How to Prime a Vape Coil?

By Eina Panayotova

Some of the information in the following blog is based on external, third party sources and is for educational/informational purposes only. Such content is not intended to be representative of the products sold on this website.

How to Prime a Vape Coil?

Vape devices are designed to be easy and, in many cases, intuitive to use. Often, it’s simply a matter of loading your vape juice – or for pod mods, simply inserting a cartridge and starting up the device with a button to start vaping. If you’re looking to learn a little more about how vapes work, there are some basic maintenance tips to be aware of. Knowing how to prime a coil is one of them.

What is a Vape Coil?

A vape coil is the heating element that is essential for the correct function of a vape device. In short, the coil heats the vape juice and turns it to vapour. Generally, when you purchase a coil, you aren’t just getting a piece of wire – instead, the product will be a full replacement unit including the heating element, wick, and outer casing. They’re usually very simple to attach to your vape and are most often located in the centre of the tank.

Vape coils generally last between 1-4 weeks , so even with the best maintenance, they’ll need replacing on a relatively regular basis. To ensure you don’t accidentally burn your coil on the first puff, it’s well worth learning how to prime a coil.

What Does It Mean To Prime a Coil?

As mentioned, a coil refers to the entire unit as it attaches to your device. So, when we talk about priming vape coils, we’re referring to the wick, which is inside this unit. The wick is most commonly made of cotton and surrounds the coil’s heating element. The wick absorbs e-liquid. When heat is applied, it vaporises the e-liquid. Without a wick, the vape juice would simply leak through the device — if your vape is spitting or leaking, there’s a good chance your wick has worn out.

When to Prime a Coil/Wicks in Vapes

Priming vape coils should be the first thing you do when you fit a new coil. The wick is cotton, which means it can burn easily. If you don’t allow it to absorb enough e-liquid, you’ll be applying heat directly to dry cotton, which can cause it to combust.

Do I Need To Prime Coils For Every Vape Device?

Not every vape device uses coils. For example, pod mods don’t use a tank and therefore they do not need to have their coils maintained. On the other hand, vape pens and box mods do use a tank, and will need their coils maintained. You should always consult with the instruction manual first, ensuring not to attempt to dismantle or adjust your vape without following the exact manufacturer guidelines.

How to Prime a Coil For Vapes

Priming a coil is not a complicated task, but it can require a bit of practice. Essentially, the act of priming means wetting the wick with vape juice before loading up and using your vape. Loading your tank will not automatically prime a coil or sufficiently wet the wick. Here’s how to prime a coil:

  1. Attach Your New Coil
    It’s possible to prime a coil without attaching it to your device, but it’s recommended that you attach it to your device first as it gives you better control when holding the coil steady. New coils are usually easily attached — consult the manufacturer’s instructions if you’re not sure how to do this.

  2. Drop E-Juice on the Wick
    You should be able to see the wicking material in your coil. There will be two holes where you can see the end of the cotton. Add one drop of e-juice to each of these holes. If this seems to absorb too fast, carefully drip a little more until the wick stops absorbing the liquid. Be sure not to oversaturate your wick.

  3. Take Some ‘Priming Puffs’
    Priming puffs are when you take a few short draws on the device after the holding the battery button down for a few seconds. This encourages the juice to travel through the coil, ensuring the wick is sufficiently covered. Make sure your device has been fully – and correctly – reassembled before doing this.

  4. Fill the tank
    When your device is fully assembled, you should fill the tank. Never overfill your vape tank. Leave your vape standing upright for around 10 minutes to ensure full saturation of the coil.

  5. Take A Few Test Puffs
    Your first puffs using your new coil should be at roughly half the power you usually vape at. This continues to give the wick and coil the opportunity to become correctly saturated/slowly heated, minimising the risk of burnt coils.

Do You Have to Prime a Vape Coil?

As mentioned, the coil prime process only needs to be carried out on certain types of vapes. Never try to dismantle a pre-loaded vape pod or cigalike. If you’re ever unsure of anything, always consult your manufacturer’s guidelines, contact them directly, or approach a professional vape retailer who can give you a little more guidance.

There are a few benefits of priming a coil, including:

  • Minimising the risk of a burnt coil
  • Better flavour from the very first puff
  • Better longevity

It’s not strictly essential to prime your vape coil, but the majority of vape users consider it an essential part of general vaping maintenance. It’s a key step to ensure you don’t end up burning your coil and going through more of them than necessary. Vaping without priming vape coils first is a beginner’s error — to ensure your vape can perform at its best, a regular pre-vaping priming session is recommended.

Vaping Alternatives

For smoking alternatives that don’t require coil priming or maintenance, there are heated tobacco products. IQOS is an electronic device that heats real tobacco sticks called HEETS, and then disposed of after use. HEETS are made of real tobacco leaf, so there’s no liquid or wick required. Learn more about IQOS .

Important information: IQOS is not risk-free. It delivers nicotine, which is addictive.

How long do vape coils last?

Wondering how long does a vape coil last? Find out how long vape coils last and how to prolong the life of your vape coil here.

Read Article

Why Do Vapes Crackle and Pop?

Wondering why your vape is making crackling and popping sounds? Vape crackling and popping noises are normal, find out why here.

Read Article

Vape Wattage Calculator & Wattage Chart

Use our vape wattage calculator article to work out the best wattage for vaping, and learn about another smoking alternative.

Read Article

Learn about heated tobacco
Learn about heated tobacco

What is heated tobacco?

Try IQOS for £10
Try IQOS for £10

Try now for 14 days

Discover the benefits of IQOS
Discover the benefits of IQOS

Why switch to IQOS?