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What Is an E-Cig and How Does it Work?

Electronic cigarettes are a relatively new alternative to regular cigarettes. The e-cigarette, or e cig, has been gaining popularity over the last decade through the many benefits it can bring to smokers. E-cigarettes are less expensive, contain less harmful chemicals, and are available in a wider variety of flavours than regular cigarettes. People generally make the switch in order to save money or in an attempt to quit smoking. Many of us have heard about the benefits of switching to electronic cigarettes, but what exactly are they and how do they work?

E-Cig

Basic Components

Electronic cigarettes are comprised of a few basic components which are included in all basic electronic cigarette starter kits for beginners. Cartridges, batteries, and USB chargers are the main accessories that a person needs to use an electronic cigarette. The cartridge contains the e-liquid and a heating coil which vapourises the liquid to deliver the nicotine and flavour to the smoker. The battery is contained in the “filter” portion of the cigarette and can be easily plugged into the USB charger. The USB charger can be plugged into a wall adapter, laptop, or computer tower for quick and easy charging.

Basic starter kits contain these main components, but electronic cigarette accessories get much more innovative and exciting than just these basic parts. Today there are different types of cartridges available, different colours and designs for the batteries, and a wide range of portable and travel chargers. There are options available to make the electronic smoking experience as basic or personalised as a person desires.

Types of Cartridges

Electronic cigarettes come in a variety different cartridges: atomisers, cartomizers, and clearomizers. Each one contains a heating mechanism, called an atomizer and holds the e-liquid required for delivering the nicotine and flavour to the smoker, but they all work in different ways.

An atomiser contains a coil powered by the battery which heats the e-liquid. Cartomizers and clearomizers both contain atomisers, but atomisers can also be used alone. When they are used alone, the liquid drips directly onto the atomiser where a wick absorbs and regulates the amount of liquid that is delivered to the coil.

Clearomizers have a transparent tank that holds the heating coil and e-liquid. The main advantage of using a clearomizer is that the person can see how much liquid remains in the tank before it runs out. Tank sizes vary, allowing the user to use a larger one which holds more liquid, or a smaller one which looks more compact. Another advantage that a clearomizer brings that the user can feed as much of the wick into the atomizer as he desires. More experienced users also have the option of adding multiple coils or changing the type of wick used.

Cartomizers work in much the same way as clearomizers but do not have a clear tank. They are also packed with an artificial filler making them difficult to re-fill with e-liquid. Most people use new cartridges once theirs runs out, which is a more costly method of e-smoking.

About Sara T. Loving

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