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Cleaning an Atomizer properly

Discussion in 'RTA' started by Rockford, Nov 22, 2018.

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  1. Rockford

    Rockford Super Member ECF Veteran

    Nov 21, 2018
    BC Canada
    I'm still new on here so if this is under that wrong category pls lmk and move if you like.

    I recently purchased a KF Prime (clone) and first thing I did was take it completely apart, let is soak in hot water with vinegar added. I let it soak over night, then brushed and dried it next day. It seemed to wash it pretty good as there was no machine oil taste that I could tell.

    My question is what is the best way to clean an atomizer without spending a ton of money.

    Thank you :)
     
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  2. Eskie

    Eskie ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    May 6, 2016
    NY
    Well, what you did worked. Also water with a drop or two of dishwasher soap like Dawn. Just rinse really well with water afterwards. For another method alcohol is a great solvent. Either plain vodka or a higher proof alcohol like everclear or rectified spirits is another way to go. Again, rinse well before using.
     
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  3. Punk In Drublic

    Punk In Drublic Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Aug 28, 2018
    Toronto, ON
    I prefer the warm soapy water and use a soft tooth brush where possible. Vodka can work well - but if I get the bottle out of the liquor cabinet, the martini’s start flowing, music gets turned up and before I know it, I’m drunk dialing all my friends and telling them “I love you buddy!!”. Not very effective….but will have a clean atty once I sober up!

    Joking aside – if using alcohol, ensure it is vodka or everclear, the later you may even want to dilute a bit. Isopropyl alcohol could degrade rubber seals.
     
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  4. VictorC

    VictorC Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 26, 2015
    Toronto, Ontario
    Same as above, warm soapy water, tooth brush and vodka. When you rinse put a fine strainer on the top of the drain, I lost a lot of small parts, screws and o-rings in the past. Ultrasonic cleaner is another popular option.
     
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  5. Punk In Drublic

    Punk In Drublic Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Aug 28, 2018
    Toronto, ON
    Yes – sound advice. Something I also practice. Thought I lost a grub screw down the drain once. Found it a week later stuck to the bottom of my foot elsewhere in the house. Must have fallen out prior to my trip to the sink and the cat got to it. I now make a habit of tightening the screws down or removing them altogether prior to washing.
     
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  6. Rockford

    Rockford Super Member ECF Veteran

    Nov 21, 2018
    BC Canada
    Yep, I washed it in a small Tupperware bowl because I know all about the drain in the sink syndrome lol
     
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  7. sonicbomb

    sonicbomb Vaping Master Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Feb 17, 2015
    1187 Hundertwasser
    A bowl of hot water with a little dish soap and a tooth brush. Scrubby scrubby, rinse and repeat as required.
     
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  8. MartinD

    MartinD Super Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 18, 2017
    Spread a bit of vg or eliquid on the orings on the deck. They are often of poor quality and tend to break when you put the chamber on a deck if they are dry.
     
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  9. stols001

    stols001 Moved On ECF Veteran

    May 30, 2017
    Cheapest? Leave it out in the rain disassembled. You may lose bits, but it is amazing what just water can do, given enough time.

    Honestly for most stuff some dawn and a bit of scrubbing is all that is needed plus elbow grease.

    I'm sure everyone has their favorite method, but Dawn is cheap, it works, and water is well water, plus whatever scrubbing thing you want, I'm partial to a toothbrush.

    Anna
     
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  10. mimöschen

    mimöschen Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 15, 2016
    If you remove all gaskets, orings and plastic parts, high concentrated vinegar (40%) works very well. No scrubbing needed, just let the metal parts soak for 10 minutes, take 'em out and rinse with warm water.
    Gaskets&co just need a rinse with warm water.
     
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  11. Ryedan

    Ryedan ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Mar 31, 2012
    Ontario, Canada
    Cleaning a new atty is for me all about getting rid of any machine oils left over from the manufacturing processes used. I don't know how good vinegar is for dissolving this stuff, but I know dish soap works very quickly, thoroughly, it doesn't take much and it's very gentle on O-rings and plastics. I like that :)
     
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  12. Ryedan

    Ryedan ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Mar 31, 2012
    Ontario, Canada
    I've been doing this after an initial cleaning for years now and it has always worked well for me.
     
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  13. mimöschen

    mimöschen Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 15, 2016
    Depending on the soap you might get an aftertaste. Vinegar essence as an acid dissolves the machine oil very quick and doesn't give a funky taste. Works very well with crusty coils as well btw.
    I like that too:)
     
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  14. Ryedan

    Ryedan ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Mar 31, 2012
    Ontario, Canada
    Good to know, thanks @mimöschen. I've never got any aftertaste with dish soap though, and it has worked very well for me for cleaning them for first use. I do flush it all off my atties after I've cleaned them. It's pretty easy to do.

    I don't use it on coils. Dry burns work best for me for that unless I just replace the wire. I use rebuildable atties only, so that may make a difference.

    Thanks again :thumb:
     
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  15. mimöschen

    mimöschen Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 15, 2016
    I use RTAs/RDAs exclusively and dryburn/rinse is my goto method for cleaning coils as well because it's quicker.
    But using acid on coils shows very nice how fast it cleans the metalparts. After dropping the coils in you almost instantly see the crusts coming off. Just give 'em a shake now and then and after rinsing they're blinking and as good as new.
    Might be worth a look for coils that don't like to be dryburned.
     
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  16. Eskie

    Eskie ECF Guru Verified Member ECF Veteran

    May 6, 2016
    NY
    I will add that all of the above techniques work, but another option is an ultrasonic cleaner. Nice for a new atty and very nice of you have gunky complex coils after a dry burn to really get the nooks and crannies. It can be combined with any of the mentioned methods as well.
     
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  17. mimöschen

    mimöschen Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 15, 2016
    Just make sure the atty is unscathed and painted/plated well enough, or else the color might flake off like dandruff from a bum's head.
     
  18. P3ch3

    P3ch3 Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jan 31, 2019
    loved method, but not available all time:
    Ultrasonic jewerly cleaner, awesome is all can i say about this, take tank apart, put it to swing there, i use to do this at a friend vape shop, but constantly saving for getting one my self,

    Regular method:
    Tank fully taken apart, warm water, a bit of alcohol listerine, rinse with warm / hot water for some minutes.

    PD: just noticed that i havent cleaned a tank when new, this means that i totally take tank out box, build it and use it ! :blush:

    Regards,
     
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  19. Zazie

    Zazie Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Nov 2, 2018
    Maine, USA
    I bet water and a little citric acid would work well. Does wonders for a toilet.
     
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  20. MacTechVpr

    MacTechVpr Vaping Master Verified Member ECF Veteran

    Supporting member
    Aug 24, 2013
    Hollywood (Beach), FL
    Have none of you actually tried my suggestion of the past 5 years?
    What am I, chopped liver? :D

    No seriously vinegar, alcohol most soaps leave an aftertaste, even after drying out. Then you have to use something else to remove that. Might as well get right to it and use a fine "soft" tooth brush and some baking soda toothpaste. Will cut through most everything including imperceptible surface oxidation and deposits in seams or corners to which nasty residue may be bound.

    dl-263_1z.jpg

    Might mention that some foaming soaps including a percentage of alcohol are amazing. I mean for just about any kind of household cleaning and stain removal. These will add a fine brightness to metal. Just don't get it in the atty after the above.

    Best of all, baking soda toothpaste is cheap…and heads-up it's multi-tasking, as a cleaner and occasionally, as a tooth brushing agent.

    Good luck. :D
     
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