Vaping is an industry that is experiencing great growth. As people rush out to buy, the industry invests in innovative products that give users a great vaping experience. However, accompanying this are people hoping to take advantage of users by putting out market imitations and counterfeit, fake vape products.
While there are repercussions for buying any fake products, buying counterfeit vape products can cause serious harm and is a risk to public health. It is important that when purchasing your vape products that you buy them from a reputable vendor. How can you tell if your product is fake though?
There are plenty of ways to help you make the right decision when it comes to purchasing a vape product that isn’t a fake that could cause you potential harm. We cover what to look out for and why these counterfeit products are popping up on the market.
The Production of Fake Vape Products
While many vape products appear to be genuine, a lot of the time, they can be counterfeit vapes that lull consumers into a false sense of security. Due to how easy these products are to produce, they are usually very cheap in price which encourages people to buy them over other products that people may find to be too expensive.
A lot of these counterfeit products are sourced from plastic factories in China that haven’t been designed or developed to produce vapes. This means that there is no regard for quality control resulting in faulty products. Many consumers who think they are getting a good deal are usually people who don’t have the awareness of vaping brands and don't realise the regulations that are put in place to keep vaping devices safe to use.
Demand for these products is fuelled as many counterfeit vapes and accessories appear extremely similar to the ones sold by reputable companies, therefore making it harder to distinguish between the real thing and a fake one. This often happens amongst new vapers with little experience, who are looking for an affordable product.
This production is worrying to many professionals who work in the vaping industry, particularly those who are involved in the distribution of legal marijuana. Counterfeit vape goods can cause many issues for users and many business owners who are involved with selling genuine vape products campaign to further standardise the industry.
Using pre-filled vape cartridges that have been purchased from a brand that produces counterfeit goods can lead to serious health issues which can end up being long term. This is why it’s so important to purchase goods from reputable manufacturers and companies that follow safe standards.
The Issues with Buying Fake Vape Products
As mentioned above, investing in pre-filled vape cartridges that are counterfeit can have serious consequences for people’s health. A lot of the time, fake vape products are produced with low-quality metals or have lead soldering applied directly around their heating elements and coils.
When these heating elements or coils are heated, it results in them off-gassing, releasing toxic fumes - all from the lead soldering that has been exposed to heat.
If a vape is used regularly, this means that you will be regularly inhaling toxic fumes resulting in respiratory issues, allowing for elevated risk from other diseases as well. Research done in 2020 has shown that counterfeit vape cartridges contain multiple respiratory toxicants that aren’t found in CBD or other medical vape products.
Toxicants that were found in these counterfeit goods include solvent-based hydrocarbons that are volatile like butane and some semi-volatile hydrocarbons like decane and silicon-conjugated products that are sometimes used as cutting agents like pesticides, metals, biodegradable polyester, metals, and Vitamin E acetate.
Scientists also found that inhaling these chemicals in sufficient quantities could cause chest pain, nausea, diarrhoea, shortness of breath, vomiting, weight loss, fatigue, and fever in users. These symptoms are consistent for people who suffer from EVALI, an acronym for E-Cigarette or Vaping Product Use-Associated Lung Injury.
People who suffer from this debilitating disease struggle with day to day life and feel the effects of their condition daily. This has been shown in medical imaging scans from EVALI patients where the images are consistent with damage that is seen in lipoid pneumonia and chemical damage in lung tissue.
Another issue associated with using counterfeit products is that inhaling compounds or hydrocarbon solvents such as butane can severely damage the central nervous system as well.
If you are using cannabis products that are counterfeit, synthetic cannabinoids can be a problem. These are terrible for your health as it is incredibly easy to overdose on synthetic cannabinoids which can lead to death.
How to Tell if a Vape Product is Fake
If you are ever in the market to purchase a vape, it is important to do so from a reputable and regulated company or business. If you're unsure about a product, ask for the Certificate of Analysis.
This is a document issued by Quality Assurance that confirms that a regulated product meets its product specification and can help you make the right decision when buying vape products.
It is so important to buy from reputable suppliers and authorised companies. This is because it is incredibly hard to tell if a vape product is real or fake - particularly if you are using vape cartridges.
You can only know the concentration of any ingredient in a vape cartridge if it comes with a third-party lab report. This is something that any genuine manufacturer can offer their customers. It will show you exactly what is in it and what isn’t within it, things like solvents and heavy metals.
If you have a vaporiser that is non-disposable, one way of ensuring that a product isn’t fake is to stress test it. This means charging the battery fully, setting the temperature to its maximum and switching it on until the battery depletes. Don’t vape during this, just ensure that it is switched on throughout.
How to Stress Test Your Vape
As your vape battery depletes, ensure that you look out for certain issues. The first one being if your vape emits chemical smells. While manufacturing smells are usual initially for any vaporiser, if the vape is still emitting those odours within 30 minutes, that is a major sign that it is producing chemicals which are clearly not for consumption.
Test the battery by confirming that its life is congruent with what was advertised as its battery life according to the manufacturer. Due to wanting to make quicker and cheaper products, counterfeit products will be substandard, using a low-quality battery that will deplete significantly faster than well-known brands.
Another thing that every vape should have is a serial number. You can email a manufacturer to verify if you have the correct one which will confirm any issues for you. As long as you are buying from reputable companies, like KIX Vaping, you shouldn’t run into too many issues.
Check if your vaporiser has a serial number, and email the manufacturer to verify whether it is the real serial number.
How to Avoid Fake Vape Products
Vape cartridges have become one of the most popular components to be poorly manufactured on the black market, there are plenty of others which can have a negative impact on your vaping experience and your health. Never purchase your vape from a side street, always go to a reputable store.
E-liquids are another way people can be tricked into purchasing shoddy products. Again, ensure that you are always purchasing from a reputable company that is compliant with industry standards and you will have nothing to worry about. There are plenty of ways to pick good vapes.
If the cost of a vape or associated product is too good to believe then it probably is. Many vape components and accessories will have best before dates, and this will all be clear on the packaging - including the ingredients. Any business that cannot provide you with clear labelling is one that you will want to avoid.
Choose Genuine and Legitimate Products
Purchasing and using counterfeit and fake vape products not only destroys public health but it also has a deep impact on the economy. Support local businesses that comply with industry standards so that you can be confident you're bot putting additional strain on the body.
While this industry is relatively new and of course has close ties to the cannabis community, for those who inhale CBD and THC, it is becoming more regulated as standards are put into place. This will ensure that fake vape products become a thing of the past as people search for better and safer alternatives.
If you are interested in learning more about vaping or want advice on the best products available on the market, get in touch with KIX Vaping today. As a reputable company that only sells vapes from brands that comply with industry standards, we would be happy to help you on your vaping journey.