More advanced vaping equipment is constantly evolving, and devices like a mechanical mod require some technical skills to operate.
A regulated mod and unregulated device will follow the law named after Georg Ohm, a German physicist who discovered the rules for manipulating electrical circuits.
Knowing this law is essential for ensuring your vaping experience is safe and you get the most out of your device.
Using Ohm’s law helps determine the limits of your vape, calculate resistance, and protect both you and your device. It also affects the intensity of flavor, the temperature of your vapor, and the size/density of your clouds.
Once you learn Ohm’s law, it’s easy to understand as you’ll only use a few simple mathematical equations.
There are several Ohm’s law calculators online that can help you do the heavy lifting; however, you might have access to them at all times. Moreover, an online calculator might not consider all the aspects of your particular device.
So, it’s important to learn these calculations for yourself.
This article serves as a crash course on Ohm’s law to ensure your vaping journey begins on a safe note.
Ohm’s Law and Vaping
Ohm’s law is the math formula for understanding the relationship between current, voltage, and resistance in an electrical circuit.
Since your vape functions like all other electronic devices, knowledge of Ohm’s law will give you a better understanding of the electrical current flowing through your coil and the effects of power and wattage.
These are critical to maximizing the different settings that impact your vape’s performance.
Moreover, if you know how to calculate Ohm’s law, you’ll also learn a thing or two about battery safety and how to handle your vaping equipment properly.
Current (I): Current is the rate at which an electrical charge flows through a conductor (let’s say, a wire), and its unit of measurement is ampere or amps (A).
Resistance (R): Resistance is the ability of a material (e.g., the metal coil in your vape) to resist the flow of a current or charge, and it’s measured in ohms. Lower resistance will allow for a faster flow of electrons through a circuit than higher resistance. If you decrease resistance, you get more power for your device and vice versa. This principle plays out in sub-ohm vaping, where the resistance of your coil is less than one ohm.
Voltage (V): Voltage is measured in volts (V) and is the difference in charge between two points (usually between your battery’s positive and negative terminals). A higher voltage between two points means that higher energy is gained with the same charge level. As vape devices, like mech mods, come with variable battery voltage, you must know how to manipulate the settings.
Power (P): Electrical power is the total energy used or produced in an electric circuit. The unit of measurement for power is watts (W). More power means more current passes through a coil faster, which heats it more quickly to produce bigger, denser, and more flavorful clouds.
Ohm’s Law for Vaping
Ohm’s law states that at constant temperature and pressure, the current flowing through a material conductor is directly proportional to the voltage applied across it and is inversely proportional to the resistance.
In layman’s terms, you can use the Ohm’s law triangle to calculate any electrical device’s volts, amps, and ohms.
The equation to calculate voltage looks like this:
Voltage (V) = Current (I) ÷ Resistance (R) or V = I ÷ R
From this power triangle, you can become your own Ohm’s law calculator and derive a few important equations that enable an improved vape experience.
If you’re calculating resistance (the amount of electrical current drawn through your coil), the formula – V = I ÷ R – changes. Instead of voltage (V), current (I) becomes the main variable. Therefore, the equation to determine current is:
I = V/R or I = V ÷ R
For example, if you want to use a fully-charged single-battery mechanical mod, you have a theoretical battery voltage of about 4.2 V to power your coil.
If your coil resistance is 0.5 ohms, you can calculate current in amps with the above formula.
Your math will look like this:
I = 4.2 V ÷ 0.5 ohm
I = 8.4 A
The above calculation means that a 0.5-ohm coil can draw a maximum current of 8.4 amps in a fully-charged single battery mod.
If you choose to use a dual mech mod, know that this will double the amperage drawn per battery, and you will have to build coils with twice as much resistance for safe vaping.
Lastly, as you drain the battery, the current draw will equally drop off.
To calculate resistance, just like when calculating current, you have to rearrange the equation to make resistance (R) the main variable. The equation becomes:
R = V/I or R = V ÷ I
So, let’s say you want to determine the lowest coil resistance that can work without exceeding the limit of your battery’s continuous discharge rating (CDR).
If your vape has a battery CDR limit of 25 amps, we have enough information to complete the calculation. (Remember, the max voltage from a single or parallel battery mod is 4.2 V.)
Therefore, if R = V ÷ I:
R = 4.2 V ÷ 25 A
R = 0.17 ohms
Your safe resistance limit when using a 25 amp battery is 0.17 ohms. You cannot go any lower than 0.17 ohms, or you risk exceeding the current limit of your battery.
While calculating power (P) is not in Ohm’s equation, you’ll need it to determine the wattage of your coil. To calculate power, the formula is:
P = V × I
So if we use the values from the equation above:
P = 4.2 V × 8.4 amps
P = 35.3 W
This number means that with a charged battery, your 5-ohm coil will deliver 35.3 W. As Ohm’s equation suggests, coils with a higher ohm (high resistance) require less wattage and current.
Ohm’s power triangle states that when you keep voltage constant and lower the resistance, you increase the current in an electrical device.
When it comes to vaping, more current means more power, and more power means that your coils heat up faster, vaporize liquids quicker and produce bigger and more flavorful clouds.
Based on the equations above, you can adjust the resistance and amp draw (i.e., the current) of mechanical mods to get more warmth and flavor from vaping.