Is dry burn bad for you? Here’s how to clean your heating element with heat without risking your health

Is dry burn bad for your health?

Modified on: 01/12/2022

Dry burn: the simple guide to correct resistance cleaning

Dry burn is a procedure for thoroughly cleaning the resistor and replacing the cotton inside it, but without damaging the resistive wire. Next, you burn off the remaining e-cigarette liquid and cotton so that they dry out.

Thanks to this operation, it is possible to change the cotton in complete safety.

Despite this, many vaper and non-vaper alike have wondered: is dry burn terrible for you?

That is why in the following article, we will try to answer this question and understand how to clean the heating element with heat without doing any damage.

Read also: Electronic cigarette liquid in the mouth: why it happens and what we can do to avoid it

How to dry burn correctly (without making the usual mistakes)

Detail of a coil

This procedure is carried out to restore the heating element to an optimal condition by removing all the fouling that has formed over time.

But let’s see immediately how to do it.

First, ensure you are in a well-ventilated and comfortable place, away from flammable fabrics.

At this point, you can remove the liquid from the tank, set it aside, and begin the procedure.

To perform the dry burn correctly, you will need to remove the cotton inside the coil, but if you cannot remove it from the heating element, you can decide to shrink it by evaporating the remaining liquid.

To do this, we recommend lowering the wattage from the standard wattage you use when vaping so as not to impair the functioning of the heating element.

As soon as it has reached the right temperature, you will notice that the liquid will start to come out of the coil: be extremely careful during this step because, being particularly hot, you could risk burning your hands or face.

Finally, if you notice that a flame starts to ignite, stop immediately and wait a few moments: once it has cooled down, check if there are any other incrustations to remove: you can use cold water to wash the coil or a toothbrush to sweep over the area gently. Once this is done, repeat the procedure if necessary.

At the beginning of this article, we said that a dry burn is performed so as not to damage the resistive wire, right? However, sometimes it is necessary to replace it because it is too worn.

It is pretty simple to understand this: heat the wire and check the colouring once it cools down: in principle, it should be changed when it is dark and tending to black.

If you notice that the coil is too dirty, you can decide to repeat the operation a couple of times: our advice is to always clean the heating element at the end of the day to avoid fouling that forces you to replace it more often than you should.

So, is it true that dry burn is bad for you?

No, dry burn is not bad for you and does not harm your health.

However, some vapers do not support this procedure for a simple reason: heating the coil without cotton means altering the physical-chemical composition of the metal, with the risk of causing the resistance to lose all its properties.

But let us go into more detail. Why do some vapers advise against this?

Let’s say there are three main reasons.

Firstly, dry burn is based on the technique of carbonisation: using a higher temperature than ‘standard’ means risking damaging the resistive wire.

Secondly, if the resistance is excessively encrusted, the procedure may not be effective, as in the case of using tobacco liquids and unique flavourings.

Finally, the third reason is related to the fact that overheating the metal could compromise the quality of the e-cigarette liquid, contaminating it and making the vaping experience less safe and pleasant.

Read also: Menthol cigarettes: why Italy (and elsewhere) has decided to ban them and what are the less harmful alternatives


This article shows how dry burn works and how to clean the coil correctly with heat without damage.

As you will have noticed, it is easy to follow all the steps to remove fouling from the resistance and restore it to an optimal condition, as if it were new.

Finally, we have answered the question that many have asked: is it true that dry burn is bad for you? As you may have guessed, this technique is not harmful to health, but great care must be taken with each procedure to avoid contaminating the liquid and/or ruining the wire.

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