510 Vape Pens: The Ultimate Guide to Understanding and Using Them

510 Vape Pen Ultimate Guide

The 510 vape pen is probably the most popular type of vaporizer on the market today – so if you’re thinking about buying your first vape, there’s a very good chance that a 510 vape pen or a 510-thread battery will be the first device you choose.

Before you jump in and spend your money, though, it’s wise to have a basic understanding of what you’re getting and how you can expect your new device to work. That way, you can be certain that you’re buying the right vaporizer for your needs. When your device arrives, you’ll have a good idea of how to use it and can begin enjoying your vape right away.

This is your ultimate guide to 510-thread vape pens. Reading it, you’re going to learn what these popular vaporizers are and how to use them. You’re also going to learn what to do if your vape pen doesn’t work as it should. By the time you’re done reading, you’re going to be an expert.

What Are 510 Vape Pens?

What Are 510 Vape Pens

The term “vape pen” generally refers to any vaping device with a narrow and cylindrical shape. Traditional vape pens like the CCELL® M3 somewhat resemble ballpoint pens, and that’s how the name came about. The term has become so popular in recent years, though, that it can now refer to almost any small vaping device of any shape.

The term “510” is a little more complicated. It refers to the type of threading that’s used to attach a vape cartridge to the device. In the past, there were several different types of threads for vaping devices, and they were all physically incompatible with one another. Today, though, virtually every vaping device on the market that works with threaded attachments uses the 510 thread.

Why are 510 vape pens so popular? It all comes down to a few reasons.

  • They’re widely available, and you can find them in a huge variety of appealing designs.
  • They’re typically very small and discreet. You can easily carry a 510 vape pen in your pocket and wrap your entire hand around it during use.
  • They’re simple and easy to use. A 510 vape pen will either activate automatically when you puff on it, or it’ll have a simple button-based control system.
  • They’re compatible with a wide variety of attachments. When you shop for the best vape cartridges on the market, you’ll have no trouble finding one that exactly fits your needs.

What Are the Parts of a 510 Vape Pen?

A standard 510 vape pen like the Cloak battery consists of four main components. They are:

The Battery

The battery is the main section of the device. It supplies power to the atomizer coil, and it also controls the vape pen’s safety features and other functions.

The Cartridge

The cartridge stores the vape pen’s oil supply, and it also includes the other two components listed below.

The Mouthpiece

The mouthpiece is the component of the cartridge that goes into your mouth when you vape. People have very individualized preferences when it comes to vaping, so mouthpieces come in a variety of materials such as metal, wood, plastic and ceramic. They also come in several different shapes.

The Atomizer Coil

The atomizer coil is the metal component in the center of the ceramic cylinder at the bottom of a vape cartridge. When an electrical current passes through the atomizer coil, the coil becomes hot and vaporizes the oil in the cartridge. An atomizer coil is either made from wound resistance wire or from a strip of metal mesh.

How Does a 510 Vape Pen Work?

How Does a 510 Vape Pen Work

As we described above, the basic role of a vape pen is to manage the delivery of power from the battery to the device’s atomizer coil. When you puff on your device or press the fire button, the vape pen’s safety circuit confirms that the battery’s remaining voltage is sufficient. It also confirms that the cartridge doesn’t have a short circuit. If the vape pen isn’t safe to use, the light will blink. This process is nearly instant. Otherwise, the vape pen sends power to the cartridge, and the atomizer coil heats up.

A vape cartridge has a ceramic cylinder that absorbs the oil from the cartridge and holds it close to the atomizer coil. When you vape, the atomizer coil vaporizes the oil held in the ceramic cylinder. The cylinder then absorbs more oil from the cartridge’s reservoir. This process continues until the cartridge runs out of oil – at which point, you’ll refill or replace the cartridge – or until the battery dies. When the battery dies, you’ll recharge it.

Choosing the Right Cartridge for Your 510 Vape Pen

With such a wide variety of vape cartridges on the market today, you might find it difficult to choose the right cartridge for your 510 vape pen if you have no previous vaping experience. We’ve devoted an entire guide to choosing the best vape cartridges elsewhere on this site, but here’s a summary that can help you make the right choice.

  • For oil vaping, you should always use a vape cartridge with a ceramic core. The CCELL® ceramic core is extremely effective for absorbing thick oil-based concentrates.
  • Choose between a pre-filled or refillable cartridge. Pre-filled cartridges are convenient because they’re available in many dispensaries. Once a pre-filled cartridge is empty, though, it can’t be refilled. Refillable cartridges give you more choices, and they’re also more economical in the long run.
  • Choose between a plastic- or glass-walled cartridge. Cartridges with plastic enclosures tend to be cheaper and more durable, but many people believe that glass cartridges have superior flavor quality.
  • Choose the mouthpiece material and shape. The material affects the way that the mouthpiece feels against your lips, and the shape affects the dispersal of the vapor on your palate. With experience, you’ll learn what your preferences are.

One of the most important aspects of shopping for a vape cartridge is making sure that the cartridge will fit your vape pen. In some cases, a 510 vape pen may have threading that’s hidden inside the body of the device. A vape pen with this design won’t work with wide cartridges. When you buy your vape gear here, though, you can buy with confidence because all Hamilton Devices and CCELL® vape pens work with all of the CCELL® cartridges sold on this site.

How to Fill a 510 Vape Cartridge

Fill 510 Vape Pen Cartridge

If you’re going to use a refillable vape cartridge with your 510 vape pen, you’ll need to fill the cartridge with oil before you can begin vaping. We have a detailed article on how to prime and fill a vape cartridge elsewhere on this site, but here’s a quick summary to help you get started.

Before you begin, it’s important to know these two things in order to avoid wasting your material.

  • Vape cartridges are very compact and have small filling holes. To ensure that you won’t spill your oil, you should fill your cartridge with a blunt-tip syringe.
  • Vape cartridges are intended for oily concentrates only. The oil can be very thick, but it must be liquid at room temperature. If you want to use a waxy material that’s solid at room temperature, you should use a wax coil. If you attempt to put solid wax into a cartridge designed for oil, the cartridge will most likely clog.

Follow these instructions to fill your vape cartridge.

  • Make a note of your cartridge’s capacity – it’s usually 0.5 or 1.0 ml – and draw that amount of oil into your syringe.
  • Twist the cartridge’s mouthpiece counterclockwise to remove it. Set the mouthpiece aside.
  • Insert the tip of the syringe into the cartridge’s filling hole, which is slightly offset from the center air chimney.
  • Dispense the oil into the cartridge. It’s normal for a full vape cartridge to have a little empty space at the top because the mouthpiece needs some of that space.
  • Replace the cartridge’s mouthpiece and wait about a half hour before vaping.

How to Use a 510 Vape Pen

To use a 510 vape pen, charge it via USB, connect the cartridge, and activate by either puffing or pressing the fire button. For an optimal experience, maintain gentle air pressure, refill promptly, charge only via computer, and keep it clean to prevent leaks. Monitor the LED for charging status, troubleshoot if it blinks, and enjoy a user-friendly vaping experience. Here’s a quick overview that applies to virtually every vape pen on the market.

  • Charge the vape pen by connecting it to your computer using the charging cable supplied with the device. When a vape pen charges, the LED usually glows red. The light turns off or changes color when the battery is full.
  • Connect the cartridge to the vape pen by screwing it into the device’s threading. If you’re using a device without a fire button, connecting a cartridge turns the device on automatically. If the device has a button, you may need to turn it on. That’s usually done by pressing the fire button five times.
  • Vape by puffing gently on the cartridge’s mouthpiece if you’re using a vape pen without a fire button. If your device has a fire button, puff while holding the button. Inhale the vapor and hold it in your lungs as long as you like before exhaling it.
  • If your vape pen’s LED blinks when you try to vape, recharge the battery by connecting it to your computer.

If you want to have the best possible experience with a 510 vape pen, you should follow these four best practices.

  • Always use gentle air pressure when you vape. If you puff too firmly, you could draw oil out of the cartridge’s coil assembly and into its center air path. If that happens, you’ll either get oil in your mouth, or your cartridge will leak.
  • If you’re using a refillable cartridge, refill the cartridge as soon as the oil is below the circular openings on the outside of the coil assembly. This helps to prevent the cartridge’s ceramic cylinder from drying out, which can cause a harsh burnt flavor.
  • Charge a 510 vape pen only by connecting it to your computer. A quick-charging adapter for a mobile phone or tablet may cause the battery in a vape pen to overheat.
  • Keep your vape pen clean by wiping it periodically with a soft cloth. If a cartridge leaks, you can clean your vape pen’s threading using a cotton swab moistened slightly with rubbing alcohol.

What Are the Common Issues with 510 Vape Pens?

Suppose your vape pen isn’t working. What should you do then? Most of the problems that can occur with vape pens fall into three categories, and those problems are generally fairly easy to fix.

Cartridge Has Airflow but No Vapor

Read more: Cartridge Has Airflow but No Vapor

If your vape pen isn’t hitting – but air is flowing smoothly through the cartridge – you should start by making sure that the device is charged and turned on. Check under the cartridge to see if oil has leaked. If you find oil under the cartridge, clean and dry your vape pen’s threading and try vaping again. If your vape pen still isn’t hitting, try a different cartridge.

Vape Cartridge Is Clogged

Read more: How to Unclog a Cart

If your vape pen isn’t hitting – and your cartridge has oil in it – your cartridge may be clogged. This is particularly likely to be the case if you have trouble drawing air through it or if it produces an extremely harsh burnt flavor. This can happen because the cartridge’s airway is blocked or because the oil is cold and isn’t absorbing into the cartridge’s ceramic cylinder. If you’re having trouble pulling air through the cartridge, try clearing the airway with an extended paperclip. If the oil is cold, try warming it by sealing the cartridge in a plastic bag and holding it under warm running water for a few minutes.

Vape Pen Isn’t Charging

Read more: How to Charge a 510-Thread Battery Safely

If your vape pen isn’t charging, make sure that you’re connecting it to your computer and not to a third-party wall adapter. Don’t use a wall adapter to charge a vape pen unless the adapter is provided by the device’s manufacturer. Try charging your vape pen with a different USB cable; it’s common for charging cables to fail after months of constant use. If your vape pen still isn’t charging, remove dust and lint from the charging port with a toothpick and try charging the device again.

What Are the Pros and Cons of 510 Vape Pens?

As you might expect with products that are so popular, 510 vape pens definitely have more benefits than drawbacks. That’s why 510 vape pens are the most popular types of vaporizers by a wide margin. If you’re still on the fence about what type of device to buy, here are some of the most important pros and cons of 510 vape pens to consider.

The Pros of 510 Vape Pens

510 Vape Pen Benefits

  • They’re some of the smallest vaping devices on the market. It’s easy to vape discreetly when you can wrap your entire hand around your device. A 510 vape pen is usually also very easy to carry comfortably in your pocket.
  • They’re simple and user friendly. A 510 vape pen typically has just a single fire button or no button at all. It takes minutes to learn everything that you need to know about how to use a 510 vape pen, so it’s the perfect type of vaporizer for a beginner.
  • Although 510 vape pens are small, their modest vapor production isn’t an issue because oil-based concentrates are very potent. When the material that you’re vaping is extremely concentrated, you don’t need a device that can produce enormous clouds.

The Cons of 510 Vape Pens

  • Some 510 vape pens may lack the ability to work with waxy concentrates because they’re only compatible with narrow cartridges. If a vape pen has threading that’s recessed within the body of the device, a wax coil probably won’t fit.
  • Some 510 vape pens may lack advanced features such as the ability to operate at multiple power levels. Advanced vape pens do exist, but they’re typically a little larger than the sleeker and simpler devices.
  • A 510 vape pen requires more maintenance than a disposable vape. To keep the device working its best, you’ll need to clean it and refill the cartridge periodically. A disposable vape, in comparison, requires no maintenance. When a disposable runs out of oil, though, you’ll need to discard the entire device. A 510 vape pen, on the other hand, can last many months before the battery stops holding a charge.

What Are the Legal Issues Surrounding 510 Vape Pens?

Vaping is completely legal in the United States, and 510 vape pens are legal as well. Some of the things that you can do with your vape pen, however, may not be legal in all places. These are the three primary legal issues surrounding 510 vape pens.

Vape Pens Have Special Travel Requirements

You can bring your vape pen and empty cartridges when traveling if you like. Like all other items with lithium-ion batteries, you should turn your vape pen off and pack it in your carry-on bag. However, you should leave any filled vape cartridges at home because they’re most likely not legal for international travel. The United States is the only nation that has separate legal definitions for cannabis with a THC content over 0.3 percent and low-THC industrial hemp.

State and Federal Laws Can Sometimes Differ

Some of the materials that you might want to vape with your 510 vape pen – such as isolated cannabinoids like Delta-8, THC-JD and THC-V – may not be legal in all states even though they’re legal federally.

Public Smoking Bans Also Include Vaping

You can’t vape in places where smoking isn’t allowed. That includes all public transportation and most enclosed public buildings. If you’re caught disobeying a public smoking ban, you could face a steep fine.

How Do You Use a 510 Vape Pen Safely?

A 510 vape pen uses a powerful lithium-ion battery as its power source – and although the battery is very small, it’s much more powerful than an alkaline battery of equivalent size. If a lithium-ion battery overheats, there’s a potential risk of fire. You need to treat your vape pen properly to ensure that won’t happen, and caring for a vape pen means avoiding situations that can elevate the battery’s temperature.

Charge Your Vape Pen Through Your Computer

As we’ve mentioned more than once in this article, it’s important to charge your vape pen only through your computer unless you have a wall charger that you know is approved by the manufacturer of the device. A vape pen usually charges with a 0.5- or 1.0-amp current at 5 volts. Chargers for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are often designed to deliver higher currents than that.

Keep Your Vape Pen Away from Heat

A lithium-ion battery always works best in a room-temperature environment. Don’t use your vape pen in a hot environment such as in direct sunlight. You should also avoid leaving it inside a parked car.

Know What to Do in an Emergency

Your vape pen should never emit an unpleasant smell or feel painfully hot to the touch. If one of those things happens, it’s possible that the battery is about to overheat. If the device is charging, disconnect it from the power supply immediately. If you’re using the device, stop using it immediately. Move the vape pen to a heat-proof location such as an open cooking pot and wait for it to return to room temperature. Recycle the device according to your local ordinances.

What Are the Different Types of 510 Vape Pens?

Types of 510 Vape Pens

When you shop for a 510 vape pen, you’re going to find that the devices fall into two categories: 510-thread batteries and 510-thread vaporizers. Here’s how they differ.

510-Thread Batteries

You’ll find that 510-thread batteries are the smallest and simplest refillable and rechargeable vaping devices. A 510-thread battery doesn’t include a vape cartridge, though, so you’ll need to provide your own. This type of vaping device is typically very inexpensive, but it’ll usually lack the advanced features of a full vaporizer.

510-Thread Vaporizers

If you need something a bit more advanced, you’ll want to look at some 510-thread vaporizers. These devices tend to be a little larger than 510-thread batteries, so they usually have better battery life and may also offer advanced features such as voltage or wattage control. A 510-thread vaporizer may work with both oil- and wax-based concentrates, and it may include at least one cartridge or coil.

Disposable Vapes

Disposable vapes aren’t really 510 vape pens because they don’t use threaded attachments. Nevertheless, people tend to put disposable vapes into the same category as other vape pens because they look and perform similarly. In a disposable vape, the cartridge is a permanent part of the device and can’t be removed or refilled. One of the benefits of disposable vapes is that using one is an easy and inexpensive way to introduce yourself to oil vaping.

What Are the Different Types of 510 Vape Cartridges?

Vape cartridges fall into two categories: disposable and refillable. You can find a detailed comparison of disposable vs. refillable cartridges elsewhere on this site, but here’s a short summary that can help you come to a decision.

Refillable Vape Cartridges

A refillable vape cartridge has a twist-off cap, so you can refill it as many times as you like until the cartridge’s flavor quality is no longer acceptable. If you’re an end user, this is generally the type of cartridge that you want to buy.

Disposable Vape Cartridges

Disposable vape cartridges are available in two forms. You can find pre-filled cartridges in many dispensaries and vape shops, and you can also buy and fill your own disposable cartridges. Single-use cartridges, however, are mainly intended for brands that want to sell pre-filled cartridges because they’re tamper evident. Once a disposable vape cartridge is capped, any attempt to remove the mouthpiece will cause the cartridge to crack.

How to Buy a 510 Vape Pen

Best 510 Vape Pen Brands

Are you ready to start shopping for a 510 vape pen? There’s a huge level of variety in this segment of the vaping market, so you might find your choices a bit overwhelming. Consider these three factors to narrow down the selection and make your decision simpler.


On this site, we offer our own Hamilton Devices vaporizers and devices made by the well-known brand CCELL®. CCELL® vape pens have an excellent reputation for quality and are widely available around the world. Hamilton Devices vaporizers are compatible with all CCELL® vape cartridges and often have some unique features that you won’t find elsewhere. Here are a few of the most popular 510 vape pens from both brands.

  • CCELL® Silo: Extremely compact vaporizer with puff-activated operation and recessed threading that conceals much of the attached cartridge. $16.49.
  • CCELL® Palm Pro: Couples sleek design with advanced features such as variable voltage and adjustable airflow. $34.99.
  • Hamilton Devices Butterfly: Uses a folding butterfly design to completely conceal the attached cartridge. $45.99.
  • Hamilton Devices KR1: Has a built-in water bubbler for incredible smoothness. Works with both oil and wax. $69.99.
  • Hamilton Devices Jetstream: Uses up to three cartridge or coils simultaneously for maximum potency. Works with both oil and wax and has a built-in air pump to make vaping as easy as breathing. $169.99.


In addition to the brand of the device, you should also consider the design when you shop for a 510 vape pen. You might want a smaller device for maximum discretion and portability, or you may prefer to get a larger device because you want to use something that offers some advanced features. Also, you might simply like the way certain devices look, and that could factor strongly into your decision.

Specifications and Features

You should also compare the specifications and features of the different devices when you shop for a 510 vape pen. For example, the battery capacities of the different devices – measured in milliampere-hours or mAh – describe how long they last before they require charging. A vape pen’s voltage describes its operational power and vapor production. You’ll also want to know if a device works with both oil and wax or if it’s an oil-only device. Finally, you’ll want to know about a device’s advanced features such as the ones that we described above.

Frequently Asked Questions About 510 Vape Pens

How Long Does a Vape Pen Last

Do you have a lingering question about 510 vape pens that we haven’t answered elsewhere in this guide? If so, you’ll find the answer here. These are some of the most frequently asked questions about vape pens.

How Long Does a Vape Pen Last?

A vape pen usually lasts through hundreds of discharge cycles before the battery decreases to the point where the device becomes unusable. Going through that number of discharge-recharge cycles will probably take anywhere from several months to a year depending on how often you use your device.

How Long Does a Vape Cartridge Last?

Although a volume of 0.5 or 1.0 ml may not seem like a lot of oil, vape cartridges can actually last through multiple lengthy vaping sessions because oil-based concentrates are so potent. If you only puff on your vape pen occasionally, you may find that you can use a vape cartridge for a week or even longer before it runs out of oil. In addition, you can usually refill a vape cartridge several times before its flavor quality is no longer acceptable.

How Long Does a Vape Pen Take to Charge?

Since a vape pen usually charges with a one-amp current, it’ll take about one hour to charge for every 1,000 mAh of battery capacity. The smallest vape pens usually recharge in well under an hour.

Wrapping Up the Discussion on 510 Vape Pens

Reading this guide, you’ve learned what 510 vape pens are and how to use them. You’ve also become an expert on the factors that differentiate the devices from one another, and that’s going to help with your buying decision if you’re shopping for your first device. We invite you to view our wide selection of 510-thread batteries and 510-thread vaporizers. If you’re still having trouble deciding what’s right for you, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We’re always standing by and are happy to answer your questions.