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High-Temperature Vs. Low-Temperature Dabbing - Which one is better?

Perhaps you're a dabbing connoisseur or new to dabbing, either way, a hot topic amongst herb dabbers is, "what is the right dabbing temperature?"

It comes down to a matter of personal preference but there are some important points to consider before making your choice. The first question that you need to ask yourself is what type of experience are you hoping to have? Are you looking for flavorful hits that last a long time or a more intense rush, with thick clouds of smoke? You will also want to factor in the type of concentrate you are dabbing with as well as your nail, or the dab pen that you are using. We will weigh out the pros and cons of dabbing at high vs. low temperatures, and you can decide for yourself.

Enails and regular nails.

Enail is short for an electronic nail, a device connected to a controller box that allows you to control the temperature of your nail while dabbing, with the touch of a button or dial. You can buy complete enail kits that have everything you need to get started. Some enails are portable and have a glass attachment that works as the dab rig. A dab rig is a device used to smoke oils or concentrates, people normally prefer glass rigs

To heat a regular nail you use a torch, which produces irregular temperatures that are impossible to control. Since the temperature is crucial, an inconsistent, uncontrolled temperature affects the dabbing experience.  

Dab Pens.

A dab pen has the same concept as the vape pen, only you add your concentrate (wax) into the heating chamber instead of adding a liquid (oil) into a cartridge. 

Dab pens usually come with adjustable heat settings and often heat up quickly in a matter of seconds. This feature makes it a great device to use on the go, you just have to find the heat setting that is best for you. Overheating can cause some adverse effects on the dabbing results. 

Dab pens work with atomizers and mouthpieces. The mouthpiece is used to inhale the concentrates while the atomizer serves as the heating element. 

Why does the temperature matter?

It all boils down to the terpenes. Terpenes are the compounds in cannabis that produce its unique smell and flavor. Terpenes are extremely sensitive to temperatures, so the temperature defines the experience, the flavor, and the effects that you receive from dabbing.

Dabbing at lower temperatures.

Some prefer to savor the flavor with a slower, longer-lasting dab session. The terpenes found in cannabinoids have a boiling point around 310 to 400°F. Sticking to a lower temperature gives you a rich, satisfying flavor without burning off terpenes and the general session lasts longer since the heating process is lower. Using lower temperatures is also easier on your lungs, and less likely to expose you to harsh toxins like methacrolein and benzene, which a new study shows can lead to cancer.

If you are using an enail to dab, a lower temperature is around 500° and 600°F.  If you are not using an enail, you should remove the heat once the nail starts to get red, then pause and allow it to cool for a few seconds before taking your next dab.

A good material for low temperature dabbing is quartz.  

PROS:

  • Lesser risk of exposure to toxins.
  • Enhanced flavor, not overwhelming.
  • Smoother hits that last longer.
  • Easier on your throat and less risk of burns.

CONS:

  • You will have to invest in carb caps to prevent oil wastage and help the nail retain heat.
  • The slower heating process leaves residue behind in your smoking apparatus, which means you will have to spend more time cleaning it out.
  • The process is slower between hits.

Dabbing at higher temperatures.

Some prefer the intense rush of dabbing at a higher temperature. There is less mess involved, but the taste can be pretty intense. Dabbers say using a high temp to dab leaves a char-like aftertaste in your mouth, but it produces thick clouds of smoke as opposed to vapors from low heat. 

High-temp dabbing is usually at around 750° to 1000°F (538°C).

Titanium nails are best for high temp dabbing, they heat/cool down faster and won’t crack from the high temperatures, making them the perfect choice. 

If you are using a regular titanium nail, set your torch to medium or the highest heat setting, once the nail is hot, remove the heat, grab your dab from your dab jar, and enjoy!

If you are using a titanium enail, most have adjustable heat settings, simply adjust your heat to the highest setting and proceed to use. 

PROS:

  • Intense rush associated with higher heat. 
  • The dab wax melts quickly regardless of the consistency.
  • No carb cap needed - less oil wastage.
  • A faster process, hit away! 
  • Thick clouds of smoke, opposed to vapor. 

CONS:

  • High heat burns off a lot of (CBD), THC, and terpenes.
  • Higher heat means you risk scorching your dab.
  • Recommended for people who have experience with chillums and hand pipes because of the harsh smoke.’

Conclusion

Whether you choose to dab at a high or low temperature depends on your preference, there are pros and cons to each one. Now that you have the information, you can easily select which method is best for your needs. Remember, take into account the type of experience you are looking to have and take into consideration the tools you are using. Enjoy your dabbing! 


 

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