Glossary of E Cigarette Terms

Ecig glossery

A quick glance through an ecigarette forum can be like trying to read an ancient Sumerian scroll for new vapers. With so many technical terms, abbreviations and slang words flying around, it can be hard to make sense of a lot of posts.

This glossary covers most of the main terms newbies might not be familiar with and by the end of this post you’ll be talking like a vaping veteran!

Analog Cigarette – A tongue in cheek way to referring to a tobacco cigarette.

APV – Stands for Advanced Personal Vapouriser, essentially any kit which is more sophisticated than a standard ciga-like or eGo style vape pen. You can see some of our recommended APVs on our Best E-Cigarette Starter Kits page.

Atomizer – The metal coil which vapourises e-juice. The metal coil is wrapped around some wicking material which soaks up the e-liquid. When a charge is applied by the battery, the coil heats up and turns the e-juice into an inhalable vapour.

Bottom Feeder – A specific type of e-cigarette in which the e-liquid is stored in a tank at the bottom of the machine. The e-juice is pumped to the atomizer from the bottom to produce vapour.

Box Mod – Mod stands for “modded” and refers to the home-made machines vapers would create with battery boxes and atomizers. Today, this sort of e-cigarette can be bought, meaning that it is no longer necessary to make your own (potentially dangerous) mods. You can see some good box mods on our Best Ecig Batteries page.

E Cigarette Cartomizer – A term referring to the tank which holds e-liquid and contains the atomizer. Derived from combining the words “cartridge” and “atomizer”.

E Cigarette Cartridge – Cartridges refer to the older systems still used in ciga-likes. Most vapers choose AVPs over ciga-likes these days because they are less powerful and versatile than cartomizers.

CE2 – One of the first styles of cartomizer, where the coil is held at the top of the tank and long, string-like wicks feed e-liquid to the heating element.

CE3 – Unlike a CE2, the atomizer is found at the bottom of the cartomizer, where eliquid is fed to the coil through small holes containing wicking material. Quite rare in modern e-cigarettes as they are less effective than the CE2 and CE4 variants.

CE4 – The best current model of cartomizer, the CE4 also has the atomizer installed at the bottom of the tank, but the design is improved and most versions allow you to replace the atomizer, which is cheaper and more convenient.

Ciga-like – a small ecigarette manufactured to look like a real cigarette.

Clearomizer – A transparent cartomizer. Read our list of the Best Clearomizers.

DCT – Stands for Dual Coil Tank. Dual coils allow for bigger vapour production.

Dripping/Direct Dripping – The practise of dripping e-juice directly onto the atomizer, as opposed to having a tank feed the e-liquid into the cartomizer.

Drip Tip – The tip of the e-cigarette where you draw from. See our anatomy of an ecig infographic for more.

Dry Burn – The heat the coil when all it is completely dry of e-juice. Usually used as a means of cleaning a coil by burning off e-juice gunk.

Dry Hit – The burnt tasting hit you get when the atomizer isn’t being fed with enough e-juice.

eGo Style E Cigarette – A standard vape pen.

mAh – Stands for Milliamp Hour. A way of measuring battery life. See our beginners’ guide to e-cigarette batteries for more information.

Mod – An e-cig which uses a replaceable battery.

PG – Propylene Glycol, one of the main ingredients in e-liquid. You can read more about PG, its uses and its safety here.

Rebuildable Atomizer – An atomizer which the user can rebuild themselves using wire and wicking material. Not recommended for new users, as an incorrectly build atomizer can damage your e-cigarette.

Resistance (ohms) – The electrical resistance of the atomizer is measured in ohms. You can read all about resistance and how it applies to ecigarettes on our guide to batteries.

Steeping – Leaving an eliquid to age for any amount of time. With some ejuices, this allows the flavours to blend better, giving users a more pleasant vape.

Tank – The glass or plastic shell of a cartomizer.

Thread Pattern/Threading – The connection used to connect cartomizers to batteries. Most modern cartomizers and batteries use the 510 thread. Any item with the same thread is compatible.

Throat Hit – The burning sensation felt at the back of the throat when vaping. Many vapers like a strong throat hit as it better resembles smoking analog cigarettes. The throat hit is mostly down to higher nicotine content, but PG also gives a bigger throat hit than VG.

Variable Voltage – A battery which allows you to change the voltage, so that you can send more or less power to the atomizer. The more power sent, the more vapour produced.

VG – Vegetable glycerine. Another main ingredient of e-juice. VG has a slightly sweet taste and is responsible for producing bigger clouds of vapour. You can read more about VG and its health implications here.

Wick /Wicking – The material which soaks up and holds e-juice close to the coil. Usually made from cotton or some sort of silica.