What is HASL - Hot Air Solder Leveling?

PCB Basics 
1 Answer
Can you answer this question?

Editorial Team - PCB Directory

Jan 15, 2020

HASL (Hot Air Solder Leveling) is a metallic surface finishing technique, which is performed on the outermost layer of the PCB board to protect the exposed copper surfaces like tracks until the component placement and soldering is completed.

The HASL coating is composed of Solder with 63% Tin and 37% Lead, and during the assembly process, this coating gets dissolved with the soldering material.

The HASL Coating is applied as per the steps below:

  1. The process starts with the immersion of the PCB board into a molten tin/lead solution, where all exposed copper area is covered by this solution.
  2. After that, a Hot Air Leveler (HAL) ensures the uniformity of solder deposit by removing the excess solder from the PCB board, using high pressure hot air knives. The purpose of this is to leave a uniform and thin possible layer on the board.
  3. This coating protects the copper traces from corrosion until the board goes in for the assembly process.

Advantages of HASL:

  • Resistance to copper corrosion
  • Excellent wetting capability during the soldering process
  • Provides excellent quality solder joint (solderability) by making component  soldering more effective
  • Economical
  • Can be re-worked easily
  • Suitable for Lead-free PCBs
  • Reduce the chances of PCB failure

Limitations of HASL:

  • It offers high thermal stress to the PCB, which results in defects.
  • Due to the inconsistent thickness of HASL coating, it’s not a feasible solution for SMT component placement.
  • Not suitable for PTH (Plated Through Hole) components.
  • Less environment-friendly
Web Analytics