In this introductory article on using a marijuana vaporizer we will discuss the health benefits of using a vaporizer for your marijuana consumption as well as the 7 different options of vapes you can use.  We are ranked the best dispensary in crested butte and work hard to provide you educational information on how to consume marijuana safely. Please enjoy!

What is a Marijuana Vaporizer? Why put in the extra effort?

Simply put a marijuana vaporizer is a device that heats up herb without burning it.

VaporizersThis releases a greater amount of cannabinoids like THC (popular for recreational users) without the carcinogens that come with other means of smoking. We will cover the many different types of vaporizers for marijuana and why you should buy one for the health benefits.

Short answer: reduce the health problems of smoking paper while releasing more THC in often a more discreet fashion.

According to a 2003 study done by the California NORML and Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, “…vaporizers may therefore substantially reduce what is widely regarded as the leading health concern associated with marijuana, namely respiratory harm due to smoking.”

How Does a Vaporizer for Marijuana Work?


Handheld Vapes at Our Shop

It starts by internally heating the bud inside a chamber, usually within a heating cylinder. Heating the herb without combustion allows release of the maximum amount of THC and CBDs is into vapor rather than smoke.

There are 7 different types of marijuana vaporizers that have many different methods of heating the bud, wax, shatter, and oils. Prices range from $30 – $500 +

Why Use a Marijuana Vaporizer?

If used correctly, vaporizers are the most efficient way to smoke with a smooth high and are kind to your wallet.

An added benefit of using a vape is that the smell of the weed is significantly reduced. This is very useful if you are the type who likes to toke up on the move. After the inhaling part of your high is over, you can reuse the bud in a joint to release any other THC/CBD. Even though the vaporization process releases a fair amount of THC, there is still more.

Pro Tip: The left over marijuana is good for making special brownies or any other marijuana edibles.

Vaporizers significantly reduce the evidence of smoking and is healthier for your mouth and lungs.  As said above, vapes may reduce the faux pas that is associated with smoking. The study mentioned tested a device called the M1 Volatizer®, an aromatherapy vaporizer developed by Alternative Delivery Systems, Inc.

“Many medical marijuana patients say they prefer vaporizers because they deliver smoother, less irritating medication,” said Dale Gieringer, NORML California State Coordinator. Source

This study found that 3 of the most harmful carcinogens were eliminated: benzene, toluene, and naphthalene. The study also found that there was an elimination of smoke tar and carbon monoxide.

7 Types of Cannabis Vaporizers

1. Forced Air Vaporizers

tower-vaporizer Large “tower” style vaporizers designed for home use. Their name comes from the internal fan that sends a current of air through the internal heating chamber over the herbs and into either a balloon bag or whip for direct inhalation.

2. Whip-Style Vaporizers

A desktop vaporizer which plugs into an outlet, creating a convection current using a nichrome heating element inside a compact box shell. 

whip-vaporizerWith these vaporizers, the weed goes inside what is called the “wand” and rests gently over the heating element, which gets extremely hot. These are great starter vaporizers because they heat up quickly and it’s easy to see how much herb you have used used. Volcano vapes are great for parties or multiple use

These are very popular units for their ease of use. Patients can regulate the size of the intake they get by their breathing. The bigger/longer the inhale, the more air is pulled over the herbs and in the wand.

3. Portable Vaporizers


Quickdraw M1 Vaporizer

As opposed to forced-air and whip-style vapes which are all pretty similar in their aesthetics and construction, portable vapes come in a wide array of styles. 

Some feature internal batteries which have to be recharged from an AC or car charger, while others can be activated using a push-in battery. Examples we sell at our Colorado Marijuana Dispensary:

Firefly Portable Vaporizer Dr. Dabber Ghost Vaporizer

4. Pen Vaporizers

neos vape pen

NEOS Vape Pen

A subset of portable vaporizers which is best used with marijuana concentrates: essential oils or waxes. 

These are incredibly stealthy and easy to transport because of their resemblance to a pen or an e-cigarette. These devices make use of conduction currents because their heating elements or “atomizers” are coils which heat the material directly. They operate by screwing the heating chamber in to a rechargeable battery and are activated by using a small button on the side.

Be careful with pens that “claim” that they can vaporize regular bud. These devices are basically just glorified pipes that will reduce your bud to ash, burning them completely rather than simply vaporizing the active ingredients.

The most effective “pen vapes” are either dedicated oil vaporizers or wax vaporizers.

We highly recommend the NEOS Vaporizer Pen

5. Oil Vaporizers


Dr. Dabber Ghost Vaporizer

These devices are compatible with liquid concentrates such as butane hash  oil, or “BHO.” featuring either a cartomizer, a clearomizer, or a replaceable concentrate chamber.

A cartomizer is an attachment for vape pens that combines both the cartridge and the atomizer (heating coil) into one unit. They have filler material inside them that is similar to the filler found inside a standard atomizer cartridge.

A clearomizer is a cartridge devoid of filler material. They contain a metal tube that extends up the middle of the body. In certain clearomizers, the heating coil is attached to the top of the tube and sometimes it is at the bottom. In both cases, a fiber wick extends from the atomizing coil and this wick absorbs the liquid concentrate and carries it to the heating coil. In order to fill a clearomizer, the tip at the top must be removed and replaced before any inhalation is done.

Anytime you want to be able to vaporize all three with one device, you should use discrete dry chambers and liquid chambers.

Some oil vaporizers are also effective wax vaporizers; in fact most vaporizer pens are designed for full compatibility with either form of cannabis concentrate. Some vaporizer pens claim to work with herbs as well as oil and wax, but it’s generally not a good idea to mix.

6. Wax Vaporizers


Atmos Boss Vaporizer

These are delivery devices that are meant to be used with solid concentrates such as ‘budder,’ ‘errl,’ or ‘shatter.’

Similar to oil vaporizers, wax vaporizers run off of a rechargeable battery that heats a cartomizer or clearomizer; when the concentrate is heated in the tank, the concentrated THC and CBDs are released in a tasty vapor for direct inhalation.

7. Dry Herb Vaporizers

Previously the only materials that pens were really good for was waxes and oils.

cloud phantom

CloudV Phantom

Now with the advancement of vaporizer technology we have an entire new lineup of products available to consumers.

New products for dried herbs such as the G Pro Herbal and Pulsar Supernova are now allowing cannabis users to take advantage of the many added benefits that a vape pen provides, all while maximizing convenience and overall vaping satisfaction.

Marijuana Vaporizers as a Form of Aromatherapy

Interestingly, because of legalization, many spas are now using marijuana vaporizers as a form of aromatherapy. Doctors are also jumping on the band wagon and prescribing it to treat joint pain, PTSD, Multiple Sclerosis, cerebral palsy and glaucoma.

There are many reasons to try using a vape instead, but not matter what you use to consume, make sure you are aware of the marijuana laws in Colorado.


Research Sources