Whether or not lighters affect the taste of weed has long been a debate amongst cannabis smokers. Many argue that it doesn’t affect the flavor at all while others swear by using natural alternatives like hemp wick for a tastier smoke. The answer isn’t a simple “yes” or “no,” but let’s dive into the details.
Do Lighters Affect the Taste of Weed?
First, burning cannabis with anything will affect its flavor. Vaping weed will always result in stronger and cleaner flavors while burning it will always result in a more smokey and ashy flavor.
Aside from fire’s inevitable effect on the flavor, many wonder if the actual lighter can affect the taste of weed. More specifically, if the butane in the lighter can have an effect on the flavor or smoking experience. Butane isn’t really a culprit here, though.
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.
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.
Image by Christian Allard | Featured image by Sharon McCutcheon
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.
In Conclusion: Lighters Do Affect the Taste of Weed
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.