Here are some of the most frequently used terms within the vaping industry and community. Knowing these words and concepts is helpful to understanding electronic cigarettes generally so you can be a more well-informed shopper and user. They are especially important when you want to get into modding – combining the specific components you want for a better vaping experience.
- Common Terms, A-Z
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Common Terms, A-Z
401 / 510 / 801 (pen style) / 901 / 4081 / E9: When you want to customize (modding), these are the typical connection-thread types. These types are important because it allows interoperability between different pieces, so you can connect a battery to a topper (atomizer, cartomizer, etc.).
Analog: A standard, traditional cigarette. Sometimes analog also refers to a cigar.
Advanced personal vaporizer (APV): This type of vaporizer is also called a mod (a modified electronic cigarette). Generally, these modified ecigs have stronger battery life. They often also allow variable voltage or wattage.
Aerosol: This term is “[a] scientifically more accurate description of e-cigarette ‘vapour’, because of the presence of liquid droplets suspended in air,” notes E-cigarette Politics. “[T]echnically, vapour is invisible.”
All-day vape (ADV): An e-juice that someone can use most of the time – that isn’t cloying in its intensity (too sweet or robust) when used as one’s primary flavor.
Atomizer: Also sometimes called the atty, this ecig component houses the wire coil and typically a wick. It is where the vaporizing of the e-liquid (also called e-juice) takes place.
Bottom coil clearomizer (BCC): This designation means that the coil within the atomizer is at the base of the clearomizer tank.
Burner: A synonym for analog, this term refers to traditional combustible tobacco cigarettes.
Cartridge: Sometimes shortened to cart, this is the mouthpiece where e-juice is stored in certain vaporizers.
Cartomizer: Also called a carto, this component is a disposable cartridge with a built-in atomizer.
Cartomizer punch: With this tool, you can create holes in a cartomizer. Some cartomizers already have holes pre-punched, but many don’t. With one of these devices, you can carefully determine where your holes will be so you can control draw tension.
Cartomizer tank: A tank, typically made of glass or plastic, that slides over a cartomizer. The tank is helpful in e-cigarettes because it allows you to use a sizable reservoir for your e-liquid instead of having to keep refilling the carto. You have to have holes in order for the e-juice to flow.
Cigalike: “An electronic cigarette having a similar form factor as a traditional cigarette,” explains God of Steam. “Generally considered to be the bottom of the ladder as far as build quality and vape quality in electronic cigarettes.”
Clearomizer: Also called a clearo, this piece is a cartomizer that is transparent, so you can see the level of e-liquid.
Cloud: Vapor exhaled by a user. Typically people say they re “blowing clouds” when the vapor is dense because of elevated water content.
Deck: On rebuildable atomizers, this is the flat base (some with a lip) where the negative and positive posts are located. The deck helps separate the liquid from the battery connection.
Drip: To place a small amount of juice straight on the coil or bridge of an atomizer rather than pouring it into a cartridge, cartomizer, or clearomizer.
E-juice: Also called e-liquid or e-nicotine (the latter for types that contain the stimulant), this is the substance that is vaporized.
Fuse: A component that keeps the battery from failing in mechanical mods.
Genesis style: This type of rebuildable atomizer rests on a tank, with at least one hole to the tank.
Glassomizer: A clearomizer with a tank made of glass instead of plastic.
Hybrid: Combination battery holder and topper, often for use with mechanical mods.
Juice: Shorthand for e-juice or e-liquid (the substance vaped).
Kick: A type of circuit that sits on top of the battery in mods (typically mechanical) that allows you to change the wattage.
Mechanical mod: This mod for veteran users is “[a]n electronic cigarette that (traditionally) does not have any electronics or wiring (some ‘mechs’ do have wires),” says God of Steam. “[I]t is just a metal tube with a mechanical switch that holds a battery and a connector for a topper of some sort.”
Mod: Abbreviation for modification. This word used to refer to a battery or flashlight that had been customized for use as an ecig. Now it generally includes anything that is not a cigalike.
Personal vaporizer (PV): Any ecig.
Rebuildables: A rebuildable atomizer (RBA) or rebuildable dripping atomizer (RDA), these are units with user-serviceable parts. With the former, you don’t need to drip liquid straight onto the coil.
Tank: The portion of a topper containing the juice.
Topper: Any component that sits on top of the battery and battery holder (i.e., an atomizer or any of its variations).
Vape: To use an ecig. Also sometimes refers to an ecig itself.
Vaper: Anyone who uses an ecig.
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