Updated: February 2nd , 2016
In this blog post we will provide some advanced insight into the temperature setting that can play a role in the vapor quality. If you prefer a post that is more practical or vape specific, check out our post on Vaporizer temperature settings.
Understanding Vaporization & Temperature
For a little background information, the goal of vaporization is to convert the compounds and essential oils in your botanicals into vapor, or gas form. This is done by heating them to a certain temperature range, to vaporize efficiently and avoid combustion. Some botanicals have several different compounds you may wish to vaporize, and by understanding how different temperatures effect and release the active components in your botanicals you can control your vaporization experience.
We mentioned that vaporization is a heating process that avoids combustion, by heating your botanicals at a low enough temperature. Whereas vaporization can release your botanicals compounds in a controlled manner, based on temperature control, combustion releases all components instantaneously, as soon as they are heated at this high temperature. Every botanical’s combustion point is slightly different due to moisture content, but in general, combustion occurs at 400 degrees Celsius. Combustion burns and releases, along with the essential oils, harmful by products such as tar and carbon monoxide through smoke. Avoiding these harmful by-products by vaporization is just one of the reasons many people find vaporization to be a healthier alternative to combustion based smoking and therefore note the benefits of vaporizing.
Choosing a Vaporizer
When choosing a unit, you will notice vaporizers come in many different styles and therefore are manufactured for various methods of temperature control and adjustment. Some vaporizers allow precise temperature control to the degree allowing you to choose your ideal temperature shown on a digital display screen, such as the Volcano Vaporizer
or the ZEUS Smite plus
. Vaporizers with temperature precision set the maximum temperature setting far below the possibility for combustion to ensure you receive pure vaporization. On the other hand, other units vaporize strictly at one fixed temperature set by the manufacture such as the GPen or Iolite vaporizer, generally around 190-200 degrees Celsius. However, it is common for vaporizers to combine temperature control styles by allowing you to choose between either a fixed number of temperature, such as the Arizer Solos
7 presets, or by use of a dial to give you a range of approximate temperature settings such as the DaBuddha. When choosing a unit to vaporize with, you may want to take into account the temperature control features if you value being able to control the vapor you wish to receive.
The Right Temperature
Vaporization temperatures greatly effect the quality of your vapor by releasing different amounts, and types, of compounds released at different temperatures. For example, at a lower temperature, approximately 190-210 degrees Celsius, you will receive thin & wispy, yet very flavorful vapor. In most botanicals, the first compound to vaporize, as it’s boiling point is the lowest, is terpenoids. Terpenoids are the ‘flavor and aroma’ compounds. Terpenoids, although most noticeable due to its properties, are not the only compound that can be start vaporizing at a lower temperature. If you feel that vaporization is not occurring because you cannot actually see visible vapor, by using senses other than sight, such as smell and taste you can determine that vaporization can be occurring even on an invisible level. However, many people find visible vapor more satisfying as it allows them a sense of vapor inhalation control. Those who prefer thicker, denser or more visible vapor should consider vaporizing at temperatures between 210 – 235 degrees Celsius on the ideal vaporization spectrum. Check out our post about Vapor Tasting, Vapor Shocking and Vapor Stepping for some vaporizing techniques.
How do I set temperature on my vaporizer to get the best vapor quality?
The most common temperature to vaporize at is between 190 to 235 degrees Celsius (374 to 455°F). You can go higher than 235°C (455°F), but there is a reason why doctors generally recommend staying below this temperature. I will write a blog post about that in the next week or two . However, to make things simple to understand, I will divide the heating techniques into three categories: VaporShocking, VaporTasting and VaporStepping.
VaporShocking: If you like to have thick vapor and don’t want to deal with different temperature settings, just put your vapourizer up to 235°C and vaporize till there is no more vapor coming out of the unit. Then you know that your botanical is fully vaporized, at which you can replace it with new material.
VaporTasting: If you want to have very thin vapor, which is also much easier on your lungs, you might want to try the following technique. First you set the unit to 190 °C. Give it about 10 – 15 minutes of time to fully get up to that level. Then you start vaporizing and will notice that your vapor is relatively thin and has a nicer taste. As the vapor becomes thinner, you can put up the temperature 10 degrees at a time and make up for the thinning of the vapor. This is recommended for individuals that are health conscious.
|VaporStepping: This method is just an in between of the previous two methods (my personal favorite). What you do is that you start at 200°C, till the vapor starts thinning out. Then you go up to 220°C (428°F) and continue to vaporize till the vapor thickness falls below the level you like. Then you jack it up to 235°C and vaporize till there is no more vapor coming from your product.
It is important to mention that temperature settings generally fluctuate with these portable based on the technology they use. So setting the unit from 190 degrees to 195, will not make as much of a noticeable difference as having a vaping technique in general that you prefer. That is a good thing because you can customize things to your own taste and units like the Ascent Vaporizer (follow link to the review as it scored best in the video) even offer simple settings to learn and replicate your session style. Vape Temp’s did a nice video to show how much these units fluctuate.
If you found useful information in this post, I would recommend you check the convection vs conduction vaporizing blog as well. In that post we explain the difference between the two technologies and its pros and cons. If you already have a Vaporizer, it is great to know which unit may offer the other system, so you get to experience both technologies. It’s definately worth it to know about the difference if you are into gadgets.
If you have interesting methods to manage temperature settings on a vaporizer, we welcome your comments!
Thank you for reading