A lot of e-liquid ships in plastic bottles, so it doesn’t seem right that plastics can be damaged by e-juice, but it does happen. The two factors are the type of plastic and the flavoring used in the liquid.
Reports from the field talk about plastic tanks, which are often made of polycarbonate, developing cracks or even melting from certain flavors – but not from others. Anise is one of the flavors associated with cracking tanks due to a reaction between anise and propylene glycol (PG). Others have reported that allspice, banana, cinnamon, citrus, cloves, cola, licorice, nutmeg, essential oils, and strong menthol flavors also have problems with plastic tanks. (Mt Baker Vapor has a lengthy list of its flavors that have reacted with plastic tanks.)
Further, chemical reactions take place more rapidly when heat is applied, to vaping with a hotter coil will impact the longevity of polycarbonate tanks with acidic flavors.
This is a chemical reaction between certain types of plastic and acidic e-juice flavors, which have been given the name tank crackers. Since your lungs are not made of plastic, tank crackers should have no impact on your lungs.
Polypropylene and Polyethylene Are Safe
If you buy e-juice in plastic bottles, odds are those bottles are made of polypropylene or polyethylene, types of plastic that are far safer than polycarbonate.
Use Glass or Pyrex
Because most people vape with nicotine, you should consider Pyrex or glass tanks instead of polycarbonate ones for acidic flavors. The last thing you want is your nicotine-laden e-juice leaking all over your hands or in your pocket. If you are using a plastic tank and it gets hazy or develops cracks, get rid of it before it leaks.
Another advantage of glass and Pyrex over plastic is that they can be cleaned completely, but plastics can absorb some of the flavors you use and throw off the taste of the next flavor you try. This is also a reason to clean your coils after using sweeter or heavier e-juice. See How Long Should My Coils Last? for tips on cleaning coils.
- Why Some E-Liquids Crack Plastic Clearomizer Tanks, Cloud Nine
- E-Juice Flavors That May Break a Plastic Tank, Mt Baker Vapor
- If Some E-juice Deteriorates Plastic, Then Is It Safe for My Lungs?, e-cigarette-forum.com
- What Causes Some E-Liquids to Damage Tanks?, The Vape Mall
4 Ways Your Vape Juice Can Be Affecting Your Tank and Remedies, Dollar Vape Club
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