The Best Vape Detector (for Vaping, Vapers and E-Cigarette)

Particulate Matter PM2.5 -

The Best Vape Detector (for Vaping, Vapers and E-Cigarette)

Vape detectors are used to measure the air quality relating to vapers and e-cigarettes in indoor environments, for home, hotels, office, work, schools, or other enclosed spaces. A PM2.5 detector is an excellent low cost detector in an indoor environment to confirm if vapers or e-cigarettes were used. A sensitive PM2.5 detector can be considered a vaping, vaper, or e-cigarette detector. PM2.5 detectors can be used by hotel staff, landlords, or even for property inspections to confirm vaping or e-cigarette use. 



  • Vape and e-cigarette vapor detectors (PM2.5) are relatively low cost
  • Many detectors that are able to detect the use of e-cigarettes or vaping can also detect the presence of cannabis and weed smoke
  • PM2.5 detectors can help landlords and hotel owners solve problems associated with vaping and e-cigarette use
  • Vaping and e-cigarette use is common
  • Vaping and e-cigarettes are often used indoors to deliver nicotine to the body in a fast way
  • Limited product options exists to detect vaping and e-cigarette vapor

The Best Vape Detector?

There are various technologies that detect vapor caused by e-cigarettes. Here are some top and popular units:

    • This detector has 12 sensors that detect particulate caused by vape and smoke, as well as carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen dioxide gas.
  • Zeptive Vape Detector
    • This detector has high sensitivity and low-false flag rate. It works by detecting the components of vape aerosol.
  • Triton 3D Sense Vape Detector
    • This detector measures chemicals in the air to determine the likelihood and severity of someone vaping in an enclosed space.

What Chemicals are in Vaping?

    • A study showed that cigarette vapor is made up of aerosols, particulate matter, tobacco-specific nitrosamines (TSNAs), aldehydes, metals, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), phenolic compounds, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), tobacco alkaloids, and drugs (amino-tadalafil and rimonabant).
    • Pellegrino et al measured the ultrafine particulate matter (PM) fraction yield of e-cigarettes. Data showed that the PM emission values were lower in e-cigarettes compared with the conventional cigarette (eg, PM1=14 vs 80 μg/m3 and PM10=52 vs 922 μg/m3
    • In one study, it was shown that PM2.5 concentrations were correlated with the number of e-cigarette users present in a vape-shop.

    What is a E-Cigarette?

    Electronic cigarettes also known as e-cigarettes, e-cigs, vapers, electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), vape pens, vaping devices, mods and tank systems are battery-operated devices that vaporize a liquid (also known as e-liquid) to produce an aerosol.

    Users inhale the aerosol that includes nicotine and other flavored substances.

    Yes there is.

    The most effective and low-cost device is our Particulate Detector PM2.5. This detector is accurate and will detect the slightest particles produced from vaping and e-cigs.

    Smoke detectors are not sensitive enough to detector particle vapor from a E-cigarette.

    The PM2.5 detectors can be considered a highly sensitive smoke detector that detects the emissions of these particles when vaping.

    Is There a Device to Detect Vaping Odor?


    A person can smell vaping odor since their nose is smelling the vapor cloud produced during the use of an e-cigarette. The vapor is particulate matter that is microns in size. These continue to rest or float and are aromatic, hence their smell. 

    The PM2.5 detector functions essentially as a very sensitive air quality detector, which means it can detect the presence of the aromatic vapor caused by vaping or e-cigarette use.

    How to Use a Vape Detector?

    1. Turn on the PM2.5 particulate detector.  
    2. Leave it in a known vapor-free and smoke-free room for 10 minutes. This will be referred to as a clean room.
    3. Record a baseline reading of the clean room of the PM2.5 level. You will use this value when comparing to your reading in a suspected room.
    4. Then, move the detector to a suspected room where you believe someone has vaped or used an e-cigarette within.
    5. Leave the detector in the room for 10 minutes. Then, take a reading.
    6. If there is an increase from the clean room to the suspected room, there is a strong likelihood that vapor particles exist and are suspended within the suspected room.

    What Does Vaping Smell Like?

    Vaping and e-cigarettes have different smells depending on what is being consumed. Most vape pens and e-cigarettes use cartridges that are flavored with various flavorings related to food, such as fruit, candy, or mint. As a result, the smell of vaping can smell like many different food-related flavorings. 

    While it is being vaped, the scent of the vape or e-cigarette is amplified. It is often described as "sickly-sweet".

    However, some vape and e-cigarette cartridges are filled with marijuana, or cannabis. This type of vapor can have notes that are described as herbal or earthy. 

    How Long Does Vape Smell Last?

    The length of time that the smell from e-cigarette use lasts is associated with the vapor particles. If someone uses an e-cigarette in an indoor space, it will take several days for the smell to totally dissipated. The vapor particles will:

    • Penetrate into porous items in the home, such as the carpet and furniture.
    • Over longer periods of time, and dependent on the ventilation in the enclosed space, the aromatic vapor particles will mix into the clean air and reduce in odor.
    • High levels of ventilation will allow for the smell to reduce at a faster rate than it will in an enclosed space with poor air circulation.
    • If a hotel owner or landlord has problems associated with vape or e-cigarette smell, it is recommended to  increase ventilation by implementing blowers or fans, and eventually the smell will dissipate.

    How Does the Vape and E-Cigarette Odor Detector Work?

    • A PM2.5 detector, which is used for detecting poor air quality related to vaping and e-cigarette use, works by measuring the amount of particulate matter in the air.
    • Specifically, the PM2.5 detector described utilizes advanced laser sensor technology to detect the particulate in the air. The EPA (United States Environmental Protection Agency) definition of particulate matter is the solid and liquid matter (ie particles and droplets) that reside in the air. These detectors measure the level of droplets and particles that are suspended in the air.
    • Vaping and e-cigarette use produces vapor particles, which can be measured by the detector in an indoor area.

    Does a Vape Detector Work With Cigarette Smoke and Cannabis?

    If a vape detector monitors the presence of particulate matter in an enclosed environment, then it would also work with cigarette smoke and cannabis smoke as well.

    PM2.5 detectors can measure vapor from e-cigarettes, cigarette smoke, and cannabis smoke. 

    How Long Do Air Quality Detectors Last?

    Air quality detectors that measure particulate optically last 5 years or more. Forensics Detectors Particulate PM2.5 Detector lasts over 24 hours on one charge and has a expected life over 10 years.

    How Much Does a Vape Detector Cost?

    Vape detectors are a relatively affordable equipment. Many options are available at around the $100 mark.

    Can an Air Quality Test Detect the Presence of Vapor from E-Cigarette Use?

    If a PM2.5 detector is used, then a air quality test can do it. Some PM2.5 detectors are often referred to as air quality tests.

    Does Vaping Affect Air Quality?


    Studies have shown that using e-cigarettes has negative effect on air quality in an enclosed and indoor environment. Air quality can also be affected in an outdoor environment with poor circulation.

    Does Vaping Produce Carbon Monoxide Gas?

    No, e-cigarettes and vaping do not produce carbon monoxide gas.

    As a result, carbon monoxide sensors cannot detect the use of e-cigarettes in an environment

    Who Needs a Vape Detector?

    • Schools to Detect Students Who Vape in restrooms or indoor spaces. Perfect for teachers and administrators.
    • Hotel to Detect unauthorized E-Cigarette Usage in Rooms and Lobby.
    • Landlords to Detector E-Cigarette Usage from tenants.

    Final Words

    • A PM2.5 detector can easily detect vapor produced by e-cigarette use
    • Vapor produced by e-cigarette use can and do affect the air quality of indoor environments and can affect outdoor air quality with poor air circulation. 
    • Most air quality detectors can monitor the presence of vapor in the air along with smoke produced through other means such as cigarettes - as long as they are detector PM2.5.
    • Vapor caused by e-cigarette use will not set off smoke alarms - a PM2.5 detector is needed to detect vaping in an enclosed area, which can be thought of as a extremely low level smoke and ultra super sensitive smoke detector.

    About the Author

    Dr. Koz is the President of FORENSICS DETECTORS, where the company operates from the scenic Palos Verdes Peninsula in Los Angeles, California. He is a subject matter expert on gas sensor technology, gas detectors, gas meters, and gas analyzers. He has been designing, building, manufacturing and testing toxic gas detection systems for over 20 years.

    gas detector expert

    Every day is a blessing for Dr. Koz. He loves to help customers solve their unique problems. Dr. Koz also loves spending time with his wife and his three children going to the beach, grilling burgers, and having a cold beer. 

    Read more about Forensics Detectors here.

    Phone: +1 424-341-3886

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