WHAT DOES 650, 900, 1100 mAH MEAN?

When people talk about the size of a battery in an electronic cigarette, they are usually referring to how powerful it is, and generally the more power it has, the larger it will physically be.

When comparing like-for-like batteries, in this case standard ecig batteries, in the example grid below you can see that a lot of the information is the same, but the greater the power of the battery the bigger (longer) it is and the longer it will last, so that means you can puff on it more times before you have to swap your batteries over and re-charge them again.

ESTIMATE ONLY

650MAH

  • Length and diameter: 71 x 14 mm
  • Lifetime of battery: 300 charges
  • Use between charging: 1 day
  • Ave puffs per charge: 600 puffs
  • Battery’s working voltage: 3.7-4.2 volts
  • Charge voltage: 4.7 volts
  • Charge time: 4 hours

900MAH

  • Length and diameter: 86 x 14 mm
  • Lifetime of battery: 300 charges
  • Use between charging: 1.5 days
  • Ave puffs per charge: 8-900 puffs
  • Battery’s working voltage: 3.7-4.2 volts
  • Charge voltage: 4.7 volts
  • Charge time: 5 hours

1100MAH

  • Length and diameter: 96 x 14 mm
  • Lifetime of battery: 300 charges
  • Use between charging: 2 days
  • Ave puffs per charge: 1000-1200 puffs
  • Battery’s working voltage: 3.7-4.2 volts
  • Charge voltage: 4.7 volts
  • Charge time: 6 hours

To put it another way, it’s how many puffs you can take before the battery needs to be recharged. Slender e-cigarettes have batteries ranging anything from 90mAh 360mAh meaning that with these smaller batteries they will need to be re-charged more often. The mAh stands for milli Ampere hour or milliAmp hour. It’s the measure of a battery’s energy storage capacity. If you imagine your battery as a fuel tank in a car, the mAh is the measure of how much fuel the battery can hold. The higher mAh rating the more fuel the battery can store inside. The more fuel, the longer the journey lasts.

In order to make a meaningful comparison, it’s important to compare mAh ratings of similar batteries. For example, there’s no point comparing an alkaline battery to a NiMH (nickel-metal hydride cell) battery. So assume we are talking about batteries that are similar, in this case lithium ion e-cig batteries.

Lithium batteries are used in electronic cigarettes because they have good energy density and they’re slow to lose their charge when they’re not in use. So we know that the mAh relates to the amount of fuel a battery can store, so the higher the number, i.e. 650mAh, 900mAh, or 1100mAh, we know that these batteries will last longer because they can store more energy.

When comparing batteries from the same manufacturer, the only difference you should expect to find is how long the battery’s power can last before you have to re-charge it. If you were to compare batteries made by different manufacturers you may find some perform better than others.

You will find batteries from different manufacturers are compatible with a wide variety of e-cigarettes but you should expect some variance in their performance. The best advice is probably to stick with one that performs well, for example if you’ve bought an e-cigarette kit, ensure you buy the same batteries or replace them with batteries from a reputable brand – and you must ensure they’re compatible with your kit. When trying to source something cheaper or get a better ‘deal’ just be mindful that quite often you are getting what you’re paying for.

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