Guide to choosing your first vape kit

Choosing your first e-cigarette kit is an important step in your stop smoking journey. There are countless starter kits available, and choosing the perfect one to suit you is important to making the switch from smoking to vaping as smooth and easy as possible.

Pod systems

Pod systems are a fantastic solution for those who want to give vaping a try, to see if it could help them on their stop smoking journey. Pod systems are usually small and discreet e-cigarettes, and require minimal set up and maintenance. Unlike traditional e-cigs which have refillable tanks that require the coil to be changed periodically, pod systems feature a plastic pod with an enclosed coil. When the pod needs changing, the user simply needs to replace the pod with a fresh one, which is much easier and less messy than changing a coil. Pod systems generally have a cigarette alike airflow design, helping them feel comfortable and familiar to those who are using the device as a stop smoking aid.

There are two different types of pod system, prefilled or refillable;

Prefilled pods are purchased already filled with e-liquid, available in a range of flavours and sometimes different nicotine strength options, depending on the chosen brand. Examples of these types of devices are the JUUL range or Logic Compact kit. Once the pod is empty it cannot be refilled, and the user just needs to replace it with a fresh pod. These types of devices are arguably the easiest to use for new vapers, as they require little set up, vaping knowledge or upkeep. As the pods are prefilled, they can be used immediately, with no need to wait around for the coils to prime. However, these types of devices will not necessarily be suited to everyone, as users are limited by the flavours and strengths available for the device.

For new vapers who would like a wider variety of flavours and nicotine strengths, refillable pod systems could be a suitable fit, like the Innokin Gala, Eleaf Elven or Aspire AVP AIO Kit. They work in much the same way as their prefilled counterparts, but the pods are purchased empty and can be refilled with any suitable e-liquid. Each pod can be refilled multiple times and once the coil starts to taste burnt it can be disposed of and replaced with a fresh one. The pods do require some set up, as the pods will need to be allowed 5-10 minutes to absorb the e-liquid the first time they are filled, so the dry coil does not immediately burn.

Tank starter kits

Tradition, tank starter kits are the most popular type of starter e-cigarette. They are made up of a battery, with a refillable tank usually made of glass and metal, and containing a replaceable coil. Starter kits are best used with 50/50 e-liquids, which offers users the choice between countless different flavours and a wide range of nicotine strength options. This means that users can find an e-liquid that the love, which will keep them coming back to their e-cigarette and help make smoking a thing of the past. This also means they can select the nicotine strength that best suits their needs, as the amount of nicotine required will depend on previous smoking habits. The coil housed within the tank will need to be replaced periodically, as it will eventually start to taste burnt as the cotton inside begins to burn out. Changing a coil is fairly straight-forward, but it is usually preferable to change it when the tank is empty or contains only a small amount of e-liquid. How long a coil lasts will depend on a number of factors, such as what e-liquid is being used and the frequency of use, but in starter kits the coils tend to last on average upwards of a week, and can last as long as a couple of weeks. Some starter kits such as the popular Aspire PockeX device, have a fixed airflow design which usually replicated the feel of smoking a cigarette. Others, like the Innokin Endura T18II have an adjustable airflow so users can open or restrict the airflow to best suit their needs.

The importance of airflow

Choosing a device with an airflow design that suits you is extremely important, as many people find it easier to quit smoking when their e-cigarette closely replicates the feel of their e-cigarette preferences. Some kits have a tight airflow, which feels similar to that of a hand rolled cigarette, such as the Innokin Endura T20S kit. Others will have a looser draw, more similar to that of pre-rolled cigarettes, like the A Sub Evod kit. If you are unsure what airflow design will suit you, or would like the ability to personalise your vaping experience, an adjustable airflow device like the Vaptio Cosmo or Aspire Tigon kit give the user the ability to adjust the airflow settings to find the perfect setting with just a twist.

Once you have chosen your first vape kit, take a look at our other guides for help choosing an e-liquid, other useful information pertaining to vaping and to access our FAQs.

Reasons to start vaping

  • E-cigarettes have been found by University College London to be the most effective way to give up smoking, especially when combined with the help of a stop smoking specialist.
  • E-liquids allow you to control your nicotine dosage, and lower the dosage as and when you are ready.
  • Vaping feels much more familiar to smokers, as the act of vaping closely replicates that of smoking in a way that other nicotine replacement therapies like patches and gum do not.
  • Vaping has been found by Public Health England to be 95% less harmful than smoking, and e-liquids do not contain any of the countless toxic substances that are found in cigarettes.
  • E-cigarette vapour dissipates in seconds, and does not cause discolouration or a lingering smell to yourself or your environment.
  • On average, vapers spend only a third of the money they were spending when smoking, an average saving of £800 per year!

Where to start

If you are considering an e-cigarette as an alternative to smoking, or a way to cut down on your cigarette usage, give our ‘Guide: Switching made simple’ a read to help you find the perfect device and e-liquid combination to suit your needs.

You will need to identify the device that will feel most comfortable and fit into your lifestyle best, as well as an e-liquid strength that provides the appropriate nicotine dosage and is a flavour that you love.

How does an e-cigarette work?

An e-cigarette is comprised of a tank, or pod, and a battery. The tank contains a coil surrounded by cotton; once the tank has been filled with e-liquid, the cotton absorbs the e-liquid which is then vaporised as the coil is heated. This vapour is then inhaled by the user. The coil will only heat up when the user depresses the fire button, or on buttonless devices, when the user inhales through the mouthpiece.


How to set up your device

Once you receive your device, you will find a user manual with a device specific set up guide to help you set up your device effectively.

  • If you are using a pre-filled pod system, it is as simple as popping the pod into the device and you are ready to go.
  • If you are using a device with fillable pods, simply fill the pod with e-liquid and let it sit for 5-10 minutes before using it.
  • If you are using a device with replaceable coils, squeeze a few drops of e-liquid onto any exposed cotton, this is known as priming the coil. Avoid putting e-liquid into the centre of the coil, as this may not be absorbed straight away and may spit out of the mouthpiece when you use the device. Once you have primed the coil, insert it into the tank and fill the tank with e-liquid, then let it sit for 5-10 minutes to become fully saturated.
  • It is important to ensure the coil is fully saturated in e-liquid before you use the device. If you use your device before the coil has fully absorbed the e-liquid this could lead the coil to burn out prematurely.
  • Once the tank is read to use turn on the device, this is usually done by pressing the fire button 3-5 times in quick succession. If your device has an adjustable wattage feature make sure the wattage is set to the correct setting for the coil you are using, and then your device will be ready to use!
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