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What is a Dripper?

When you look at a dripper for the first time, you probably think wtf is that? Where is the glass? Where does the e-liquid go? How does it work? Well this strange compact atomizer belongs to the rebuildable category and commonly abbreviated to RDA (Rebuildable Drip Atomizer). Unlike a Sub-ohm style tank where e-juice is stored, RDA’s are moistened (yes sorry I had to use the “M” word) more frequently. This is how it got the name Dripper, e-liquid is essentially dripped directly onto the wicking material rather than e-liquid being filled and stored in a tank.

For a better understanding of what RDA’s are, lets break it down.


Anatomy of an RDA

Designed to Be Simple

A dripper doesn’t have a tank like an atomizer has however that are some that kinda do. Some RDA’s do have a 1.5ml or up to 2ml e-liquid capacity however it’s the dripping action that separates from a tank style. Even though the thought of building your own coils sounds tricky, RDA’s are designed to be simple to use. Newer RDA designs have easier build decks, larger screws and mesh coils that are also compatible with squonk devices.

Mastering a Dripper

Mastering a dripper, like most things takes some practice however experienced dripper vapers swear by it. The hardest part is learning how much e-liquid to use to prevent the wicking material to dry out during use. As everyone is different, this will be different per user and will be trial and error type basis but experimentation is the key.


Like most devices and device types there are pros and cons. Here are some when comparing drippers to tanks and tanks to drippers.

Dripper v Tank 

The Good                                                                            

  • Truer flavour experience                                                
  • Massive cloud production                                            
  • Compatible with High Powered Devices                     
  • Easier to go from one flavour to another                     

The Not So Good

  • Time consuming to set up
  • Little E-liquid capacity
  • Can decrease battery life
  • Can be a potential risk if not set up correctly

Tank v Dripper

The Good                                                                       

  • Much more e-liquid capacity                                       
  • Easier to use and replace coils                                    
  • Initial cost is usually less                                              

The Not So Good

  • Flavour isn’t as bold or intense
  • Less vapour production (not necessarily a con)
  • Ongoing cost is usually higher

Benefits of Using a Dripper

  • Flavours really come to life with a dripper.
  • Easier to go from one flavour to another without having cross contamination of the previous flavour.
  • Designed for maximum flavour compared to Sub-ohm tanks.


Things to Consider

Drippers are usually more expensive than sub-ohm tanks however the ongoing cost is less. They also require a high powered device type to operate rather than pod or pen style devices. It can take a bit of practice to set up the coil but the benefits are worth it. 

Looking for a RDA? You can find them here