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how to maintain coil

How to Avoid Coil Gunk When You Vape

Gunky coils are gross. Vapers call the thick, black layer of something coating the coil of your atomizer and clogging up the wick “gunk,” and it often detracts from the taste of your juice and reduces the lifespan of your coils substantially. The problem is that it’s hard to avoid in a lot of cases, especially if you have a sweet tooth when it comes to your e-liquid flavor choices. But learning a little more about coil gunk and what you can do to prevent or fix it can help you get the most out of your vaping experience.


What is Coil Gunk?


Coil gunk is the dark, gloopy buildup you may have noticed around your coil and soaked into your wick. This is one of the most common reasons you’ll have to change your coil regularly, because the build-up around the coil interferes with the flavor of your e-juice and the gunk in your wick affects its ability to soak up e-juice.


The gunk is essentially residue from e-liquid that hasn’t been successfully vaporized. Some components (often sweeteners or other ingredients from sweet flavors) are left behind, and as you continue vaping, these components are heated over and over again and turn dark. Sweeteners are particularly bad for creating coil gunk because they are heavy molecules that don’t vaporize easily, and turn dark (in a way very similar to coil gunk) when they’re exposed to extreme heat.


Causes of Coil Gunk


Avoiding coil gunk means understanding what causes it in the first place. The good news is that the most common cause is fairly easy to avoid, and while there is always some risk of coil gunk, you can minimize it with only small changes to your vaping habits.


  • E-juice with sweeteners: The most common cause of coil gunk is e-juice containing sweeteners. The sweeteners don’t vaporize easily and can leave a residue on your coil, as explained in the previous section. Many NET e-liquids contain sweeteners, and if they haven’t been filtered well, some of the material from the steeping can lead to gunky coils too. This is why many NET e-liquids are bad for coil gunk. However, at Black Note we don’t add sweeteners to our e-liquid and everything is thoroughly filtered so you only get pure e-juice. That’s why we call it “clean coil” e-juice.
  • Dark-colored e-liquids: In general, darker-colored e-liquids are more likely to lead to coil gunk than lighter e-liquids. However, this is really because darker-colored e-liquids are usually heavier and sweeter than lighter-colored e-liquids, so it’s really more about the sweeteners likely to be included than the color of the e-liquid in itself.
  • Higher VG e-liquids: While this is disputed by some, some vapers argue that higher VG e-liquids produce more coil gunk than lower-VG ones. Higher VG e-juice is thicker, which makes clogging more likely in general, and would explain why some vapers notice more gunk with high-VG e-juice. Black Note’s blends are 50/50 PG/VG, but anything with less than 70% VG will reduce the risk of coil gunk.
  • Higher power settings and chain vaping: If you vape at high power settings and either chain-vape or take very long puffs, coil gunk is more likely to occur. The effect of vaping a lot or at high powers might be more to do with directly burning your wick (through dry or slightly dry hits) than gunk necessarily, but the end result is the same.


What Can You Do to Avoid Coil Gunk?


It’s true that coil gunk is a bit of a fact of life for vapers. You can’t completely avoid it all the time unless you’re very careful about the juices you vape and how you vape them. Even if you’re absolutely careful, your coils will get gunked up eventually. However, you can drastically reduce the chance of getting coil gunk by taking some simple steps. These follow-on from the causes linked in the last section:


  • Change your e-juice flavor: Switch to a different e-juice flavor if you want to avoid coil gunk. Black Note’s NET blends don’t include sweeteners and are some of the only NET blends that don’t have an issue with coil gunk, but the most important thing is to avoid e-juice with a lot of sweeteners or darker, sweeter flavors in general.
  • Turn the power down: Reducing the power setting you vape at can reduce the risk of coil gunk. If you find that your coils don’t last long, even if it isn’t related to gunk, turning the power down and chain vaping less can help anyway, so this is definitely something to try.
  • Switch to a lower-VG e-juice: Many high-VG e-juices don’t cause coil gunk, but if you really struggle to avoid it, switching to a lower-VG e-juice may help reduce the problem. Again, Black Note’s blends are well set up for this because they’re only 50% VG, but anything with less than 70% VG should reduce the issue substantially.


So Your Coils Are Gunked Up: What Can You Do?


If, despite all your efforts, your coils get gunky, there are a few steps you can take to rectify the situation. You might not be able to save the coil in every situation, but if it isn’t too bad you might be able to save yourself the purchase of a new coil or at least get more life out of your existing one.


  • Switch to rebuilding: Using rebuildable atomizers has tons of benefits for reducing coil gunk. The main reason for this is that if your coil does end up covered in gunk, you can simply remove the wick and replace it with a new one. Take out your existing wick and then dry-burn your coil to remove some of the residue. Wait for the coil to cool down and if there is any residue, give it a gentle wipe with a damp Q-tip or paper towel to get your coil nice and shiny again. Then simply re-wick and you’re good to vape.
  • Clean pre-made atomizer heads: For pre-made atomizer heads, re-wicking is possible but a more challenging process. However, you can often reduce the effects of coil gunk by cleaning your atomizer head when it gets gunky. You can do this with hot water in many cases or strong grain alcohol (that you can drink – Everclear is a favorite but vodka works too). Disassemble your tank and drop the atomizer head in the liquid before leaving it to soak for half an hour or so. If you’ve used alcohol, rinse the coil under water after you remove it. Then leave it to thoroughly dry before trying to vape using it again – at least 12 hours should do it. You can read more about cleaning your coils here and here.
  • Re-wick pre-made atomizer heads: This isn’t the most convenient solution, but if cleaning won’t re-vitalize your coils, you can change the wick on them if you’re careful. In essence, you need to just replace the wick material (usually cotton) with a matching wick, but how simple this is depends on the structure of the atomizer head. You can often find specific guides for your device if you need help (for example, this video covers the Smok TFV-8).
  • Change wick material: If you build your own coils, chances are you use cotton as a wicking material. While this does have many advantages, it is more susceptible to gunk than some other materials. Switching to a silica wick will make your builds more resistant to gunk. Some pre-made atomizer heads also use ceramic for wicking, which is also less prone to getting gunky.


Gunk Can Be Reduced, But Not Avoided Entirely


Following the advice in this post should help you get more life out of your coils and will reduce gunk in most cases. But it isn’t perfect, and for all your best efforts, your coils may still get gunky. There are only so many times you can clean a coil, and everyone likes a bit of sweet, darker e-juice from time to time. If your coil is gunky and nothing is helping, it may be time to rebuild your coil entirely or install a new atomizer head. It isn’t ideal, but if you take care over how you vape, it won’t happen often.

Lee Johnson

Lee Johnson

Writer at Black Note
Lee Johnson is a writer and vaper from the UK. He started vaping in 2012, and since then has contributed to E-Cigarette Reviewed, E-Cigarette Direct’s Ashtray Blog and Vaping360. He strongly believes smokers need accurate information about vaping and other reduced-harm alternatives to smoking. He has a degree in physics from the Open University and a passion for all forms of science.
Lee Johnson

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What is Naturally Extracted Tobacco E-Liquid?

E-juice, also known as e-liquid or vaping liquid, is the liquid that’s placed in the vaping device and subsequently atomized into vapor. When you go to buy e-juice, you’ll notice it contains a mix of several ingredients. These typically include vegetable glycerin (VG), propylene glycol (PG), some type of flavoring, and nicotine.

VG and PG form the base of the e-liquid. VG is a component used in food and personal care products; its role in e-liquid is to create a thick, dense vapor. PG is another popular solvent used in a variety of everyday items. It carries the e-liquid flavor, provides the “throat hit,” and enhances the vaping liquid’s ability to soak into wicks or cartomizer materials.

Nicotine is an optional ingredient, often available in different levels. E-juice also contains some type of flavoring.

Black Note leads the pack of tobacco vaping liquid by using only natural flavoring – extract from real tobacco leaves to produce real tobacco taste. When you go to buy e-juice from other companies, you may find any number of chemicals used to create synthetic flavors that include fake strawberry, manufactured vanilla, and even man-made tobacco flavors.

If your aim when you buy e-liquid is to experience the subtle nuances, genuine flair and authentic taste of real tobacco, then you’ll be on the mark if you buy e-juice from the Black Note lineup.

Best E-Juice

When you’re going to buy e-liquid, it’s only natural you’ll want the best e-liquid. But what, exactly, does it “best e-juice” mean? We’ll tell you.

For starters, you’ll want an e-juice that doesn’t contain all kinds of strange chemicals and concoctions that you can’t even pronounce. True, even the best e-liquid will contain vegetable glycerin (VG) and proplene glycol (PG), which serve as the base of e-juice, but you don’t necessarily need a host of other chemical compounds.

The best e-juice will stick to natural ingredients, like real tobacco extract, rather than rely on synthetic flavorings, colorings and other additives. Diacetyl is one of those synthetic ingredients that has gotten a pretty bad rap, although its use is not all that uncommon for producing sweet e juice flavors.

Definitely read the ingredient list before you buy e-juice to ensure you recognize what’s on it. Better yet, see if the e-juice company offers a lab report to confirm what’s actually inside the e-liquid.

In addition to having as few chemical ingredients as possible, the best e-juice will have an amazing taste. For those who enjoy authenticity over imitation, the most amazing taste is the most natural taste, especially when it comes to tobacco. Since Black Note uses real extract from tobacco leaves, we not only avoid all those weird chemical flavorings, but we also produce the most authentic experience: tobacco vaping liquid that actually tastes like tobacco.

Best E-Liquid on the Market

Anyone looking for the best e-liquid on the market need look no further than Black Note. Black Note tobacco vaping liquid ranks as the best e-juice across the board in every category, starting with the taste.

Black Note’s main claim to fame is producing a tobacco vaping liquid that actually tastes like real tobacco. That because we use real tobacco extract, not chemicals, to create the best e-juice tobacco flavor. Using extract from real tobacco leaves retains tobacco’s nuances and flavor notes, giving you the most authentic and multi-faceted tobacco experience.

In addition to being the best e-juice for tobacco taste, Black Note also has the best e-liquid manufacturing process. We spent years researching and testing various production methods, and finally landed on one that we believe is absolutely perfect.

It starts with growing carefully selected tobacco seeds, followed by an equally precise of steps that include an extensive natural extraction process. Even our bottling and packaging is done with the utmost care, using recycled and recyclable packaging materials to ensure our products are as earth-friendly as they are vapor-friendly.

One more category where Black Note ranks as the best e-liquid is with the value. Every order comes with free domestic shipping, one-to-three day domestic shipping guarantee, and a 90-day, money-back satisfaction guarantee. If you’re not happy for any reason, or don’t agree we’re the best e-juice on the market, send it back on us and we’ll refund your money.

Vape Juice Ingredients

Vape juice ingredients can be pretty straightforward – or not. At the very least, most vape juice contains propylene glycol (PG), vegetable glycerin (VG), and some type of flavoring. Nicotine has largely become an optional ingredient that can be included at varying levels or left out altogether.

Vegetable glycerin (VG) and propylene glycol (PG) are usually the two main ingredients that make up the base of most vape juice.

VG is a plant-based substance with the ability to produce a dense, thick vapor. PG is an additive found in many food items and certain medicines. It carries the flavoring, provides the “throat hit” and enhances the vape juice’s ability to soak into the wicking materials.

Nicotine levels can vary, as can ingredients that make up the flavorings. The components that make up vape juice flavoring are where ingredients can get rather complicated.

Vape juice that relies on artificial flavorings can contain any number of extraneous chemicals and other additives, whatever it takes to recreate the flavor the ecig juice is going for.

Black Note uses only natural flavorings: extract from real tobacco leaves. That keeps our ingredient list incredibly simple, backed by a lab report to prove it. You won’t find any strange chemical concoctions used to produce our tobacco flavor, just real tobacco extract that delivers a real tobacco experience.

What is the Best Flavor for Ecig Juice?

From strawberry shortcake to banana rum, ecig juice comes in tons of flavors. While folks can debate and discuss all the fruity, sweet or food-like flavors all day long, the best flavor for e-cig liquid is straight-up tobacco.

Why? Vaping was originally created as an alternative for traditional cigarettes, mainly for those who enjoy the taste of tobacco. And when you can find an e-cig liquid that is able to recreate tobacco’s full-bodied yet delicate flavor notes and nuances, but without the harmful chemicals found in cigarettes, then you’ve found the best ecig juice.

Recreating tobacco’s complex flavor isn’t easy, especially when it’s attempted with artificial ingredients. That’s why Black Note sticks to the real thing, extracting the essence of real tobacco leaves to flavor our vaping liquid. Not only does this avoid the harmful chemicals in cigarettes, but it also eliminates the flavoring chemicals found in many ecig juices. The end result is real tobacco taste, an authentic tobacco experience and the best flavor for ecig juice you can find.

Notice also we said the best e-cig flavor was straight-up tobacco, not plain old tobacco. Black Note’s real tobacco vaping liquid happens to come in a variety of different blends, from the light and airy to the peppery and robust. Not all tobacco is created equal, and different blends capture the specialized subtleties that make each tobacco unique.

Best Sweet Tobacco E-Juice

When it comes to sweet tobacco e-juice, your options can be broken down into two categories.

The first category contains tobacco e-juice that overlays the tobacco flavor with artificial chocolate, caramel, vanilla, fruity or other dessert-like flavorings. We wouldn’t classify any such flavors as the best tobacco e liquid, simply because they typically use chemicals and other artificial ingredients to create the tobacco taste, the sweet taste, or both.

The second category of sweet tobacco e-juice is where you’ll find the best tobacco e-liquid, sweet or otherwise. This category contains vaping liquid created using only natural flavorings, which is exactly where Black Note fits in. Instead of concocting flavors using synthetic ingredients, Black Note uses an extensive extraction process that slowly and deliberately extracts the tobacco essence from real tobacco leaves.

The result is the best tobacco e-juice: tobacco vaping liquid that actually tastes like real tobacco. And if you’re going for the best sweet tobacco e liquid, we have a few tobacco blends that offer varying levels of sweetness.

Prelude is our sweetest tobacco e-liquid, containing golden Virginia tobacco. Made from fire-cured dark Virginia tobacco, Sonata is our Cavendish blend with a mildly sweet and nutty flavor. Solo is our menthol blend, giving you a semi-sweet minty taste created from natural menthol crystals extract from dried mint leaves.

For the best tobacco e-liquid that’s naturally sweet and remarkably delicious, Black Note is at your service.

WARNING: Black Note products are not smoking cessation products and have not been tested as such. Black Note products are intended for use by adults of legal smoking age (21 or older in California), and not by children or women who are pregnant or breastfeeding. Black Note products contain nicotine, a chemical known to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. Ingestion of the non-vaporized concentrated ingredients can be poisonous. Keep out of reach of children and pets.

WARNING: This product contains nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive chemical.