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Vegetable glycerine (glycerol) - safety discussion

Discussion in 'Health, Safety and Vaping' started by Mihai, Aug 27, 2008.

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  1. Mihai

    Mihai Senior Member

    Jul 11, 2008

    All 'medical' information about glycerine in the following posts can be safely ignored.
    Glcerine (aka glycerol, glycerin) is approved for inhalation in medical applications such as inhalers. The entire contents of the first post have been deleted.

    Dow Chemical make all grades of PG and VG, and advise that their pharmaceutical grade glycerine 'Optim' is the most suitable product of all for medical inhalation duty.

    Food grade glycerine is NOT suitable for inhalation - only pharmaceutical grade is. Only 'Glycerine, USP' or 'Glycerine, BP' or 'Glycerine, EU' are pharma grade - a glycerine product with ANY OTHER labelling OF ANY KIND is NOT suitable. Glycerine products without the USP/BP label are most likely food grade but could be agricultural grade or industrial grade. Only inhale pharmaceutical grade materials.

    Acrolein has not been detected in e-cigarette vapor even at 300 C (a heat decomposition product of glycerine).

    To read more about the excipients used in e-cigarette refill liquids, please go here:

  2. DeviLFisH

    DeviLFisH Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 5, 2008
    how about this???which I post in another sub forum here.:

    I just brought this Glycerin BP is it safe to vapour?as it stated cannot take orally

    :confused: gee is it safe to use as it mention cannot take orally

    is it GLYCERIN BP

    Not to be taken Orally
    For external Use Only

    this is the company


    The answer is clearly NO if the label does not say Glycerine, BP (or Glycerine, USP).

    If it appears to be labelled correctly but the manufacturer says it cannot be taken orally, then it may not be Glycerine, USP and should not be used. Glycerine, USP is licensed for topical use (on the skin, ingestion (taking orally), and inhalation (breathing in). It is used as the basis or carrier material or for hydration (keeping moist) in medicines for all those purposes. It is considered 'Acceptably Safe' or 'GRAS' for all those purposes. Glycerine is not toxic including for inhalation.

    However: each separate medical use of a material must be individually and specifically licensed. If a manufacturer sells a product labelled 'this can be inhaled' then they must have a pharmaceutical license for that application.

    Here, it looks as if you may have the right material but that individual manufacturer does not have a specific license for ingestion or inhalation. You must judge for yourself if it is safe. It might be better to find a glycerine correctly labelled, without warnings regarding ingestion (or inhalation).

    Do not buy materials for inhalation based on their low cost; buy the best you can get, and if they are expensive - it's still a bargain.


  3. dnakr

    dnakr Ultra Member ECF Veteran Verified Member

    Jan 25, 2008
    Virginia, USA
    I recall reading what the temp our atomizers use but can't remember. Anyone know?
  4. CaSHMeRe

    CaSHMeRe Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jun 12, 2008
    oy vey ... :( ...

    luckily, I haven't found myself allergic to anything other than bickfords flavorings of PG... Carts and Liquid I seem to be doing fine on!

    A PG Allergy is quite damning though ... If there is no replacement, that is really a bummer :mad:
  5. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    Cashmere, I read somewhere that alcohol creates vapour too so you might want to experiment with that at some point. I have vaped neat flavouring with no pg or vg, only alcohol and flavour and there has been vapour produced.
  6. CaSHMeRe

    CaSHMeRe Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jun 12, 2008
    Very interesting Kate ... hmmm ...

    Lots of vapor or just a little? and were you able to see it both on inhale and exhale? :thumb:
  7. DeviLFisH

    DeviLFisH Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 5, 2008
    hmm I also feel achohol might produce vapour

    I got try one baking extract

    is made in US as it stated , I believed those US folks here should know this brand?

    It call Virginia Dare.

    I brought is RUM extract.

    the extract contains is as follow :

    Water, rum , alcohol(24 %) , Propylene Glycol , natuarl and artifical flavours.

    funny of this brand is , Orange extract don;t have Propylene Glycol !???

    that why I never choose orange. in order to have vapour u must have PG rite.
  8. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    I'll just try dripping flavouring neat for a while ... ingredients - vanilla, 38% alcohol and water. I'll report back on my experience with the vapour in a while.
  9. CaSHMeRe

    CaSHMeRe Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jun 12, 2008
    Adding higher amounts of alcohol may be good for PG sufferers. I think the biggest issue with PG is the concentration. When used in smaller amounts, people with a reaction may be able to get by like myself :)

    Keep us posted kate. Maybe even try adding 10-20% PG and see if that helps the volume of vapor, etc...
  10. Nazareth

    Nazareth Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jun 14, 2008
    Pretty close? Or exactly? VG doesn't break down until 280 degrees celsius- we need to find out what our atomizers are running at temperature wise.

    Now you gotta ask yourself, do you want acrolein from real ciggs, or fro ma much healthier Ecigg? You want acrolein with 4000+ chemicals and around 60 other carcinogens fro mreal ciggs? Or from the Ecigg which doesn't have those 4000 chemicals and nearly as many cacinogens?

    6 of one, 1/2 dozen of another. Smokers know they are ingesting poisons- the question is do we want a safer way to to cut down on the ingestion? Somethign with far less poisons? Smokers have apaprently been ingesting the poison acrolein for hundreds of years and some living long and fruitful lives regardless. Soem aren't as lucky of course- but we al lknow the risk, and make hte descision to smoke or not, so meh- I'm not too concerned with the report Mihai- Do I wish it didn't break down? Sure- absolutely- but meh- I'm a smoker- I've made my choice, and I'll live with the results of my choice- PG is a great unknown too- but Mahai- Cigarette tobacco has had VG in it for a very long time now- probably not in the quantities edevices do, but we've been getting out fair share of VG as regular cigg smokers none the less for a logn time now.

    Shouel we look for safer alternatives? Yup- but I just wouldn't be too cocnerned with the report above as we've already been exposing ourselves to acrolein for many years-
  11. Mihai

    Mihai Senior Member

    Jul 11, 2008
    Devilfish, glycerine is not toxic per se.
    Glycerine is dangerous because @ 280 deg C it transforms in completely another chemical - acrolein - which is very toxic.

    Our atomizers heat at about 200 deg, probably much more if you drag longer or if the filament has a bit lower resistance than the standard. This happens pretty often - that's why some atomizers die faster (lower resistance - higher temp) and others don't vape too well or they do it only if you keep dragging (higher resistance - lower temp). Also a proof for higher temperatures is that cotton burns at over 250 deg C, so if your cotton filament ever burned that's because it reached over that temp.
  12. icemanmaz

    icemanmaz Senior Member ECF Veteran

    There is a big differance in a cig and an e-cig then
    We performed a series of experiments in order to determine the actual temperature of the lit cigarette. Here are the results for the temperature at different locations and under different conditions:

    Temperature without drawing:
    Side of the lit portion: 400 deg C (or 752 deg F)
    Middle of the lit portion: 580 deg C (or 1112 deg F)

    Temperature during drawing:
    Middle of the lit portion: 700 deg C (or 1292 deg F)

    The above numbers represent the average we obtained by performing several trials and can be considered accurate to within 50 deg C. A standard Fe-CuNi digital thermocouple thermometer was used in all trials.
  13. DeviLFisH

    DeviLFisH Super Member ECF Veteran

    Jul 5, 2008
    skip my glycerine already , because it stated Cannot be use orally , for external use.

    maybe this glycerine cannot be use .

    so now I plan to use baking flavour extract instead.
  14. margouillat

    margouillat Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Aug 13, 2008
    Rouen, France
    It's very interesting information
    And i read that : "When glycerine is heated above 150°C, it starts decomposition and produces toxic smoke called acrolein (acraldehyde, or prop-2-enal).

    Acrolein is such a severe pulmonary irritant and lacrimating agent that it has been used as a chemical weapon during World War I."

    So 250°c or 150°c ?
  15. TheEmperorOfIceCream

    TheEmperorOfIceCream Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    Jun 1, 2008
    London, UK
    Hi Mihai, thanks for posting this, it certainly warrants discussion. VG vapers, any observations? If this is breaking down into acrolein (which I've never heard of until now, by the way), then I would expect to hear reports of respiratory difficulties, given it's cited as a severe pulmonary irritant.

    I haven't yet tried VG formulations, but this is very concerning for the pursuit as a whole. Most of us are banking on this being proven safer than hot smoking.

    I don't want to overreact here, though. Glycerin is used in theatrical smoke machines as well as propylene glycol, so perhaps it does not heat to the decomposition point. There must be tech specs available for fog machines. What's the temperature of the heating block, what's the parts-per-million output of a fog machine?

    Mac, if you catch this, did anything come up in your lab reports about acrolein?

    Dr Loi, if you read this, could you post your thoughts?


  16. Mamba

    Mamba Full Member

    Jun 19, 2008
    If your numbers are correct it would mean the atomizer would have to consistently reach about 540 degrees Farenheit or above. Just from personal experience I doubt a properly working atomizer is getting this hot but I could be wrong. In my opinion it is fruitless to jump to conclusions based on guessing. We need actual tests of the vapor produced by different devices instead of researching the Internet or asking someone's opinion. We need the real specs. of these devices: how hot does the atomizer actually get?, what are the specific ingredients of the e-liquid and is it manufactured in sterile facilities and of pharmaceutical grade components?, what is the "floss" made of and can it off-gas to any appreciable degree?, if the atomizer malfunctions can it get significantly hotter and allow the device to emit dangerous vapor?, etc.

    Until these questions are answered by the manufacturers of these products we are just hoping that they are actually safer than tobacco cigarettes. As for acrolein (or acrylamide), if it concerns you then you would have to stop breathing car exhaust and eating french fries. Some health zealots even compare each french fry as the equivalent of a cigarette. I still think banning smoking outside is ludicrous. But if there is anything (and I mean anything) closely resembling any component of cigarette smoke in e-cig vapor then you can forget about using it in public. Even if your acrolein ouput is miniscule compared to the Hummer passing you as you sit at the sidewalk cafe it will have to be banned. For the sake of everyone's health, blah, blah, blah.

    ATSDR - ToxFAQs™: Acrolein

    Acrylamide - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  17. dc2k08

    dc2k08 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    May 21, 2008
    250 c seems abit much for the atomizer. i doubt it can go that hot. isnt glycerin an ingredient in our reg e-liquid anyway?
  18. vafvaf

    vafvaf Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Mar 31, 2008
    i remember that in the time of e'cig forum ecig answered several times about temperature inside atomizer, dont remember exactly, but sure it was higher than 250 c
  19. MagusSteele

    MagusSteele Super Member ECF Veteran

    Hi people,
    First VG is fine, but, there is more then one kind, and extraction method, and viscosity. There is several types of mixes, and synthetics even, not to mention the lower grade has more vegetable Matter mixed in (its more cloudy), even if it is microscopic pieces.
    The low grade VG Tends to clog the vaporizers too .

    In the club we run Straight triple distilled water through, untill the fog comes out clear to clean it.
    I guess it could be possible to do that with an E-cig.
    The mix is also very important.
    Standard Fog juice, like used in a Night club or haunted house is
    6oz(177.444ml) - 8oz (236.592ml) mixed into 1Gallon (3.785Liters)
    of Triple Distilled Water,

    Dont know why this went red, :evil:

    The thicker the smoke, and the longer hang time the more VG or PG you mix in. VG is suggested, but PG is also approved to use. NOW "EG" is dangerous if burnt. I have in the past bought some fog juice from china that had that in it.

    However your not Hoffing from smoke machines eather, hehe
    As for the breakdown under heat, the burnt veg matter is worse for you.
    If people were really worried about what they injest, they would stop drinking diet pop too, that breaks down to Embalming fluid at 90f (body temp)

    Alcohol is not great as a suspension media, it has a lower flash point, and may over heat the elements, leading to shorter life spans for your atomizers. It burns cleaner, less residue, but because it burns better, it should have less Visible smoke.
    You Can cut with it, but i wouldnt over do the amount, we are talking a drop per like, 10ml

    I have been a DJ for over 20 years, and going to Clubs Longer. I was tought how to mix the fog juice from pros who do it for major bands, and i have made Gallons of it, believe me, it wont kill you, unless you already have a bad medical condition.
    It does leave a slight oil resedue, but thats basicly vegetable oil.
    I am no doctor, but that should be able to pass easily to expel it.


  20. Mihai

    Mihai Senior Member

    Jul 11, 2008
    sorry, I can't edit the original post. If one of the mods can, then please edit the stupid stuff from the original message, some people might not consider reading past the first posts and they will get the wrong ideas.
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