Mechanical Mod Won’t Fire? Fix a Mech Mod With These Tips

Mechanical mods are prized by a subset of e-cigarette users for their low cost and simplicity. They’re also ideal for e-smokers who build their own atomizer coils, because they always output the full voltage of the battery to the coil — nothing is lost to wires and chips. The one thing that mechanical mods lack, though, is feedback. So, if you find one day that your mechanical mod won’t fire, your device won’t do anything to help you troubleshoot the problem. We’re here to help. Welcome to eCig One’s comprehensive guide to troubleshooting a mechanical mod that won’t fire.

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Mechanical Mod Won’t Fire: Troubleshooting Tips

Check the Battery

When your mechanical mod isn’t firing, the first and perhaps most obvious troubleshooting step is to try a different battery. The batteries used in most mechanical mods are considered “dead” when they drop to about 3.2 volts. A battery discharged below this level may not be able to fire an atomizer coil and may, in fact, be unsafe to use. Swap out your current battery for one that you know to be fully charged and see if the mechanical mod fires. Because a mechanical mod has no display to supply information about the battery, many mech mod owners find it very helpful to use a battery voltage checker periodically.

If your mechanical mod has never fired, consult the instruction manual to confirm that the battery polarity is correct. In most cases, the negative terminal of the battery faces the fire button at the bottom of the mod. Although some mechanical mods will fire with the battery polarity reversed, doing so is potentially very dangerous because any damage to the battery’s wrapper could result in a hard short to the body of the mod. In the worst case scenario, a hard short to the body of a mechanical mod will cause severe electric shock and burning.

Check the Atomizer

A mechanical mod won’t fire if the atomizer has a problem. Some of the problems that might occur with an atomizer include damage to the coil or, if the atomizer has never worked with your mechanical mod, a center pin that doesn’t touch the top contact point inside the mod’s threading. The worst case scenario is a short in the atomizer, which we’ll discuss later. Try swapping in a different atomizer such as a mass-produced tank or a traditional cartomizer.

Adjust the Pins

Your mechanical mod may have as many as three adjustable pins: one for the bottom of the battery, one for the top of the battery and one for the atomizer. Often, the pins are reverse-threaded, so they come out when turned clockwise. You’ll want to adjust these pins so your mechanical mod makes firm — but not overly firm — contact with the battery and atomizer. Be warned that if you over-tighten, you could deform the top and/or bottom caps of the battery. In this case, you’ll need to dispose of the battery for safety.

An important note about hybrid mods: A hybrid mod is a device with a hole rather than a pin in the top cap. In most mechanical mods, the top cap includes a pin that touches the top of the battery and the bottom of the atomizer. In a hybrid mod, the atomizer pin goes through a hole in the top cap and touches the battery directly, reducing power loss and potentially improving vapor production. Hybrid mods are only safe to use with atomizers that have protruding center pins. If your atomizer doesn’t have a protruding center pin — or has a spring-loaded pin that moves when pushed — it could cause a short when used with a hybrid mod. In this case, the mechanical mod won’t fire. It may also become extremely hot as the battery begins to vent hot gas. This is also a case that will likely require disposal of the battery.

Hybrid Mechanical Mod Not Firing

A typical hybrid mechanical mod. Note the long stem at the bottom of the rebuildable atomizer, intended to touch the top of the battery directly.

Clean the Device, Battery and Atomizer

A mechanical mod can become quite dirty over time — especially if you flood your atomizer frequently. Dust, grime and e-liquid residue can form a film on the contacts of your device and atomizer and prevent good power transfer. In addition, some people have reported new mechanical mods that arrived from the factory with contaminants such as machine grease and metal filings. Clean your mod with a soft cloth and cotton swabs. Some people use a little water or rubbing alcohol — simply follow the best practice for the component that you are cleaning. Be certain, though, that your mod and all of its components are completely dry before attempting to use the device again.

Check the Fire Button

A mechanical mod uses resistance to keep the button away from the bottom of the battery when the device is not in use. Early mechanical mods used springs — and many less expensive mods still use them. However, the preferred method is to use two magnets inside the button. In this design, the magnets are positioned so that they push away from one another but aren’t allowed to touch when the button is fully pressed. A mechanical mod with a magnetic fire button has a very smooth action — the button shouldn’t wobble and should last a very long time.

If you have a mechanical mod with a spring-loaded fire button, check to make sure that the spring isn’t compressed from use. If your mechanical mod won’t fire but the button becomes very hot, there is a good chance that you need to replace the spring or the entire button. If you have a magnetic fire button, check to make sure that a magnet isn’t cracked or broken. Most mechanical mods contain rare earth magnets that don’t conduct electricity. However, some rare earth magnets may have a conductive coating. In this case, a broken magnet could potentially cause a short.

In addition, some mechanical mods simply have finicky fire buttons that require you to apply pressure to the exact center for the mod to fire. Many mechanical mods also have locking fire buttons for safety. If your mechanical mod isn’t firing, is the fire button locked?

Battery Amperage Limit

Whether or not you build your own atomizer coils, it is crucial that you understand the capabilities of your mechanical mod’s battery. Although an in-depth explanation of battery technology is out of this article’s scope, suffice it to say that you need to be aware of your battery’s capabilities. You should also be certain that your battery is genuine, as battery counterfeiting is rampant. The most popular batteries currently used in mechanical mods can operate under loads up to 35 amps. Most atomizer builds are no problem for a 35 amp battery. However, you could run into problems when vaping a sub-ohm coil on a lesser or counterfeit battery. Always use a resistance tester to check your coil builds, and familiarize yourself with Ohm’s law.

Critical Battery Flaw

Most batteries for mechanical mods are designed so the top post functions as the positive pole, while the rest of the battery is the negative pole. The positive pole is insulated, but the battery’s wrapper is the only thing protecting the negative pole. In other words, if the wrapper is torn or removed, any metal object touching the exposed metal portion of the battery will effectively be touching the negative pole and may cause a short. You should dispose of a battery that shows any sign of cosmetic damage. Other signs of a critical battery flaw include bulging, warping and becoming painfully hot to the touch.

A Word About Heat

Speaking of heat, we feel it is necessary to mention the point that your mechanical mod should never become painfully hot to hold. We’ve heard of some videos in which mechanical mod users hold their devices in towels to protect their hands from discomfort. If your mechanical mod is painfully hot, you are over-stressing the battery and need to change what you are doing immediately.

Short Circuit in Mod or Atomizer

A short circuit is any situation in which electrical current flows along an unintended path. A short circuit could result in a variety of negative consequences such as an electrical shock or battery explosion. Of course, a short could also cause a mechanical mod not to fire. We’ve already discussed situations in which a damaged battery or fire button could cause a short. It’s far more common, though, for faulty coil builds to cause shorts. If your mechanical mod won’t fire, check the atomizer with a resistance tester. If the coil build worked previously, it may simply be that the mod was bumped or jostled, causing one of the coil leads to come out of its post. If the coil build has never worked, a coil may be touching the drip well or side of the RBA.

Hot Spring or Fuse

If your mechanical mod has a top- or side-mounted switch, it may have a safety feature called a “hot spring.” In the event of a short, a hot spring collapses to break the circuit before the battery fails critically. At this point, the mechanical mod won’t fire because pressing the button will no longer complete the circuit. You’ll need to replace the hot spring before the mod will fire again. More importantly, though, you’ll need to correct the situation that caused the short to begin with.

If your mechanical mod has a bottom-mounted switch, a hot spring won’t work because its collapse would close the circuit rather than opening it. However, some mechanical mods include “VapeSafe” fuses instead. Like a hot spring, a VapeSafe breaks the circuit in a mechanical mod when the current is too high. If your mechanical mod won’t fire and has a VapeSafe fuse installed, you first need to correct the over-current condition. Depending on the VapeSafe model, the fuse will trip at around 6 amps. With a fully charged 4.2 volt battery, this means that the resistance of the atomizer can’t be lower than about 0.7 ohms. Of course, many people build atomizer coils at 0.5 ohms and even lower, so they don’t use VapeSafe fuses. If your mechanical mod doesn’t have one, though, we highly recommend using a fuse. It really will add an extra measure of safety.

If your VapeSafe fuse has tripped and you have the VapeSafe 1 model, you’ll need to replace the fuse. This is a single-use fuse that trips once and never works again. If you have a VapeSafe 2, the fuse will actually reset itself when you allow it to cool. However, the fuse eventually wears out, which means you’ll need to replace the VapeSafe 2 every several months.

Author: eCig One Staff

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33 Comments

  1. Hey how are you guys
    I have a Le petit gros by vapenaute which is a hybrid mod. I have noticed after 4 or 5 drags it gets hot where as I have fixed it many times but it won’t work. Which material is needed to make a new spring and the guage of wire. I can find iron in my town will it work for my mod or from where can I get those Springs.

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks for your comment! Vaponaute would be best qualified to advise you regarding the electrical aspects of your device. Don’t delay in contacting them; if your mechanical mod is becoming overly hot while you use it, it could be a sign that you aren’t using it with the correct type of attachment or that your setup is over-stressing the battery in some way.

      Post a Reply
      • I’m using LG HG2 battery and a aqua rda @.5 Resistance
        getting the hot button issue I have replaced the spring twice and nothing works for me
        any best advise.
        already contacted vapenaute

        Post a Reply
        • Hi Asif,

          There isn’t really enough information here for us to go on, as we didn’t design the hardware and don’t know everything about your setup. That being said, we can see that the Le Petit Gros uses a 18350 battery. If you are using a 3.7 volt battery with a 0.5 ohm atomizer, you’re creating a current of 7.4 amps. An 18350 battery, though, usually has a maximum safe continuous discharge rate of about 6-7 amps, depending on the brand. So, the heat you’re experiencing may not be the fault of the mod, but rather the fact that the resistance of your atomizer coil is far too low for the battery to safely support. You probably need to greatly increase the resistance of your atomizer build and should possibly consider recycling the over-stressed battery. If you don’t want to use higher-resistance atomizers, you’ll need a device that can handle the load safely.

          Post a Reply
          • I have a smoke mod that the display will not come up on but it still works don’t know what level it’s at

  2. Hai! My ipv5 mod isnt firing when i press the power buttom. Its also happen when im switch it on 5 times it wont work! Its so stressful. The “+” “-” buttom are working but only the power buttom. Do you have solution for that?

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Fadil,

      The IPV5 isn’t a mechanical mod, and unfortunately none of our staff own it. Hopefully another reader can chime in with a solution.

      Post a Reply
  3. I have a voidray and it keeps on saying “over current”. I went back to the shop to have it replaced. I tried replacing the batteries with new ones also but still does the same thing.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Sol,

      The Voidray isn’t a mechanical mod, and unfortunately none of our staff own it. It sounds like the “over current” message is a fairly common problem with this device, though. It might be a good idea to have it replaced if it’s still under warranty.

      Post a Reply
  4. My husband has a mechanical mod. He has a Kato k6368. The bottom spring looks pretty compressed but when we put his artic tank on my mod it’s still doesn’t work

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  5. I have a Smoke H-Priv. when I change batteries it seems like it won’t fire for a while. It’s like I have to play around with it before it starts to vape. But once it starts there is no problem at all. Any suggestions. Not getting anywhere with the Smok company

    Post a Reply
    • Hi, NewVapor.

      The SMOK H-PRIV is a regulated mod — not a mechanical mod. Unfortunately, we don’t have one. We can offer a few general tips, though. If it doesn’t fire when you change batteries, does the screen display any message at all? The H-PRIV has kind of a unique fire button design. It’s possible that the switch under the button isn’t working as it should. In that case, the device might need some repair work. You’ll also want to make sure that you’re using the recommended batteries. Are the batteries identical? Also, make sure that the wrappers — and the batteries themselves — have no physical damage.

      Post a Reply
  6. Hey guys, this is really helpful, im using sencillo hybrid mod, and I think that both atomizer and battery is the prob. I don’t know how to adjust the pin, so I’m just going to the shop and do those things on me. This is really helpful now I now what’s the problem in my mod

    Post a Reply
    • We’re really glad that you found the article helpful, Paul! Please let us know if the shop was able to fix your mechanical mod successfully.

      Post a Reply
  7. Hi,i have a tugboat box mod by flawless with two batteries.Today the mod didn’t Fire ,the Green led didn’t light on .I build a 0.37 ohm resistence with kanthal a1 on a Goon rda.What Is the problem for you? There Is also a fuse in this box mod in order to prevent Short circuit.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Antonio, have you checked the resistance of your atomizer since your mod stopped working? Could be that one of the coils is loose. Try using the mod with a different attachment if you can, also. It would also be a good idea to use a different pair of married batteries if you can.

      Post a Reply
  8. Hey guys! This is helpful, but im having some issues still.

    I have a vcp mod and it will no longer fire. I have taken it completely apart and cleaned it up a bit, but it is still no longer firing up. Over the last month or so, it was back and forth on firing up, randomly I would have to press the button a couple times to get it to fire up in the past. Any ideas on what could be happening?

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Marie, we’d suggest troubleshooting by trying a different attachment as well as a different pair of married batteries. It looks like the VCP mechanical mod uses two batteries in series, so because of the extra stress on the batteries it’s important that you use batteries that are exactly matched — including the total number of charge/discharge cycles. Running two batteries in series in a mechanical mod is a known risk, so hopefully you’re using some kind of fuse as well.

      It looks like this mod might have adjustable bottom contact pins for the batteries. Are they tight? Do the batteries rattle?

      If all else fails, there might be a problem with the fire button itself. You might consider replacing the button if it’s possible with your mod.

      Post a Reply
  9. Hi,
    I’m current attempting to run a Smok magneto with a 24mm temple rda (5 wrap flat wire sitting at a .1 ohm) and a vrk and mkjo 18650 battery. (Not at the same time obviously.) Before purchasing the device it fired fine with this setup. After about 24 hours of usage I went to charge the current battery in use and go to sleep. Now the mod no longer fires. I have cleaned, adjusted the pins, and changed the spring to no resolve. Any ideas or comments would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

    Post a Reply
  10. Hello everyone! I recently bought a joytech eVic-vtc mini and I was using it normally until it suddenly stopped, the screen turned off and it wouldn’t fire up again, I tried a different battery and still no change, it heats up a lot when I put it on a charger so that might be a thing, I have no idea how to fix it and if you help me I would be very greatful.

    thank you

    Post a Reply
    • Tariq,

      It sounds as though your VTC Mini has had a severe malfunction. We would not recommend using it at all. You should return it if it is still under warranty.

      Post a Reply
  11. Hi, i have a limitless RDTA Mod. I am facing an issue where i require to put quite an amount of pressure to fire. The amount of pressure i have to put on the bottom of the cap is nonsensical.
    I dont think it is a fire button issue as i think the magnet in the button is intact and working. And the battery doesn’t get hot when i tried fire. So i don’t think it has short-circuit.
    It would be grateful if you could help me 🙁

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Dennis, does the battery fit tightly inside the mod? Do you hear it rattle at all? If either the top or bottom cap of the Limitless RDTA mod is too loose, the battery may not fit tightly inside the mod. That would force you to push the button harder to get it to fire.

      Check the insides of the top and bottom cap to see if you can adjust the battery contact pins by twisting them.

      Post a Reply
      • Thanks for the suggestion. You’re right, the top cap’s pin is being installed too tightly. I’ve adjusted it so that when i push the fire button, the battery doesn’t rattle. And now i can fire without having to use much effort. 😀
        Once again, thanks a lot!

        Post a Reply
        • We’re glad that fixed it, Dennis!

          Post a Reply
  12. Hi, I’m currently using the Anubis Mech mod by el diablo Philippines and after I cleaned the internal contacts it misfires on the first fire then it’ll be normal after that. What should I do about it? It doesn’t creat a “Hot button” but the misfires irritate me. I’m vaping at .4 ohms (The Anubis is a dual parallel mech mod) and using a genuine Sony VTC4. What can I do about the misfires?

    Post a Reply
  13. Hi! I just got the hammer of god v3 hogg and I’ve used it twice and now I’m getting nothing when I push the fire button. I bought 4 new batteries when I got the hammer of god,so the batteries im using are married and have always been used for this box and this box only. I have tightened and loosened the pin,the rda im using works fine on my other boxes, I’ve switched rda’s, and still the same, no go.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Larae,

      The Hammer of God v3 operates at 8.4 volts with four fully charged batteries. It’s going to draw a lot of amps from the batteries if you attach a very low-resistance atomizer. With a 0.2 ohm atomizer, for example, that’s a load of 42 amps — way more than the batteries can handle. Could that be the problem? Have you tried attaching a tank with pre-built coils — something with a higher resistance?

      Post a Reply
  14. Hi,my tesla invader 3 just died on me.I had a new dual build reading .4 installed and vaped a few hours and then it kept blinking 5 times before going to standby everytime i tried to fire.Tried on a few different attys with new builds,the 510 is clean with no luck.Love the mod and is my only go to mod,any help would be deeply appreciated.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi,

      The Tesla Invader III isn’t a mechanical mod. Reading the instruction manual, though, it looks like the LED blinking five times would indicate a short circuit, too high of an output current or a device temperature that’s too high.

      Make sure that you’re using married, fully charged batteries. Try connecting a standard tank with a pre-made coil, and turn the voltage dial all the way down. If that doesn’t work, the problem is in the mod. Try a different pair of married batteries. If the mod has adjustable battery connectors and/or an adjustable 510 connector, make sure that everything connects tightly. If it still doesn’t work, you should look into replacing the mod.

      If the Tesla III does work with the pre-built coil, then the atomizer the you’re presently using has a problem such as a short.

      Post a Reply
  15. Ok so not gonna lie here but I got my mod recently and I know that u must put the batteries in correctly. Welll just yesterday I put them in wrong really pissed bout it too cuz now it doesn’t work. Anyone know what I should do from here to fix it. Sorry I am new too this.

    Post a Reply
    • Hi Dylan,

      What mod are you using? Are you using fully charged, matched batteries? Do the batteries fit tightly, or do they rattle?

      Post a Reply
  16. hi I’m using smok x pro m80 plus with succubus drip,but when i press the fire button the coil doesn’t heat up.any advice?

    Post a Reply

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