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Think about it this way; water boils at 100 degree centigrade, does that mean all fluids on earth boil at the same temperature? Of course not. Same thing applies to the compounds inside cannabis. Every cannabinoids has its own threshold boiling point, each of those have a different effect on the brain as well as how much of the total percentage of chemical activators are released. In simple words, the higher the temperature the more toxins could be released.
Different temperatures release different terpenes sand different cannabinoids. A study by Taylor and Francis Ltd shows 230 C (446 F) is the optimal temperature to release the most of THC and other cannabinoids, however, it will also burn other part of the herb and that may release more "byproducts" which can be harmful to our health over time (see the graph below from that same study).
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My research, both online and anecdotal, has taught me that a hit at 350 to 365 is radically different from a hit at 420 to 430. If you want the healthiest way to smoke, turn the temperature down, and remember, later you will have the AVB (Already Vaped Bud) that you can use to make edibles and more.
Check this graph, this may slightly vary between a strain to another, so it's a trial and error till you find your best temperature. You always want to avoid By-Products.
Lower temperatures the high is usually smooth and linear, however, the sedative effects aren’t as strong. They tend to release a more creative cerebral high while temperatures exceeding 400F tend to release more sedation and pain relieving effects.
What temperature works best for you? Well that's entirely up to you to discover. Not all of us seek the same medical benefits from this wonderful plant. It also depends what your plans are. Many people turn their vaporizers all the way up when they start their session, this practice is useful if you’re in rush, which I occasionally do that. It’s also useful if you’re having a bad day and you want to forget about life, or if you smoke weed to treat your insomnia. On the other hand, to get the euphoric head high with low body high and no couch-lock, planning socialize, do some work or enjoying a movie, lower temps is recommended (upper 300s)...
As for best vape temperature... here is the deal...
First off, there is no perfect vape temp, it's usually up to your tolerance and what you wanna get out of it your session. Here is the best practice I’ve seen so far to avoid combustion and preserve/enjoy the flavor:
Related article: What is Already Vaped Bud (AVB) - Best Practices & Methods
It's a common misconception among new users that "no vapor" means "no effect." While this is true when you're getting towards the end of a bowl, lower temperatures may produce no vapor at all. Pay more attention to the flavor and how you're feeling.
Good vaporizers like The Might, The Crafty and The Arizers can get 20 puffs out of every session, 40 puffs out of every bowl. Some of those puffs might not be as satisfying as you want it to be, but despite the fact that you feel you’re not getting anything, you are getting something. So keep doing it.
By the end of the session, and when the ABV comes out, it should be a 100% consistent in color from flake to flake, any variety in color means you haven't obtained a full extraction at the desired temperature. Again, stirring the herb inside the oven is necessary to accomplish the AVB color consistency.
Experiment, Experiment, Experiment. Every person can have a slightly different experience than others. It makes the whole experience more exciting and fulfilling. There is no perfect temp, part of the journey to becoming a full fledged vaporent is discovering which temps work best for you personally, here is my results, you can use it a benchmark and modify accordingly:
320-340 - Incredibly flavorful, good heady high
345-385 - A little more sedentary and thoughts tend to be deeper
390-425 - Couch lock
430-460 - Final couch lock phase, thoughts are very ADHD and can be heavier and introspective thoughts. Less party friendly for sure.
Stay toasty my friends.
Ayad Maher is a Cannabis Industry Entrepreneur, Blogger & Activist. eCommerce Specialist and Owner of a 420 Life Style Website; Monroe Blvd, an online smoke shop; 421Store, and an online CBD store; GoodyCBD.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in June 2018 and has been revamped and updated as needed for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
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