A few years ago, temperature control was all the rage in vaping. If you were shopping for a new vape mod and saw a device that didn’t have a temperature control function available, you’d avoid that mod because you didn’t want to buy last-generation technology. At that time, practically every sub-ohm tank on the market had a temperature control-compatible nickel or titanium coil available; some tanks even featured both types of coils.
Then, all at once, the titanium and nickel coils disappeared. As vapers’ demands for vapor production and flavor intensity continued to increase, temperature control coils simply couldn’t keep up.
Although temperature control vaping hasn’t been popular for many years, virtually every box mod on the market still supports it. If you go to any well-stocked vape shop like V2 Cigs UK, you’ll find a huge selection of temperature control-compatible devices – and while you won’t find any nickel or titanium coils for your favorite vape tank, many tanks do have stainless steel coils available. Stainless steel does work with most mods in temperature control mode, but is there any point in trying it? Is temperature control vaping relevant at all in 2021?
How Does Temperature Control Vaping Work?
If you’ve never tried temperature control vaping before, you’ll likely find a primer on the technology useful. Here’s an overview.
Temperature control vaping works because of a property called the temperature coefficient of resistance (TCR). As a metal increases in temperature, its electrical resistance changes in a predictable way. If you know a metal’s TCR, then you can estimate the metal’s temperature by tracking its resistance while heating it.
The trick to getting temperature control vaping to work is that the atomizer coil must be made from a material with a high TCR. Kanthal is the most common material used for vaping coils. It’s also one of the most popular materials for heating elements of all types, and one of the reasons for its popularity is that it has an extremely low TCR. When kanthal is heated, it changes so little in resistance that it’s difficult to measure. That’s no good for temperature control vaping because you can’t get an accurate temperature estimate.
Nickel, titanium, and stainless steel are the three most common coil materials used for temperature control vaping because all three materials have suitably high TCRs. As mentioned above, though, there aren’t any sub-ohm vape tanks currently in production that have nickel or titanium coils. Plenty of tanks do have stainless steel coils, though, because stainless steelworks in both wattage and temperature control modes. You’ll need a tank with a stainless-steel coil if you want to try temperature control vaping.
What Is It Like to Vape in Temperature Control Mode?
To understand what the experience of temperature control vaping is like, you should probably think of it more in terms of “temperature limiting” because that’s what temperature control really does. When you enable the temperature control function on your device, you’ll select an operational wattage you currently do when vaping in wattage mode. In temperature control mode, however, the wattage is only a starting point. The wattage that you select determines how much power the coil initially receives when you press your mod’s fire button.
In addition to the wattage, you’ll also select a temperature in Fahrenheit or Celsius – and here’s where the phrase “temperature limiting” comes into play, because the temperature that you select functions as a limit rather than a constant. When the coil reaches its temperature limit, the mod immediately cuts its power to lower the coil’s temperature.
So, that’s how temperature control vaping works in practice. What’s the actual experience like? Let’s discuss that in further detail as we learn more about the pros and cons of temperature control vaping.
What Are the Pros and Cons of Temperature Control Vaping?
The reason why temperature control never became the most popular way to vape is probably because some people ultimately found the technology a bit disappointing. While it does have benefits, most people who try temperature control vaping end up wishing that the technology would automatically keep a coil at a consistent temperature rather than simply cutting power when the coil reaches its temperature limit. If your device is constantly cutting power when you try to vape, it only means that you need to reduce the wattage – and that’s something you could easily do on your own without temperature control mode.
When you finally do find a wattage that allows you to vape in temperature control mode without your device constantly cutting power, you’ll probably be surprised to discover that it’s much lower than the wattage at which you usually vape. That’s because, if you use a high-end cloud chasing tank, you probably vape at a temperature higher than what your device will allow in temperature control mode.
The cooler vapor temperature that you’ll experience when you vape in temperature control mode may be a good or bad thing depending on your preferences. If you prefer a vaping experience that’s cooler and smoother, you might appreciate the fact that temperature control guarantees that experience every time. If you start to pick up your vaping pace and your coil is in danger of getting too hot, the temperature control function will kick in before that has a chance to happen.
On the other hand, vaping in temperature control mode always means that you’ll get smaller vapor clouds and less intense flavors compared to vaping in wattage mode. If you’re the type of person who loves to use a mesh coil tank and create your own personal weather systems, you’re probably going to be disappointed when you try temperature control vaping because temperature control simply can’t produce that kind of experience; it won’t let your coil get hot enough to produce huge clouds.
If you don’t pay close attention when vaping and find that you often forget to refill your tank, you may enjoy temperature control vaping because that’s where temperature control really shines. When you vape in wattage mode, you’ll experience a harsh “dry hit” if you vape with an empty tank. With no e-liquid in the tank to keep the coil cool, the metal immediately begins to glow and release noxious fumes. With temperature control, though, that never happens because your device won’t allow the coil to get that hot. If the tank is empty, the coil simply stops producing vapor. A dry hit is one of the most unpleasant things that can happen during vaping, and the fact that temperature control prevents dry hits makes it worth trying at least once.