When you start getting into the world of the bigger box mod vaping units, such as my recent purchase, the Kangertech Topbox Nano, and also the Pioneer 4 U iPV6x (which I still haven’t actually bought batteries for), you start getting a new realm of batteries. These really confused me at first, with loads of different numbers and digits in the name, and I think the confusion was what put me off these bigger units. If they had required a couple of AA batteries, for example, I probably would have been more inclined to try them earlier.
The first battery I bought was the Vaping Outlaws Vape Cell 18650 22A 2500mAh battery, and this was for the Kangertech Topbox Nano. The only reason I bought that particular battery was because it was offered to me as I placed my order. The UK ECIG STORE website told me I would need to order a battery as one wasn’t included with the starter kit, and I just picked the first one I liked the name of … I know I shouldn’t admit that, but we’ve all got to start somewhere, right?
To be honest, I don’t really have anything to compare the Vaping Outlaws Vape Cell to, so I can’t say whether or not it’s a “blinding” battery, or anything like that. That would be false advertising, and that’s not really what I’m about. What I can say, on the other hand, is that it works. It lasts about as long as I would expect it to last, bearing in mind it’s being used in a much more powerful model than I’m used to using. In fact, the Topbox Nano is the most powerful unit I’ve used to date. I’m still learning as I go, and in the world of vaping there seems to be a lot to learn!
The Vaping Outlaws battery I bought has never conked out on me. I’ve been using it for a few months now, and it seems to work just as well now as it did on the first day I started using it. I didn’t buy a “special” charger for it. Instead I charge it up within the unit, using the lead provided by Kangertech in the starter kit box. I don’t know if that’s the right or wrong thing to do … Perhaps someone could advise me?
Also … I was informed that when re-charging these 18650 batteries in your vaping unit, you don’t get a full charge. Almost full, but not quite. When you take the batteries out of your vaporiser, charging them up in a charging unit, and then putting them back into your vaping device, you will get a full charge, and therefore more lifecycles out of it. Just a heads up.
When I received the Pioneer iP6Vx, I figured I would do some research into the batteries. I needed two for a start, rather than just the one for the Kangertech model, so I wanted to make sure I was throwing my hard-earned cash on a battery that would actually be worth it.
There are three important factors to take into account when purchasing a battery for your new box mod, especially when you’re on the hunt for the best 18650 batteries:
1 – High Capacity
When you first start off your vaping journey, you’ll more than likely have started with something like the Vapouriz Fuse – simple, cheap, and effective. This will have a relatively small battery – only about 650mAh or so, and with cigalikes like this Smoko design, the battery will be even smaller capacity still – 150mAh perhaps?
With a Smoko cigalike at 150mAh, I would say that you’d get about an hour and a half’s worth of regular puffing. With a Vapouriz Fuse at 650mAh, I would say that you’d get about six and a half hour’s worth of regular puffing. That’s not a dead-cert, but roughly, that’s pretty much what I’ve found it to be. That’s what I’ve always worked it out as, and that method has always worked fine for me.
The best 18650 batteries for vaping are going to need to have a much higher capacity than that. These box mods use vaster quantities of power to give you those bigger clouds, and I soon realised that when I got my Vapouriz Sub Tank. It was a 1,000mAh battery, and with a ‘regular’ tank – the Aspire Nautilus Mini, for example, I would get about 9 to 10 hours of use out of it, give or take. When I popped that Sub Tank on there, and started using sub-ohm liquid, I was only getting an hour or two’s worth of use out of it. The battery life was significantly decreased.
My Vaping Outlaws battery is a 2,500mAh capacity 18650 battery, which is pretty high, but not the highest you can go. You might think that opting for the biggest mAh capacity is the best option … but it’s not. I’ll get to that in a moment.
The biggest 18650 battery I’ve found is by Panasonic and it’s a 3,400mAh capacity. You can find that HERE.
But … should you buy it?
2 – High Current Rating
Here’s the bad news … You can get yourself a super-high capacity battery, like the 3,400mAh from Panasonic, and that’s great. However, it won’t have a high current rating, another important feature for the best 18650 batteries.
Now … this took me some figuring out, I’ll be honest. In fact, there wasn’t very many men in my phonebook I didn’t call in an attempt to understand all this voltage, amp, and wattage stuff. This is why it’s taken me so long to finally step up and start taking a peek at these bigger vaping units. They intimidate me. There I said it.
I think I’ve worked it out that the ‘A’ is this current rating, and you’ll want it to run at the highest ‘A’ possible – amps. So, for example, the larger Panasonic 3,400mAh battery only runs at about 6A, but my Vaping Outlaws battery runs at 25A. The Aspire 18650 battery (from UK ECIG STORE) has a much higher 40A, but the capacity is only 1,800mAh. In short, if you want a higher capacity you’re going to be sacrificing the A – current rating, and if you want a higher current rating, you’re going to be sacrificing on capacity. You need to find a decent midway point between the two, so going with the 2,500mAh 25A battery from Vaping Outlaws wasn’t a bad choice. It’s not often I get it right (ish) first time, so I’m going to go right ahead and give myself a little pat on the back for that one, if that’s okay?
For the record, the Vaping Outlaws 2,500mAh 18650 Vape Cell actually has 11 reviews on UK ECIG STORE, with an average rating of 4.9 out of 5. That’s quite impressive, right? (I thought so.)
3 – Operating Temperature
Obviously when you’re running a lot of power through a battery, it’ll have a tendency to get warm, but you don’t want it to get too hot that it poses a serious threat. Batteries that overheat can explode, vent, burst, and generally be dangerous to your health, and those around you. As a general rule, good quality, brand-named batteries are the most reliable, and therefore the best 18650 batteries for vaping.
The Best 18650 Batteries for Vaping
So … I’ve done my research into what I think are the best 18650 batteries for vaping, although I’m sure there are plenty who would disagree with me. I’m definitely open to advice and information though, so if you have any experience with these 18650 batteries yourself, feel free to share them in the comments below. You can also get in touch via the powers of social media, and you can find all the links here.
If you’re looking for a super high discharge, one of the best batteries I’ve seen is the Aspire 18650 1,800mAh battery, £7.99 from UK ECIG STORE. It runs comfortably up to 40A, and when I last checked, it had received 9 reviews on Amazon, scoring 4.7 out of 5 stars.
If you want to combine a decent current rating with an impressive capacity, the LG 18650 HE4 2,500mAh 35Amp battery isn’t a bad one to go for, £8.69 on UK ECIG STORE or £10.89 for two on Amazon.
If you’d rather have more capacity than current rating, the Vaping Outlaws one that I went for isn’t a bad choice, and you could also look at the Samsung INR18650-25R 2,500mAh battery, £8.99 from UK ECIG STORE. You’ll be looking at about 25A for that one.
If those aren’t high enough for you, one battery that I’ve seen plenty of rave reviews for is the LG HG2 30A 3,000mAh 18650 battery. It states that it’s good for 20A for continuous drainage (good for those who like to chain-puff), and also 30A for pulse (on / off) use. I’m going to be honest, I’m pretty sure this is the battery I’m going to use for my Pioneer 4 U iPV6x. In case you want to check them out for yourself, you can find one battery here for £7.98, two batteries here for £14.98, three batteries here for £22.18, and even four batteries here for £27.49 with a battery case included. I’ll let you know how I get on with mine once I order them … unless you’ve tried them and didn’t rate them highly?
I’ll add to this list as and when I come across the best 18650 batteries for vaping worth talking about. If you have any that you think I’ve missed out and deserve a shot, feel free to let me know. I’m still learning so any advice will be gratefully received!
Safety Note: Don’t mix and match vaporiser batteries, especially 18650 batteries. If you need a device with two or more batteries, make sure that they are batteries that you bought, and then started using, at the same time. Don’t use an old battery with a new one in the same device. You should also ensure that you are buying your batteries from a reliable source. Re-wrapped batteries are often batteries that haven’t quite made the standards set by the likes of Samsung and LG, but are still deemed “safe enough” to use. Be wary because there are lots of ‘fakes’. You wouldn’t buy a cheap ‘knock-off’ car battery, so don’t use a cheap ‘knock-off’ vaporiser battery either. You’ve heard those stories of exploding in pockets and handbags? Nine times out of ten those cases are caused by a user error – incorrect batteries, etc.
*Prices & information correct at time of writing.