The cannabis market has really grown in the last few years. Long gone are the days when the only method of using weed was smoking, and the overwhelming variety of cannabis products you can find in an average dispensary can attest to that.
Not only that, but the potency of the average cannabis plant is way higher. Compared to the 1970s when the highest THC content was 10-15% at best, today, these THC levels are considered incredibly low. In comparison, the most potent cannabis flowers nowadays measure up to 30% THC.
On top of that, there are now numerous ways to utilize the chemical profile of the cannabis plant by extracting the active ingredients into concentrates and distillates to consume them in various ways. Dab rigs, bongs, vape pens, and desktop vaporizers are some of the devices that can be used.
Whatever the method, some forms of cannabis have a specific purpose and some can be used in several ways – for example, you can’t dab dry herb, but you can make magic brownies with both dry herb and cannabis oil.
Many cannabis concentrates can be used in a variety of ways to enhance the potency of your dry herb – you can add a few drops of CBD oil to your favorite Sativa strain before rolling a joint, or you can sprinkle some kief on top. The possibilities are indeed numerous.
One of the more popular ways of consuming cannabis concentrates is vaping THC oil, and for many reasons other than the potency. THC cartridges are portable and discreet, but they are pricey and you’ll need to be careful with them, especially if you’re out and about all day and carry one with you. The reason for this is that it can easily get damaged.
If you’ve ever wondered if you can use THC oil in other ways than vaping, read on. But first, we need to cover the basics of weed concentrates just so you know what you’ll be ingesting.
Cannabis Concentrates Basics
Cannabis concentrates are exactly what they sound like – concentrated forms of the active ingredients present in the cannabis plant. The plant matter is processed in such a way that only the desirable compounds, like cannabinoids (CBD and THC) and terpenes, are kept, while the rest of the impurities are discarded. The process used is called solvent extraction where different types of solvents (isopropyl alcohol, butane, carbon dioxide, dry ice, and others) are used to soak the plant matter in order to make the extraction.
Overall, cannabis concentrates are more abundant in cannabinoids and terpenes than the original plant they were extracted from due to the advanced form of processing. They can later be further processed into various textures and consistencies – they can be hardened to shatter or crumble, or be made into wax for dabbing, or be kept in their original liquid form as an oil or tincture, for vaping or sublingual consumption.
Concentrates are crazy powerful – the psychoactive effects will be much more pronounced, and if you go overboard, the side effects will be much stronger, too. First-time users should be very cautious or stay away until they’ve gained some cannabis experience.
What Kind of Concentrate Is THC Vape Oil?
Vaping is preferred by many when using cannabis concentrates due to the portability of vaporizers. Also, it’s easier to dose and take puffs throughout the day if you need to.
Most commonly, THC vape oils come in vape pens that consist of a pre-filled cartridge attached to a battery that heats up the oil and vaporizes it. These vape cartridges are designed for one use only, meaning they can’t be refilled, but you get to keep the battery and replace the cartridge many times.
Another common way of vaping THC oil is with a handheld vaporizer. This type of vape comes with a chamber that you can refill over and over again and you can put any type of cannabis concentrate to vape, including THC oil. The vaporizer contains a heating coil that heats up the concentrate and turns it into vapor.
THC vape oil can contain various additives such as propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin to thin out the oil and make it easier for the battery to vaporize it.
The Effects of THC Oil
THC oil, as you may have guessed, is quite powerful because it’s a concentrated product (and doesn’t contain any CBD to counter the effects of THC). Therefore, this means that a little can go a long way. Vaping, in general, is much smoother than smoking and much easier on the throat and lungs, which is why so many people prefer it. But this also means that it’s easier to go overboard because it will feel too light compared to smoking a joint.
My Vape Cart Broke! Can I Eat the THC Oil?
A question we often get is “can you eat distillate”, and, technically, yes, you can ingest the oil, but whether it will get you high depends on the oil. Let us explain.
Some THC carts come with a distillate oil that has already been decarboxylated, meaning that the THC in it has been activated beforehand and is able to produce the psychoactive effects. This type of oil is vaped at lower temperatures. However, most vape carts come with an oil that has not been decarboxylated and only gets activated when exposed to the temperature of the vaporizer. For reference, decarboxylation is the process where the cannabinoids get activated when exposed to heat.
Now, if you ingest the distillate oil, it will likely get you very high because it’s highly concentrated and the THC is already activated. Some users add it to weed butter and then make edibles with it. But, if you ingest THC oil that has not been decarboxylated, you’re unlikely to feel any significant effects and it would be a waste of product. If your cart broke and you want to use your THC vape oil in some way, you can dab it or smear it on some flower and smoke it. That way, the THC can get activated and you won’t waste the sweet juice (as THC carts are pricey).