What Happens When You Vape Dry Herbs: A Quick Rundown

If you have been paying attention, you likely have noticed the rise in popularity of vaporizers. While vaporizers started out primarily for e-juice products that contained nicotine, there are all kinds of vaporizers available now, including for vaping dry herbs.

Dry herbs have been around for decades. However, in times past, the primary method of enjoying dry herbs was by smoking them. This including rolling them into joints or blunts, or smoking them by using glass pipes. While there is not anything particularly wrong with smoking them, it presents significant disadvantages to the smoker. Namely, in terms of the harshness on the lungs and the very noticeable smell.

Vaporizer pens offer a solution to the disadvantages brought by smoking. They are convenient and discreet to use, primarily because they never burn the herbs. Instead, it puts the dry herbs through a process called convection, which means the dry herbs are baked hot enough to produce vapor, but never hot enough to burn. Through convection, vaping enthusiasts have been able to enjoy the benefits of enjoying dry herbs without the drawbacks presented by smoking.

What Happens When You Vape Dry Herbs: A Quick Rundown

  1. The vaporizer is powered on, and the heating chamber begins to heat the air inside.
  2. The hot air begins to heat the dry herbs.
  3. As dry herbs are heating, they begin to produce vapor that can be inhaled and enjoyed.

The Heating Process For Vaping Dry Herbs

When the heating chamber heats the air and causes your dry herbs to produce vapor, you are witnessing the process of convection. This is in contrast to combustion, which involves higher temperatures, actually burns your dry herbs, and produces smoke.

Though vaping offers great benefits, it is important to prepare your dry herbs in a fashion that sets you up to enjoy the full benefits. The most important step for you to follow is making sure you grind your dry herbs before loading them into the heating chamber. Grinding your dry herbs allows for easier airflow, which makes it much easier to take a hit when your dry herbs are fully heated. It also allows for your dry herbs to be more evenly heated, which produces vapor more quickly and helps you get the most out of your dry herbs. If you do not grind your dry herbs, you risk having an extremely poor vaping experience.

Most vaporizers also allow you to set the heating temperature to your preference, which itself offers great benefits. When vaping at lower temperatures, some of the softer tasting notes that may be missed by smoking the dry herb are much more noticeable. It also is easier on the lungs, since the vapor is not so hot, and the smell of the vapor is harder to detect from those around you.

The Breakdown of Dry Herbs

When you vape dry herbs, they breakdown much more slowly than compared to smoking them. Smoking dry herbs is an instant breakdown producing ash. When dry herbs are vaped, they will slowly change to orange and eventually a brown color. If you continue vaping herbs at this stage, you will essentially create brown dust. Since the breakdown is much slower, you get to enjoy a higher quality flavor experience, and the entire vaping experience ends up being much easier on your lungs.

5 Tips for Vaping Dry Herbs

  1. Make sure to use a grinder before packing dry herbs into your vaporizer. This is an important step to ensure that airflow quality is not compromised.
  2. When packing dry herbs, do not overpack them. Overpacking can clog your vaporizer, preventing airflow altogether. Not only will this make it nearly impossible to take a hit, but it will also make it very difficult for your dry herbs to be properly heated to create vapor in the first place.
  3. Since the heating chamber has a large surface area, it ends up generating quite a bit of heat. This heat can travel through the body of the vaporizer, including the mouthpiece. If this regularly happens and impacts your ability to vape, we recommend getting a silicone mouthpiece cover. It will extend the distance of your mouth from the hot part of your vaporizer, and it will give a good protective covering, too.
  4. When using a dry herb vaporizer for the first time, you should always start at the lowest temperature setting and work your way up. This ensures that you do not surprise yourself with an unexpectedly hot hit of vapor, and it allows you to experience the full spectrum of tasting options your vaporizer has for you.
  5. If you experience that it is difficult to properly take a hit from the vaporizer, you likely need to clean or change the mesh metal filter inside. The purpose of this filter is to prevent any unwanted pieces of debris from making their way into the vapor path and causing clogs. Those filters can be cleaned with a wired brush, and replacements can be readily found at online stores like this one!

Vaping vs. Smoking

Vaping and smoking offer very different experiences, but they each have their pros and cons. Vaping, as we have mentioned, is very easy to do discreetly and inside, since it does not require an open flame and the smell from the vapor dissipates quickly. Vapor is also softer on the lungs, which makes it a great alternative for those that might otherwise be unable to smoke.

Smoking, on the other hand, is a more involved process. You will need access to an open flame (unless you happen to own a combustion vaporizer that produces smoke instead of vapor). Both the appearance of smoking and the smell smoking produces are very distinct, so if you are trying to discreetly enjoy your dry herbs, smoking is not the best option.

However, what smoking does offer is a more potent experience on a faster timeline than vaping provides. Combustion of your dry herb happens instantly, whereas vaping requires a gradual heating process. The potency of smoke from dry herbs is also much stronger than the vapor produced (since the dry herb is getting used up all at once), which makes it an ideal experience for those looking to quickly enjoy their dry herbs.

What Is The Best Temperature for Vaping Dry Herbs?

The best temperature for vaping dry herbs is completely a personal preference. Vaping at lower temperatures will be easier on the lungs, will produce less noticeable vapor, and will produce a less noticeable smell. Vaping at higher temperatures produces more vapor and harder-hitting hits, though the smell will be slightly more noticeable.

The ideal temperature will also vary depending on the kind of dry herb you have and how well it is ground. When using a new vaporizer or vaping a new variety of dry herb, we always recommend starting at the lowest temperature your vaporizer offers and working your way up. This will allow you to experience the gamut of vaping your device provides and will more quickly help you find that perfect sweet spot!

Written By: Matthew H.

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