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Are Ceramic Coils Safe? Possible Health Concerns for Vapers

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Forget your plain old kanthal and stainless steel coils, ceramic coils are being touted as the next big thing that will revolutionize your vaping experience. But do they live up to the hype? And more importantly, are ceramic coils safe?

While ceramic coils may produce better flavor and provide a longer coil life when compared to traditional coils, there are concerns that it may be at the expense of your health.


What Are Ceramic Coils?

What do clay, bricks, tiles, glass, and porcelain dentures have in common? They’re all example of ceramics, of course! Ceramics are a common material that we encounter all the time in our day to day lives, and are a wondrous material  for their hardness, ability to withstand extremely high temperatures, and resistance to erosion.

In coils made with ceramics, there are a couple of different designs. Perhaps the most well known is Vaporesso’s CCELL ceramic coils, which are coils encased in a ceramic cylinder. This design is completely wickless, as the microporous nature of the ceramic allows the ejuice to flow freely to the coil. This produces a better flavor, longer coil life, no chance of a dry hit due to the absence of cotton, and will potentially allow you to use less juice due to the great heating abilities of the ceramic.

Additionally, there are also ceramic coils that are similar to your regular coils in appearance, but they are coated and encased in ceramic. These coils are still wicked with cotton but this ceramic coating prevents further oxidation of the metal which could lead to metallics in your vapor.

Lastly, while less common there are also ceramic coils where there is a layer of cotton in between the coil and the ceramic cylinder. This design is much more brittle and fragile, and has a higher chance of breaking if not handled carefully.


Are Ceramic Coils Safe?

While ceramic coils are being touted as the answer to all of the problems that vapers are currently facing with their coils, they may just be replacing our current problems with new, far more dangerous ones.

In an objective research and analysis of how ceramic coils affect vapers health, Uwell used a microscope to examine three different ceramic coils and their microstructures and powder size. What they discovered is that there is potential for small pieces of the ceramic coil to break and release silica powder, which is harmful to your health. Prolonged inhalation as done in vaping can lead to trachea and lung damage, as well as lung cancer.

When examined under a microscope, ceramic coils reveal many impurities and the glass like particles are uneven, chaotic, and sharp.

If scratched, jolted, dropped, or vibrated with enough force, there is the potential for the ceramic coil to shed silica powder which is very harmful to your health. This powder is composed of tiny, sharp, glass like crystals that are too tiny to see with the naked eye. If inhaled, the possibility of trachea and lung damage is very real.

Silica Powder from Ceramic Coils

And if you’re sitting there thinking: “But if i’m extremely careful and never drop or scratch my ceramic coil, i’ll be safe!” Think again.

Uwell points out that because of the manufacturing process, silica powder is produced after taking the coil off of the mold. This dust is quite sticky and will stick to the inside of the ceramic coil. There is ceramic powder on the inside of every ceramic coil on the market and because of the high air speeds going through your tank while vaping (up to 223mph), there is a high potential for this dust to be introduced into your lungs.


Potential Health Complications from Inhaling Silica Dust

  • Silicosis: a form of occupational lung disease caused by inhalation of crystalline silica dust.
  • Lung damage
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Scarring of the trachea
  • Lung cancer

Conclusion

While they can potentially provide many benefits to vapers, ceramic coils just don’t seem to be worth the risk. Because of the potential for pieces of the ceramic to break and produce silica dust that is hazardous to health, we don’t recommend using ceramic coils. Even the smallest scratch, drop, or vibration can release this dust and it is definitely present in all ceramic coils due to the manufacturing process. It’s better to be safe than sorry, and your health is no joke. I would rather have a longer life span myself than a longer life span for my coils, wouldn’t you?

Reference: Uwell Study

 

Adam A.

I started vaping in 2013, determined to quit smoking because I knew it was a terrible habit. Many hard years later, I'm smoke-free and feeling better than ever! I love trying as many different tanks, mods, and ejuices as I can get my hands on, but I love sharing my experiences and honest opinions even more! When I'm not reviewing, researching, or writing, you can find me watching tennis, tinkering with coils, or playing with my two mischievous cats.

2 comments

  • Hi Adam,
    thanks for a very interesting write-up!
    So which coil would you prefer for safe vaping? Are RDTA tanks with organic cotton safe? Please let me know your thoughts.