Why Does My Vape Taste Burnt? (Common Causes & Solutions)

Why Does My Vape Taste Burnt

Vaping is an enjoyable experience for many enthusiasts, but did you ever savor a delicious flavor of your vape only to be interrupted by an awful, repugnant taste of a dry hit? If you did, then you know how unpleasant it is.

I believe most vapers have experienced this, but why does your vape taste burnt? Continue reading to find out all about the possible causes and solutions for this annoying occurrence. The good news is, you can usually prevent it!

What Causes Burnt Taste When Vaping?

A burnt taste, or a dry hit, has multiple possible causes. It is a taste that is not only repulsive but also potentially dangerous for your health. Let’s see what are some things that can factor into your vaping device creating it.

1. Dry Wick

A wick is a part of your vape pen that absorbs the e-juice and delivers it to the coil, which then heats the liquid and produces vapor. Wicks are most frequently made of cotton because cotton is a highly absorbent material.

When your wick has not absorbed the liquid well, it won’t get to the coil when you take a hit. Therefore, you are essentially inhaling nothing, so you will only feel a metallic-like, burnt taste that comes from a hot coil.

2. E-Liquid Running Out

Another reason you may feel a burnt taste when you take a puff from your vape pen is if you don’t have enough e-liquid in your device. In that case, the wick won’t have enough oil to transfer to the coil, resulting in a dry hit.

3. Low-Quality E-Liquid

Using a high-quality e-liquid is as important as buying a high-quality vape pen. This is because many e-juices contain unnecessary sugars, additives, and contaminants that affect the overall vaping experience.

If your e-liquid is of low quality, the bad ingredients can stick to the wick and coil more easily, leading to a buildup and consequently a burnt taste.

4. Wrong E-Liquid

Even if you use high-quality e-juice, you may be using the wrong type for your specific vape pen. Apart from having different flavors, e-liquids also differ in density and the percentage of certain ingredients, such as propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin.

Depending on your vape pen’s wattage and other characteristics, some e-juices will be more suitable than others. Using the wrong type of oil may lead to a burnt taste over time.

Always check the manufacturer’s instructions on which type of liquid to use for your vaping device. If you are still not sure, consult an experienced vaper or a local vape shop.

High Wattage

5. High Wattage

Some vape pens have an option of adjusting the wattage at which you want to vape. Higher wattage is great for better vapor production and an enhanced flavor.

However, vaping at a high wattage can cause the coil to overheat. This in turn overheats the e-liquid and produces a burnt taste instead of vapor.

Another way a high wattage can cause dry hits is if the coil gets so hot that it burns the wick.

Also, coils are made of different materials, and some of them are more compatible with lower wattages, so using more power to heat the coil can lead to burning it.


6. Chain Vaping

If you are feeling stressed or if you just can’t get enough of your favorite vape flavor, you may start chain vaping. This is understandable, but don’t get too surprised when that dry puff hits you.

If you vape without taking a break between the puffs, or if you take puffs that are longer than around ten seconds, your device doesn’t have time to cool down. The coil can’t keep up with your demands and it overheats, leading to a burnt taste that you want to avoid.

7. Old Coil

A coil is one of the most important parts of your vape pen. It works whenever you take a hit, so it wears off pretty quickly, even when cared for properly. It’s crucial to clean and replace a coil regularly to have a consistently high-quality experience with your vape pen.

If you fail to do so, your coil may get burnt or worn out. In this case, it won’t be able to vaporize the e-liquid well enough, which can lead to dry hits.

8. Clogged Wick

One more reason you may experience a burnt taste when vaping is a clogged wick. A wick in your vape pen can become clogged over time due to certain ingredients in your e-juice, usually the sugary ones.

How To Prevent Burnt Taste When Vaping

How To Prevent Burnt Taste When Vaping

Now that you know all the possible reasons you sometimes feel dry hits, let’s talk about how to prevent them.

1. Prime Your Coil

Remember to prime the coil and wick before using your vape pen. Priming implies saturating a wick with e-liquid so it can transfer it to the coil which will then vaporize it.

The simplest way to do this is to wait for around 10 minutes to half an hour after filling your vape tank with e-juice and before taking the first hit. Shake the pen gently to allow the juice to reach the wick. Once the wick has absorbed the oil, you can start vaping.

2. Refill the Tank Promptly

Don’t let your vape tank get empty before filling it up again. The vape pen doesn’t even need to be completely empty for you to experience a dry hit. This is why it’s important to refill the tank promptly, whenever you see that you are running out of it.

3. Use High-Quality E-Liquid

Do your research before buying e-liquid for your vape pen. Make sure to use juice that contains only organic and high-quality ingredients. While good e-liquid can get expensive, it will be worth it, both for your pleasure when vaping and for your overall health.

4. Use Suitable E-Liquid

Apart from buying a good e-liquid, also make sure that it is compatible with the specific brand and model of your vape pen. You can find this information on the brand’s guidelines and instructions, or you can ask people who work in one of the nearby vape shops.

Use Appropriate Wattage

5. Use Appropriate Wattage

As mentioned, high wattage can damage your coil and cause dry hits. To avoid this, you should set your device to the appropriate power level suitable for your vape pen and coil, according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

If you decide to vape on a high wattage, you should allow your device to get used to the lower power first, and then slowly increase it until you reach the desired wattage.

6. Vape Slowly

As enticing as it is to chain vape when you are stressed, under the influence of alcohol, or just because you like it, you should take it slow for the sake of your device’s durability. Take shorter puffs and take longer breaks between them, unless you want to feel the awful burnt taste often.


7. Clean & Replace Coil Regularly

Your coil can overheat and produce a burnt taste for a multitude of reasons. To prevent this, you should clean it regularly – at least two times per month, and preferably once a week.

Cleaning a coil doesn’t take a long time, and you only need some warm water and soap. Mix the two and soak the coil in the solution for around half an hour. Rinse it with clean water and let it air dry for a few hours before putting it back into your vape pen.

When your coil becomes too dirty to be cleaned or too damaged, you will need to replace it. This can happen as soon as after a week but your coil can last for months if you maintain it well.

8. Switch to Disposable Vape

If you are tired of having to worry about wicks, coils, e-liquids, batteries, and all the other things that are relevant to vape pen maintenance, you can consider switching to disposable vapes.

Disposable vapes are considered to be a bit more expensive than reusable vape pens long-term, but if you are not a chain vaper, you probably won’t feel the difference in the price that much.

The advantage of disposable vapes is that you don’t have to worry about anything. They come pre-filled, pre-charged, and ready for you to use right away.

Disposable vapes can last for weeks, and sometimes even months, so you will not need to buy one every few days. There are a lot of brands with models that have more than 5 000 puffs in them. This equals more than 30 packs of cigarettes, so it is worth your money.


Experiencing a burnt taste when vaping is far from pleasant, but it is something that you can prevent if you take care of your device properly.

Dry hits usually happen because of a dry wick, e-liquid problems, high wattage, chain vaping, damaged coil, or clogged wick.

You can avoid dry hits by priming your coil, refilling the tank promptly using high-quality and suitable e-liquid, using appropriate wattage, vaping more slowly, and cleaning or replacing your coil regularly.

If you don’t want to bother with maintaining reusable vape pens, consider switching to disposable vapes – they are much more convenient!

I hope this helped answer your questions about that irritating burnt taste you sometimes experience. If not, please leave any questions you may have down below, and we will get back to you soon!


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