Vaporizers & Vaping

5 Best Vape Pens for Oil: What You Should Know Before You Buy

Gabi Antunes

Sep 10, 2019

Vape pens have become increasingly popular for their portability, simplicity, and efficiency. Specifically, vape pens for oil offer consumers an easy way to vaporize their preferred liquid extracts discreetly. However, with so many oil vape pen options on the market, it can be hard to know which one to buy. With just a little bit of information about oil vape pens, however, you can make an informed decision to select the right device for your ideal vape experience.

What is a Vape Pen for Oil?

Vape pens offer a compact, portable, and discreet way to engage in a session. While these devices can vary quite a bit in terms of shape, size, and design, vape pens are generally simpler than more comprehensive portable vaporizers, offering single-button or dial control. Vape pens for oil are specifically designed to work with liquid cannabis extracts, many of which come pre-filled in compatible cartridges that are screwed onto or inserted into the pen.

Oil vape pens models vary in functionality and purpose. For example, disposable oil vape pens are pre-filled with a cannabis or hemp CBD extract in states that permit it. These devices are intended for single use; once the extract is depleted, the empty vape pen should be disposed of according to the manufacturer’s instructions. These are often the most straightforward devices on the market, since they can be used straight out of the box without the need for charging a battery or loading materials.

For consumers that want to use their oil vape pen multiple times, there are dozens upon dozens of vape pen options to choose from. Reusable vape pens, sometimes referred to as a vape “battery,” often rely on the use of pre-filled cartridges. The most common connector type, a 510 thread, is practically universal unless you are buying a specific device, such as a PAX Era which is only compatible with PAX Era pods. Other pens require you to load them with the extract of your choice.

The type of oil vape pen you choose should be dependent on your needs and priorities. A casual vaper who just wants to try a certain product, for example, might benefit most from a disposable pen. Disposable pens are also popular options for consumers who cannot or do not wish to carry cannabis or hemp CBD consumption accessories. A frequent consumer that wants to swap extracts in and out on the fly while experimenting with different temperature settings would probably prefer a reusable model.

How Vape Pens Work

While vape pen operation will vary slightly from device to device, the basic operating principles are the same. They all contain similar components, for example, such as a battery, heating element, and mouthpiece.

The battery generates the electricity needed to heat your material. Battery life and size is determined by milliamp hours (mAh), which is an important factor when selecting your battery. A larger battery lasts longer between charges and supports more significant power output. Vape pens with multiple temperature settings are known as variable voltage vaporizers because with the click of a button you can change their voltage output, causing them to produce more or less electricity.

The electricity generated by the battery is used to warm the heating element. As the heating element reaches the selected temperature, it vaporizes the oil in your vape pen. Vape pen cartridges include the heating element and mouthpiece in a single component. Vape pens with chambers often have an internal vapor path that the vaporized oil travels through before reaching the mouthpiece. The type of device you have can also affect cleaning and maintenance requirements.

Your method of controlling your vape pen is dependent on the model you select. Some vape pens feature a one-button design, in which a single button is used to power the device on and cycle through available settings. Other vape pens have no button at all and are activated by drawing on the device, a common design feature of disposable vape pens. Of course, there are some more complex vape pens on the market with several buttons for powering the device on and off, cycling through temperature settings, and activating any additional features they might support. More advanced models may offer a mobile app for true fine-tuning.

How to use a Vape Oil Pen

When preparing to use a vape oil pen, the first thing to do is charge your battery. Attach your pre-filled vape cartridge or fill the chamber once the battery is charged.

Once the oil compartment is properly attached to the battery, you can turn on your device and select your desired temperature setting. Some vape pens include a preheat mode, which automatically vaporizes the material and allows you to inhale periodically without needing to hold any buttons. Most vape pens, however, require you to push down the button and hold it for a moment to vaporize your material. If you’re not sure how your vape pen works, read your device owner’s manual.

Once your session is complete, it’s important to clean your vape pen and store it properly. Maintenance is a critical to extending the lifetime of your device and protecting its ability to provide you with quality sessions time after time.

How to Clean a Vape Oil Pen

Cleaning your vape pen is an important part of preserving the longevity of your device, so you should endeavor to do so after every few sessions at the very least. Again, the specific cleaning process will depend on the type of device you’ve selected, so consult your device owner’s manual for the exact instructions.

For cartridge vape pens, it’s important not to get the battery connection or any internal components wet. Using a dry multi-tool or cotton swab, gently rub the inside of the threads on both the battery and your cartridge to clear the connections of any residue or general dirt and debris. Be careful not to put too much pressure on the connections while swabbing your device, and always double-check to ensure that no cotton swab threads were left behind.

For vape pens with chambers, cleaning can be a more involved process. Generally, you will have to disassemble your device to expose the chamber and inside of the mouthpiece. In many cases, you will need to use a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol to gently wipe down the components. Once all residue is removed from each component, allow the device to fully dry. Once dry, you can reassemble the vape pen and store it safely until your next session.

What factors determine the quality of a vape oil pen?

When choosing a vape pen for oil, you want to check several factors to determine the device’s overall quality. Consider your priorities as well so you can weigh the importance of each factor against the others. There are many ways you can differentiate between devices, but five of the most important considerations include:

  • Construction: Vape pens are available in many types of materials. For example, stainless steel vape pens are highly durable devices. A quartz heating element is less likely to influence flavor than a copper heating element. Understanding how these components are made can help you choose the right vape.
  • Battery: The expected lifetime and voltage settings of a battery are central elements to choosing the right vape pen for your sessions. Always check the milliamp hours as well as the voltage of your battery. If the battery offers multiple voltage settings, that means you can select different temperatures as well.
  • Budget: Of course, the aforementioned factors all contribute to the price tag. Balancing quality with your budget is important, so be sure to investigate devices thoroughly to adequately balance quality and cost.
  • Discretion: How discreet is a vape pen when in use? Does it produce big, visible clouds? Is there a strong aroma during sessions? These are important questions to ask if a priority for your sessions is avoiding unnecessary attention.
  • Maintenance: Finally, it’s important to know the level of maintenance a device requires. You don’t want to end up with a labor-intensive device that requires significant cleaning if you are a casual consumer who wants quick and infrequent sessions. Review the maintenance section of the device’s user guide to determine the level of care required for each vape pen.

Popular Vape Pens for Oil

There are many great choices on the market when it comes to oil vape pens, but these five are among some of the most popular models available today.

  1. Kandypens Crystal: This vape pen features an all-quartz chamber and heating element, which is engineered to preserve the flavor of your oil. It can hold about 0.1 grams of material at a time. It offers four temperature settings, as well as a pre-heat mode that automatically vaporizes material for up to 10 seconds. The device is made of medical grade stainless steel and contains a 900mAh battery. It currently retails for $134.97.
  2. Migi Pro 510 Cartridge Oil Vape Pen Battery: This battery is compatible with all 510 thread oil cartridges. It also features a 650mAh battery and one-second heat-up time. The Migi Pro employs one-button functionality and comes in white, purple, or black. The device includes three separate temperature settings ranging from 3.5V to 4.0V. Currently, it retails for $29.95.
  3. MigVapor Bug RX: This vape pen combines portability, durability, and longevity. This stainless-steel pen contains an 1100mAh battery for long-lasting sessions. Its 1.2mL chamber is slightly larger than average, designed for vaporizing oils of any consistency. A magnetic top cap helps prevent leakage or spillage. The device currently retails for $39.95.
  4. Dr. Dabber Ghost: This vape pen supports both oil and wax concentrates. The heating element is made from high quality titanium, although the device itself offers just one temperature setting. It is simple in its design, employing an easy-to-use one-button functionality. The Ghost currently retails for $69.95.
  5. PCKT One Plus: This vape pen is a slightly bulkier model intended for use with pre-filled 510-thread cartridges, the PCKT One Plus features a 660mAh battery that can vary in voltage across three temperature settings. It comes in eight different colors and currently retails for $59.95.

Portable Vaporizers Offer Additional Functionality

Oil vape pens are great at what they do, but they are not adaptable for other cannabis materials. If you prefer a device that supports cannabis consumption options, you should consider purchasing a portable vaporizer.

Many portable vaporizers support the use of both dry flower and cannabis concentrates. For example, the PAX 3 comes with a special concentrate insert that enables you to use concentrates such as wax with the device. If you’d rather vaporize flower, just remove the insert and load the device as instructed by the owner’s manual.

Not only does the PAX 3 offer multipurpose functionality, it also has a wide range of features uncommon among oil vape pens. You can connect your PAX 3 to your smartphone via Bluetooth® and use the PAX Mobile application to expand your options and further customize your session. PAX Mobile allows you to set your temperature to the precise degree, monitor your usage through a Session Control feature, and even name your device.

The key to selecting the right vaporizer is understanding how your priorities line up with the components and features of each device. Take your time when choosing a vape pen for oil to ensure you select one that truly promotes the type of vape experience you envision. Your research will pay off once you have a device in hand that will support your sessions for years to come.