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WARNING: This product contains nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive chemical.

Internal vs External Vape Batteries – Pros & Cons

Batteries are one of the least talked about aspects of vaping. After all, a batter is just a power source, right? Yes, but there is a lot more to it than just that. Internal batteries and external batteries might seem self-explanatory, but they can have a big impact on your vape experience.

In the battle of internal vs external vape batteries, which reigns supreme? We’ve compiled all the pros and cons of the two main types of vape batteries.

What Is mAh?

Both internal and external batteries are measured in mAh. This stands for milli-amp hours, and it is the standard metric for measuring the amount of energy that a battery holds.

Of course, the more mAh a battery has, the longer it will last. To get a good battery life, you need to find a device that has a high mAh rating.

Internal Lithium Polymer (LiPo) Vape Battery

Built-in Internal Vape Batteries

Definition and Explanation of Internal Batteries

True to its name, an internal battery is located inside the vape device. These types of batteries are designed to stay inside the device, so you can’t remove or replace them. This also means that you don’t have to install them, which ticks one box off your to-do list.

Despite the convenience, there are a few concerns about internal batteries. The average internal battery is made from Lithium Polymer (also known as LiPo) which can be dangerous if misused.

Internal batteries have a wide range, with some of the lowest clocking in at 300mAh and the highest sitting at around 1,500mAh. In general, you can expect 300mAh batteries to last for half a day. 1,500mAh rechargeable batteries could last up to an entire week.

Common Devices that Use Internal Batteries

An internal battery is the best option for people who favor convenience, so it is no surprise that they are commonly found in starter kits and pod kits.

Pros of Internal Batteries

1. Convenience and Ease of Use

As we’ve discussed, internal batteries are super convenient. There’s no need to install the batteries yourself or worry about electrics. The vape battery will already be installed, so you can start vaping straight away.

2. Compact and Sleek Design

If you are searching for a compact, convenient device, you need to find one that has an internal battery. These batteries are snugly nestled inside the device, so they don’t disrupt the silhouette. Compact devices are perfect for people who want to vape on the go without attracting attention.

3. Safety Measures

In-built batteries benefit from a whole host of safety features. The manufacturer that makes the device also makes the battery components, and they are obligated to think about battery safety.

Cons of Internal Batteries

1. Limited Lifespan

Remember, internal batteries are not removable. Some of them aren’t even rechargeable! If you hate the idea of constantly checking your battery life indicator, you should avoid devices that have internal batteries. Lots of ultra-minimalistic vape pens don’t even have battery life indicator lights, so your vape device could stop working at the worst time.

2. Requires Entire Device Replacement

Once the battery is gone, you will have to throw the entire device away and buy a new one. This is one of the biggest disadvantages, especially for people who want affordable vape devices. It is especially annoying for heavy users, who will have to buy a new vape device every day or so.

Of course, this isn’t a problem as long as the internal battery is rechargeable.

3. More Likely to Fail

Internal batteries are permanent, and so are the components. Unlike external batteries that can be removed, tweaked, and reinstalled, internal batteries can’t be touched. If even the smallest thing goes wrong, the battery is doomed.

Whereas advanced and experienced vapers may be able to solve the problem themselves, more often than not, vapers have to throw away the whole device.

Internal batteries tend to use Lithium Polymer. If these kinds of batteries are punctured, they could start a fire. Vapers need to treat these kinds of batteries very carefully to avoid the associated risks.

Removable - External Vape Batteries

Removable – External Vape Batteries

Definition and Explanation of External Batteries

External batteries are also known as battery mods, box mods, and removable mods. The term mod stands for modifiable, which reflects all the available customization options.

Essentially, a vape mod is the chunkier, removable part that is installed on the bottom of a vape device. It houses the battery, and typically a few other electrical components.

Types of External Batteries (18650, 20700 & 21700)

External battery mods don’t come with batteries. They feature a battery compartment, where you can install whatever batteries are compatible with the device.

Before you buy an external battery, it’s important to remember that each battery is named after its dimensions. This is a super-easy way to identify which battery is compatible with your device. For example, a 21700 battery is 21mm in diameter and 70mm in length.

Here are the main external batteries.

18650 Batteries

These batteries are the most common types that are found in vape devices. The mAh range starts at 2,000 and can reach 3,500 mAh. 18650 batteries can be recharged hundreds of times without any adverse effects.

Find the Best 18650 Batteries for 2023.

20700 Batteries

These batteries offer great energy density for the side. The mAh rating sits somewhere between 3,000 and 4,000 mAh.

Discover the Best 20700 Battery for Vaping in 2023.

21700 Batteries

These batteries are rechargeable lithium-ion cells. The mAh range starts at 3,000 and goes up to 5,000 mAh. Some brands use protected cells, whereas others use unprotected cells. In the context of batteries, the term ‘protected’ means that the battery has a feature that stops it from overheating.

Learn about the Best 21700 Battery for Vaping in 2023.

Common Devices that use External Batteries

In the battle of internal vs external vape batteries, external batteries are far more powerful.

An external battery is the best choice for people who want uncompromising power. They are suitable for sub-ohm devices, which need a lot of power to produce immense plumes of vapor.

Pros of External Vape Batteries

1. Easy Replacements and Longevity

One of the best things about external batteries is that they allow vapers to recharge and reuse their device for months and months. If you’re searching for a long-lasting device that has staying power, you need to find out what is compatible with a box mod. Mods house immensely powerful batteries, which can be replaced once they have reached the end of their life cycle. This kind of vape battery is ideal for people who want affordable, enduring vape components.

2. Versatility and Customizability

They don’t call them mods for nothing! External batteries are housed in mods, which come with a lot more customization options than a typical vape pen. Mods can give you the power to change the wattage, temperature, or air control. Some of them even have display screens, so you can monitor your usage.

3. Potential for Higher Power Output

Mods can house any kind of vape battery, which means that the power potential is through the roof. On the lower end of the scale, you can get batteries that offer 300 mAh of power. On the higher end of the scale, you’re looking at a massive 5,000 mAh rating. Unlike a standard internal battery, a standard external battery can power a sub-ohm device for several days.

Cons of Removable Vape Batteries

1. Requires Additional Safety Knowledge

Regardless of whether an external vape battery has in-built safety features, it can be very dangerous. Unregulated vape mods, which are also known as mechanical mods, don’t have circuits. This means that you cannot change the voltage or wattage. All the power goes straight to the coil in your device, meaning that using the right coil is essential. If you use the wrong coil, your device could overheat and start sparking.

2. Larger and Less Portable Design

External battery mods are known for being chunky. They are installed onto existing devices, which usually disrupts the sleek silhouette that a lot of vapers look for. On top of that, they are usually heavier than a vape pen or disposable vape device. Overall, you can bet on an external battery being bigger and less portable than a device that contains an internal battery.

3. Additional Costs (Spare Batteries, Charger)

An external battery might seem more affordable than an internal battery, but is this true? Overall, we have to say yes. But external batteries require you to carry spare batteries as well as chargers. If you’re searching for a streamlined, all-in-one device, external batteries might not be the best option for you.

Explore the Best Vape Battery Chargers for 2023 on our website.

How to Choose the Right Battery Type for You

Consider Your Personal Vaping Habits

Before you begin shopping for batteries, you need to consider your personal vaping habits. If you love sleek devices, you might be tempted to consider an internal battery. However, if you want the unparalleled vapor production that comes from a sub-ohm device, you need an external battery.

Ultimately, you need to make a decision that ties together lots of different aspects of your ideal vape experience.

Understand Your Device’s Requirements

There is much more to the battle of internal vs external vape batteries than meets the eye. Once you understand your personal preferences, you need to spare a thought for your device’s requirements.

Some devices can only handle a small amount of mAh, whereas others can handle up to 5,000 mAh. This should be one of the first things you think about when you buy a battery. If you buy a 21700 battery and pump 5,000 mAh of power into a device that can only handle 3,000 mAh at most, several things could happen. Your device could overheat and short-circuit, or the coil could overheat and produce burnt hits. Either way, you should avoid the outcome at all costs.

Decide Between Convenience and Versatility

Devices that support internal batteries tend to be more convenient. Think sleek, slimline disposable vapes and pod vape systems. On the other hand, devices that support external batteries tend to be more versatile. Think temperature control and a whole host of other customization options.

At the end of the day, you need to choose between convenience and versatility. Which battery suits your lifestyle? Internal, or external?

Review the Safety Risk

When it comes to vaping, safety should be your first thought. Of course, safety is not so much a concern for people who want a device that has an internal vape battery, but it’s an important consideration for people who want an external box mod.

Right off the bat, we know that internal batteries are compatible with the device that they are housed in. The same is not true of external mods, which can be switched out and installed on different devices. On top of that, lots of vape battery mods are not regulated. These mechanical mods are at significant risk of overheating and causing serious safety problems.

You need to ask yourself, ‘How equipt am I to deal with a safety problem?’ If you’re unsure, you should choose a device that has an internal battery.


So, where does this leave you? Is the battle of internal vs external vape batteries settled?

If you want a safe, functional battery that comes in a convenient, easy-to-use device, you should opt for an internal battery. These kinds of batteries may be less customizable than their external counterparts, but they are far safer, and you don’t have to spend your time finding a compatible battery.

Of course, if you want the complete opposite (a bulky, customizable device) you will be a big fan of external batteries. They may require more thought and time than their simpler internal counterparts, but these batteries offer a wealth of interesting opportunities. Adventurous vapers will feel right at home them.

It’s no surprise that your personal preferences will shape your choices. Whatever your preferences are, make sure to do some research on the different components. At the end of the day, staying safe is the most important choice that any vaper can make.

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Viki Howlett
Viki Howlett
Viki Howlett, a skilled writer with a decade of vaping experience, enriches our website with engaging, well-researched articles, offering readers valuable insights and trustworthy reviews on vaping products and trends.
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