Do Dabs Smell? A 2024 Guide on Concentrates and Vape Pens

Do Dabs Smell? A 2024 Guide on Concentrates and Vape Pens

What is Reclaim and Should You Smoke It? Reading Do Dabs Smell? A 2024 Guide on Concentrates and Vape Pens 6 minutes

Quick Summary:

  • Dabs do smell due to the terpenes in the extract.

  • Dabs smell but much less than marijuana smoke.

  • There are certain techniques you can use to reduce the smell that dabs produce.

  • Dab pens smell less than dab rigs, but they still leave a distinct smell behind.

This article will dive deep into the science of dabs and answer the question "do dabs smell?". We will also be comparing various dabbing methods (dab rig, nectar collector, and dab pen) and the distinct odor they leave behind.

To give a simple answer to the question, "do dabs smell?", yes, dabs have a strong smell. However, dab vapor is nowhere near as strong or long-lasting as cannabis smoke from a joint or bong. This makes dabbing a good alternative for those that do not want to stink up their apartment or have uptight roommates.

What are Dabs and Why do they Smell?

Close up of wax on a dab tool

Dabs are concentrated doses of cannabis, created by extracting cannabinoids, like THC and CBD, using a solvent like butane or carbon dioxide. They are also solvent-less methods that can be used to create dabs. This produce results in a sticky oil. Depending on the specific method of extraction, this can result in having wax, shatter, budder, rosin, hash oil, live resin, or any other variation of a dab.

Why do dabs smell? The answer is simple. Terpenes. These are the aromatic compounds found in a cannabis plant that create the distinct smell and flavors. They are, also, responsible for creating the various therapeutic effects associated with cannabis extracts.

What do Dabs Smell Like?

Dabs produce a distinct odor that any experienced stoner will recognize immediately. Many people will describe a dabs smell as some of the most beautiful and natural odor a cannabis plant can produce.

Close up of cannabis nugs on a table

Dabs are the essence of a cannabis flower, intensified. Dabs can range from floral and citrusy to earthy and piney, depending on the strain and extraction method used. The aroma is often smoother and more suitable than cannabis smoke, but it is eerily similar.

What Smells Stronger, A Dab Pen or a Dab Rig?

One of a kind handmade dab rig

Here's the deal: dab rigs produce a much stronger smell than dab pens. Why? Dab rigs heat the concentrate to a much higher temperature which vaporizes it instantly and releases a potent smell. Dab rigs, also, allow a small percentage of vapor to escape while heating, leaving additionally smell in the air. Make sure you are in an environment where releasing vapor smell is okay. We will have more tips on how to reduce the weed smoke smell further in this article.

Girl smoking a dab pen and producing a lot of smoke

Dab pens, on the other hand, keep the concentrate more contained and use more efficient heating methods to prevent any vapor from escaping. This greatly reduces the dab odor that is emitted. Dab pens are ideal when discreet dabbing is necessary.

Do Nectar Collector Dabs Smell?

Simple nectar collector for dabs

Yes, but minimally. Think of nectar collectors as the middle ground between dab pens and dab rigs. They smell much more than dab pens, however, much less than dab rigs.

Nectar collectors are basically portable dab devices that heat the concentrate directly from its container. This method offers more control over the dab consumed, and it reduces the smell in the room since it has a smaller surface area.

How to Reduce the Dab Smell

Hotboxing your apartment

There are various ways to reduce the smell of dabs. These can include but are not limited to:

  • Adequate Ventilation: Keep the air moving. Use a fan, open a window, or both to reduce the strong odor.

  • Use a Sploof: Exhale the dab vapor into a smoke filter, as such the Smoke Buddy, in order to capture the scent. You can also use dryer sheets as a sploof to minimize odor.

  • Odor Eliminators: Use sprays or scented candles specifically designed to neutralize cannabis odor produced.

  • Low Temp Dabs: Opt for lower temperature dabbing which will produce less vapor and smell. Inversely, using high temperature dabs (over 450 degrees Fahrenheit), will produce significantly more smell.

Scented candle in the living room

In Conclusion: Dabs do Smell but Less than Flower

Over all, dabs do have a distinct smell. This smell is less pronounce and dissipates much faster than smoking flower. With the right precautions, dab smell can be gone almost immediately making it a great option for smoking discreetly or in an apartment.


Do you or your clothes smell after taking a dab?

In most cases, dabbing will not make you or your clothes smell. The smell may cling momentarily, but it will be nothing compared to the smell of smoking weed. If you are dabbing at a ridiculously high temperature, you may accidentally burn the concentrated cannabis substance, which can lead to an unpleasant dabs smell.

Do Dab Pens make a room Smell?

Yes, dab pens can make a room smell. Dab pens smell less intense and fade quicker than dab rigs. Good ventilation can help clear the air even faster.

Can you Dab in an Apartment?

Yes, dabbing is much more suitable for indoor consumption than smoking. It smells much less than smoking and also dissipates quickly. Dab pens are particularly apartment-friendly and is the consumption method that leaves behind the least smell.

pov of someone smoking weed in their apartment with a nice view

How Long does the Smell of a Dab Pen Linger?

The smell of a dab pen typically dissipates within a few minutes, especially with proper ventilation. If you are considered about the smell lingering too long, consider using an odor eliminating spray.

Will Dabs set off smoke alarms?

It is unlikely that a dab rig or dab pen will set off a smoke alarm, as dabbing produces mostly vapor instead of smoke. In addition, dabbing vapor dissipates faster than traditional smoke. However, excessively high temperatures can create enough vapor to potentially trigger an alarm.

Why do Dabs smell harsh?

If your dab smells overly harsh or burnt, this may be an indication that you are dabbing at a temperature that is too high. Consider turning down your torch or allowing more time for your dab rig to cool between hits. If you are using a dab pen, consider turning down the wattage.

Daniel Branca

Daniel Branca is a blogger and journalist specializing in cannabis, vaping and health. He has 7 years of experience in the industry and is commited to providing accurate and up-to-date information. On his off days, he likes to read, workout, and light bowls.

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