Many people use hemp wicks to save money on lighters and avoid the taste of butane affecting their smoke, but does it actually work? Whether or not lighters affect the taste of weed has long been a debate amongst cannabis smokers with the argument split down the middle.
As it turns out, the answer to this question isn’t as simple as one may think.
Do Lighters Affect the Taste of Weed?
Whether you are smoking a joint, vaping, or dabbing cannabis, different notes can be tasted in the cannabis depending on your consumption method; vaping weed results in a stronger and cleaner flavor while burning it typically results in a more smokey and ashy flavor. However, there are different types of lighters out there that use butane or electricity, so does it make a difference?
Regardless, if any kind of fire is involved, it will inevitably affect the flavor. Although people suspect butane is the reason for the difference in taste, it cannot be tasted due to combustion. Once the flint and butane meet to create a flame, combustion suggests that butane won’t survive past the fire. Meaning the butane in the lighter would not affect the taste of weed. If complete combustion doesn’t occur due to an oxygen-poor environment then butane particles may be left behind, but this is unlikely to happen nor affect the flavor.
Image by Christian Allard
So, don’t aim your blame at butane. The real culprit is the actual flame from the lighter. Butane lighters burn at temperatures of up to 3,500 degrees Fahrenheit. This burns off many cannabinoids and terpenes, taking away from the overall flavor. Hence why smoking cannabis has an overall ashy, burnt taste.
Similarly, a hemp wick burns at a temperature of around 1,500 degrees. Though lower, the high temperature may still burn off many cannabinoids and terpenes, but many claim that this method results in a much more flavorful smoking experience.
In contrast, cannabis flower can be vaporized at as low as 320 degrees Fahrenheit. The low temperature preserves many of the plant’s cannabinoids and terpenes, allowing for more of its flavor to shine through.
The Final Verdict
All of this information suggests that yes, lighters do have an effect on the taste of weed, but likely not because of the butane. If you’re looking to get the most flavor out of your cannabis flower, try vaporizing it at a low temperature.