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The European Commission is still working on some technical specifications of the European Directive on the vaping products.

Two solution are being studies by the EU Commission

The EU TPD has imposed the presence of a leak-free filling system for e-cigarette tanks. “Given the toxicity of the nicotine-containing liquids used in electronic cigarettes and refill containers”, the drafters of the Directive deemed “appropriate” to ensure “that electronic cigarettes can be refilled in a manner that minimises the risk of dermal contact or accidental ingestion of such liquids.”

It is the Commission’s responsibility to achieve this objective with the preparation of technical standards.

In the current state of their work, the draft text (.docx) indicates that clearomizers and refill bottles are requested to meet one of two requirements in order to be legally marketed in the European Union.

  • First solution: the refill container possesses a non-detachable nozzle at least 1cm long, narrower than and that slots comfortably into the opening of the tank. The flow control mechanism is required to emit no more than 20 drops of refill liquid per minute when placed vertically.
  • Second solutiona docking system which only releases refill liquids when the electronic cigarette and refill container are connected.

Finally, refilling instructions, including graphic illustrations, must be provided to consumers. The width of the nozzle and of the clearomizer’s opening must be indicated to allow consumers to identify the compatibility between the bottles and the tanks.

AFNOR's pictogram showing the refill nozzle's external diameter
AFNOR’s pictogram showing the refill nozzle’s external diameter

The first solution appears to be in agreement with the work carried out in France by the AFNOR on vaping products. It was proposed, for example, the maximum flow rate of 20 drops per minute and to indicate the external diameter of the refill nozzle.

  • RobC(UK)

    The First Solution is definitely not leak free as the displaced air has to vent out
    of the fill port and with the restricted flow, which will take 3 mins to fill a
    2ml tank, an overflow is much more likely. The impatient and those with
    painful joints, like myself, will likely resort to some form of mechanically
    pressurizing the refill container so it can be left unattended during the
    protracted refill process.

    The Second Solution gives no indication as to how it would deal
    with the air displaced from the device during filling or how it would prevent
    overfilling. Compliant refill containers would not be backward compatible with
    older devices that are still (legally) in use and users would likely resort to
    cutting open the container to bypass the fill mechanism, as would probably be
    the case from the restricted flow design of the First Solution.

    As the refill liquids that are permitted to be sold under the
    TPD are CLP cat 4 in toxicity (less than dishwashing detergent), this really is
    an inelegant solution to a problem that does not exist.