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Does Vape Juice Expire or Go Bad?
Over the past five years, the e-juice market has ‘exploded’ with numerous brands being released constantly. In most cases, vapers have so much in their vape juice bottles to the extent that if there’s any change in taste when they are vaping, they will blame the equipment and not the juice.
But, did you know that E-liquid can go bad? In fact, they even come with an expiration date which you should be very aware of and check the moment you receive your new batch of e-liquid. Just like food, and dairy products, e-liquid can go bad and a bad taste in your mouth would be the last of your worries.
What is the Shelf Life of E-liquid?
After production, the quality of most perishable products slowly deteriorates and within a set period, they are not viable for consumption. The same is the case with e-liquid. For most e-liquids, this period is 1 – 2 years.
The expiry period is set depending on a variety of factors. One of them and perhaps the most important is the key ingredients used in the making of the juice. Nicotine, PG and VG all have a shelf life of 2 years if they are stored under the right conditions.
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When exposed to extreme heat and sunlight, the compounds can break down faster reducing the life span of the juice. There are some e-juices that have a shelf-life of as long as 5 years and there are others that last about 2 years.
It’s important to note that expiration dates are an estimation. You have to decide when your vaping liquid is too ripe for vaping and the taste is not palatable anymore.
How to Tell If Your Vape Juice has Gone Bad
Other than the expiration date on your vape juice, there are other signs you can use to check if your vape juice has gone bad. It’s important to note that while the expiration date of the vape juice might be prolonged, most of the juices are flavoured and the flavours are prone to faster expiration. Here are a few factors that you can use to tell if your vape juice has gone bad.
Change in colour
Change of colour happens when nicotine molecules react with oxygen molecules in the air. It’s a chemical process that you have no control over. In most cases, you never even notice the change in colour.
However, when this reaction takes place on a large scale, it can affect juice and cause the colour to change. When the colour of the vape juice has changed slightly, there is nothing to worry about. Alternatively, if the colour changes considerably, it’s best not to vape.
Change in Thickness
Thickness varies depending on the quality, type and brand of vape juice. E-liquids rich in PG have a higher throat hit but are more liquefied while the VG varieties are thicker.
If you leave the bottle for some time, you might notice some residue at the bottom of the bottle. In such cases, all you need to do is shake it a bit and the contents will merge together in no time. If this doesn’t happen and he liquid remains separated, it’s best not to use it anymore.
A good way to tell if the consistency of your juice has been compromised is to check how it drips into the vaporiser. If the liquid doesn’t drip from the bottle, then it has gone bad and you shouldn’t vape it.
If it stinks, you shouldn’t bother vaping it. Most vaping juices are designed to have a great smell that is enticing. If the smell becomes funny or anything other than what you’re used to, then it’s best to throw away the bottle.
Is it Safe to take Expired E-liquid?
It’s probably something you won’t want to try but for the sake of information, is it worth a chance. The expiration dates only determine the quality of the product and not its safety. With that in mind, that doesn’t mean that a vape bottle past its due date is unhealthy to take. It only means the taste might not be as expected.
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The liquid might still be safe to consume but the quality may have been diminished. Nonetheless, you’re better off not taking expired e-juice for the sake of your taste buds.
How to Properly Store Your E-liquid
As mentioned earlier, storage can significantly affect the quality and expiry of your vape juice. When stored properly your vape juice can last longer and retain its quality. To help you achieve that, here are a few tips on how to properly store the vape juice and protect its integrity.
Store in a dark, dry, place – vape juice doesn’t do well in light and heat. It’s important to store it away in a tinted glass cupboard. If you don’t have such a cupboard you can use an old shoe box to protect the bottle from direct sunlight.
You should also store the bottle away from water and humidity. That means you can’t keep them in a refrigerator to avoid compromise of the thickness and consistency of the juice.
Seal the liquid – Nicotine is constantly reacting with oxygen in the air. By making sure the bottle is properly sealed, you can reduce the amount of air creeping into the bottle which reduces the reaction rate and prevents change in colour and the loss of nicotine which means you have lower hits.
How to Get Rid of Expired Juice
Unfortunately, you have verified that your vape juice has gone bad. The next question is, “How do you safely dispose of it?”
Just because the bottle has gone bad doesn’t mean that you should just toss it out. You have to make sure you dilute the contents thoroughly by pouring them in the drainage so they don’t cause any harm further down the line.
If you want to save yourself from the pain of having to watch bottles of your favourite vape juice go down the drain, it’s best to buy in small batches. You have enough to keep you running but not too much that you end up throwing bottles that you haven’t used in over 3 years.