We all heard stories about exploding e-cigarettes and exploding vapes. Some brave Internet users might even have watched a video about such accidents as well. In this post, we will tell you everything you need to know about e-cigarette explosion, how to avoid it and manage it if it happens to you or someone near you.
Electronic vaping devices, such as vape pens, e-cigarettes, and vaporizers, are electronic devices that are used to imitate smoking and (optionally) deliver nicotine to the user’s body without the side-effects regular tobacco cigarettes have.
The first devices of this type emerged back in 2007, and they have been getting immensely popular ever since. It all sounds perfect until you learn about the threat of an e-cigarette battery explosion.
Batteries power all of the electronic cigarettes. In some cases, an e-cigarette explosion occurs when a user holds the device in their hand or carries it around in their pocket. Luckily, such accidents happen very rarely. However, when they do, they can cause severe injuries, including burns, bone and teeth fracture, eye damage or loss, as well as property loss.
E-Cig Explodes: Case Study
As for now, there are over 275 registered cases of vaporizer explosions. According to these reports, vapes exploded during use, while charging and while being transported. There are also cases of spare batteries blowing up. Here are the most widely known examples of vape explosion, presented in chronological order:
– Back in 2012, a 57-year old man from Florida was wounded by an e-cigarette that exploded as he was holding it in his mouth. The e-cig explosion left the man with several knocked-out teeth and a tongue injury.
– The following year, a vaporizer exploded while charging connected to a laptop. A man’s laptop caught fire and burned a part of the furniture in the room. It happened in Oklahoma.
– In 2014, a firefighter from North Carolina was taken to hospital with injuries caused by an electronic cigarette blowing up in his face. Luckily, he didn’t lose his eyesight, but the accident caused some permanent eye damage.
– In 2016, a spare e-cig battery exploded in a man’s pocket in Kentucky. The incident was caused by a battery circuit that most likely took place because of the coins the guy had in his pockets. This poor guy was hospitalized with second-degree burns.
– In late spring 2018, an e-cigarette explosion killed a man. It is the first registered death caused by an e-cigarette ever. The suggested reasons behind the explosion are battery overcharging and battery shortage.
As you can see, all of the cases of exploding vape pens occurred under different circumstances, which leads us to the next question: why do vapes explode?
Why Vapes Blow Up
Why do e-cigs explode? The Federal Emergency Management Agency reported the following causes of e-cigs blowing up in their reports:
– Use of an unsuitable charging device;
– Use of an incompatible battery;
– Use of a re-wrapped battery that has inaccurate rating;
– Use of a damaged or faulty battery;
– A failure to follow the battery charging limits;
– Carriage of a spare battery in one’s pocket.
How to Prevent E-Cig From Exploding?
Now that you know what causes e-cigs to explode, you probably wonder how you can avoid such incidents. Even though vapes don’t blow up often, no one would want such an experience in their life. The best pieces of advice we can give you are as follows:
– Purchase e-cigarettes, spare parts, and batteries from verified vendors only. Buy only those spare parts and batteries that are recommended by the manufacturer.
– Keep an eye at your charging battery. Unplug it as soon as it is fully charged. In case something goes wrong, you should be there to prevent the fire from causing any damage. Don’t charge the batteries overnight or when you leave home. Charge your batteries on a flat horizontal surface that cannot catch fire in case the e-cig explodes.
– Follow the operation manual closely and avoid exposing any parts of the vape and its battery to unsuitable conditions.
– Spare batteries should never get in your pockets. A short circuit can easily occur when a battery contacts a metal object in your pockets. It can lead to an explosion and some bad burns.
– Store your e-cigs and batteries following the recommendations of the manufacturer. In general, all the vape batteries require cool and dry storage space, away from direct sunlight and heat.
– Turn off the vape before putting it in your pocket. Some devices have a locking feature for safety reasons.
– Dispose a battery as soon as you notice any defect to it. When an e-cigarette explodes, you need to pay so much more than the cost of the battery.
– Never use your device if it’s safety features don’t work as intended. Do not disable or remove these features.
Following these steps will make your vaping experiences much safer. An e-cigarette explosion can cause a lot of harm, so every vape user should take the needed precautions to avoid the worst-case scenario.
To use your vape safely, remember that proper handling is the key. If you buy a certified device from a verified vendor and follow the manufacturer’s recommendations carefully, it won’t be more dangerous than a cell phone or a laptop. In general, vaporizers are not dangerous as long the manufacturer, the seller and the user take all the needed precautions.
Luckily, we cannot say that a vape explodes here and there. Even though such cases are very rare, when a single e-cig blows up it does a lot of harm. For this reason, we recommend you to follow all the safety tips and learn all you can about proper use, maintenance, cleaning and disposal of your vaping device and its batteries. Following all the precautions will help you make sure that your vape never blows up.
Report to FDA
FDA is continuously collecting information about all the cases of vape explosions to be able to address the issue adequately. We encourage you to report any health hazard, related to a vape, including its explosion, following the link. Please provide the following information when filling in the form:
– What brand e-cigarette blew up or caused a health hazard?
– What are the vape model and serial number?
– What is the battery brand name and model?
– What is the purchase date?
– Was the product used other than intended by the manufacturer?
– Was the product modified in any way?
You can watch a YouTube video to learn how to report a battery explosion to the FDA.