Different Types of Vape Cartridges (Ultimate Guide)

different types of vape cartridges

Without a doubt, vape cartridges have revolutionized how we consume nicotine, cannabis, and other flavored chemicals. These battery-operated vape carts that house concentrated cannabis concentrates offer a user-friendly, discrete, and non-messy way to consume cannabis on the go.

Vape cartridges are broadly classified into two; based on their delivery system and prefilled concentrates. Based on their delivery system, the available types include the 510 Thread, Disposable Pens, and Device Specific Cartridges. Whereas based on the prefilled concentrates, there are distillate oil, live resin, live rosin, and full spectrum oil cartridges.

Here, together with getting acquainted with the different types of vape carts, you’ll get to know how to choose the best type for your needs. 

Types of Vape Cartridges Based on Their Delivery System

From expert knowledge, we’ve gathered that three types of vape cartridges are available based on the delivery system used. Although similar in several ways, these cartridges house features that differentiate them from one another.

1. The 510 Thread Vape Cartridge

The 510 thread is one of the most common cartridge types available in the vape cartridge market. It is so named because of the 510mm thread beneath the cartridge system that connects to the vaporizer battery. 

We found this cartridge type to fit the vaping needs of regular vapers because many cartridge types are disposable. Others have the refill or recharge option to ensure continuous usage.

Finally, for easy identification, these carts often come in a small cylindrical shape that fits into the pen vape they are best compatible with for an effortless vaping experience.


  • This cartridge type is compatible with many vape pen brands since many use the 510mm thread connector. 
  • Replacing it is easy since it’s readily available in different stores. 



2. Disposable Vape Pens

As the name suggests, disposable vape pens were created for one-time use. Embedded in them are the cannabis extract, mouthpiece, and battery. Unlike other vapes,  you do not have to charge or fill these disposables during or after use; enjoy your smoke and recycle when done. 

Although tagged as one of the most convenient ways to vape, the use of disposable vape pens is discouraged because it promotes waste and does not allow for an optimal user experience. Additionally, you will find that additional features present with other cartridge types are absent when it comes to these disposables.


  • It is suitable for consumers looking to try a new flavor or for a one-time vaping experience.


  • Disposable pens are not the most durable since they only get produced for one-time use.


3. Device-Specific Cartridges

Device-Specific Cartridges

You would be pleased to know that several cartridges are explicitly designed to work with a particular device. A typical example is the PAX brand which creates pax-era pods that specifically work with their battery brand. This limits the use of these cartridges since they are incompatible with popular vapes. 

They are also referred to as proprietary connections and are only available from a licensed retailer. One good deal with these cartridges is that they offer the consumer an optimal vaping experience because they offer better flexibility than the other types. 

You’ll find it relatively easy to tell these pod cartridges from other types because, unlike the cylindrical shape of the other carts, the pods have a box-shaped design called a squatter. 


  • They offer specialized features such as control over the temperature, which makes them more desirable.


  • They do not offer flexibility; you can only use them with a designated vaporizer brand.


Types of Prefilled Concentrates (Extracts) you Will Find in Vape Cartridges

The vape cartridge’s purpose is to house cannabis extracts. However, it is possible that the cartridges’ content can vary. Here we’ve compiled different vape cartridges based on the prefilled concentrates.

1. Distillate Oil

Distillate oil is formed through a CO2 distillation process, which involves the extraction of desired cannabinoids from source plants. The result is a distillation with CBD or THC potency of 99%. Consumers who know the compounds they want usually go for such oils.

The extraction process of this oil is quite efficient, so much so that it strips away the cannabis flavor and other plant compounds like the terpenes from the source plant. In cases like this, terpenes get injected back into the concentrate to improve the taste and texture after extraction.

The ability to do this is possible thanks to extractors who researched and found the best way to preserve and reintroduce the terpenes into the extract after the distillation process. Additionally, distillate oil is quite popular and makes up 60%+ of the total cannabis vape sales.

Oils produced through this process carry a pure golden color after extraction, so identifying them should be easy for consumers looking to purchase them.


2. Liquid Live Resin

Liquid Live Resin

Arguably the best quality extract. The live resin’s cost and value sets it apart from other cannabinoids due to the delicate process invested when harvesting these concentrates.

This concentrate gets filtered from fresh, flash-frozen cannabis to ensure that the terpenes and the cannabis oil get preserved in the most natural way. By doing this, you create a high-quality and full-spectrum cannabis concentrate hence the value and cost.

Furthermore, the butane hash oil (BHO) extraction method involves using butane to clean up the cannabis plant before extracting it together for oil production. 

As a result of the high terpene and plant compound inside the cartridge, you will find that these oils have a darker color. The quality of this oil may be at the whole spectrum in terms of flavor, but you should know that in terms of potency, it will not be the same as the distillate.


3. Live Rosin

Don’t worry; this is not a typo. These oil types are the smallest range of cartridge oil; however, they are also a fast-growing category of cannabis extract.

Many, especially health-conscious consumers, call this type solventless oil as it differs from the life resin in terms of the temperature and method used in extracting it. As opposed to lower temperatures, this category involves the application of heat and pressure to extract oil from the fresh plant.

If you are looking for the concentrate with the purest extraction methods, live rosin extract is the one. However, the produce from extraction is tiny when compared to other types, which makes it quite expensive. Not to mention that this extraction method makes the plant flavor very pronounced, and not all consumers are fond of the such flavor. 


4. Full Spectrum Oil

As the name suggests, this type of oil envisages all the compounds found in your desired cannabis strains, whether Indica or Sativa. This extract carries cannabinoids and terpenes of the same grade as those found in the source cultivar.

Consumers that opt for oils of this kind usually experience the entourage effect as a result of all the compounds in the cape working together and taking full effect on the user.

In addition, the content of a full-spectrum oil will include THC, CBD, terpenes, and other cannabinoid compounds present in the original plant source. The buzz the full spectrum concentrates creates is second to none.


How to Choose a Vape Cartridge?

There are some crucial factors to consider when choosing a vape cartridge.

  • The functionality of the vape which relies on the battery type and 
  • User preference, which determines your experience while vaping.

1. Battery Type

The vape’s battery type is one undebatable factor that you must put into consideration when choosing a vape cartridge. The battery must be compatible with the vape cartridge for functionality. The only time the battery type would not be considered is if you are dealing with a disposable vape.

When choosing a battery type for your vape cartridge, whether a 510 cartridge or a device-specific one, your choice will depend on the ease of access. The 510 batteries are more accessible and widespread, so it is easier to get one around.

However, device-specific batteries are harder to come by but offer far more exciting features than the standard 510 cartridges. So, you may want to purchase a vape cartridge depending on the battery type most accessible to you.

2. User Experience/Preference

Another vital factor to consider when choosing a vape cartridge is the user experience and preference. The consumer’s experience can be determined by the ratio of THC to CBD, depending on what the consumer wants.

If you want a light buzz, a 50:50 ratio works. Still, for more intoxication, you should go for a cartridge with a higher THC level for a maximum user experience. Terpenes also affect the user’s experience, so when picking a vape cartridge, you should consider the experience you are looking to have.

Final Thoughts

Your preferred choice of vape cartridges depends on the type that gives you the best experience. It makes it wise that you are familiar with the common types of vape carts, which helps you make an informed decision.

Whether you are a first-timer, one-timer, or regular, you must consider the features of the vape cartridge and the cannabis oil in your cartridge to pick the best one to suit the desired experience.


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