How To Identify A Bad Coil
Posted on Mar 10, 2015. 11 comments

How To Identify A Bad Coil

by Jenny Spring

With electronic cigarettes, we’re only subjected to replace or replenish two products that will allow us to continue vaping.  As you must know, we have to continue to replenish our e-liquid, and the coils used in our clearomizers have to be replaced often as well.  The truth is, it is very seldom that a coil will stop functioning, but a coil will begin to deliver unsatisfactory results over the course of time.  When you become unsatisfied with a coil and it seems as if it isn’t performing as it did when it was first used, then the coil has went bad.  To further this information, we’re going to list a few tips on how to identify a bad coil, and hopefully you’ll learn how to prolong your coils life, as well as how to continue receiving a satisfactory vaping experience.

Length of Use

Over the time you use your clearomizer or atomizer device, it will continue to function, but will weaken due to continued use.  The coils we use have to be replaced and this is how the manufacturers continue to earn money from you.  It’s a simple trade-off; you pay up, you get an unrivaled vaping experience.  These coils are meant to be disposable, meaning that you can continue to use them for a length of time until they’ll need to be replaced to receive the same satisfactory results.

Burnt Wicking Material

The number one way to identifying a bad coil actually stems from its wicking material used.  If the wicking material goes bad or isn’t performing as should, then your coil won’t perform well, nor deliver a satisfactory vape. Each atomizer coil contains various amounts of cotton, depending on the type and size. Smaller heads, such as the Kanger Single-Coil Atomizers, house small amounts of cotton, while others, such as the massive atomizer coils that come with the SMOK TFV8 Big Baby Beast Tank, are furnished with substantially larger quantities of wicking material. When it comes to bad coils, size does often matter, as atomizers with more cotton tend to last longer than their smaller counterparts.

The most common issue is that the wicking material has been burnt, thus delivering a foul taste.  In addition, if the wicking material is burnt, it will not perform its job as normal.  If you know how a coil works, then you’ll know that when the wicking material can’t keep up with the flow of delivering e-liquid to your coil, then it will continue to burn the wicking material.  The best way to avoid burning the wicking material is by priming your replacement coils before you actually use them, being sure that the wicking material stays wet at all times and by only using a liquid viscosity that your coil can handle.

Foul Flavor

Most easily recognize a bad coil from the flavor that is received once the coil vaporizes the e-liquid.  If there is a foul flavor present, the coil could have potentially went bad.  The foul flavor can be the result of many issues, such as improper wicking from the manufacturer, a burnt wick from use, faulty airflow from the clearomizer or faulty coil wire inside of the replacement coils housing.  Very seldom can a user remove the foul flavor once it’s present, so we highly recommend that you replace the coil immediately to receive the intended vape experience.

Dead on Arrival

If your clearomizer or atomizer device isn’t performing at all once you’ve received it, then you may have encountered a coil that is dead on arrival.  Obviously, if your clearomizer isn’t working, you presume that the coil is bad, but this isn’t always the case.  Most users who replace their coil and notice that it isn’t working will toss the coil in the trash or become disgruntled for paying for something that didn’t work.  We understand your frustrations completely, which is why we want to share this bit of information with you.

It is very rare in today’s products will you encounter an actual “DOA” replacement coil.  Manufacturers are steps ahead and ensure that a product works through its quality and testing departments.  With that said, if you stumble upon a coil that isn’t working out of the box or in the midst of use, then it’s typically a connection issue.  By this, we mean that the coil isn’t properly screwed into the clearomizer or your ecig device’s pin inside the 510 connector isn’t making proper contact with the clearomizer.  

Most newer ecig devices come with a spring-loaded center pin, which will keep it at the required height, however, there are some that do not, and often get pressed down into the 510 connector too far.  To fix this issue on your device, you can use a small object (precision flat-head screwdriver etc) to pry the pin up just a bit enough to make a solid contact.


  • Posted by nektarios on Feb 25, 2018

    i just bought a new coil for a aspire pockex and when i put it it leaves nothing but a nasty burn taste can you please tell me what i should do?

  • Posted by Rob on Jan 26, 2018

    My vape lights up and the stopwatch counts up when I press the fire button, but it’s not producing anything at all. Could this be the coil?

  • Posted by C.D on Dec 23, 2017

    Got 2 hits from it now it won’t hit at all. It’s fully charged. Has the juice in it have no clue what’s wrong any idea?

  • Posted by Ron on Aug 30, 2017

    I see a lot oof questions but no answers. My Vape pen (T20) seems to be still working fine after about 3 weeks of moderate use but it has an after effect that it stings the inside of my mouth, not horribly but it doesn’t seem right, maybe I need Veggie glycerin mix instead of the 50/50 I have been using. Any insight you have on this?

  • Posted by Terti Harris on Aug 25, 2017

    I bought coils off the internet trying to save money. The coils only lasted 3 days. This has happen twice. Went and bought two at the store and they lasted two weeks. Will not purchase again. The coils had expired. This company just lost another customer. Sometimes when you see a good deal you need to stop and question how they can do it. They send you EXPIRED COILS.

  • Posted by Kevin on Aug 16, 2017


    It sounds like you wicked it wrong. There should be wicking ports on your RTA, they go from the top part down into the tank part where your juice is. There should be enough cotton to prevent the juice from flowing by itself, out of the tank, into the coil, and down through the the air holes. But there shouldn’t be so much that it has to be packed into the wick ports. If you compress the cotton too much, it won’t be able to wick up. It will just take some practice to find the right amount.

  • Posted by John on Feb 24, 2017

    Went and bought a new coil today for a k2 aspire CE fill up the k2 with new just replace the old coil from new one and had nothing but a nasty burn taste when I try it what can be the problem? So I took the new one off replace with the old one and had no bad burn taste to it but did not got the same results with it when I bought the old one that why I went to buy a new one what can be the problem?

  • Posted by Crystal inman on Jan 21, 2017

    I ordered some kanger tech dual coils and every time i try to use one i get one good puff then my battery flashes but it doesnt do it with other coils… is it the coils i ordered

  • Posted by Daniel on Nov 20, 2016

    Hey I was wondering if this could happen on a vape pen cause I was using mine and the second time I used it the smoke started to smell like it was burning and I was wondering if it’s the coils

  • Posted by Rachel Harding on Nov 11, 2016

    Hi i have recently purchased a v box sub series and I’ve had it a week now and Im getting a watery staste and burna the back of my throat do I need a new coil and how often do i need to buy new coils? I see tutorials off ppl changing there own but I don’t want to start messing around with it please can you help me thankyou Rach

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