Vape Dictionary

High vaping rates around the world have introduced a plethora of new terms and keeping up with the latest lingo can be difficult. If you are wondering what the vapers in your life are talking about, here is a list of some popular words, phrases, products and general language used to refer to vaping/e-cigarette.

vape dictionary

2020-2022 NEW TERMS


A type of device that uses disposable pods containing e-liquid. The body of these devices can be recharged and the disposable pods can be replaced with new compatible pods.


These systems require vape juice and come in three varieties: box mods, pens and refillabe pods. These devices have tanks or pods that are continuously refulled with vape juice and the pods/tanks are not thrown away after one use. These systems are used more by “hobbyist” vapers because they require more upkeep and are typically modified to be able to do tricks.


Devices that are not refillable and are intended for one-time use. These typically have 300-800 puffs and some examples include Ecigator D14, D19 and other products.

Old Dictionary

Analog – What we call a traditional (or real) tobacco cigarette.

ADV- All day vape- This is referring to an ejuice or e-liquid you can vape for a long period of time. (You like to vape it all day)

APV – Advanced Personal Vaporizer. This describes anything other than a mini or eGo battery. It includes both Variable Volt/Watt and Mechanical devices.

Atomizer (Atty) – The atomizer is a the heating unit of the electronic cigarette.  Usually metal (A1 Kanthal or Nichrome) wire wrapped around a wick (usually cotton or silica wick).  It gets hot when electricity from the power source is applied and “vaporizes” the ejuice.  The ejuice then becomes a vapor.

Automatic Batteries – Automatic batteries will activate the heating element automatically when a puff is taken.  You do not have to use a button to activate the heating element.

Battery (Batt) – The battery is the power source for an electronic cigarette.  It provides power to the heating element which vaporizes the ejuice.  Some batteries are integrated into the device like an EGO.  These devices will come with a charger that is made for the device.  Most mods have removable batteries and require an external charger.

Bridge – A U or V shaped covering over the heating coil of some atomizers.  It is usually metal covered by an absorbent material designed to wick e-liquid from a cartridge filler to the heating element.

Cartomizer (Carto) – Cartomizers are disposable cartridges with atomizers built directly into the unit. The efficiency allows for a brand new atomizer in each cartomizer and gives users maximum vapor production.

Cartridge– A plastic tube that is filled with an absorbanant material to hold the eLiquid needed for vaping.

Clearomizer (clearo)-This is an ejuice delivery system which sits on the battery housing the wick and coil.  It is usually made with glass or plastic hence the “clear” name.

Coil – The metal that gets hot! Generally a piece of nichrome or kanthal that has been wrapped around some kind of wick. Current flows through the coil, the coil gets hot, and vaporizes your ejuice. You then Vape Happy!

Connection Type – Many different connection types are used to connect the atomizer to the device or battery.  The most common are 510, 901, 808, 801 The 510 and ego connection is the most popular type.

Drip Tip – A drip tip is a mouth piece originally created to be used on an atomizer for “dripping”.  It has an enlarged opening allowing you to drip e-liquid directly into it.  Drip tips are also commonly used on clearomizers, replacing the small rubber mouthpiece that comes with them to provide a much more comfortable experience.  Drip tips come in many different styles, colors, and materials.

Drip Well- The drip well is typically a bowl shape on a mod where the atomizer female connector resides. The well is designed to catch any excess e-liquid that may have leaked from the atomizer.

Dripping – Dripping is the act of manually getting e-liquid to the heating element by “dripping” it directly onto the heating element. People generally consider dripping to provide the best possible vapor, throat hit and flavor.

Dry, Scratchy, or Burnt Hits – This can occur when not enough juice is in the wicking material.  This will result in poor flavor and vapor. This may also burn your throat like fire.

Ego Style- (Ego) A style of electronic cigarette, which utilizes the 510 threads and allows one to use 510 components but with a much larger battery and charge capacity. The eGo is a very popular e-cig amongst Vapers

Electronic Cigarette (E-Cigarette, E-Cig, Personal Vaporizer, PV) – A device used to vaporize ejuice and create the sensation of smoking a traditional cigarette.  A typical electronic cigarette is a system made up of three important parts.  A power source, a heating element, and a ejuice delivery system.  The power source provides power to the heating element which heats up and vaporizes the ejuice.  The ejuice delivery system holds and directs the e-liquid to the heating element.

Eliquid or Ejuice – Ejuice generally contains 3 components.  A base of either Propylene Glycol or Vegetable Glycerine (or some combination or “blend” of the two), nicotine, and flavorings.  Nicotine is optional.

Flooding – This can occur when too much juice is supplied to the coil at one time.  This will result in gurgling and possibly drinking the juice. This is not recommended (unless you have 0mg of nicotine)

Gurgling – Usually occurs when too much ejuice is supplied to a given device resulting in flooding.  This can also be caused by condensation built up in the air passage.

Kanthal – One of the two main types of resistance wire used for the heating coil in an atomizer or cartomizer. The other is Nichrome.

mAh- milli-ampere-hours: It’s a measurement of the amount of energy the battery can store. The higher this number is, the more energy it can store. More energy means longer use-time in between charges. This has nothing to do with output voltage. Higher mAh also means it will take longer to charge and it usually also means that the battery will be larger.

Manual Devices or Batteries – Manual batteries or devices will activate the heating element only when a button is pushed. Most electronic cigarettes and mods use some type of button.

Mechanical Device/Mod (mech mod) – A mechanical device or mod is just that, purely mechanical. There is no circuitry, protection, or other electronics in use. The button will close the circuit sending power from the battery directly to the atty/carto connection.

Mod – Originally , a mod was a device created by an e-cig enthusiast looking for a better device than those mass produced. They wanted superior performance in battery life and vapor production as well as build quality. Mod can also be used to describe a modification made to an electronic cigarette to improve the performance.

Nichrome – One of the two main types of resistance wire used for the heating coil in an atomizer. The other is Kanthal.

ohm- A measure of electrical resistance. In E-Cigs, lower Ohms indicate lower resistance and in turn, faster heating.

Passthrough – A Passthrough can either be a device itself or part of an electronic cigarette or mod.  If is it the device itself, you can connect your atty to it and then plug it into the USB wall adapter.  It receives power through either.  Passthroughs are also built into some electronic cigarettes and mods allowing you to use them while they are charging.

Personal Charging Case (PCC) or Power Supply– A device that you first charge and then use to charge your electronic cigarette batteries while out on the go and away from an outlet.  These are generally used and helpful for smaller electronic cigarette models with less vape time between charges on the batteries.

Personal Vaporizer (PV) – Another name for an electronic cigarette and generally preferred by the vaping community.

Propylene Glycol (PG) – Propylene Glycol is used as a base in many ejuices.  People have reported sensitivity and/or having an allergic reaction to PG. These people may be required to add a higher % of Vegetable Glycerin (VG) or all VG to their ejuice in order to continue vaping.

RBA – A rebuildable atomizer. These atomizers allows you to replace or repair the wick and coil system inside of them. These types of devices are generally thought of as more advanced. They require you to manually wrap a wick of some type with resistance wire to create a coil. This assembly is then installed into the RBA.

RDA – A rebuildable dripping atomizer. These atomizers allow you to replace or repair the wick and coil system inside of them. These types of devices are generally thought of as more advanced. They require you to manually wrap a wick of some type with resistance wire to create a coil. This assembly is then installed into the RDA.  You can then drip your liquid onto the coil you just built and enjoy a vape.

RBTA or RTA – A rebuildable tank atomizer. These atomizers allow you to replace or repair the wick and coil system inside of them. These types of devices are generally thought of as more advanced. They require you to manually wrap a wick of some type with resistance wire to create a coil. This assembly is then installed into the RBTA.  RBTAs have tanks incorporated into their design which hold ejuice and automatically feed the wick and coil.

Resistance – Atomizers, cartomizers and clearomizers all have a resistance rating in Ohms.  The easiest way to think of this is that the lower the resistance rating, the “hotter” the heating element will get with less power. It is important to understand what voltage can be supplied to what resistance atomizer so that you do not burn them out.

Resistance Wire – What the heating coil is made of. Two types are generally used, Kanthal and Nichrome.

Stacking – Stacking is the act of using two batteries in a series instead of just one.  Think of it like putting two batteries, one on top of each other in a flashlight.  In order to be as safe as possible and prevent damage to yourself and your device, you should ALWAYS use matched battery pairs, devices that have vent holes, and batteries that have protection built in. Two examples of good batteries would be the Sony VCT5 and the Samsung 25R.

Steeping – The act of waiting and letting your juice sit in a cool, dark place for a period of time before vaping.  Some people will allow their ejuice to steep before using it. It allows a freshly made juice’s flavors to intermingle, mature, and become all happy together. How long should you let your juice steep? A couple days? A week? Opinions will vary on this. Some vendors will even put steeping instructions in with your order. If you don’t like a juice when you first get it, give it some time to steep and try it again before you toss it!

Tank – A device that holds ejuice.  Most tanks will house the atomizer and wick.  All you have to do is connect to a battery and you’re good to go.

Throat Hit (TH) – Throat Hit is the sensation or “thump” felt in the back of the throat when inhaling vapor from the mouth into the lungs.  TH is generated by many different factors including, but not limited to the e-liquid’s nicotine level, the flavorings used, the VG/PG ratio used, quality of the ingredients used, the voltage applied to the heating element, the resistance of the heating element, etc.  Generally, however, the higher the nicotine level, the greater the TH.

Unprotected vs. Protected Batteries & Devices – Protected batteries and devices will contain protection circuits.  This circuit is designed to stop the battery from charging or discharging or the device from working in certain circumstances.  These circumstances can include over-charging, over-discharging, short-circuit, and overheating.

Vape–  Since E-Cigs produce vapor, this is how users refer to the action of ‘smoking’ an Electronic Cigarette.

Vaping – The act of using an electronic cigarette.  WE VAPE!!  WE DO NOT SMOKE!!  Power is supplied to a heating element which vaporizes ejuice and that vapor is taken into the lungs providing the sensation of smoking along with nicotine if present in the e-liquid.

Variable Voltage (VV) Device – A device that will allow you to adjust the voltage to the atomizer in small increments.  This can be done via push button settings, dials, or knobs. The settings vary between devices, but usually somewhere between 3V up to 6V.  Examples: The Provari, The Buzz Pro, The LavaTube.

Variable Wattage (VW) Device – A device that will allow you to adjust the wattage rather than voltage.  To understand this, you need to understand a little about Ohms law, a variation of which states that Watts (power) = voltage² / resistance.  Let’s say you like to vape a 2.0 Ohm atomizer at 4.2 volts.  You plug the numbers in and you get 8.8 watts.  So if you had your VW device set for 8.8 watts, it will automatically adjust the voltage to always deliver that same wattage.  Which means if you now put a 3.0 Ohm carto on it, it will self adjust to 5.1V.

Vegetable Glycerin (VG) – Vegetable Glycerin is used as an alternative or addition to Propylene Glycol (PG) in e-liquids.

Vent Holes – Vent holes appear on the bottom of electronic cigarettes and mods.  These holes allow heat to vent in the event of a battery failure.

Voltage – Volts are supplied to the atomizer from the battery.  Most devices, such as the EGO supply approximately 3.7V.  High voltage devices can supply between 5-6 volts.  Variable Voltage devices allow you to adjust the output voltage.  This varies between devices, but usually somewhere between 3V up to 6V.  Multi-voltage devices provide pre-determined voltage setting.  For example, a low setting could be 3.7V, a medium setting could be 4.5V, a high setting could be 6V.

Watt – A measurement of power which is a function of the voltage of your device and the resistance of your atomizer.  In some devices you can also control your watts.  Watts = Voltage (squared) of your device divided by the resistance of your atomizer.

Wick or Wicking – can be a verb or a noun.  Noun – a piece of absorbent material designed to direct juice from a container to the heating element.  Verb (wicking)– the act of directing the e-liquid from the container to the heating element.

If you have questions about any of these terms please comment or send the question in our contact form.  There are no stupid questions.  Vape Happy!

Matthew Ma