5 Reasons to Switch to Dry Herb Vaping
Something I hear a lot from long-time smokers is the reluctance to try something new when smoking their cannabis has worked fine for them for years. And you know what, I get it – habits are hard to break… but stay with me for a little longer and hopefully I can help you see why trying a dry-herb vape may save you in the long run!
Vaping vs. Smoking Cannabis
Health Advantages of Vaporizing Flower
Vaping cannabis offers a slew of health advantages over smoking it, first being when vaping dry-herb the sensation upon inhaling is much gentler than that of anything that combusts (is lit). What this means is that the draw is easier… softer, causes less coughing. My personal favorite reason to use a vaporizer instead of smoking my cannabis is because with the vaporizer I have the ability to dial in to the optimal temperature to get the most out of my flower instead of burning it and getting what I could along with all the bad stuff that comes along with inhaling anything you combust.
Vaporizing is easier on the lungs than smoking
Vaporizing cannabis is healthier for your lungs because you aren’t inhaling any actual smoke from combustion. Instead, vaping cannabis allows you to enjoy the benefits of the plant without the harmful toxins that come from the traditional smoking methods.
Vaping is cleaner and more discreet
In addition to being healthier, vaping medical cannabis products can also solve many of the issues that come with smoking it, such as odor and cleanliness.
Dry herb vaporizers come in all different shapes and sizes, including portable handheld devices. This means no more lighters and ashtrays floating around. Vaporizers don’t produce actual smoke, the cloud is vapor – which is cleaner and produces less of an odor. The vapor will not soak into your skin, hair and clothes like smoke will – allowing you to be discreet with your consumption.
The lower temperatures of vaping activate a larger range of terpenes
The best thing about using a dry herb vape (in my opinion), is the ability to lower the temperature to get the most out of my flower rather than just burning it down. The terpenes and cannabinoids that give that flower the effect it has, each have their optimal activation temperature that is actually much lower than the point of combustion.
By lowering the temperature you heat the flower, you’re actually optimizing the medicinal benefits of the plant. My favorite thing about making this switch is that by doing so, you’ll be able to actually taste the different flavor profiles of your different buds. Instead of burning right through these delicate compounds at the torch of a lighter, you’ll be able to experience the full spectrum of your medical cannabis products.
Find a Vaporizer that works for you
If you search for dry herb vaporizers on the market you’ll find there are hundreds to choose from – each claiming to be the best for one thing or the other. The key to this part is to have a good attitude and know exactly what it is you want to get out of your device.
- Are you using it at home or on the go?
- Are you looking to be able to choose an exact temperature or are pre-set heat settings good?
- Do you want a device that does only dry-herb or one that does both dry-herb and concentrates?
- Additional things to consider: what does the prep look like for this device, what does the cleaning process look like and am I willing to commit to the upkeep, battery/charging, accessories, etc.
Read the instructions carefully
No matter which device you end up purchasing for yourself, you want to make sure you actually read the instruction manual that comes with it and/or watch some YouTube videos on the device to completely familiarize yourself with its parts and features. By doing this from the start, you ensure that you know how to get the most out of not only your medicine, but the device you just committed good money towards. Getting comfortable with your device and consumption practice will allow patients to feel more confident in their overall experience.
Ensure that the flower is finely ground to get the most out of your medical cannabis
Get yourself a really good dry herb grinder – this will ensure that your medical cannabis is finely ground and in optimal condition for your dry-herb vaporizer. Packing your device too tight can hinder the flow of vapor from the material packed inside which can cause the terpenes and cannabinoids in the flower to not be activated – meaning you miss out on the medicine even though you think you’ve adequately medicated.
By using a grinder to prepare your flower versus breaking it up with your fingers is also a great way to make sure you’re capturing the most for your money. When you break up flower with your fingers, you will inevitably end up with a sticky build up on your fingers, which most people wipe off or waste thinking it’s just part of the prep but in actuality that sticky build up is the trichomes that “frost” the plant and house all the good stuff!
When we use a grinder to prepare our flower, we want to use grinders that have what is called a “kief catcher”. Kief is an extra fine powdery concentrate that can contain THC levels around 70% – this is the “sticky build up” that typically gets wasted when we break our flower up with our fingers. You can vaporize kief that has collected in the bottom chamber over time by mixing it back into your ground when packing your device. Some people also use their kief to make edibles or other concentrates.
Regularly clean your vaporizer
Most vaporizer devices instruct you to clean them after every use, and if you’re anything like me you immediately think “yeah, right… sure” and next thing you know your clear pipes are brown with resin and your draws aren’t as easy as they used to be. This can be problematic for many reasons – the first, gross … who wants to smoke out of a grimy piece?
But seriously, that build up in your pipes is minimizing the benefit of the cannabis in your inhaling. Not only does it taint your typically clean tasting draw on your vape by leaving an unpleasant aftertaste, but it clogs the flow of the actual vapor you’re trying to ingest.
Thankfully cleaning vape devices is fairly simple and can usually be done with things you already have in your house. Please consult the cleaning instructions for your specific device before proceeding with these instructions. Most vaporizers can be adequately cleaned using a q-tip and rubbing alcohol – you’ll want to soak the swab end in the rubbing alcohol and then carefully swab out the heating chamber of the device. (Please do this step when the device is cooled to room temp). You’ll also want to use the rubbing alcohol to clean any mouth pieces, pipes or accessories that are used with your device. Pro-tip: never dump any cleaning solution directly into the chamber of your device. 😉
** My handheld dry herb vape uses glass tubes that slide into the heating chamber, so I will just let those soak in some rubbing alcohol in a small container for a few hours, use a pipe cleaner to reach any remaining resin build up and then rinse with warm water and allow to dry before using. **
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