Whoever has taken two seconds to survey the breadth of the vaporizer market quickly notices that various brands tout their heating element as “the most effective available” while pointing out health risks associated with their competitors’models. Evaluating all these (sometimes conflicting) statements can be very a task. The purpose of this article is never to endorse a certain kind of heating element, but rather to gather the available details about heating elements in one place to aid people in making informed decisions when purchasing a vaporizer.
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Why Do Heating Elements Matter? The heating element is the absolute most integral section of any vaporizer. It regulates the temperature of the air that catalyzes the active ingredients while the air passes through it. An email: the air passing through the heating element may be either propelled by a push in balloon-style models i.e. the Volcano Vaporizer or by one’s own in direct-inhalation style vaporizers i.e. the VaporCannon. Some models, like the herbalAire, are designed for both balloon and direct-inhale style vaporization. A primary requirement for many heating elements is precision – you would like your vaporizer to truly be at the temperature you set – but health considerations could also play when people look for vaporizers.
Types of Heating Elements:
Ceramic heating elements are probably the most commonly form of heating elements. Their proponents argue that they’re the cleanest and therefore healthiest option. This statement holds some truth: ceramics can withstand very high temperatures (about 3000*F) prior to the material starts to transform to a gas and are therefore very clean and healthy. Some companies take this logic an action further and argue that since other types of heating elements have lower “boiling points” they’re dirtier and less healthy. This argument is somewhat flawed: while other heating elements have lower boiling points, these points are usually still well in excess of typical vaporizing temperatures. Learn about the specific types below for more info.
Another important consideration when evaluation vaporizers with ceramic heating elements is the quality of the ceramic unit because the definition of “ceramic” can be used to explain kinds of elements which are quite different in design. That is because of the proven fact that “ceramic” merely identifies if the unit incorporates some ceramic in to the heating element’s design, it does not show that the air only touches ceramic material. This makes buying vaporizers with ceramic heating elements difficult unless one knows the specifics of the designs employed by each manufacturer. As an over-all guideline cheaper vaporizers are more prone to have exposed low-quality wire or solder within the heating element’s ceramic structure that can emit toxins. So steer clear of that digi vape if you prefer quality vapor. While the sole definitive test is to take an element completely apart to observe it’s constructed, some manufacturers will address these questions if you contact them. The manufacturers of the reduced quality models will dodge them.
Inferior ceramic elements reflect poorly on all ceramic heating elements, which can be unfortunate because a well-designed ceramic element is extremely clean. Top of the line ceramic heating elements are very precise too, although precision is also a function of the circuitry and computer chip technology used with the heating element.
Types of vaporizers with good ceramic heating elements: VaporBrothers, Phedor and Hotbox
Some of the greatest vaporizers on the market use aluminum heating elements. Manufacturers say that aluminum is more precise than ceramic elements since it responds faster the temperature changes:
“One reason the Volcano maintains such perfect temperature control is basically because it uses an aluminum element and block, and aluminum has different properties than potential practical designs using ceramics. An aluminum element and block can more rapidly adjust for ramifications of air pressure and flow over plant material…the key to vaporization is maintaining control over temperature and flow, which ultimately leads to more perfect control over vapor density.”
Critics of vaporizers with aluminum heating elements cite health risks related to experience of aluminum, namely an elevated risk of Alzheimer’s. It is essential to note a few things here. The first is from the Storz & Bickel FAQ page:
“Q. Does the aluminum heating block emit any substances which are subsequently inhaled by the consumer?
A. No. the very best temperature reached in the heating block 240°C (464°F) is by far below the temperature that is required to emit any substances from the aluminum alloy AlMgSi, melting point 660°C (1220°F); boiling point 2519°C (4566°F) used by us. That is documented by an analysis of the air produced by the Volcano on top temperature made by the University of Leiden, Netherlands.”
So a smartly designed aluminum heating elements seem to be quite clean.
Are you aware that increased threat of Alzheimer’s: it’s hard to be sure whether something does or does not may play a role in the development of Alzheimer’s because the condition itself isn’t completely understood, but aluminum doesn’t appear to significantly increase a person’s susceptibility. These articles from Scientific American and Alzheimer’s.org discuss this conclusion in depth.
Examples of vaporizers with good aluminum heating elements: Volcano, herbalaire
Glass is simply the same as ceramic in regards to heating elements. Only one vaporizer having an all-glass heating element happens to be available: the Vapolution Vaporizer.
CONCLUSION: Selecting a Vaporizer with the Right Heating Element
In the long run deciding on a heating element is a matter of personal choice. Health considerations are paramount for a few, while precision may dictate the options of others. Those worried about health must be advised that the type of plastic hosing used and type of plastic tubing used inside different models may also be very relevant, but this is a topic for a different article. The most expensive vaporizers obviously have the best heating elements – this can be a large section of everything you are spending money on – but some mid-range models also offer quite viable (usually ceramic) options. Execute a little research before you buy too, it will pay off. Hopefully this information has given you a place to start.