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How to Use a Cannabis Vape Cartridge

There’s no question that vape cartridges are one of the fastest growing product categories among cannabis consumers. Viewed by some as the future of cannabis consumption, these modern devices offer patients a range of benefits in a compact package. For anyone new to the world of cannabis cartridges, the following guide will explain how these innovative products work and how to get the most out of your cartridge purchase.

What is a Cannabis Vape Cartridge?

Put simply, a cannabis vape cartridge is a small, pre-filled unit containing extracted cannabis oil designed for vaporization. Products in this category may vary in style and branding, but they typically follow a standard design formula. Most products are offered in the form of a small cylinder containing the following key parts:

  • Chamber – This section contains cannabis oil, which is prefilled in a specified quantity.
  • Atomizer – This is the cartridge’s heat source. The atomizer section is attached to battery and produces heat when activated in order to vaporize the cannabis oil for inhalation.
  • Mouthpiece – This channel at the tip of the cartridge allows the patient to comfortably inhale vapor through the device.
  • Please note that cartridges also require a battery in order to operate. Some units include a disposable battery, while others must be paired with a rechargeable battery (sold separately).

Why Do Patients Use Cannabis Vape Cartridges?

Vape cartridges offer a number of advantages that contribute to their growing popularity with patients:

  • Convenience: Cartridges allow patients to inhale cannabis medicine with the simple push of a button. They offer a quick and easy option for treating sudden symptoms.
  • Discretion: Cartridges are small and discrete, enabling patients to keep their medical use private. They also produce a milder odor with a shorter duration than smoked cannabis, which may make their use less noticeable or bothersome to others.
  • Selection: Cartridges are available in a variety of strain selections and/or specific medicinal formulations. Patients may choose the best product for their individual needs and may prefer to have multiple cartridge selections on hand for different situations, such as daytime vs. nighttime use.
  • Comfort: By heating cannabis oil at a low temperature, cartridges offer a smooth inhalation experience that many patients find enjoyable.

How Do You Use a Cannabis Vape Cartridge?

Cartridges are known for their simplicity, but it’s important to use the product correctly in order to get the most out of your purchase. Please note that most cartridge products work similarly, but there may be some variation in how individual products are properly operated. Be sure to follow any instructions listed on the packaging or provided to you by your sales associate.

For stand-alone cartridges, you’ll need a standard 510-threaded rechargeable battery to connect to the product and turn it into a “vape pen”. If you don’t have a battery on hand, ask your sales associate for assistance selecting one.

Once you have your cartridge and battery in hand, here are the steps you’ll need to follow:

  • Charge your battery: Before using a new cartridge, you’ll want to make sure your battery is adequately charged. Attach your battery to the charger and wait until the indicator light shows that it’s fully charged.
  • Attach the cartridge: Remove any packaging and attach the cartridge by screwing it onto the battery. Make sure the unit is snuggly and properly connected.
  • Activate the battery: Some batteries turn on automatically, while others require 5 taps of the button to activate. Batteries usually have a light that turns on when the button is pressed, letting you know that the unit is turned on.
  • Press and inhale: Hold down the button on your battery while inhaling softly through the mouthpiece on the cartridge. You should see the battery light up and begin to feel vapor entering your lungs. You should see a small amount of vapor when exhaling, which lets you know the unit is working properly.
  • Titrate your dose: The correct dose will be determined by your individual tolerance, severity of symptoms, and the potency of the product. For some patients, one or two inhalations may be sufficient, while others may require slightly more. Remember to pace yourself and assess the product’s effect on you before continuing to consume.

Additional Tips and Tricks

Once you’ve got your unit set up and working properly, there are still a few things to keep in mind. The following tips will help you get the most value out of your vape cartridge:

  • Know what you’re buying: Regulated dispensaries like ours follow strict manufacturing guidelines to protect patient safety. Purchasing vape cartridges from a trusted and licensed provider is the best way make sure you’re getting top quality cannabis oil. Products purchased from unknown sources can contain unsafe ingredients, inaccurate labeling, and poor construction. Purchasing from a reliable and regulated provider is especially important with this product type.
  • Keep your unit clean: the threading on your cartridge and battery must be clean to ensure a firm connection when attached. Carefully using a q-tip with rubbing alcohol is the best way to clean these small parts. It’s important to avoid water exposure, which can damage your battery and also doesn’t work well for cleaning cannabis resin.
  • Don’t overheat: If the unit stops working, it might be too hot. Prolonged activation of the battery can cause it to shut down. An overheated unit can also damage the cannabis oil inside the unit. Even when treating strong symptoms, it’s best to take your time when vaping.
  • Understand your battery: Knowing the features of your battery will help get the best results and troubleshoot when necessary. Most batteries will blink when they need to be recharged or they’ve become overheated. If your battery is blinking or its light changes color, the device is communicating something to you about its current condition.
  • Store properly: For best results, cartridges should be stored away from bright light and extreme temperatures. Reapplying any caps or containers that came with the cartridge is recommended when storing. Keep in mind that cartridges can sometimes work effectively for months after purchase, but performance will be strongest if used within a few weeks. When using an older cartridge, try warming it in your hand for a few minutes before use to loosen up the cannabis oil.

Conclusion

Vape cartridges are a great example of innovation in the medical cannabis industry. We expect to see continued advances in the quality of the products we offer and we’re excited to introduce patients to new ways this medicine can improve their quality of life. We hope this guide has been helpful and our dispensary staff is always available to demonstrate products and answer any questions you have.

THC Cartridges: The Complete Guide To Pre-Filled Oil Vape Cartridges

Back in the day, if you wanted a novel way to experience marijuana, you had to hunt down the mythical Thai stick or get really creative with your homemade bong. Now, novelty abounds in head shops from coast to coast. One of the newer approaches to dancing with Mary Jane is the THC cartridge.

THC cartridges are so new you may not even know what they’re all about. And that’s a shame because THC cartridges really are one of the easiest ways to get your ganja on.

But rest easy — the experts at Honest Marijuana are here to help. In this article, we’ll answer all your questions about pre-filled oil vape cartridges and help you decide whether a vape THC cartridge is right for you.

What Are THC Cartridges?

It all started when some canny cannabis consumer came up with the brilliant plan to modify an electronic cigarette to handle marijuana instead of tobacco.

Those MacGyvered electronic cigarettes caught on quickly and are now known as vape pens. When they first came out, you purchased a small bottle of your favorite e-liquid (or in marijuana circles, “vape juice”), and filled the vape pen yourself.

But progress is all about doing fewer things yourself. That’s where the THC cartridge came in.

A THC cartridge is a pre-filled, disposable container filled with your favorite strain of THC oil. Once the oil in the THC cartridge reaches a certain temperature, it vaporizes. You can then inhale to your heart’s content without worrying about the adverse effects of smoke in your lungs.

But you’re not going to throw your THC cartridge in the oven or boil it on the stove. There’s a very special method to this madness.

How Does A THC Cartridge Work?

All right, let’s walk through this using the above picture as a reference. See the small piece in the foreground with the left end that looks like the mouthpiece of a pipe? That’s a THC cartridge.

Now see the longer piece above it? That’s the vape pen, e-cigarette, or just vaporizer (call it whatever you like, it’s all the same thing).

Actually, the vaporizer is the black shaft from the silver tube on the left to the end on the right (this vaporizer has a THC cartridge attached).

As you can probably surmise from the picture (unless you’re really stoned, in which case, right on!), you first attach the THC cartridge to the vaporizer (usually by screwing it on).

When you’re ready to fly, you press a button on the vaporizer and a small battery heats a coil. The coil then vaporizes the oil in the THC cartridge and you’re off to the races.

“That all sounds great,” you say, “but I’m good with joints, blunts, bongs, and edibles. Why would I want to switch to a THC cartridge?” Good question.

What Are The Benefits Of THC Cartridges?

1) Higher Potency

Vaping with a THC Cartridge is more potent than smoking because using a vaporizer reduces the temperature at which cannabinoids change from solid or liquid into gas.

This temperature reduction preserves many of the active ingredients in marijuana — the stuff that gets you high and makes you feel good — that would otherwise be destroyed when you burn your cannabis.

Think of it this way: a flame is pretty much only one temperature. It’s hot enough to burn your bud and turn it into smoke, which occurs at around 450℉.

But — and here’s the kicker — cannabinoids can be changed into a gas at much lower temperatures (around 284℉). All that extra heat is just destroying a large portion of the cannabinoids and terpenes you’re trying to get into your system.

That’s where the THC vape pens come in. They operate at much lower temperatures than your common, everyday flame. Rather than producing smoke (through burning), they produce vapor (through vaporization).

As a result, you get more “bang for your buck” — or perhaps “cannabinoids for your cash” — because the THC, CBD, CBG, CBN, and others don’t get burned away.

And this occurs in a sleek and indiscreet package that doesn’t require bulky bongs or a plethora of extra tools. All you need is a THC vape pen and your favorite THC cartridge.

2) Ease Of Use

Sure, pills, dissolvable strips, tinctures, and creams are probably the easiest methods of getting marijuana into your system, but vaporizers and THC cartridges are, at the very least, close to the top of the list.

Do you know how to screw two things together? Do you know how to push a button? Do you know how to inhale?

If you answered yes to these three questions, using a THC cartridge will be a breeze.

3) Portability

We love THC cartridges for their portability. Pop a THC cartridge and heating element in your shirt pocket or handbag and you’re good to go.

No baggies that can break open and spill. No lids that can come off. No muss, no fuss. Just plenty of THC goodness in the palm of your hand.

4) Controlled Dosing

Getting just the right dose (be it CBD or THC) is on everyone’s mind when they first use a new product. Nobody wants a bad trip. But with a THC cartridge, you get a controlled dose from each inhalation.

Are colors starting to talk to you? Put the vape pen away for a while and come back when the edges get dull. The THC cartridge will be waiting for you to press that button and start inhaling again.

You can’t do that with a joint or blunt.

5) Secrecy

With joints and bongs (and other “burn” methods), you’re always concerned about the smoke and smell. You certainly can’t fire up a fatty in the office and not expect some repercussions.

But with a vape pen and THC cartridge, you don’t have to worry about drawing the attention of those around you. Everything is self-contained and the vapor doesn’t really produce an odor.

Plus, the whole thing looks just like an e-cigarette. So you can always tell your anti-ganja friends and neighbors that you’re just trying to quit smoking.

There are more discreet methods of ingesting marijuana, but if you enjoy the act of inhaling your cannabinoids, THC cartridges are just what you’ve been looking for.

What Are The Drawbacks Of THC Cartridges?

1) Undecided Science

The jury’s still out as to the long-term effects of vaporizing with THC cartridges.

But, hey, for the longest time, that same jury was convinced that cannabis was the devil’s weed. Now, look at all we’ve discovered about the medical benefits of marijuana.

2) Shorter-Lasting Effects Than Edibles

Honestly, is this really a drawback? Few methods of consuming cannabis stack up to edibles when it comes to longevity.

To us, this feels like saying, “My Mazda Miata won’t haul as much cargo as my ¾-ton GMC Sierra.” Well, yeah. Duh.

If you want a fun, fast ride that will fit into tight spaces, go with the THC cartridge. If you’re looking for an all-day long haul, gnosh on a pot brownie. It’s all about choosing the right tool for the job, folks.

3) Fewer Terpenes

Because of the way THC cartridges are made, they contain fewer terpenes than raw bud. And when it comes down to it, most concentrates fall into that same boat.

Just like the second drawback above, there are trade-offs with each method of consumption. If you’re ultra-concerned about flavor, stay at home and smoke some fresh organic bud.

4) Expense

When compared to other types of extracts, THC cartridges can be expensive. But you’re also paying for the convenience, portability, and discretion. That’s worth a few extra bucks, isn’t it?

5) Special Knowledge

No, we’re not talking alchemy and Kabbalah. But do you know how to use a vaporizer? That’s the special knowledge you need to get the most from a THC cartridge.

Really, though, it’s a lot less difficult than rolling a joint. Just read the instructions.

Should You Try A THC Cartridge?

Absolutely! Trying new things is the name of the game in the cannabis community. And honestly, what do you have to lose?

If you don’t like it, that smoke sesh is less than stellar, but you can always go back to the old standby (whatever that is for you). But if you do like it, you may just find your new favorite way to get baked.

Before you run out and drop bookoo bucks on a THC cartridge, bum a ride from (a.k.a. share a few tokes with) a friend who already owns a vaporizer. Or maybe she’ll be generous enough to lend it to you for a day so you can really get a feel for how a THC cartridge works.

However you do it, trying before buying is the ideal way to test a THC cartridge and vaporizer for yourself. Just be sure you return the favor should someone ask you.