dabbing with propane

Arizonans for Mindful Regulation

Since the practice of “Dabbing” has become so mainstream, people have been buying up Quartz bangers, Grade 2 Titanium Nails, and Butane Torches like crazy.

Many people have been wondering if they can use a cheaper Propane Torch, instead of a Butane Torch, when heating their Quartz banger, Titanium Nail or Titanium Pad.

The short answer is: NO, you should NEVER use a Propane Torch to heat up your Quartz Banger, Titanium Nail, or Titanium Pad for Dabbing.

Here’s just a few reasons why;

1) Propane has NOT been refined to remove impurities. Butane IS refined, sometimes up to 10 times, to remove impurities that may be harmful. This refining process to clean the Butane is done primarily because they anticipate that people might be inhaling the Butane by way of smoking. This is just one of the many reasons why lighter manufacturers (like BIC) opt to make Butane lighters rather than Propane lighters.

2) Propane gas contains “Ethyl Mercaptan”, a colorless gas with a distinctive putrid smell. Most brands of canned Butane do NOT contain Ethyl Mercaptan. Since propane is colorless and odorless, Ethyl Mercaptan is added to Propane to make it easier to detect a gas leak. Putting this smelly gas onto your Quartz banger or Titanium Nail is kinda GROSS and it’s likely to make your Oil, Shatter, or Wax taste FUNKY.

Most store-bought cans of Butane do contain both Butane and a small amount of Propane as a propellant. That’s only because Propane has a lower boiling point than Butane, and so it can be used to force the Butane out of the can.

Canned Butane does NOT contain Ethyl Mercaptan.

3) Propane’s MAX burning point is 3,623 F. Butane’s MAX burning point is 2,600 F. Titanium’s melting point is 3,034 F. Propane actually gets your Quartz or Titanium hot too quickly, which ultimately causes the quartz or titanium to diminish after time. (Not to mention that LOW TEMP DABS taste so much better!)

4) Since the temperature of Propane is hotter than Butane, this will cause a layer of Carbon and Titanium Oxide to build up on your Titanium Nail faster than usual. A thick oxidation layer on your Titanium Nail can affect its efficiency in addition to potentially being harmful. Over time, a Titanium Nail can become so oxidized that it will have lost much of its original heat retention capabilities, thus making it useless.

For these reasons, we recommend that you use a BUTANE TORCH while Dabbing !

Arizonans for Mindful Regulation Since the practice of “Dabbing” has become so mainstream, people have been buying up Quartz bangers, Grade 2 Titanium Nails, and Butane Torches like crazy.

Butane vs Propane Torch: Choosing the Best One for Dabbing

When you’re getting a dab torch, one of the things you need to consider the fuel that’s firing up the torch. We’ll compare the difference between butane vs propane torch and see which is the best one to use for dabbing.

Heat delivery

One of the major concerns of dabbers is the release of chemicals that can interfere with the taste and safety of their dabs. The highest temperature range for a butane torch is 2,400°F – 2,610°F. It also has a slow heat delivery, which can be time-consuming when you’re heating your nail. If you prefer low-temperature dabs, a butane torch is your best option.

Propane torches offer a higher burning temperature of up to 3,600 °F. Since it’s stored at a higher temperature, it shoots out from the nozzle providing faster heat delivery. It can heat your nails quicker compared to a butane torch, but it exposes your quartz bangers to premature devit. As a high-temp dabber, this is your ideal partner but do watch out for your nails.

A butane torch is often small and handy, making it easier to use even with a mini dab rig.

Flame byproduct

What makes a butane torch ideal for dabbing is that it burns cleaner, producing less carbon monoxide. Your nails, whether you’re using quartz, titanium, or ceramic, will love you for using a butane torch. Aside from the low temp, the low residue slows down the wear and tear of your nails.

Some are hesitant to use a propane torch for dabbing because it burns dirtier, giving out more carbon monoxide. Camps are divided on the safety and taste of dabs when you use a propane torch. One thing is for certain, though. The intense heat and higher presence of carbon monoxide can wear out your nails faster. Some are also saying that the dabs have a slightly unpleasant taste, especially if you’re using the torch with a titanium nail.

Size and design

You get full flame emission on a butane torch because they have a straight, open-end tip. You have better control over the size of the flame, either higher or lower, depending on your needs. This makes the torch ideal for bangers and large-sized nails as they cover a wider surface area.

Most butane tanks also come in varying sizes, most of them small and portable. You can easily carry them around anywhere, which makes them great for travelers. On the other hand, the tanks can’t handle the extreme cold and hot temperatures.

A propane torch has a narrower flame, which can result in uneven vaporization due to hot spots.

A propane torch has a smaller head that curves inwardly. What you get is a focused flame that heats up a concentrated area the closer you bring the torch. It’s a good torch to use for domed nails but can cause hot spots on bangers. If you want to spread the flame, you have to pull the torch farther away, but that can lower the heat delivery.


Aerosol can refills for butane are harder to find compared to propane because of a lower demand. Many prefer getting a propane torch because it has a wider versatility. As a result, they are easier to get and come at affordable prices.


Because of the clean flame, butane torchers are loved by chefs. You can use it for crème brûlée, caramelize toppings on desserts and soups, melt cheese, and even char or roast vegetables.

We mentioned a while ago that a propane torch has a narrower flame. If you’re a jeweler or a handcrafter, this can help you weld small pieces efficiently. Larger torches can be used for gardening as well as cooking meat or grilling.

When you choose between butane vs propane torch, consider your needs for dabbing. Low-temp dabbers who want their nails to last longer and prefer a handy torch should go for a butane torch. If you want to get things done quickly, and always long for bold, strong flavors, a propane torch may be the best companion. As for the safety in terms of the presence of carbon monoxide, a butane torch will be helpful, especially in enclosed spaces.

Which torch do you prefer for dabbing? Do share it with us in the comment section!

We compared butane vs propane torch for dabs in terms of heat delivery, by product, size and design, availability, and versatility.