How to Know When Your Disposable Vape Is Almost Empty

Disposable vapes are the most popular vaping devices in the world, which isn’t a surprising fact when you consider their many benefits. A disposable vape is the only type of vaping product that’s as easy to use as a cigarette, so it’s a natural choice for a smoker who wants to make the switch. Disposable vapes are also the most user-friendly vaping devices on the market. At the most, all you’ll ever have to do to maintain a disposable vape is recharge it when the battery dies. Otherwise, you can just puff on your device and enjoy it as needed until it runs out of e-liquid. That’s exactly what everyone has always wanted vaping to be.

As easy and convenient as disposable vapes are, though, they do have one drawback compared to other types of vaping devices: There’s often no way to see how much vape juice the device has left. So, how do you know when your disposable vape is almost empty? In this article, you’re going to get the answer.

First, though, why can’t you tell how much vape juice a disposable vape has left?

Why Can’t You See the E-Liquid in a Disposable Vape?

The fact that you can’t see the e-liquid in a disposable vape is the only real shortcoming of this type of vaping device. With most disposable vapes, though, there’s no way to avoid this phenomenon because of the way the devices are designed. A typical disposable vape doesn’t hold its e-liquid in a tank or pod as other vaping devices do. Instead, a disposable vape usually stores its e-liquid in a large fabric pad wrapped around the heating coil. As you use the device, the e-liquid travels from the outside of the pad to the inside through the process of absorption. 

Even if a disposable vape had a window that allowed you to see the pad, it wouldn’t be useful in helping you know how much e-liquid was in the device because you wouldn’t be able to see the inside of the pad. It also wouldn’t look very attractive, and visual appeal is a big part of why people buy disposable vapes.

Fun fact: Did you know that a disposable vape is called an “engangsvape” in Norway?

How to Know When a Disposable Vape Is Almost Empty

To know when a disposable vape is nearly empty, you need to pay attention to the device’s flavor. When the device is starting to run low on e-liquid, you’ll notice that the vapor production will drop, and the flavor will start to become a bit muted. To get a really satisfying and flavorful puff, you’ll have to wait a little longer for the e-liquid to redistribute itself inside the device. If the pad in your device is made from a synthetic material, you might notice a “plasticky” tinge to the flavor. When your disposable vape reaches this point, you may still get quite a few more puffs out of it but should definitely plan to replace it soon.

When a disposable vape is completely out of e-liquid, one of two things will happen. If it has an automatic temperature control function – which is rare in disposable vapes – it’ll stop producing vapor entirely even if it’s fully charged. Most disposable vapes don’t have temperature control, though, so the flavor will usually become horribly burnt when the device is out of e-liquid. This happens because the e-liquid pad is completely dry, so the coil begins to overheat and emit noxious fumes. At this point, you need to stop using the device unless you want to try refilling it – something we’ll discuss in greater detail momentarily.

Note that many modern disposable vapes contain e-liquid that’s heavily sweetened, and the sweetener will leave residue on the device’s atomizer coil. Over time, the residue will cause the device to produce a flavor that tastes a little like burnt sugar. This is different from the burnt flavor that a disposable vape produces when it’s out of e-liquid, and it’s possible for a device to produce a “burnt sugar” flavor when it still has a good amount of vape juice left. This is unavoidable with sweetened e-liquids. If the caramelized flavor bothers you, use a disposable vape with unsweetened e-liquid.

What to Do When a Disposable Vape Is Almost Empty

A disposable vape’s vapor production and flavor quality may begin to diminish when the device still has a good amount of e-liquid left. If you want to get every puff out of it that you possibly can, the trick is to wait longer between puffs. When the pad in a disposable vape is nearly dry, it takes longer for the e-liquid to travel from the wet outer portion to the dry inner portion where the coil is. If you give a disposable vape extra time to equalize itself between puffs, you’ll get the best possible flavor when the device is almost empty.

Can You Refill an Empty Disposable Vape?

In some cases, the fact that a disposable vape is empty doesn’t necessarily mean you need to throw it away. If you’re not quite ready to say goodbye to a device yet, it may be possible to refill it. Before you try to refill a disposable vape, though, you need to keep two things in mind.

  • You shouldn’t try to refill a disposable vape unless it has a rechargeable battery. A disposable vape that isn’t rechargeable should run out of e-liquid and battery life almost simultaneously, so refilling a non-rechargeable device will end up being wasteful.
  • If your disposable vape has developed a burnt and caramelized flavor from sweetener residue, refilling the device will not fix that issue. Replacing the heating coil is the only way to fix sweetener residue – and in the case of a disposable vape, that requires replacing the entire device.

To see if your empty disposable vape is refillable, gently pry the mouthpiece off of the device. Under the mouthpiece, you might find a silicone gasket. Remove the gasket, and you should see the e-liquid pad under it. Add a few drops of vape juice to the pad and wait for it to absorb before adding more. Continue this process until the pad looks very wet. At this point, you can replace the gasket and mouthpiece and continue using the device until you’re no longer happy with the flavor quality.