I’m working on some articles that require a bit more research before I can sit down and start writing. Because of the amount of research required I am actively scanning literally hundreds of news sites for stories about e-Cigarettes and Vaping on a daily basis. There are several topics that have come up in these stories that annoy me every bit as much as the distortions and lies the media tells. So, I’ve decided that a rant about common sense vaping is in order.
This is a rant about two specific topics: handling / storing e-Liquids, and handling batteries safely. These are two topics that are extremely important for all vaper’s.
First up is battery safety. I read a couple of stories recently about batteries “exploding” or “catching fire”. One such article was this: Fire service warn against leaving e-cigarettes on charge after several devices explode.
Now, I get it that accidents happen. But this article documents three incidents within a single month, in the same region. Of course, even then it could still just be a coincidence, right? I was thinking that at first, until I read this part and got extremely annoyed:
One fire crew was called to a property in Conway Grove, Cheadle, at 7.00pm on March 29, where the residents had left their device charging for nine hours.
NINE HOURS? NINE HOURS!!
If these were cig-a-like batteries, they should have charged in under three hours (typically two hours). If they were 18350’s it would also likely have been a maximum of three hours. 18500’s typically take three to four hours, and 18650’s typically need four to five hours (although I’ve had one take close to six hours). So how in the world did someone leave their battery on a charger for nine hours???
I can only think of two scenarios that could answer this. The first is ignorance. The person charging the battery was not aware that they needed to watch how long it took to charge the battery, and not leave it on longer than required to charge it. Now, it could be argued that if that person got their battery from a store that didn’t explain how to properly explain how to handle it that it wasn’t their fault. Or they could have gone to a website and bought it without any instructions on how to handle the battery.
But, I call BS on both of those excuses. The long and short is, these are technologies that aren’t like our cell phones. They don’t have all the safety bells and whistles that a phone or other electronic device has. And, especially if you are using a larger mod (like a SiD or ProVari), or a mech mod, it is on the owner of the device to know and understand what they are doing, and how to properly handle their equipment. There are tons of resources all over the internet for this equipment. There is no excuse to not go out and make certain that you have all the knowledge necessary to handle them properly.
The other scenario that explains the nine hours is: a faulty battery or faulty charger. But again, this comes into the situation where you have to know the equipment, and make certain you are handling it safely.
It’s been noted many times over that one of the sure signs of a battery dying is if it takes longer to charge than it has previously. At first you might not notice it. But by the time you have it on the charger for an additional 20-30 minutes beyond the normal charge time, it is time to start suspecting you have a bad battery. If several of your batteries are taking longer than they had previous taken to charge, you might suspect that your charger is having issues.
Basically all three of these things should set off alarm bells or fireworks for a vaper. Yes, it is possible to have an isolated incident, but if an isolated incident starts becoming a trend, then it needs to be investigated.
Nicotine Is Still A Poison
Despite emerging research that we may not have properly judge lethal dosages of nicotine in the past, there has been nothing that really refutes that it is a poison. More than that, there are other side affects of nicotine such as raising your heart rate, blood pressure and metabolism. (Simple Nicotine and Scientific / Chemistry entries from Wikipedia).
Now, most of the news media has talked about their being more calls to poison control centers regarding nicotine fluids. And the media has greatly mis-represented the amount of nicotine that most e-Liquids contain (which are typically about the same levels of nicotine found in various brands / strengths of tobacco cigarettes).
However, there are reported cases of children being exposed to nicotine fluids. Here is one of them: Child poisoned by ingesting liquid nicotine. Now, despite the stupidity of Lee Cantrell’s statement, the spin of the story by the reporter is correct, at least in part:
It is important for parents to be conscious of where they leave their liquid nicotine…
This is not the responsibility of manufacturers. It is not the responsibility of retailers. It is the responsibility of parents, guardians, siblings, or anyone that is around children.
If you were a smoker, would you have ever left your cigarettes where you kids could get to them? If you did leave them out in the open, and did it knowing that a child could have access to it you were not using common sense. You were not taking your responsibility seriously.
If you had drugs or medication around, did you leave laying about in non-childproof containers? Did you leave it where children could have access to it? Did you do this knowingly? If you did, you were not taking your responsibility seriously.
If you have household cleaning supplies that have poison(s) in them, or are known to be poisonous, did you leave them someplace where children could get to them? Again, if you did so, and did it knowingly you were not being a responsible parent and/or guardian.
e-Liquids are no different from any of these substances. It is a poison. It is serious fluid. It needs to be stored where children cannot get to it. It needs to be stored in childproof containers. If necessary, you may have to lock it up someplace. Would you leave a loaded gun out in the open, or would you put it in a locked cabinet? I sure as hell hope you would lock it up – there have been documented cases of children picking up guns and accidentally shooting others.
A Rant About Common Sense Vaping
Okay, that pretty much wraps up my rant. I just get angry when I read things that really fall into the range of common sense that people seem to be ignoring. Despite the convenience and improvements that many of us are experiencing using e-Cigaettes and Vaping devices we have to have respect for them. We have to make certain that we have the knowledge, and take the safety precautions necessary with them.
So, for the tl;dr types, here’s the summary:
- Know how long to charge a battery
- If you notice it taking longer than before, you need to check out the charger and battery, likely one of them is failing
- e-Liquids are poisons, no matter the emerging research
- e-Liquids should be treated the same as tobacco cigarettes, medicines, cleaning solutions and weapons
- e-Liquids should be stored in places where children will not have access to them.
- If all else fails, you may need to lock up your e-Liquids to keep them away from kids
Now, don’t make me write about common sense stuff like this again. If you didn’t like this article, I didn’t like writing it ten times more than you didn’t like reading it. I feel like the Hulk: don’t make me rant, you won’t like me when I rant.