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January 25, 2024
6 min to read

A Blinking Disposable Vape: What It Means & How to Fix It

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Jeremy Mann

Why is my disposable vape pen blinking?

If your disposable vape pen blinks, there’s an electronic issue that prevents it from functioning. The only electronic function it will perform is the blinking light. Luckily, it’s most often just a battery that needs recharging.

Although disposable vape pens are consumable products, they’re also electronic devices. You cannot actually see the lithium-ion battery inside these types of vapes, but there’s always one there. Some are rechargeable, and others are not.

In addition to a depleted battery, the blinking LED is also an indicator saying something is amiss within the electronics. Some devices might blink 3 times, and others 10 times or more.

There are a few reasons and fixes for disposable vape pens with a blinking light. You just have to determine which situation most likely applies to your blinking light.

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The battery is out of charge: recharge it

A dead battery is the most common reason for the blinking light.

  • Search the device for a micro-USB or USB-C port.
  • Charge it like other electronic devices.

Where is the charge port?

Most of the time, the charge ports will be visible, though they're often found on the bottom of the device. There are other times, like recently for me, when finding the recharge port wasn’t so straightforward.

Some recharge ports might be located under a cap on the bottom of the pen. Try to unscrew it if you have one. If it comes off, you’ll most likely see the charge port there. It also may be under a rubber plug.

How do you recharge a disposable vape pen?

Charge the disposable vape pen the way you would any electronic device with a USB charge port. On average, vapes take about 45-60 minutes to fully charge.

A fully charged status is indicated differently depending on the device. Just watch it when you plug it up. If a light is on when you go to charge, it’ll likely go off when done. Conversely, if there is no light when it charges, it may come on when it’s finished.


What if your disposable vape pen doesn’t have a charge port?

That means it’s not rechargeable.

Although lithium-ion batteries can be recharged, not all disposable vape pens are designed to be recharged. The main reason for this is the non-rechargeable disposable device only has enough vape liquid to last for the duration of a single charge. In this case, you wouldn’t want to recharge it because it’s out of liquid and can’t be refilled.

How long before my vape starts blinking again?

While not in use, the battery loss is insignificant. The frequency of usage and the battery’s mAh rating is what determines the run time before the light starts to blink again. Milliamp hours (mAh) is a unit of measure that suggests how long a charge will last. All vapes are sold with their mAh rating displayed somewhere on the packaging.

Always check the battery’s rating before purchasing. A battery of 550 mAh or less is for a single day of moderate usage before needing to recharge. If you chain vape, 550 mAh may be just a few hours. Opt for a larger battery capacity, of up to 1000 mAh or more, if your device goes into blink mode too quickly for your usage. Some disposable vape pen batteries are as low as 200 mAh. Those will start to blink much quicker than others.

The puff-time limiter’s reached: take shorter puffs

A problem frequently experienced with cannabis disposable vapes.

  • Take shorter puffs
  • Take fewer puffs in a quick succession

It’s easy to go overboard sometimes when taking hits. Remember, heat is generated by the atomizer coil inside of the vape, as well as from the battery. To keep the unit protected from overheating, vapes have circuits that limit the output in a single span of time.

If you’ve gotten overzealous with your vaping, let the device reset for a moment. If you keep trying to take a hit while the light is blinking, it will keep blinking.


An incompatible attachment: remove and replace

This can happen with any kind of disposable vape that allows for any other electronic part to be attached, including a recharge port.

  • Remove the cart or other attachments like a charge cord.
  • Determine if it’s a proprietary fit that’s causing the issue.
  • Replace it with another cart or charge cord (ideally from another brand).

If you’re using a disposable vape pen that has a removable cart, know that not all carts will work on it—even if they screw on. Although there are times when you can get a snug-feeling connection, the parts may not be actually connecting properly with the battery.

What if it’s blinking when you try and charge it?

It’s possible that your device blinks while it charges, indicating that it’s charging. Maybe it goes back to solid or cuts off when finished. However, there could be something else at play.

It could be the USB plug you're using, or even the outlet where you're plugging it in, that’s not compatible. There may be electrical or physical issues with the other components that could be causing the problem. It may not be the disposable vape pen at fault for the blinking light.

This has happened to me a few times; an outlet won't charge my disposable vape, causing it to blink. Other times, it’s been the actual cord that was the problem.

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Brand new and blinking: Return it immediately

It’s unfortunate, but a disposable vape pen will occasionally have a blinking light before you even get to use it.

  • Save your receipt and packaging.
  • Take it back to the store you got it from.
  • Take a video if purchased online (and send an email).

Most likely, there was leaking inside the device during shipping. Fluctuations in air pressure can cause leakage of vape liquids into the internals of the battery compartment. Most vapes have physical protections (like rubber plugs) and electronic protections that prevent the device from firing when wet.

Sadly, you can’t fix it on your own if the electronic protection kicks in and the disposable vape pen is brand new. Of course, you can try and fix it if you want, but I strongly recommend not taking your disposable vape apart to solve a blinking light issue. It will void any chance of returning it.

The best option, in this case, is to communicate with the seller of the product (not the manufacturer). Hopefully, you still have your receipt. If it’s a physical store, take the device back and show them what’s happening.

If you've purchased it from an online dealer, you may have to show a video of what’s going on. Typically, vape sellers are aware that a blinking light can be triggered by leaking during transit, so there’s a good chance that they’ll replace the device for you. Unfortunately, it’ll depend on the retailer.

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Jeremy Mann

Vaping since: 14 years

Favorite products:

Favorite flavors: Desserts, fruit mixes, sweet tobaccos

Expertise in: Vaping history, MTL vapes, DIY, cannabis/vapes

Jeremy Mann

Previously having been the chief-editor, I am now a contributor here at Vaping360 and I reside in southeast Michigan. I've been vaping since my first ecig purchase in 2010. For more reasons than I can list, vaping has been a lifesaver for me. Now, my goal is to help other smokers make the switch.

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