How Do Vapes Work?

How Do Vapes Work?

In this article, we’ll take you through some of the main types of vapes and how they work.

If you’re new to vaping and just getting started, you’re bound to have questions around how a vape works. Vapes come in many different shapes and sizes, but they all have the same basic components: a battery, coil and a tank or pod. Depending on the type of vape you want, some can be more complex and customisable, while others are simpler and easy to use. 

How Do Disposable Vapes Work?

Disposable vapes are non-rechargeable devices. There are many disposable vapes available in the UK, which come with a pre-filled e-liquid in a variety of different flavours and high nicotine strengths (up to 20 mg). The moment you remove them from their packaging, and peel away any hygiene seals, they’re ready to use. 

Disposable vapes only last for a short amount of time. Once you’ve used up all of the pre-filled e-liquid inside, you’ll need to responsibly dispose of them - hence the name. This makes them great for smokers wanting to try vaping out before committing to a more long-term device, or for anyone who lives an on-the-go lifestyle.

Disposable vapes are powered by a battery. This battery heats up the coil, which in turn vaporises the e-liquid and produces the flavoured vapour you inhale. Due to their simplicity, they’re super user friendly and don’t require much vaping knowledge. At, we have a wide range of disposables available from different brands. Check out the disposables we stock online. 

How Do Refillable Vape Pens Work?

A refillable vape pen is simply a vape that’s styled in the shape of a pen. Like most vapes, it has a chamber which you fill with your e-liquid of choice. Refillable vape devices allow you to change the nicotine strengths and e-liquid flavours, so you can customise your vaping experience and try out different flavours and strengths of e-liquid until you find your perfect match. 

If you’ve ever wondered “how does a vape pen work?” we’ll break down the three major components of them now. 

The first main part of a vape is the battery. Depending on the device, some vapes allow for temperature and wattage control, which manage the power output of the battery in a vape pen. This gives you the freedom to choose your preferred wattage from the device’s range, tailoring your overall vaping experience. 

The next component is the tank. This is where the coil is located and where the vape juice is stored inside the device. Tanks come in a variety of different sizes, and some vape pens give you the option of buying replacement ones. At the bottom of the vape, there are air holes that pull air into the device. Some vape pens allow you to adjust this feature, so you can limit or open up the airflow - according to your preference. Top tip: limiting the airflow where possible can give you a tighter draw, a noticeable throat hit and subtle vapour.

The mouthpiece is the third main section to a vape pen. The mouthpiece is a tip usually on the top of the vape pen where you inhale and draw vapour with your mouth. 

How Do Pod Systems Work?

Compared to disposable vape pens, pod systems are slightly more advanced. They’re refillable, rechargeable and sometimes customisable with replacement parts. While they require a little more maintenance than disposables, in the long run this doesn’t equate to much, and looking after a device can mean it lasts as long as the manufacturer intends. Pods are longer-lasting, and can be more cost-effective than using disposables long-term. 

Some pod systems have a firing button to trigger the vape, while others are draw activated, and some can even be both. They also come with an LED battery light that indicates when the device needs charging. 

Some advanced pod systems come with adjustable airflow features which cater to mouth-to-lung (MTL) or direct-to-lung (DTL) vaping options - or sometimes both. Learn more about these vaping styles in our Mouth to Lung and Direct Lung Vaping Guide. Pod systems are small and portable vaping devices that typically consist of a battery, pod and coil. They’re designed to be easy to use and convenient, great for beginners or those always on the go.

The pod itself is a small cartridge that contains both the vape juice and coil. Some are refillable, allowing you to fill them with your preferred e-liquid. Other pods are prefilled and disposable, so you’ll need to replace them once used up. The coil is a small heating element that vapourises the e-liquid inside the pod. So, when you activate the pod system, the battery sends power to the coil. From there, it heats up and vapourises the e-liquid. 

How Do Box Mod Kits Work?

Box mod vapes are some of the most customisable vapes available on the market. Box mod kits are typically larger and more complex compared to other vapes. These are sub-ohm devices, designed to vape lower nicotine strength e-liquids (e.g., 0 mg, 3 mg and 6 mg). They’re ideal for those who aren’t satisfied with simpler devices, and want something bigger with more power.

Box mod kits usually consist of a vape mod (also called a box mod, where the battery is housed), a tank and a charger. The vape mod is the device that controls the power and settings of the kit. It often displays important information like battery life, wattage and temperature control. Box mods always come with buttons and a screen, allowing you to adjust the settings for optimal customisation. The tank is where the coil is housed, and where the vape stores e-liquid.

Typically, box mods have a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. These are either inbuilt or replaceable 18650 or 21700 batteries. In general, lithium-ion batteries should have a good rechargeable lifespan and can last a year or two. To use a vape mod kit, you first need to attach the tank to the mod. Then, fill the tank with e-liquid and let it soak into the coil for a few minutes. From there, adjust the settings on the vape to your liking. Then, press the firing button to activate the coil and start vaping!

To get the most out of your vape, it’s important to understand what kind of experience you want it to provide. Are you new to vaping? Do you value the freedom to customise? Or just want something simple to use? From there, you can choose a vape that best suits your needs. At, we have a wide range of vapes for new to even the most experienced vapers.


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