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Why Does My Vape Pop and Crackle?

February 01, 2024

Pop and crackle sounds from your vape can initially be panic-inducing if you aren’t familiar with them. Generally, they’re nothing to worry about, and should you keep on vaping, these sounds will likely dissipate. However, if they don’t dissipate, they can become a nuisance, and “spitting” from your vape can occur.

To avoid unwanted noises or spitting, it’s best to understand why these noises occur and how to prevent them from becoming a problem. 

What Does It Mean if Your Vape Is Popping and Crackling?

Popping, crackling, and spitting can sound scary, but these terms refer to the sound coming from the (atomiser) coil in your vape’s tank. You might hear these noises when you press the power button, and usually, these noises will fade as you continue to vape. However, it’ll likely be louder if this is your first time using the vape in a few days or weeks. 

With some reports of vapes malfunctioning in the news, hearing these noises when you first turn on the vape might startle or worry people around you. If your vape pops and crackles, the noise might initially seem alarming, but it's typically not an issue. However, if your vape is spitting, you may have more of a problem on your hands. 

Spitting follows the pop and crackle noises and occurs when hot vape juice squirts into your mouth. While the popping and crackling are annoying, they aren’t typically harmful. However, hot e-liquid entering your mouth can be highly unpleasant, so it’s best to avoid it if possible.

What Causes a Vape to Pop?

Your Wattage Level Is Too Low

If you want to avoid unpleasant noises, it’s best to check that your wattage level is high enough. If it's too low, you might find the popping and crackling noises increasing. Likewise, if you use a low-ohm device, you may have low wattage and voltage, meaning your device isn’t heating your e-liquid sufficiently. 

As a result, the heating process is heating the e-liquid but not enough to turn it into vapour sufficiently. Thus, any spitting after these popping and crackling noises could result from e-liquid overflowing the tank. 

Your Chimney Is Too Narrow 

If your chimney is too narrow, you might find an increase in these odd noises; when the vape creates the vapour, condensation can occur with a narrower chimney. The moisture collects behind the chimney and becomes water. Once this happens, the airflow can’t correctly pass through due to the obstruction. 

Your Chimney Is Clogged 

Much like the moisture blocking the airflow to your chimney, other factors can clog your chimney and cause problems. For example, if you have a build-up of e-liquid in the chimney, especially over a long period, then spitting can occur. 

You Need To Change The E-liquid 

It’s possible that if you use a sub-ohm tank, which requires higher temperatures to vaporise, and your e-liquid is too thin, then noises and spitting are more likely to occur. But how do you know if your e-liquid is too thin? 

Generally, Propylene Glycol (PG) e-liquids are thin e-juices compared to Vegetable Glycerin (VG) e-liquids. Some people prefer using PG liquids because they think they provide a stronger taste, but if your vape is popping often, it's worth trying a VG e-liquid instead. 

Low temperatures are often the norm with smaller devices, and these smaller devices will suit thinner e-liquids because they can heat up enough at lower temperatures. So, if you’re using a smaller device, you may have a light e-liquid. 

A Braided or Twisted Coil 

Twisted, plaited, or braided coils could also be the reason behind the continuous noises and possible spitting from your vape. Like the holes in hair plaits, braided coils also have gaps; e-liquid can then seep into these gaps and cause noise. 

Inhaling Too Hard 

Ensure you know how to vape correctly; if you’ve looked at all the other factors and don’t believe they’re causing the problem, you may be simply inhaling the vapour too hard. The force from your inhale could be sucking e-liquid into the coil. Try taking shorter and gentler inhalations and see if that makes a difference. If it does, you were likely inhaling too enthusiastically. 

How To Stop Your Vape From Popping or Crackling

Popping and crackling won't necessarily lead to more severe accidents. While noises may be something you can get used to, for others, it’s an annoying sound that becomes a nuisance, ruining the vaping experience for some. Once you determine which factor is causing the problem, it’ll be much easier to fix.

  • Clean Your Device’s Chimney - Any obstructions in the chimney could cause an interrupted airflow, create unwanted noises, and even spit. Before using your vape, ensure the device is clean and ready. 
  • Don’t Prime Your Coil Excessively - “priming” refers to the process whereby you manually put e-juice onto the wicking material. Too much e-liquid in the chamber could result in overflowing, causing noises or spitting. So don’t drip too much e-liquid on; give the wicking material time to saturate. 
  • Decrease the Airflow - Knowing how a vape pen works is vital, as once you’ve seen the coil, you must decrease your airflow to ensure that you aren’t pulling any e-liquid into the rest of the vape. Inhale slowly and gently, but if the problems persist, your vape may have an airflow setting that you can lower to help you. If you do this, be careful not to overcompensate by inhaling too deeply, as it will perpetuate the issue.
  • Employ Thicker E-liquid - Remember, you can always purchase a thicker e-liquid (a PG e-juice) to help you manage the popping problem. Compared to VG e-juices, the PG e-liquids are more viscous and less likely to flood your atomiser. E-liquids aren't without their risks, so staying as informed as possible about what chemicals you're exposing yourself to is essential.
  • Increase the Wattage - You may struggle to vaporise your e-juice if your wattage is too low. So consider increasing the wattage if your device allows for it. 
  • Do Not Use Twisted Coils - There’s no harm in enjoying building your coils, but if you’re inclined to use twisted coils and have followed all the other steps, it might be time to go back to basics. It’s so easy for e-juice to pass through the gaps in the twisted coils that you’ll likely experience popping, crackling, and spitting when using them. A plain, round wire might seem more tedious, but it’s more effective at preventing these unwanted effects. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What Happens if a Vape Pops in Your Mouth?

When you inhale on your vape, the “pops” or “crackles” you hear might enter the tank and your mouth. While it’s not dangerous, the taste can be unpleasant. Should this happen regularly, the e-liquid might leave you feeling nauseous, and the “spitting” could prevent your vape from working correctly.

Final Thoughts

Don’t let a little pop or crackle ruin your vaping experience. While it’s not dangerous, it’s essential to understand why the noises are occurring. And should any e-juice “pop” into your mouth, it’ll be unpleasant. If the noises and “spitting” won’t disappear, it might be time to invest in a new vape and explore RELX vape’s collection today!

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