Vaping vs. Dabbing: Why Heat Matters
Gone are the days when smoking dry herbs or making up a batch of edibles were the only viable ways to get your fix. As technology has advanced, so have the methods for consuming dry herbs and concentrates in alternative ways.
One of the main concerns of many consumers is whether any of the new consumption methods are healthier than just smoking their stash. Because many of the new methods, including vaporizers and dabbing, require higher heat than with traditional smoking, you may wonder how they will impact your health.
To understand the difference between vaping and dabbing, and whether or not one is better for you than the other, you first have to take a look at conduction vs. convection heating and what those might mean for your experience with your favorite strains.
Conduction vs. Convection
Conduction heating is the process of applying a substance to be heated, in this case, a concentrate or plant matter, directly to the heating element. In dabbing, for example, a nail is heated with a torch, often until it’s red hot. A small amount of wax is placed on the nail, and the melting wax then releases actives of the herb into the air.
Because the nail is extremely hot when the dab is placed on it, you might see black char marks and hear a small sizzle. That’s because the heat is burning the oil quickly, causing combustion. Though conduction is better for you than regular smoking, the char still releases potentially harmful compounds.
Convection heating, on the other hand, means that a heating element warms the air surrounding the concentrate or flower. Once the air surrounding the product is hot enough, it begins to melt or burn, releasing the actives.
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The lower temperatures and slower heating rate of convection cause the product to vaporize without charring, making it a healthier alternative than conduction heating or regular smoking.
Which Type of Heating Is Better for Me?
No matter which you choose, vaping and dabbing are both better for you than smoking loose-leaf material. With vaping, you can safely eliminate the carcinogenic byproducts caused by burning your loose-leaf materials. This means a healthier, cleaner, powerful experience.
Because wax concentrate is far more potent than dry-leaf material, you need less concentrate to feel the same effects from dabbing as you would from smoking or even some methods of vaporizing.
Though conduction heating can create charring which may be harmful to your health, choosing the wrong vaporizer can also bring in extra unwanted compounds.
Because the heating elements on many vaporizers are aluminum held together with solder, as the components heat up, you’re going to be dealing with off-gassing of the metal. That could mean you’re inhaling something other than the vapor you want.
Additionally, because some vaporizers require you to add water, you introduce the possibility of rust. If you let your vaporizer go too long without inspecting it carefully, you could be breathing in rust particles as you vape.
Ultimately, either vaping or dabbing are better for your health than regular smoking. Choosing one or the other is a matter of personal preference, and finding high-quality gear is essential to keeping your experience as free from unwanted contaminants as possible.
For a high quality, potent and pure vaping experience, check out the Loto Lux – the world’s first induction heating vaporizer.
Learn More: How to Vape Weed
Does Temperature Really Matter for Vaporizers?
If you want that extra-thick vapor or smoke, you may be tempted to crank up the temperature on your vaporizer or hold your torch to your dabbing nail until it’s bright red. But with that thick smoke comes another problem: benzene.
A common carcinogen found in all sorts of things—tobacco, laundry detergent, even soda―benzene can have harmful effects on your body. Overall, even smoking plant material produces lower benzene levels than tobacco smokers.
Heating substances above 365 degrees could release benzene. Keeping the temperatures of your vaporizers below 365 degrees and allowing your dabbing nails to cool off a little before adding wax, could decrease your chances of inhaling benzene.
Regardless of which method you choose, both vaping and dabbing have their own unique benefits and downsides. As technology continues to advance, so will the ways consumers can enjoy their wax concentrate and favorite herbal strains.
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