Could there be a system of standardised testing of Vape batteries on the way?
The OPSS (Office for Product Safety and Standards) commissioned a report from the HSE (Health and Safety Executive) to investigate testing protocols for 18650 Vape batteries.
I dunno why but I keep thinking of the main man Battery Mooch who has been doing this for the vape community for years!
The OPSS arranged the purchase of 10 different batches of 18650 battery cells which were delivered to the HSE Science and Research Centre (SRC).
The cells that were purchased were from mixed suppliers claiming to be reputable manufacturers or re-branded (re-wrapped by a third party – often the retailer).
Online sellers were used, some from specialist battery retailers and some from online marketplaces.
I won’t go into huge detail but there was a lot of variation in quality and safety of the batteries assessed.
The document lists all the tests performed, the equipment used and the results.
The report concludes…
“This series of tests performed on a range of cell types have provided some insight into the variety of cells available on the UK market for vaping. It is clear that not all cells are entirely authentic, and do not deliver the advertised power or energy; indeed some of the advertised capacities are simply not plausible.”
This document appears to show there will be some kind of battery standard on the way for vape batteries.
Will they be regulated, will warnings be released about poor batteries? Will routine testing take place regularly? Will the manufacturers, importers, retailers, Trading Standards or other Government agencies be required to conduct these tests?
Who knows! But it does appear to me that something is in the pipeline.
If it keeps battery supplies safe for all vapers then I am on board, if the aim is to over-regulate the sale of vape batteries then I object.
I also find it strange this has not been publicised. I found it by accident on the Government website looking for something else vape related and this popped up! It was updated in March 2023 and this is the first time I have seen it and it has not been mentioned anywhere else?
When the text “online marketplaces” appears, I instantly think of the likes of Ebay and Amazon which sadly can be a pit of dodgy counterfeit batteries. So I think some of the more shocking results may be down to basically crappy batteries.
Which again means the message must be emphasised about only buying batteries from reputable dealers. Also where possible perform the authenticity checks to make sure they are not fake, low quality batteries disguised as a well known safe brand. We also talk more about battery safety in our guides section.