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RDA, RTA and RDTA Tanks Explained

The world of coil building and rebuildable atomisers is beautiful, exciting, but sometimes scary. This is especially true if you’re just starting out. Any new vapers might look at all those acronyms and technical terms and run the other way.

But you shouldn’t be scared! In fact, once you get to grips with how rebuildables work, you’ll be able to build your perfect vape customised to your own liking. Pretty good deal right? If you’re still interested, read on to find out more about rebuildables and the different types available.

What is a tank?

If you’re really new to vaping, let’s start with the basics. A tank is the part of your vape that holds your e-liquid and the coil (or atomiser) that heats up and vaporises the e-liquid. Most of the time you’ll find the tank right above your vape’s battery.

Vape tanks help the e-liquid soak into the wicking material (usually made of cotton) that comes in contact with your coil. The wick needs to be fully soaked with e-liquid before you start to vape. The coil begins to heat up as soon as you activate your vape, and this heat then turns the e-liquid into vapour.

These days, many vapers use ready-to-use tanks and coils with their vape kits, but this hasn’t always been the case. During the early days of vaping, if you wanted to get the best out of your device you’d have to build your own tanks. This brings us to our next question…

What is an RBA?

An RBA, also known as a ReBuildable Atomiser, is a type of DIY atomiser where you essentially build your own coil and add your own wick. Nowadays the term is most commonly used to refer to removable decks for vape tanks. Any type of tank with a build deck (eg. RDAs, RTAs, and RDTAs) is considered an RBA.

Why do vapers build their own atomisers?

The number one benefit vapers look to reap from using RBAs is the ability to customise their vape. Through building your own coil, you’ll be able to fully customise everything about it from its resistance level, coil wire type, and wicking style. With so many ways to customise your coil, you’ll be able to tailor your vape to your personal vaping style.

Many vapers also choose to use rebuildables as they can be more cost-effective than buying pre-built coils. Think about it: if you’re using ready-made coils then it’s likely you’ll be buying a new pack every month or so. This may not seem like much at first but these costs slowly start to add up. With RBAs, a lengthy spool of coil wire and wicking cotton wouldn’t cost you more than £15 altogether and will last you at least a few months.

RBAs come in several different types, with the most common being RDAs, RTAs, and RDTAs. Each variety comes with their own strengths and weaknesses, depending on how you like to vape.


An RDA is one of the most common types of rebuildables used in vaping. Short for Rebuildable Dripping Atomiser, RDAs don’t come with a tank that holds your e-liquid. Instead, they have a small juice well at the bottom of the build deck that holds the e-liquid as well as the wick tails. This juice well can’t hold as much e-liquid as a tank so you’d have to frequently drip the e-liquid onto the coil and wick yourself to prevent the wick from drying up.

RDAs are definitely less convenient than RTAs as you’ll have to constantly drip the e-liquid onto your coil rather than having it be fed from your tank, but they also have some significant advantages. One of them is that you’re able to use RDAs at higher wattages as there is more space around the coil, which helps to keep it slightly cooler while you’re using it. This is great for those who love cloud chasing as RDAs can help to produce massive vapour clouds.


RTAs, on the other hand, are Rebuildable Tank Atomisers, and the key difference between RTAs and RDAs is in their names. While RDA’s require you to manually drip the e-liquid into your vape, RTAs have a tank that holds your favourite e-liquid. RTA tanks will also have more capacity than an RDA’s juice well, ranging between 2ml and 6ml, which means you won’t have to worry about topping up your vape so often.

While they’re definitely more convenient to use than RDAs, Rebuildable Tank Atomisers do tend to be more difficult to build due to their greater number of components. You also won’t see clouds as massive as those produced with RDAs, but many vapers prefer using RTAs for their superior flavour production. If you’re willing to put a bit more time and effort into building your tank, then RTAs might be a good option for you.


An RDTA is a Rebuildable Dripping Tank Atomiser, which is essentially a hybrid of the RDA and RTA. A fairly recent development in the vaping scene, RDTAs feature the deck build of an RDA but use a tank with the capacity of an RTA. Essentially, RDTAs have a tank that stores your e-liquid but uses its deck to drip the e-liquid into your coil and wick, thereby combining the best of both RDAs and RTAs.

Although they’re a relatively new type of atomiser, RDTAs are becoming increasingly popular due to their many advantages. For one, vapers can reap all the benefits of using an RDA with the added convenience of a tank like RTAs. They are also able to strengthen both flavour and vapour production, so you never have to sacrifice one for the other. However, it should be noted that RDTAs can be a bit trickier to build and use, and they aren’t compatible with all devices so you’ll have to double check your mod to see if it will work with an RDTA.

Which rebuildable atomiser should I use?

The kind of rebuildable you use depends on what type of vaping experience you prefer. If you’re someone who’s relatively new to vaping and are looking for a more straightforward vaping experience, we recommend trying out RTAs such as the Geekvape Zeus X RTA. Their tanks make RTAs more convenient and easier to use compared to both RDAs and RDTAs.

On the other hand, RDAs are easier to build than both RTAs and RDTAs, making them great for beginner vapers who want to explore the world of coil-building. RDA’s are also excellent for any cloud chasers out there who are looking to produce the biggest and best clouds in the vaping scene. We recommend checking out the Hellvape Dead Rabbit V3 RDA, a high-performing and fully customisable atomiser.

If you’ve got a bit more experience, why not have a go at building an RDTA? They truly combine the best of both worlds, with the convenience of RTAs and the high quality performance of RDAs. One of our favourite RDTAs is the Wotofo Profile RDTA, which is an RDTA version of their already popular Profile RDA. They may be a bit more fiddly to work with, but once you get the hang of it we guarantee you won’t be disappointed.


Now that you have a better understanding of the different rebuildables out there, we hope you have the confidence to take that first step into coil-building. We understand if you’re still a bit nervous or unsure, but don’t worry. We were in your shoes once but after we started customising our vapes we’ve never looked back. We guarantee this is the best way to build the highest performing vape.

If you have any questions about all things vaping, feel free to contact us and we’ll help you put together your perfect vape kit!

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