If you’re working with printed circuit boards (PCBs) for electronic devices, the question of whether or not to clean them comes up at some point. Cleaning takes time and money; if done incorrectly, it can sometimes do more harm than benefit. Cleaning PCBs is important for various reasons, and this tutorial will show you how to do it properly.
What Is the Purpose of Cleaning a Printed Circuit Board (Pcb)?
The manufacturing techniques employed on electronic assemblies typically comprise several chemical processing steps. During each stage of the process, there is a possibility that dangerous compounds will be left on the PCA, which can put the reliability of the assembly at risk. It is often necessary to clean to remove these potentially dangerous residues and to increase reliability. Cleaning can also remove residues, which is helpful for inspection purposes.
Improve the PCBs Aesthetic Appeal
For PCB contractors, their boards’ visual appearance might reflect their performance. Your customer’s inbound QC inspectors may raise red flags if they see a visible, oily residue around a solder joint. A solder joint “blow hole” may appear if the flux residue chars and produces spots on the solder joints. It serves as a fault tag in the rework area, alerting others to the work even if it isn’t a problem in the first place. If you are looking for a electronics manufacturer you may visit August for more information about their products.
PCB Reliability Improvements
The nature of the end product dictates the need for reliability. If a computer keyboard breaks down, no one will die because it is a disposable item. An EMS supplier may employ no-clean flux to avoid the cleaning process entirely. On the other hand, pacemaker electronics must meet highly stringent standards because a malfunctioning board could result in death. Assemblage and any subsequent rework necessitate cleaning, and the procedure must be rigorously evaluated to ensure its efficacy and reproducibility. Even while cleaning is needed, long-lasting, durable items may fall somewhere between the two, lacking strict testing and standards.
Protect Components and PCBs from Corrosion
There are acids in the remnants of flux left behind on electrical circuit boards. Residues can attract air moisture and cause corrosion of component leads and PCB contacts if a cleaning process doesn’t remove them. If you’re looking for a printed circuit board company, you may visit their website for further information.
The Conformal Coating Prevents Adhesion Issues
Most people know that painting requires a clean surface. The paint will peel otherwise. Conformal coating is contaminated even by no-clean flux. “No-clean” refers to ionic substances left after soldering, not whether coating may stick.
The coating may lift or delaminate when flux leftovers are left on a PCB before coating. This is clear when pockets are isolated around solder junctions (except the bottom of a wave-soldered PCB). Layers are usually semi-permeable and “breathe” some. Moisture in flux residue can cause corrosion.
Avoid Ionic Contamination and Dendritic Growth
Dendrites form when polar or ionic particles from flux residue or other sources are exposed to moisture in the air, and a current is applied. Because they are conductive, the dendrites can create an unintentional trace that can leak current or even short circuit over time. Feel free to visit August’s box build for more information about products that they can offer.