A few days ago I was living through a day of extraordinary annoyance. Because of that I became annoyed in the extreme with vaping. It was right around the 3rd time I had to refill my X.Jet Spider (1.6ml capacity) with e Liquid that it hit me; vaping is a major hassle. One Royal Pain in the Butt. Naturally, I filled that Spider, not only the 3rd time, but a 4th and 5th time that day as well. Annoying or not, I like vaping, so I continue to do it. As do you.

Forget all the pros and cons over smoking versus vaping, I’m talking about the everyday, constant hassles we put up with as vapers. There are plenty of them, and because we do put up with them on a constant basis I think it says a lot about how dedicated we are to staying away from tobacco. Of course, it also says a lot about how much we enjoy the flavors and vapor from our electronic cigarettes. Why else would we put up with it?

You know what else putting up with all these hassles tells me? It tells me that when it comes to this battle of the people against government hacks that want to take away our freedom to vape, the government hacks don’t stand a chance, not if we organize under a “Single Issue Voter” banner. But that topic is for another day. Today I want to point out some of the daily hassles that we all go through, just in case it never occurred to you that what we put up with is no small matter. It takes discipline to do what we do, and it takes dedication. So let’s examine some of them, together.

Batteries and Recharging

Every aspect of vaping has its own set of hassles, but let’s start with batteries, because we have to start somewhere.

It makes no difference what type of battery you’re using, at some point the power is going to run down, or out, and you’re going to have to do something about it. No battery lasts forever and damn few last an entire day, so in the course of an average day you’ll do one of the following.

Switch out one battery for another – Whether you use a cig-a-like battery or something larger like an eGo or Johnson Creek Vea, or an APV that uses an 1800-series battery, if you’re fortunate enough to own more than one you will, at some point, swap one battery for the other and place that spent battery into a charger or plug it into a USB port. This is a multi-step hassle, we do it 7 days a week. It goes something like this;

Unregulated Batteries: An unregulated cig-a-like or eGo battery will function quite nicely for anywhere from 60 minutes to a few hours. The minute you begin vaping a fully charged battery it starts to drain, regulated or not.

But an unregulated battery’s biggest drawback is that you will begin to feel the effects of power dropping almost immediately.

What may feel like a ‘great vape’ begins to feels less great as time goes on. For the last 30-minutes to an hour the quality of your vape is about a third as satisfying as it was in at the start. What non-vapers don’t know is that while you are continuing to vape during those last minutes you are nowhere near as satisfied as you were in the beginning.

Conclusion? Vaping with unregulated batteries are a major hassle in two ways; a short vaping window and a less satisfying vape as time wears on.

Regulated Batteries:  Regulated batteries, or ‘devices that use regulating electronics in the housings’ are better, but they still confront the vaper with its fair share of hassles.

Using a regulated device, including some eGo-type batteries, new Powerkit from mod, and nearly all APV’s (advanced personal vaporizers) provide the same level of vape experience from the moment you start off with a fully charged battery to the moment the built in electronics tells you it’s time to switch or recharge. It outputs the same voltage until it reaches the shutdown or recharge point. The option of swapping out that battery and recharging it are very much the same as the non-regulated battery.

Conclusion: Regulated batteries are better, give you less hassles, but are certainly not hassle-free.

Battery Hassles Step by Step: The first thing you do is unscrew the cartomizer, clearomizer, or tank from the battery and pick up the fully charged battery waiting in the wings, (if you have one) and screw the eliquid/atomizer device onto the new battery.

Once you have the spent battery untethered to the atomizer/eliquid device you hook up that battery to a recharging port, either on a computer or a power outlet.

When the spent battery is fully recharged it’s either time to do it all over again, or you wind up setting the newly charged battery aside and wait until it’s needed again.

Hassle Against Time: Depending on the ‘mAh’ rating of the batteries you use the hassle against time is real. Sure, the more ‘power’ in the power cell the longer you can put off that hassle, but if you are using a low-power battery, i.e., any cig-a-like battery, you’ll have the most hassles, probably switching and recharging 3 or 4 times a day. If you are using larger power cells then the number of times you switch out and recharge diminishes, but it does not disappear. Using an unregulated battery throws in even more hassles by giving you a less than an equal vape experience several times a day.

Minimize the Hassle: If your budget, work life, and personal preferences can deal with it, always go with a regulated battery with the highest mAh rating to minimize the number of Battery Hassles, or the BH-factor. Always have two fully charged batteries waiting in the wings so on extra annoying days you can eliminate part of the vape hassles by being able to simply toss the spent battery somewhere out of the way and still have another one ready to serve.

Of course, if these hassles don’t bother you then use whatever you want.

The e Liquid Hassles

Now this is really where the biggest hassles are, and quite frankly, it’s the impetus for deciding to write about the hassles of vaping.

I have recently begun extolling the virtues of the Vision X.Jet Spider. It is a wonderful clearomizer, the best I’ve ever used. But the 1.6ML capacity of the Spider means that I am ‘put out’ by the Spider many times a day.

The Hassle: Whether you are using a Spider or any other low capacity clearomizer you know that if you vape more than 5ML a day you’re going to sit down with your bottles of e Liquid and perform the refill ritual more times than you want to. It’s worse with 1ML, or .7ML cartomizers, and less so with 3ML-5ML tanks and clearomizers, but still, its something you must deal with.

A number of steps are required to keep yourself vaping e Liquid all day everyday. For me and my Spiders it goes something like this;

Wake up in the morning, check the level of e Liquid in the Spider and either refill it right then and there, or wait an hour or so. When the time comes I do the following:

  1. Turn off the battery (3 clicks, 5 clicks, whatever)
  2. Make sure that I have a grasp on the bottom cap of the clearomizer and not the battery or the further up the clearomizer, lest I want to unleash what remains inside and allow it to drip over my hands, battery, and perhaps clothing, carpet, and so on.
  3. Unscrew the bottom cap to gain access to the chamber.
  4. Place the bottom cap and attached atomizer on a table next to me.
  5. Shake up the e Liquid vigorously, and unscrew the cap.
  6. Using the eye dropper or a syringe, suck up as much juice as I can and squirt it into the chamber, making sure to stay away from the hollow post.
  7. Check to see that the atomizer is secure and screw the bottom cap back onto the clearomizer body.
  8. Turn over the clearomizer and blow through the drip tip, because no matter how careful I am, I most certainly did drip a few drops of e Liquid into the center post.
  9. Screw the reassembled clearomizer back onto the battery.
  10. Click the battery power button 3 times or 5 times, depending on the battery.
  11. Repeat every 3 to 3.5 hours.

No matter what AD (atomizer device) you use the fact is the more you vape the faster the e Liquid turns into vapor, and the more you will refill that AD. Even if I were using a Vision Victory (5ML) I would do this ritual twice a day.

Conclusion: Clearomizer and Tanks with large capacities will allow you the freedom to refill them less often, but you may not get the ‘vape’ you want. I know I don’t.

Bottom Line: I’ve used just about every mainstream AD there is (I shy away from overly complicated RBA’s and I have zero interest in RDA’s these days), and the X.Jet Spider and the Aspire BDC are the best I’ve used, so for now I’m sticking with my Spider no matter how many times I will need to stop and refill every day.

Hassles? Many. From shaking e Liquid bottles, to opening new e Liquid bottles, to filling with eye droppers to syringes, from unscrewing the AD from the battery and unscrewing the AD, from filling the AD carefully, to wiping up spilled e Liquid regardless, from blowing out excess e Liquid to cleaning the battery connector.

Buying e Liquid: The first hassle you have to go through is a certain trial by fire to find e Liquids you like. A major hassle in its own right, but for the sake of brevity lets assume you’ve done that, you’ve found e Liquids that you do like. There are hassles involved even after that phase. Such as:

To Steep or Not To Steep
Storing e Liquids
Shelf Life
First In First Out – FIFO
Changing Flavor
How much is enough
What to do with Half-Full Bottles
Nicotine Strengths
How To Step Down Nicotine
Trust in Your Vendor

As you can see, there are plenty of hassles to deal with when it comes to e Liquids. How you handle them will determine the level of hassles you will experience.

Bonus Material – Leaking: At some time or other every AD (atomizer device) is going to leak. Sure, we’ve used some where leaking didn’t occur for several weeks, and we’ve written about many of them and mentioned that during the entire review period we experienced no leaking. The problem is that the only way to fit in any information about a leaking AD is to wait for the time that will come where the AD begins to leak.

Unfortunately it is not practical to wait weeks or a few months to publish a review, the idea of a review is to get the word out there before too many people have made their buying decision.

I have no delusions about the Vision X.Jet Spider and despite the fact that I have yet to experience any leaking after several weeks I’m sure that one day it will. But the great performance of the Spider warranted a speedy review because it is a clearomizer I highly recommend. Just keep in mind that the chances of whatever AD choice you make will leak stands at 100%.

Other, Less Demanding Hassles

Switching out and recharging batteries, filling and refilling AD’s are all major hassles we all experience while we are vaping. They alone are enough to warrant a bit of sympathy from each other, a kind of “I feel your pain” thing, but there are others.

Finding the right cig-a-like: When a smoker makes the decision to stop smoking and start vaping they suddenly become aware of the dozens, if not hundreds of choices in cig-a-like brands. Some will want the find the cheapest way to switch so they will jump on the “Free No-Risk Trial” garbage and experience a whole new level of pain, financial and otherwise. Forgetting the financial fraud for a minute, these cig-a-likes are awful tasting, disastrous little things that won’t last more than a couple of months. More smokers turn back to smoking when their first hassle is being ripped off when they attempt to take the cheapest path to vaping.

When a smoker does his or her homework and avoids the free risk scams they will still go through 2, 3, 4 or more “brands” before finding one that tastes good enough to leave the cigarettes completely behind. Unfortunately for our entire vape community very few cig-a-like brands are honest enough to tell their customers that if they don’t like ‘their’ e Liquids they can buy prefilled cartomizers from companies that sell the same battery connector type, the 510, 808, 901, etc. What cig-a-like brand, other than Halo Cigs and Triple 7, even bother selling ‘blank’ cartomizers so their customer can buy any e Liquid they want?

Brands like South Beach, White Cloud, Green Smoke, et al, all try to get the message across to their customers that their brand can only use their prefilled cartomizers. In fact, they often times tell the customer that any guarantee or warranty is voided should they use a competitors prefilled cartomizers!

So if a new vaper wants to stick to vaping but cannot find the ‘joy’ in, say, South Beach, instead of switching to another prefilled cartomizer like Jet Cigs (a premium US made prefilled cartomizer) they will toss the whole starter kit and start again. I consider than a major hassle, and an unnecessary one.

To minimize the hassle for friends and family that you know who may one day switch to vaping, make sure to tell them that cig-a-like brands are NOT proprietary, that they do have options after they’ve purchased a starter kit. And steer them clear of the scam alert companies.

In Conclusion

Smoking, unlike vaping, is almost hassle-free. Drive to the store, buy a pack or carton of smokes, and make sure you have a working lighter or a pack of dry matches. Did I miss anything? Oh yea, the hassle of disease and dying early stuff. Well, that may be true but there is no denying that smoking is a whole lot easier to do than vaping.

So why do we do it?

That is the big question isn’t it? Seriously now, be honest, do you really consider yourself to be 100% addicted to nicotine? Do you really believe that if you did not have access to cigarettes when you were a smoker, that you would have died? Can you honestly say that if you went to see your doctor and your doctor showed you an X-ray and told you that you will be 100% dead in a years time unless you stopped smoking that day that you would choose dying over not quitting? Really?

There is only a tiny, tiny fraction of people that smoke who can claim honestly that they “just can’t quit”. There are successful ways to quit, and the only reason someone says they “can’t” quit is because they don’t want to quit. They like smoking, but instead of saying they like smoking they say they “can’t quit”.

So, the vast majority of you who are reading this right now, isn’t the real reason you switched to vaping is because you liked smoking, but wanted to do it in a much safer way. Can we admit that?

The surprising thing about vaping is that we all like it so much that we all put up with these extraordinary hassles. And we put up with them with a smile on our face.  What other voluntary activity forces you to jump through so many hoops?

John Manzione