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What are Oil Pens? The Complete Guide

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Cartridge and Mouthpiece
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As far as smoking devices go, disposable oil pens are pretty ordinary pieces of smoking technology. Yes, some people find them useful in certain situations. But for the most part, they harm both the environment as well as your wallet. So, instead of buying these throwaway items and wasting resources, go for refillable oil pens. These are more affordable, better for the environment, and all in all, a more wholesome option.

To be fair, some people find refillable oil pens more complicated and confusing. But once you get the hang of these devices, they give more convenience and benefits. So, it's worth learning about them before you disregard them altogether.

The best way to understand the refillable oil pen is to get the components right. Once you understand the parts, you get a much better perspective on the whole device. Oil pens can be understood through its three main components – the heating cartridge (or the atomizer), the mouthpiece, and the battery. 

Oil pens and Wax pens: The Difference

Wax pens can come in a wider variety of atomizers (both in material and mechanism). But oil pens have a more particular type of requirement. You'll find that oil pens need better control and focus on temperature. The main reason here is because they use thinner concentrates compared to their wax cousins.

Wax atomizers come with coils that may be made of silica or titanium. These materials usually burn the wax as soon as it comes into contact. On the other hand, oil pens come with plastic wicks or fiberglass, as opposed to using coils. They can also have wickless ceramic cores. These cores behave like a ceramic dab nail, instead of absorbing the oil like a wick. If you're particular about the taste of the hits, wickless tanks are better at preserving the hit's flavor. 

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The Cartridge

Your oil pen may typically come with a glass or a plastic cartridge. Plastic cartridges are easier to make and cheaper to buy. But many people believe that the plastic can react with the oil when heated to higher temperatures. If nothing else, it can affect the flavor of the hit. The advantage of glass cartridges is that it doesn't react with the oils since it's organic. Also, glass cartridges usually have a mouthpiece made of metal. These metal mouthpieces are easier to clean compared to plastic materials. But for people who prefer plastic bodies, there are some oil pens that have a plastic body and a metal mouthpiece. 

Learn the temperature

Wax pens are known to emit higher temperatures to melt the wax (thicker material compared to oils). So, if your device cannot generate enough heat, the wax will not melt as well as you'd want. You end up with a not-so-great taste in the mouth.

Since oil is a less condensed material, it doesn't need as much heat to vaporize. So, oil pens do not use so much voltage to get the job done. They require lower temperatures to vaporize the oil at the right consistency. In fact, excessive heat will burn your oils. Then, you' l end up inhaling the burnt smoke instead of the rich vapor. 

Know your Battery

Now that you're aware of how temperature affects the hits, the next thing to know is how the power source works. Similar to the cartridge and heat levels, the batteries can also vary a bit. But they're not substitutes for each other. You'll have to learn how they work so that you can choose the right power mechanism to get the best results.

The simpler and more common battery-type is the slimmer, cigarette-shaped batteries. They can change the kick of your pull, depending on how hard your inhalation is. So, in one sense, you control the strength through your own breathing. The advantage of this type is that they're more affordable and easy to use. Also, they're more discreet because of their thin size. The downside is that they don't deliver the same consistency as a controlled battery. Unless you're a champion at regulating your breaths, it may give different hits every draw.

The other type of battery is the one that comes with a temperature button or dial. This button allows you to change and set the temperature. You can get the exact hit that you want since you can control the voltage of the device. The more you use this dial, the more accurately you can set the right temperature. These batteries also generally come with a button-lock, which acts as a safety feature when you're not smoking the device.

The majority of batteries and cartridges come with a standard 510 threading. So, you can upgrade your piece without going for a whole replacement budget.

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Battery maintenance

One of the most common problems people face is when the battery goes out of alignment with the cartridge. It's an easy fix, and you can rectify it yourself. Look into the batteries and check whether the contact is in place. It looks like a curled up snake in the middle of the battery. It's supposed to slide in so that it can accommodate the charger or cartridge. What happens, however, is that a longer cartridge may push it down, or a shorter battery may be unable to reach it. The result is that your device seems like it has stopped working.

Use a paperclip to softly move the contact without breaking it. Once it's back in alignment, you can start using your device again. It's a good way of 'extending' the life of your oil pen when it seems like it won't work.

Final Note

Oil pens are easy to operate once you understand the parts correctly. The refilling may take you some time to get used to it. But it's nothing that cannot be learned over a few uses. Once you get the hang of it, you'll understand why it's the better alternative over other cheaper options. Beyond that, you get quality flavors, with full discretion and convenience. 

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