Picture this—you just finished a long, stressful day at work and are looking forward to unwinding with that first puff of vapor with your favorite vape pen. But as soon as you’re ready to take one, you click down on the pen and see an ominous light that blinks three times.
Now, you might panic because no vapor will come out. But relax; this doesn’t mean that your favorite vape pen is broken—at least it’s not likely. Most of the time, a vape pen will blink 3 times to let you know that there’s something wrong with it. Often, you’ll be able to fix the issue easily.
Today, we’re going to talk about the reasons that might cause a vape pen to blink 3 times, how to fix them, and what you can do moving forward to prevent the issue from happening again.
Common Issues With A Vape Pen Blinking 3 Times
1. Your vape pen is low on battery
On many vape pen models, pushing the button and seeing the vape blinking three times can mean that the vape pen battery is very low. Your vape brand’s manual should mention how to properly tell if your battery is running low, but a blinking vape light is a tell-tale sign of this.
This is the most common reason for a blinking vape pen. To know for sure that the blinking light is because of a vape battery issue, do this simple trick.
First, take your vape tank out of the battery. Set it aside before hitting the power button of the pen again. Did your pen still blink three times? If yes, then you know for sure that the issue is related to the battery, not the e-liquid or the internal components of the pen.
What to do to fix it:
If your pen shows a blinking light and you’ve done the test above to make sure it’s related to the battery, then your vape pen is in need of a charge. Grab your USB charger and simply find the port on your pen to plug it into.
Oftentimes, the charging port of the vape pen is at its rear end. For other brands, the port is located under a cap or rubber plug that you have to unscrew.
Luckily, charging a vape pen doesn’t take that long. After just a full hour, your vape pen will get a full recharge. Around 60-80 minutes on the plug will give it maximum battery life again, allowing you a good amount of usage.
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2. There’s an issue with the internal connection
Another reason why your vaping device might be blinking three or more times is that there’s an issue with the electrical circuit within your pen.
See, your vape pen has an atomizer coil inside that is supposed to be connected to the battery. If there is a poor battery connection, your device won’t release vapor into the air, and it will signal that to you with a blinking vape pen light.
Remember how we tested if the issue with your pen’s blinking has to do with the battery? It works the other way, too. If you remove the vape cartridge from the battery and the light no longer blinks when you press the trigger button, it means that there isn’t a good connection internally.
What to do to fix it:
Troubleshooting a vape pen with a bad battery connection can be tricky for first-timers. If you can, enlist the help of an experienced vaper to fix the connection between your battery threads and the atomizer coil.
Here’s what you have to do. First, pry open the battery with a flathead screwdriver. Then, lift the connection plate (aka that small metal circle near the highest point of your battery). You can use the screwdriver to do that again since it can be difficult to maneuver the plate with your fingers.
Your goal is to lift the plate enough so that the battery threads aren’t squished to the very bottom, which could be the cause of the bad connection. Once you’re done adjusting the plate and battery threads, reassemble your vape pen and hit the activate button to see if the problem is solved.
Want to see a more technical explanation of how to fix your vape’s atomizer and coil connection? Check out this video:
There are also times when you’ll be lucky enough to fix the issue just by loosening the vape tank with a subtle twist. If the vape tank is screwed onto the device too tight, it could cause a bad connection. Unscrewing it and putting it back on can be a quick fix for this issue too.
3. Your vape pen is short-circuiting due to damage
Most brands of vapes have a built-in auto-shutoff feature that automatically short-circuits the pen if it’s been damaged in some way. That protection feature ensures that the user is safe against accidents related to a faulty vape pen.
This so-called short-circuit protection function can be caused by water damage to the vape. If you’ve recently accidentally dropped your vape in a puddle or your shower, it’s most likely the cause of your vape pen light blinking so much.
Though it’s possible to salvage your vape pen by tinkering with and cleaning the internal parts of the device, it’s more advisable to simply retire your vape pen and purchase a new one just to be safe.
What to do to fix it:
If you damaged your vape pen with water, you can try to blow all the water out. Just blow air through the vape pen to force the moisture out. To make sure water is indeed coming out, place some tissue paper or a paper towel by the lower vent of the pen.
You can also simply drop your vape pen in a bowl of uncooked rice and leave it there overnight. The rice will suck the water out of the pen and hopefully get it all dried when you check on it the next morning.
4. You took an extremely long puff on your pen
If you’re smoking cannabis with your vape pen, there might be times when you’re so in the moment that you accidentally take way too long of a puff on your pen.
Whenever you take a hit on your pen, the vape coil produces heat. If your inhalation lasts way too long, your pen will be prone to overheating. So, the pen automatically short circuits to keep it from happening, leaving the light blinking three times to signal that it has shut off on its own.
Standard e-cig batteries will consider a puff that lasts over 10 seconds already too long. To get a more accurate idea of how long is too long for your specific vape pen brand check the device’s user manual.
What to do to fix it:
If you got carried away with puffing too long, let your device sit and rest for a while so it can recover from the short-circuiting. It may not allow you to take a hit immediately after, so wait a few seconds before trying again.
When you do, make sure you take shorter puffs. That said, be sure not to make your puffs too fast. otherwise, you may end up coughing.
5. There’s a transportation defect, like a leak
Although it’s not one of the most common reasons vaporizers blink, a defect from transportation can definitely be a cause of that pesky, anxiety-inducing light. It’s sad but true—sometimes, you’ll see that blinking light before you even puff on your pen for the first time.
Several reasons can cause your vape pen to be faulty straight from the retailer. Most of the time, it’s because of a leakage.
If the shipping process of your newly purchased pen exposes it to air pressure fluctuations, the vape juice can leak and ooze into the internal components of the device. This can damage the different connection points within the device, rendering it useless and broken.
What to do to fix it:
Sadly, this problem is kind of out of your control. It’s not easy to fix an incredibly damaged vape pen from a leak. We don’t recommend you keep a pen that’s been damaged by leakage of liquid.
If you’ve kept the receipt of your pen purchase, you can go to the store and have it replaced. If they don’t do returns, we highly suggest you invest in a brand-new one instead of forcing the broken device to work.
Although there are many reasons why you’ll find a vape pen blinking 3 times, how to fix the issue differs depending on the culprit of the error.
Sometimes, all you have to do is recharge your device. Other times, you must be more hands-on and technical with it as you pry open its connection plates and rearrange the battery threads or coil. And if you’re unlucky, it might be out of your control, like a transportation defect from the retailer.
If you’re not sure why your vape pen is blinking that much, remember this list of possible issues and how to troubleshoot your device. Hopefully, one of these will work for you and get you back to puffing that relaxing vapor again.
Have any more ideas why a vape pen could be blinking three times or more? Share your experience and other vape tips in a comment down below to help fellow vape lovers!