A Beginner's Guide to Vape Tanks

One of the most important parts of your vape kit, the vape tank is the part of the device that holds the e-liquid and the coils. If you're just getting started with vaping or have only ever used disposable vapes, the vast and complex world of vape tanks might seem a little intimidating at first. That's why we've put together this helpful guide to tell you everything you need to know about vape tanks.

By the end of this guide, you'll be a vape tank expert. So, what are you waiting for? 

What is a vape tank and how does it work? 

Your vape's tank is the glass, cylindrical section that usually sits on top of the battery and below the drip tip (mouthpiece). The tank, which is also sometimes called the clearomiser, holds the coil and the e-liquid.

When you activate your vape by drawing on the mouthpiece or pressing the fire button, the battery sends power to the coil which is housed inside the tank. Heating the coil also heats the wick, the absorbent material (usually made of organic cotton) which has soaked up lots of e-liquid in the tank. This causes the e-liquid to turn into vapour, which rises through the drip tip and into the vaper's mouth. Then, more of the e-liquid in the tank soaks into the wicking material, ready for the next puff. 

The different parts of a vape tank

When we talk about the vape tank, we tend to be talking about the whole tank part of the vape. This includes:

  • the tank section itself, which is usually made of glass or plastic, and holds the e-juice
  • the coil
  • the chimney which allows the vapour to rise from the coil to the mouthpiece
  • the drip tip (sometimes replaceable) 
  • the bottom section which includes the connection to the battery as well as sometimes featuring adjustable airflow control

At the bottom of the tank, most models use a 510 connection which allows them to be connected to the majority of vape mods. 

Filling the vape tank

When the e-liquid levels inside the vape tank run low, the vaper needs to refill the tank. Each different type of vape tank has a different filling mechanism, but the majority of vape tanks can be refilled from a slot at the top or the bottom of the vape tank. 

In the UK and EU, the regulations set out by the Tobacco Products Directive stipulate that vapes must not have a tank capacity of more than 2ml of e-juice. 

What are the different types of vape tank?

MTL vape tanks

MTL or Mouth-To-Lung vape tanks are the most beginner-friendly vape tanks on the market, although some more advanced vapers also enjoy them for the powerful flavours they produce.

Mouth-To-Lung refers to the style of vaping that is most similar to cigarette smoking. In MTL vaping, vapers will take a drag, hold the vapour in their mouths, and then inhale it into the lungs. This cigarette-like vaping style is popular among new vapers and former smokers. 

A Mouth-To-Lung vape tank is a tank designed for MTL vaping. Usually, these are distinguished by the type of coil they use. Any coil with a resistance above one ohm is usually considered a MTL coil. This means that these coils perform well at low power and temperature levels and produce small amounts of vapour but powerful flavours. MTL coils are often smaller than other types of coils. 

Another distinguishing feature of MTL tanks is that they are usually designed for a more restricted airflow than DTL tanks. MTL tanks may have a smaller chimney and mouthpiece so less air moves through them.

These vape tanks are best paired with 50/50 e-liquids or nic salts because these e-liquids perform well at lower temperatures. 

DTL vape tanks

DTL or Direct-To-Lung vape tanks, also called sub-ohm vape tanks, are less beginner-friendly than MTL tanks but they provide an unbeatable vaping experience that many more advanced vapers love. 

Direct-To-Lung refers to the style of vaping where a vaper inhales the vapour from the vape's mouthpiece directly into their lungs. DTL vaping allows bigger, denser clouds of vapour which is the goal of vapers who consider themselves cloud chasers. This style of vaping utilises what we call sub-ohm coils that have a resistance of 0.6 ohm or below. The coils are usually bigger than MTL coils and may be made of mesh rather than the traditional wire coil style. 

Other differences between MTL and DTL vape tanks include that Direct-To-Lung tanks are designed to provide more airflow through the vape. This means that they often have adjustable airflow rings and airflow slots that allow you to make more air pass through the coil and chimney. Moreover, the chimney and mouthpiece are often wider on DTL tanks to allow more vapour. These designs allow for the huge vapour production that sub-ohm devices are known for. 

Which vape tank should I choose?

For a long list of the best beginner-friendly vape tanks, check out our blog here. In our list, we cover the best vape tanks for beginners from leading vape brands such as Innokin, Aspire, Uwell, Freemax, Vaporesso, and more. 

But, if you're strapped for time, here are three of our favourite vape tanks you should definitely try (spoiler alert: they're all sub-ohm)! 

GeekVape Zeus Sub-Ohm Tank

One of the best and most cost-effective sub-ohm tanks on the market, the GeekVape Zeus Sub-Ohm Tank is the perfect vape tank for anyone new to the exciting world of sub-ohm. Using quick-slide coil design, it's easy to change the coils, which are made of mesh and come in 0.2 ohm and 0.4 ohm varieties. Top refilling and both direct top airflow and top-to-bottom airflow make this Geekvape product a great vape tank to use. 

HorizonTech Falcon II Tank

The HorizonTech Falcon II Vape Tank is truly a thing of beauty -- just look at those gorgeous designs! This vape tank from HorizonTech has been designed for sub-ohm vapers who want a reliable and durable vape tank with easy push-fit coils and a sliding top cap for easy top fills. Using the Horizontech sector 0.14 ohm vape coils with a mesh fan-woven design, these have impressive airflow and excellent flavour and vapour production.

Hellvape Hellbeast 2 Sub-Ohm Tank

Last but certainly not least, the Hellvape Hellbeast 2 sub-ohm tank is one of the best sub-ohm tanks on the market. With all the great features of the original Hellbeast as well as some impressive updates, this tank is ideal for sub-ohm lovers who want a seriously great vaping experience. This Hellvape vape tank has an easy-to-use airflow control ring, seamless top filling, and a leakproof top airflow system. Using the brand new P coils, this vape tank comes with the 0.2 ohm Kanthal mesh coil pre-installed for amazing vaping at 50-60W. 

What are rebuildable tanks?

After you've got to grips with your standard MTL and sub-ohm tanks, you might be interested in trying out a rebuildable tank. These have a pretty steep learning curve and are only for the most serious vaping hobbyists who want to start customising their vapes themselves. However, once you've got to grips with rebuildables, you can enjoy an amazing vaping experience that can be hard to beat with pre-built vape kits.

Rebuildables are essentially DIY vape setups that allow you to build your own coils instead of using the usual manufactured ones. The best type of rebuildable for beginners is an RBA head, which is essentially a small, enclosed deck where you can build your own coils and then slot these neatly into your sub-ohm vape tank. Some of the best RBA heads include the SMOK TPM 40 RBA Coil and the Vapefly TGO RBA

Final thoughts

Whether you've never vaped before in your life or have only ever used disposables, upgrading to a vape kit with a high quality tank can seem a little intimidating. However, after reading this guide you should know everything you need to know about vape tanks, from the different types to which ones you should choose. 

Ready to get started with vape tanks? Browse our full range of tanks for your vape, including favourites from leading vape brands such as Innokin, Smok, Hellvape, Freemax, GeekVape, and many more. Don't forget to pair it with the perfect vape mod for a mind-blowing vaping experience!

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