10 Reasons Why Your Vape Leaks And Simple Solutions For Fixing The Issue!

10 Reasons Why Your Vape Leaks and Simple Solutions for Fixing the Issue!

We’ve all been there, you go to take a drag off of your vape and find liquid coated around it and sticking to your fingers – it’s annoying but unavoidable. However, there’s a few reasons as to why your vape leaks which we’ve compiled into one big guide for you as well as how you can fix them and prevent further leaking!

Cause of Leaks 1 – Too Much E-liquid and Incorrect Filling

Overfilling your tank or pod can cause the liquid to displace against airflow holes as the increased capacity leaves no room for expansion, thus forcing seepage. Each tank has a ‘max fill’ level, which if exceeded, breaks safe thresholds. Overfilling can also result in spitting and gurgling. Another common mistake made when filling is squeezing the E-liquid into the central airflow channel or ‘chimney’ – the E-liquid will run straight through the coil and out any bottom airflow holes in the tank/pod.

Solution – Always ensure that there is space for air in the top of your tank/pod to allow for a vacuum to prevent E-liquid escaping through airflow ports. If your tank has adjustable airflow, ensure they are fully closed when filling and open just enough when in use without you having to inhale too strongly, as forceful inhalation risks the E-liquid coming up through the chimney of the coil, which may lead to leaking.

Cause of Leaks 2 – Worn Seals and O-rings

These are the delicate silicone bands which help to maintain airtight seals around your tank/pod’s filling port and coil. They experience normal wear and tear over months of consistent removal and reinserting. As the seals wear down, there is a greater chance of leaks. If they aren’t replaced, they will deteriorate faster and the chance of leaking will increase.

Solution – To check if your O-rings need replacing, take your tank apart by unscrewing the base and top fill parts, remove the glass tube and look for the rubber rings. If they look out of position or worn out, simply remove them and replace them with new ones – your tank may come with spares, but if not don’t worry, they’re fairly cheap and your local vape supplier should have some. Once they have been replaced, ensure they’re fitted in the correct position to prevent any gaps for E-liquid to leak out of. Make sure not to over-tighten when putting your tank back together as this can damage your seals.

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Worn O-ring
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New O-ring

Cause of Leaks 3 – Drastic Pressure Shifts

When there’s external air pressure, it pushes against the sidewalls, forcing the liquid contents of your tank/pod outward through routes with lower resistance, like the airflow ports. Similarly, drastic spikes in temperature that impact internal air pressure and the volume of E-liquid can result in leaks. For example, leaving your e-cigarette in direct sunlight or hot areas like the car, causes the E-liquid to thin. Due to the thin viscosity of the E-liquid, this can lead to it seeping through the coil and seals, thus leading to leaks. Additionally, great drops in temperatures can cause components in your device to contract and cause leaking.

Solution – It’s advised that you keep your e-cigarette out of hot areas and limit its exposure to direct sunlight to avoid the E-liquid thinning and leaking – this is also important for protecting the vape device itself and batteries.

Cause of Leaks 4 – Careless Handling

Just like your phone, it’s very easy to drop your vape. The forceful collisions against hard surfaces can cause the protective casing around the device to soften or deform over time. For the likes of plastic pods, drops won’t cause too much damage initially, however consistent mishandling can cause cracks for E-liquid to leak out. Glass tubes on tanks have greater risk of developing hairline cracks for liquid to seep out of or worse, completely smashing.

Solution – When you notice hairline cracks on your tank or damage to your pod, it’s best to replace it. If you don’t have a replacement glass tube in the box your tank came in, your local vape supplier should have some at a relatively cheap price.

Cause of Leaks 5 – Faulty Coils and Install Errors

Occasionally, coils can have manufacturing flaws which can cause leaks by creating unexpected openings for E-liquid to seep through. However, it’s important that your coil or tank is assembled correctly, because if the coil is in the wrong position and not fitted in snug enough, this causes gaps for the E-liquid to escape out.

Solution – Firstly, it’s important to make sure you have the correct coil for your vape device as one size does not fit all! Ensure that your coil is correctly aligned with the base of the tank – some tanks have curves and straight edges on the tank base for coils to align with. The coil itself will have a silicone band around its base to prevent leaks, so ensure the coil is always pushed in nice and snugly. If you have done this and you notice leaking, you may have a faulty coil.

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Coil is correctly aligned and pushed in snugly

Cause of Leaks 6 – Storing or Carrying in a Horizontal Position

Due to the airflow holes on tanks, yours may not be designed to spend long durations on its side or laying in a horizontal position. When the tank is full, the chances of leaks aren’t likely to occur; however, when the E-liquid level reaches half-way, it can easily seep through any gaps and into the coils chimney. In addition to this, if you leave your tank or pod full of E-liquid for long durations without use, you’re sure to come back to it sitting in a puddle of its own contents. When the coil is submerged in E-liquid , it degrades over time – even if you don’t use it!

Solution – When you’re in between drags or not using your e-cigarette, it’s advised to leave it sitting in a vertical position. However, if you need it in a non-vertical position for a short period of time, ensure any holes on the tank are closed to avoid leaking. If your vape won’t be in use for more than a day or two, empty it beforehand to prevent any leaks or puddles of E-liquid!

Cause of Leaks 7 – Low Battery

As your battery charge drops, you’ll have to draw harder on your e-cigarette to get the vapour from it as the power will be greatly reduced than when it’s fully charged. The harder you draw on your device, the more E-liquid you risk pulling into the coil, through the chimney and leaking out.

Solution – You’ll recognise that your e-cigarette is low on charge if: there is less or no vapour being produced, with a weak hit; there is a weakening flavour which can even begin to taste ‘burnt’ and; the battery indicator light is red, flashing or if your vape mod has an LED screen, it may tell you your battery percentage. Luckily, there’s a simple solution to this – just pop it on the charge!

However, it’s important that you don’t use a charger that your device isn’t rated for as this can lead to increased battery degradation. Similarly to this, avoid overcharging your device. Despite most e-cigarettes having built-in overcharge protection, frequent overcharging can cause this feature to fail which can damage the battery or cause overheating, leading to thinning of the E-liquid and risk of leaking.

Cause of Leaks 8 – Coils Need to be Changed

Coils/pods last between 1-2 weeks, depending on use. As the material in the coil loses some of its ability to absorb the E-liquid, the coil cannot vaporise it properly, So as you draw, the E-liquid sits in the coil and starts to flood, leading to leaks. If a coil is burnt out, the cotton will no longer be able to retain the E-liquid and it will leak through the coil

Solution – If you notice that your E-liquid doesn’t taste like it first did, there’s a burnt taste or there is discolouration, changing your coil can make for a simple fix. Similarly, if your e-cigarette feels blocked and that you’re not getting a good pull from it, it’s likely that your coil is clogged up with E-liquid residue. A blocked coil can no longer vaporise your E-liquids, thus you may notice some leaking.

Cause of Leaks 9 – Power Setting

Some e-cigarettes allow you to adjust your power setting/wattage. These should be set to the optimum wattage for the coil’s resistance. If they’re set too low, you’ll notice that you will be drawing too hard and pulling excess E-liquid through the coil. On the other hand, if you exceed the wattage range of the coil, this will cause it to over-heat the E-liquid and reduce the coils ability to keep the E-liquid where it should be, whilst simultaneously reducing the coils lifespan. ‘Chain Vaping’ can also cause your device to over-heat the E-liquid, resulting in a leak or a mouthful of hot vape juice – this involves taking short drags repeatedly with only brief pauses in between.

Solution – Depending on the features of your e-cigarette, simply switch to a higher power setting within the range of your coil’s resistance. By increasing the power, your E-liquid will vaporise quicker, thus reducing stress on the coil and preventing additional leakage. It will also increase the vapour produced and enhance the flavour of your E-liquid. When drawing on your e-cigarette, make your puffs longer and try not to inhale too forcefully – you-ll notice that even with gentle inhalation, vapour will be produced, and you’ll have less risk of flooding your coil.

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Recommended wattage range for coil

*different coil brands vary so be sure to always check the recommended wattage range on the box

Cause of Leaks 10 – Wrong E-liquid for your Coil

Coils are designed to be used with either high PG (Propylene Glycol) or high VG (Vegetable Glycerine). Using a thin high PG E-liquid in a DTL (Direct to Lung) vape device will result in a leak either because the looser cotton can’t hold the E-liquid or because it gets too hot, causing the viscosity of the liquid to become even thinner. On the contrary, using a thicker high VG E-liquid with a high resistance coil can cause a build-up and damage the integrity of the coil.

Solution – DTL devices such as Vaporesso’s Target 200 utilise a lot of power and the cotton in the coil is designed to absorb thicker E-liquid with a high VG content such as 70/30 shortfills. They generally have low coil resistances of 0.15Ω to 0.6Ω, vaping between 25W to 200W. Low powered MTL (Mouth to Lung) devices such as Vaporesso’s Xros Mini or GTX One work best with thinner high PG blends such as 50/50 freebase and Nic Salt E-liquids. They are fitted with denser cotton and operate in higher resistances of 0.6Ω to 1.5Ω and run between 5W to 25W of power.

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DTL kits work best with 70/30 shortfill and MTL kits work best with 50/50 blends

We hope you have found this information useful and that it has helped you fix a leak with your e-cigarette! If you’re still having issues with leaking, don’t forget you can also pop down to your local vape shop and they’ll help you out!

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