Manufacturing most types of products for things like flash lights will require PCB fabrication for the product design. These boards should be free from contaminations during the entire creation process. This will help it operate with low incidences of failures in the long run.
Before the actual PCB fabrication phase, cleaning the substrate of the bare board will prevent some problems from taking place during the process of generation of the traces on the board.
After soldering the components on the PCB using a solder flux, you will also have to perform cleaning. Before releasing a PBC for use, you have to thoroughly clean the board as well. This will help remove excess flux and oils on the surface.
In cleaning the board during the PCB fabrication phase, you have to prepare some tools and materials.
Preparing all of the tools and materials for the task will help you save a lot of time. Also, this can help you set up a safe working environment for you and the people who may frequent the vicinity.
- Drying oven
- Cotton tipped swabs
- Isopropyl alcohol
- Plastic container
- Deionized water
- Metal-free soap
- Plastic scrub pad
- Rubber or latex gloves
You have to take care of cleaning the substrate first.
Before you do this, you should wear a pair of rubber of latex gloves similar to the PCB fabrication process. One of the most common contaminants that you should not allow the board to have is oil. During the cleaning process, this may come from your hands. This can keep the surface of the PCB from evenly accepting the resist.
Using a plastic scrub pad, you should scrub the board so you can get rid of the oxide coatings on the copper portion of your board. You should not use water in scrubbing because this can promote the production of a new type of oxide that will eventually coat the board. In cleaning during this phase, you have to handle the board by its edges. This will help encourage less contact with the copper parts.
Combine some metal free soap with deionized water. Place the mixture in a large container. The container should be enough to hold the entire finished PCB. Rinse your board in some mild board solution. Rinsing in this manner can help get rid of most of the oil residues and inorganic contaminants from the surface of your board.
To further help you get rid of the remaining contaminants, you have to wash the board in isopropyl alcohol bath. This will help you deal with the stubborn organic residues on the surface of the board. Finally, rinse the board using acetone. This will help get rid of the water or alcohol that may have been left adhered to the board because this can quickly evaporate.
Cleaning the finished board is the next phase in dealing with the entire circuit board.
Similar to the first part of cleaning, you have to put on your gloves as usual. Then, you have to dip a swab with cotton tips in isopropyl alcohol and scrub each of the solder connection on your PCB. You need to scrub both sides of your board where the solder connections were created.
Clean the board using deionized water to get rid of remaining residues such as isopropyl alcohol and metal free soap. Finally, place the board inside an oven that has been preheated to 100 degree Celsius for drying. You have to do this for around five minutes. After this, the finished and cleaned board will be ready for testing.
“Plating” procedures are essential in PCB fabrication.