What is PCB Wave Soldering?
Wave soldering is a soldering process where components are soldered on the PCB board by applying a solder spray inside a machine. It is a soldering process used for soldering large quantities of boards in a short time. It is more efficient than soldering the components manually.
The wave soldering process is divided into four steps, namely, Flux spray, Pre-heating, wave soldering, and cooling.
Flux Spray: The application of flux plays an important role while performing wave soldering. In this step, the PCB board is passed through the chamber which creates a wave of molten flux to wash the board. The flux cleans the PCB surface to ensure smooth soldering. Let’s go through the importance of using flux:
- Eliminates the oxide from the board surface & component terminals
- To avoid oxidation during the thermal process
- To transmit heat
Pre-heating: In this process, the PCB board travels on a conveyer belt followed by uniform heat treatment. It ensures that the board heats enough to bear any thermal shock before it goes into the next stage. The PCB then receives a water spray for safe cooling.
Wave soldering: At this stage, the temperature is increased constantly and the solder paste transforms into the liquid state. When the board passes through this chamber, the peak of the solder wave touches the board to form a connection between each component and their associated hole or pad.
Cooling: Wave soldering profile follows a temperature curve. As the temperature reaches to its highest value, it starts to decrease which is called a cooling zone. After being cooled to the room temperature, the board is taken into consideration for the PCB assembly.
PCB Directory has listed assembly companies that use wave soldering to solder components on to PCB boards. The list of PCB Assembly companies can be filtered further based on their location and capabilities.