporizer like you would a lolly – fill your lungs directly. You should feel your chest or belly expanding when you inhale. 

2 Why is there no smoke coming out of my vaporizer?

Because a vaporizer doesn’t produce smoke, only vapour. The difference is that smoke contains microscopically small solid particles. Vapour doesn’t contain any solid particles like soot or tar, only moisture droplets. But if you follow the tips of question 1 properly, you will see that some vapour is still released. How much vapour there is and how visible it is also depends on a number of additional factors:

  • How dry or moist your material is – Properly dried weed, for example, produces less vapour than hash. Incidentally, not all vaporizers are suitable for vaping hash. So make sure you read the product descriptions carefully.
  • The type of vaporizer (conduction, convection or hybrid).
  • How hot you set the vaporizer.

3 What is the best temperature for a weed vaporizer?

For a mild high choose 160°C, for a powerful high and getting mildly stoned choose 175°C, and to get completely stoned set your vaporizer to 205°C. Why these vaporizer temperatures? We’ve already written a detailed article about the reasons behind these recommended temperatures: 

» These are the Ideal Vaporizer Temperatures for Weed and Herbs

4 Can I use the weed several times or just for 1 session?

A session is making up one load of weed in the vaporizer. So you cannot use your weed several times. Replace your weed with a fresh load as soon as it no longer tastes pleasant or if you see that the weed is brown or even darker in colour. Incidentally, if your weed is vaped at high temperatures (200°C) your load may be used up faster than if you keep the temperature low. But don’t let that put you off vaping at the temperature you want to use.

5 Which is better? Conduction or Convection?

Different types of vaporizers are on sale. Conduction vaporizers are often more favourably priced and produce thicker vapour than convection vaporizers. Convection (hot air) vaporizers heat your weed more evenly. The hot air is cooled down through the vapour channel so convection vapes often produce cooler vapour which feels softer on the throat. And what about the effect? If you put the same amount of the same type of weed in both vaporizers at the same temperature setting, then the effect is also the same. The main difference is in the experience.

» Conduction versus Convection Vaporizers: What is the difference?

6 How much weed can you put in a vaporizer?

This depends on the size of the vaporizer’s herb chamber. You can fit about 0.2 grammes of weed in an average portable vaporizer. Table models like the Storz & Bickel Volcano series are often equipped with a somewhat bigger herb chamber that can accommodate up to 0.8 grammes. No worries. If you put more weed in a convection vaporizer, then it also takes longer to load. An important point: never tamp the weed. The idea is that hot air is able to flow through the weed. So make sure then that you don’t make the weed too compressed.

7 When do you need to replace a screen or mouthpiece?

A screen or filter stops bits of weed from ending up in your mouth or lungs when you inhale. That is also the reason you shouldn’t grind your weed into dust if you’re putting it in your vaporizer. Tiny bits are best, but not powder. After a few sessions, screens become brown and sticky – that’s inevitable. Replace a screen as soon as you notice that fresh weed is acquiring an after-taste, or you see that the screen is clogged up with deposits. You can try to clean screens with special cleaners or you can replace them with new ones. Make sure you buy the right size screen for your vaporizer. The size is often given in the product description, in your vaporizer’s manual or in the recommended products on the product page.

» Check all vaporizer accessories in this category

» Or order your cleaner for vaporizers, and for bongs and weed pipes here

A mouthpiece lasts a lot longer than a screen. Six months perhaps if used for several sessions each weekend. After a while, synthetic mouthpieces may start to taste a bit weird but glass mouthpieces definitely won’t. So you won’t have to replace a glass mouthpiece unless it breaks or you want to share the vaporizer hygienically with friends.

8 How should I clean a vaporizer?

For cleaning your vaporizer, use a recommended cleaner like ethyl alcohol and/or special tools from our cleaning range. Use liquid cleaners only on the parts of the vaporizer that are completely detachable from it. E.g. the herb chamber, screens and mouthpiece. Definitely do not use any cleaner to clean the vaporizer itself – neither on the inside or the outside! 

Detach the removable components and remove coarse and loose particles with the tools that were supplied with your vaporizer. Are there no tools for your vaporizer? No worries. You don’t have to rush to clean it. Just carry on using your vaporizer and find out later on what you need for cleaning it. The herb chamber can be placed in a small tray that you fill with the correct cleaning fluid in accordance with the instructions on the bottle. Would you like a complete set with which to get all the parts of your vaporizer clean again? If so, check out the Vaporizer Cleaning Kit by Zeus.

Cleaning the herb chamber is the most arduous job. Especially when you alternate between using sticky concentrates and weed. With some vaporizers you get specially designed liquid pads, that ensure wax or concentrates stay in their place. No liquid pads? You can still use concentrates like crumble in combination with vape wool. This is ungummed hemp fibre that prevents your concentrate leaking through the herb chamber.

Read the extensive product description to find out whether your vaporizer is suitable for concentrates like wax, rosin or shatter.

9 Can you use oil in a vaporizer?

A limited number of vaporizers are suitable for vaping oils. The firm requirement is that the concentrates insert is completely sealed. Good examples of vaporizers you can use for vaping oils are the Flowermate Aura and the Wolkenkraft FX Mini. And what about the oil itself. The question is whether you want to vape oil at all and end up with it in your lungs. We don’t think it’s a good idea really. For that reason, we also advise you not to put any CBD oil in your vaporizer. Just drip it under your tongue. As far as weed oil is concerned it’s more nuanced because we don’t know how thin or thick your extract is. It’s best to put a pure extract in the vaporizer, but because you normally dilute the extract with hemp seed oil or olive oil it’s not a good idea to put diluted weed oil or THC oil in your vaporizer. Not because you can’t do it but because it’s not good for your body.

Incidentally, you definitely may not put e-liquids in a vaporizer. A vaporizer is not the same as an e-cigarette.

10 How long can I vape for on average before the battery is used up?

Portable vaporizers are virtually always fitted with a rechargeable battery. With smaller vaporizers, a battery may last for between 5 and 10 sessions. Larger units are fitted with a heavier battery and can comfortably last twice as long. Not only does it depend on the model of your vaporizer, but also on how you use it. For example, switch off your vaporizer if you’re not going to use it for longer than 2 minutes. Most vaporizers do this automatically. Some vaporizers have a detachable battery. If you purchase an additional battery (sometimes even included), you can enjoy your vaporizer for twice as long. An alternative solution is a powerbank.

11 Which vaporizer is most suitable for daily, multiple or medicinal use?

Until recently, some vaporizers were fully or partially reimbursed by certain health insurers. Although that is no longer the case and perhaps it says something about the quality of these vaporizers. Examples of vaporizers that are built like tanks are Storz & Bickel’s Volcano and Mighty and the Arizer Extreme-Q and V-Tower Given correct use and proper maintenance, they can last for many years. Even when used daily.

12 What is the advantage of a table model?

You can plug a desktop vaporizer into the mains. Even if your vaporizer has a currently flat battery, you can still use it straight away. These vaporizers are often more powerful, meaning they heat up faster and have a higher temperature range. With some desktop vaporizers you can use balloons, and long tubes with others. In both cases they cool the vapour to room temperature without losing any of the active substances. In addition, table models often have several options for vaping various concentrates and are equipped with a comprehensive accessories package to enable this. Although it’s true that this capability is being increasingly supported by exclusive portable vaporizers. Finally, table models also have larger herb chambers. So you can, for example, fill a huge balloon with one load of weed and pass it around at a party like a 21st century peace pipe, or you can also have some of it during the day to relax you. And you only have to switch the vaporizer on once to fill a balloon.

13 Which table model is the best?

That all depends on what you want to do with it. If you want to use balloons and a tube, then you should opt for the Volcano Hybrid. This is suitable for hash and concentrates using the liquid pads that are supplied with it, However, if you just want to be able to vape EVERYTHING* without too much bother then choose the Dr. Dabber Switch. This has an extremely high temperature setting with which you can remove even baked-on bits of hash.

*As already mentioned, vaporizers are not suitable for oil or e-liquids. We understand ‘everything’ to mean Weed, Rosin, Shatter, Wax, Crumble, BHO extracts, Distillate,Taffy, Sauce, Crystalline, THC Diamonds and Hash.

14 Why is there such a big price difference among vaporizers?

In the first instance, the price difference reflects the difference in quality. As is the case with many products: you get what you pay for. The biggest difference involves the choice between a conduction or a convection vaporizer. A convection vaporizer has additional components to direct hot air from the oven to the herb chamber, whereas in a conduction vaporizer the oven and the herb chamber are adjacent to each other. Therefore you need more space and components to make a convection, or hot air, vaporizer. 

Furthermore, some vaporizers on sale have extremely valuable elements. Laboratory glass, gold leaf, food-grade plastic, titanium – you name it. Research has gone into the development of these materials for a vaporizer. So, on the other hand, you are purchasing a device that you know is better for you. Moreover, we hear that cheap vaporizers can feel very hot to the touch, whereas we don’t hear this about the more expensive segment. The battery life is also better with more expensive vaporizers. Finally, the accessories supplied can also make a difference. For example, with vaporizers costing under 100 euros you often get a more limited package of parts and cleaning accessories than with units that cost 150 euros or more.

15 What is the best vaporizer for a beginner?

Are you someone who wants to try something out first without investing a lot? If so, you should test whether vaping is for you by sampling a friend’s or family member’s vaporizer. If you don’t have an opportunity to do that, then opt for a vaporizer like the LITL 1, Focusvape Pro S or Boundless CFC Lite - All of which are not that expensive. But what if you’re the type of person who would rather not upgrade step-by-step and wants to buy a quality device straight away. In that case the Davinci IQ2, Zeus Arc GT and Utillian 722 would be correct choices, for example. These vaporizers will last a tremendously long time if you want to get completely stoned every weekend. Are you a daily medicinal user or do you simply want the Rolls Royce of vaporizers on which you can rely every single day? Then you should go for one of the Storz & Bickel vaporizers. These are rock-solid and made in Germany – and you’ll appreciate that in the quality of the vapour. Ultimately, that's what it's about, isn’t it?

Conclusion

Thinking of buying your first vaporizer? If so then hopefully this article may have helped you make a choice from our range of vaporizers. By the way, did you know that you can vape more than just weed? All dry herbs are suitable! From lavender to passion flower (both at 120°C) and from dream herb (185°C) to salvia (220°C).