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What are Potentiometers?

Posted on 1st Sep 2014 @ 6:46 AM



A potentionmeter is a tri-terminal resistor that uses a moving contact, know as a wiper, to create an adjustable voltage splitter. Bi-Terminal versions also exist, acting as a rheostat. Most of the potentiometers applied to vaporizers make use of graphite or metal to complete their electrical circuit. The main purpose of a potentiometer is to gauge the electric potential, known as voltage, of a charge.


While they're commonly employed in other devices, like adjusting the volume on a speaker or relaying button presses on a keyboard, the primary application of the potentiometer in an vaporizer unit is to modulate the level of heat you use to vaporize your substance of choice. Most potentiometers lack the power output to operate the power of a vaporizer.


While there exists a variety of different designs of potentiometers, the three common ones that're applied to this particular industry would be the slide(r) pot, the thumb (wheel) pot, and the digipot.


  • Slide pots/slider pots use a vertical or horizontal wiper to adjust the heating element's temperature.
  • Thumb pots/thumbwheel pots use more of a circular wiper to adjust the heating element by turning it in either direction. Dial-based switches would fall under the category of a thumbwheel pot.
  • Digipots/Digital potentiometers are utilized in models that contain a microprocessor. The main benefit is that they "remember" the last setting you placed it on, rather than having to worry about accidentally screwing up your settings by hand.


The main thing to remember is that the potentiometer in your vaporizer directly influences the output of your vapor. Pay attention to both the voltage you've set your device to, as well as the ohms involved. After some careful tweaking of the pot and possibly burning out a battery or two, you should eventually find your ideal ratio.


Because everyone wants to maximize the enjoyment, you can discover a sweeping array of voltage/kilo ohm ratios and battery amplifiers here at High Desert Vapes. With a basic understanding of low-level electronics, an understanding of circuit diagrams, and the proper component parts, you can easily engineer your own superior vaporizer.