Your safety is our first concern.
We are aware that there have been reports of ecigarette batteries exploding or melting and have tailored our safety protocols to minimise this kind of risk.
Let us start by saying that all ecigarette batteries, chargers and plugs are made in China. There may be one or two brands that are not, but the vast majority are, as are the chargers and batteries for mobile phones, computers and so on. Indeed probably 90% of the stuff we all have in our houses is made in China. Our batteries are no exception. Great care is used by us in choosing the right factories, and tests are carried out by those factories,and by independent third parties, on their own products, but we are keen to take our own steps here in the UK to help ensure the safety of the products we sell you.
So, when a shipment of GRUVeBatteries arrives in the UK, individual batteries are (again) independently tested. Obviously we can test only a small number this way, as testing every piece of electrical equipment would be prohibitively expensive and would increase the cost of the average e-cig starter kit from around £30 to nearer £100. However, in addition to these factory tests, and independent tests in the UK, we also test each individual ecigarette battery ourselves before it is sold. That is, we put it on full charge and leave it overnight. Obviously this is a time-consuming and cumbersome task but your safety is our paramount concern. And we undertake this testing without it affecting the prices of the kits – they remain competitive at between £20 and £35.
From May 2014, we shall be offering a free flame-retardant e-cig charging bag with each kit. Your e-cigarette battery is placed in the bag whilst it charges so that, should the worst happen, the debris would be caught in the bag rather than escaping and causing damage or injury. Given the extensive measures we have already put in place, this precaution should be entirely unnecessary but where safety is concerned, we believe in a ‘belt and braces’ approach.
What you can do
Please note that where problems have occurred, according to West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, ‘initial indications seem to point towards incorrect charging rather than faulty products’ (www.westyorksfire.gov.uk)
The most common reason for an ecigarette battery to explode is that it is used with the wrong charger. Of critical concern is that the output voltage of the charger should not exceed the input voltage of the battery. Most common ego-type batteries have an input voltage of 4.2v as do the chargers, so there is usually no problem, and given the huge number of ecigarettes that are sold these days, it is of note that there have been only a very few reported problems – far fewer than with other electrical appliances.
What you can do therefore is to ensure that you only ever use the e-cig charger that comes with your kit – and that applies not just for GRUVeCigs, but all ecigarette firms. Never use our chargers on any other company’s batteries, or theirs on ours. In particular, never use stub chargers (the little chargers you get with ‘lookie-likie’ ecigs) with ego-type batteries, as they tend to have output voltages of 4.6 – 5.0 volts, and this is certain to cause an explosion if used to charge a battery with an input voltage of 4.2 volts.
In addition, do not leave any ecig battery unattended whilst it is charging, and, when it is charging, place it in the charging bag provided. Finally, when your ecigarette battery is charged (indicated by the light on the charger turning from red to green), remove the battery from the charger as soon as possible, the charger from the plug, and the plug from the wall socket.
Next, always keep the battery centre pin and charger contacts clean. These should be wiped at least once a week with a dry tissue or preferably an alcohol wipe. Finally, do not over-tighten the charging lead on the battery as this can cause shearing of the threads.