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Vaping FAQ: Find answers to popular questions about vaping

Vaping FAQ: Popular vape questions, answered.

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Welcome to the Vaping FAQ: a place for you to quickly find answers to all of your vaping questions.

Welcome to our Vaping FAQ. We’ve made this Vaping FAQ to make it as easy as possible for people to find answers to common questions about vaping. 

We update the questions regularly to make sure we cover as many questions as we can. In this FAQ, we’ll cover topics like vaping safety, regulations and compliance, vaping hardware and vaping in general.

If you’ve got a question about vaping that isn’t on our Vaping FAQ page, leave a comment at the bottom of this page an we will try and find an answer. 

Vaping FAQ Sections:

  • Vape Regulation & Compliance FAQs
  • Vaping Basics FAQs
  • Vaping Safety FAQs
  • Vape Hardware FAQs
  • Ask a Question

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Vape Regulation & Compliance FAQs

This section will cover questions about the laws governing the vaping industry, what kinds of regulations are in place for vape products and how to find out if your vape is compliant.

In the UK, the legal age limit for buying a product containing nicotine is 18. The age limit for models who are vaping in advertising or marketing is 25.

The MHRA (Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency) & PHE (Public Health England) regulate and enforce laws surrounding tobacco and vaping products. This includes TPD and TRPR regulations.

When selling tobacco or vaping products in the UK, you must follow TPD (Tobacco Products Directive), TRPR (Tobacco & Related Product Regulations) and Tobacco Products and Nicotine Inhaling Products (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020. 

UK law prohibits the selling of cigarettes and e-liquids to people under the age of 18. There is less clarity around selling zero-nicotine shortfills to minors, as the law does not specify 0% nicotine products.

 

However, as a general rule many suppliers and vendors (including Eco-Vape) will not sell any e-liquid to under 18s, regardless of nicotine content.

In the UK, the maximum legal limit of nicotine strength is 20mg/ml.

Shortfill e-liquids are not covered by TPD or TRPR regulations as they do not contain nicotine. They are instead covered by GPSR (General Product Safety Regulations).

You can enter the product ECID code on the official MHRA (Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency) website to check if it is listed. You should be able to find the ECID code for your device on the packaging or on the manufacturer's website. You can also type in the brand name or device name to search for it yourself.

 

A vaping device is only compliant if it is listed on the MHRA's main list or legacy list. If it is not on either list, then the device isn’t legal to sell. If the product doesn't have an ECID code, it is not legal to sell.

In the UK, single-use e-cigs (including disposable vapes) cannot hold more than 2ml of e-liquid. Refillable tanks (used with mods) cannot hold more than 10ml of e-liquid.

You cannot sell e-liquids containing nicotine in bottles/containers larger than 10ml in the UK. However, as shortfill e-liquids don’t contain nicotine, they can be sold in larger bottles.

The NHS may start prescribing e-cigs and has said it will “work with manufacturers to assess safety and effectiveness of products”. Read our article on the NHS announcement for more information.

Vaping Basics FAQs

This section will cover questions about the basics of vaping, including what vaping is, how expensive it is to vape and what role nicotine has to play.

Vaping describes heating up e-liquid into a vapour and inhaling it. E-liquid is absorbed by cotton, which surrounds a powered coil. The coil is then heated which causes the e-liquid to evaporate. This creates vapour which the user then inhales.

 

Vapes, or e-cigs, are usually used as nicotine replacement alternatives for smokers who are quitting cigarettes.

 

There are different types of vape devices which work in different ways. If you need more information than whats in our vaping FAQ, then read our beginner’s guide to vaping.

Vaping can be a much cheaper alternative to smoking, however it depends how you vape.

 

In the majority of cases, it is not expensive to start vaping. You can buy a vape pod starter kit with 5 e-liquids from as little as £19.99, which can last for weeks. Compared to the average cost of a packet of 20 cigarettes at around £15, it is much cheaper than smoking.

 

However, some people take vaping to the next level with DIY kits, powerful mods, custom coils and sub-ohm tanks. This is more of a ‘hobby’ approach to vaping. It can cost a lot more than the average vaper is likely to spend if they’re just using e-cigs to help them quit smoking.

Vaping can be a much cheaper alternative to smoking, however it depends how you vape. In the majority of cases, it is not expensive to start vaping. Read our beginner’s guide to vaping for more information.

 

You can buy a vape pod starter kit with 5 e-liquids from as little as £19.99, which can last for weeks. Compared to the average cost of a packet of 20 cigarettes at around £15, it is much cheaper than smoking.

Many e-liquids and nic salts used in vaping do contain nicotine. However, there are many zero-nicotine e-liquid options including shortfill e-liquids and standard vape juice.

VG, or vegetable glycerine, is one one the main ingredients in e-liquid. It is slightly thicker than PG (propylene glycol) and is primarily used to increase the thickness and density of the vapour cloud.

 

VG has a mildly sweet taste and has a slightly shorter shelf life due to its natural ingredients. It also tends to give a smoother ‘throat hit’ which can make vaping more comfortable and less harsh.

 

You can find different ratios of VG in e-liquids, with higher VG blends often used for vape tricks.

 

Read our guide to e-liquids on the Eco-Vape blog for more information. 

PG, or propylene glycol, is one of the two main ingredients in e-liquid. PG tends to carry flavour better than VG and is usually used to create great tasting e-liquids.

 

It is a thin, odourless liquid but when combined with flavourings can provide a mouth-watering vaping experience.

 

You can find different ratios of PG in e-liquids. Higher PG blends are not used for vape tricks as the vapour cloud will be less dense, but they can provide more flavour.

 

Read our guide to e-liquids on the Eco-Vape blog for more information. 

Safe Vaping FAQs

This section will cover questions about safe vaping, how vaping is 95% safer than smoking and common health myths wrongly associated with vaping in the media.

E-cigs and vapes are tightly regulated in the UK for safety and quality. Vaping devices, hardware and e-liquids are covered by TPD and TRPR regulations.

 

According to the NHS, “they're [e-cigs] not completely risk free, but they carry a small fraction of the risk of cigarettes... E-cigarettes do not produce tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most harmful elements in tobacco smoke.”

Vaping is a 95% safer alternative to smoking cigarettes, but it is not completely without risk. E-cigarettes do not produce tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most harmful elements in tobacco smoke.

 

Read our blog on vaping safety for detailed information on the safety of vaping.

There is no difference in terms of safety between sub-ohm vaping and vaping in general. Sub-ohm tends to involve DTL (direct to lung) vaping, but there is no data to suggest it is less safe when compared to other methods.

 

Vaping is a 95% safer alternative to smoking cigarettes, but it is not completely without risk. E-cigarettes do not produce tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most harmful elements in tobacco smoke.

 

Read our blog on vaping safety for detailed information on vaping safety.

Side effects of using nicotine replacement products, such as e-cigs and vapes, are rare but can include the following according to the NHS:

 

  • Skin irritation when using patches 
  • Irritation of nose, throat or eyes when using a nasal spray 
  • Difficulty sleeping (insomnia), sometimes with vivid dreams 
  • An upset stomach 
  • Dizziness 
  • Headaches

 

Nicotine can also supress appetite.

Vaping is 95% safer than smoking according to Public Health England. Read our blog on vaping safety for more information. The NHS may start prescribing e-cigs as part of its stop smoking campaign.

More research needs to be done to establish the long-term health consequences from vaping on the lungs. There is a lot of conflicting information currently available.

 

On the one hand, Public Health England has produced a report which claims that “e-cigarettes are 95% less harmful than ordinary cigarettes.”

 

On the other hand, a study by the British Lung Foundation (BLF) suggests that e-cigarettes might be damaging lung cells in a similar way to that observed in people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Read our guide to vaping safety for more information.

Side effects of vaping for some people can include a sore throat, particularly if the individual has a pre-existing medical condition such as asthma or is allergic to particular chemicals found in most e-liquids.

 

High PG (propylene glycol) content in e-liquid, high nicotine content and menthol/nicotine flavoured e-liquids have also been linked to causing a sore throat.

No. You cannot get so called ‘popcorn lung from vaping. There have been no confirmed reports of 'popcorn lung' associated with anyone using e-cigs.

Vape Hardware FAQs

This section will cover questions about vaping hardware, including e-cigs, mods, pods and vape coils.

Vape pens are usually small, slim devices that heat e-liquids into vapour. They’re very simple devices and are designed around convenience and simplicity. Vape pens can sometimes include vape pods or e-cigs, as there are many different names for similar devices.

 

For more details on vape pens, read our beginner’s guide to vaping hardware.

Vape mods are larger vape devices with powerful batteries. They are generally recommended for experienced vapers. They offer the ability to personalise your vaping experience by changing resistance, wattage and temperature.

 

For more details on vape mods, read our beginner’s guide to vaping hardware.

Vape pods include both pre-filled and refillable designs that offer flexibility for the user. They usually include a small, rechargeable vape device alongside separate e-liquid ‘pods’, or containers.

 

Pods make switching flavours easy; they come with interchangeable containers of e-liquid or nic salt rather than a single tank/reservoir.

 

For more details on vape pods, read our beginner’s guide to vaping hardware.

E-cigs are usually simpler devices that are often used to help people to quit smoking. They are similar to vape pens, allowing the user to add their own e-liquid and may have very simple customisability (three power settings, for example). As a result, they can be easier to maintain than a vape device and are designed around convenience.

 

For more details on e-cigs, read our beginner’s guide to vaping hardware.

You should change your vape coil approximately every 1-4 weeks, depending on how often you use your vape. Using an old, burned out coil will lead to a harsher vape and can ruin the taste of e-liquid.

Coils generally last a few weeks, but this depends on usage and the type of coils/device you are using. The more you use your vape, the more often you will need to change the coil.

 

If you notice your vape is becoming harsher to use or you can taste burning when you vape, it probably time to check the coil and swap it for a new one.

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