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7 PCBA Manufacturing Defects and Solutions

As a PCB user, it is frustrating receiving PCBs that functions, but only for a short time then fail. To a manufacturer, you'll end up spending much cash and waste even more time, especially in the event of recalls.

Having a clear understanding helps you avoid the manufacture of low-quality boards. With high-quality boards, you'll enhance the reputation of your business. In the long run, it attracts more clients to partner with you.

So, what are some of the most common manufacturing defects worth noting? How about their solutions? We have listed seven PCBA manufacturing defects and their solutions.


Technicians are doing PCBA Manufacturing

(Technicians are doing PCBA Manufacturing)


1.PCBA Manufacturing of Wire Breaks Problem


When it comes to the manufacture and assembly of PCBs, wire breaks are a common occurrence. Those that are in the PCB business, wire breaks are a common occurrence. And they can bring severe delays in their jobs. Unfortunately, detecting wire breaks on a PCB is something that most manufacturers struggle.

Even though it is a little bit simple to tell where your boards have wire breaks, pinpointing the exact location of where the rest is the real problem, wire breaks can make printed circuit boards not to function as desired. With wire breaks, boards may operate for a little time and then break or fail to work after some time.

Luckily enough, there are solutions to instances of printed circuit board wire breaks. With a thorough inspection, then manufacturers will by far save on costs and wastage of time. Without a proper investigation, instances of wire breaks won't be regular. Reputable PCBA Manufacturing is those that subject their products to several inspection procedures.


Wire breaks are a common occurrence in PCBA Manufacturing

(Wire breaks are a common occurrence in PCBA Manufacturing)


2.Pin and Connector Checks


Some essential components in a printed circuit board are pins and connectors. Pins/fasteners and connectors help in relaying signals during operation. Poor placement of the pins may bring costly damages to the connector. But to prevent such a case, it is vital to use a tool known as a pattern-matching to check the correct placement of the connectors.

As a PCBA manufacturer, you can use this pattern-matching equipment to locate and group the patterns correctly. The pattern-matching tool is also ideal as it consists of a score indicating how much the patterns do match with the intended location or design. Better yet, to ensure proper pin alignment, you can go ahead and use telecentric lenses.

A good reason for using telecentric lenses is due to its magnification that doesn't change. With such, manufacturers can prevent or do away with the problem of parallax error. The conventional lens can cause parallax errors. It becomes easier for manufacturers to avoid these defects by doing thorough checks of connectors and pins.


You should be careful with the pins and connectors when in PCBA

(You should be careful with the pins and connectors when in PCBA)


3.PCBA Manufacturing Open Solder Joints


A significant cause of open solder joints is due to a separation between the PCB pad and the component lead. That's not all. It can also be due to bad soldering of the components or using little solder paste. Still, if there's some inconsistency of the solder paste that a PCBA manufacturer uses, then open solder joints can be visible on their boards.

Therefore, to do away with open solder joints, then it's advisable to use the right printed circuit board design in component placement. As a manufacturer too, you also need to avoid any contamination of the solder paste. With such, you'll significantly avoid instances of repeated open solder joints. To further ensure that you do away with open cases of solder joints, consider using the right PCBA manufacturing equipment.

You also need to ensure that the production of your board lies in the hand of good manufacturers. This way, you'll roll out high-quality circuit boards that function as you intended them to do.


Open solder Joints are crucial and should be handled with care when it comes to PCBA

(Open solder Joints are crucial and should be handled with care when it comes to PCBA)


4.Missing Parts (Component shift)


The component shift means poor alignment of PCBs parts to their intended target. Components shifts are one of the most common manufacturing defects that PCB assemblers face. It mainly occurs during reflow as parts tend to shift and move on the molten hot solder.

Some parts may end up misaligning themselves. It is because of tension that exists on the molten solder surface. Some other factors may also bring about a component shift. They include bent leads, massive convection rates, rapid vibrations in the conveyer, poor solder placement, and instances of lopsided heat sinks on the components.

But on the bright side, there are several ways that manufacturers can use to do away with cases of component shift when manufacturing their PCBs. It's advisable to ensure you maintain the right humidity. You should also ensure that you have the proper temperatures too. Also, manufacturers need to ensure the minimization of movement.

The depreciation of motion should be slow during un-reflowed assembly. It's also ideal for increasing solderability of their PCBs, achievable by using a tough flux.


Mismatching is likely to occur in any assembly line, PCBA included

(Mismatching is likely to occur in any assembly line, PCBA included)


5.PCBA Manufacturing Heat Dissipation Analysis


Almost all electronic components that we use daily tend to get hot. It happens at most times when functioning at their overall capacity. So, such may bring about some instances of overheating when they aren't well checked. Also, a hot printed circuit board heat sink can surprise unsuspecting designers.

Extreme temperatures have also been a factor towards the reduced lifespan of PCBs. With a reduced lifespan, a manufacturing firm damages its reputation besides wasting more time and money with repairs. Like the above challenges, there are solutions PCBA manufacturing overheating too.

To protect cases of overheating when designing, you'll have to ensure that you solder well the SMD heat sink. The SMD heat consists of a thermal pad that prevents cases of overheating. By soldering the SMD heat sink at the end of copper, then better heat dissipation becomes an assurance.

Furthermore, designers have to ensure that there's no exceeding of the required safety limits. Also, the heat sink shouldn't be very hot the extent of causing damage to a user's skin. By employing the use of an SMD heat sink, heat dissipates well, especially in high-power parts. To also ensure excellent heat dissipation, ensure you use the right shape and size of the SMD heat sink.


The likely outcome of poor heat dissipation during PCBA manufacturing

(The likely outcome of poor heat dissipation during PCBA manufacturing )


6.PCBA Manufacturing Shorts


For long, matters to do with solder shorts, have been a recurring occurrence in wave soldering. Shorts occur due to inadequate separation of the solder or several leads before solder gets solidified. Again, it's not always easy to notice instances of solder shorts. If unnoticed, they can make the manufacture of PCB somewhat disastrous.

Several factors can cause solder shorts when designing and manufacturing the PCBs. Some of the most common factors include poor fixing, inadequate number of pins, excess paste, poor fluxing, and poor solderability of the clips. Other causes include poor wave separation and the reflow oven.

To ensure that you cut chances of solder shorts, use the required design rules. These are lowering the component lead length and reducing the size of the pad. Also, skilled stencil modification can lead to the avoidance of solder bridging.


If the assembly is defective, it may lead to short-circuit PCB

(If the assembly is defective, it may lead to short-circuit PCB)


7.Chemical Fluid Leakage


Cases of constant PCB failures are highly prevalent. As a printed circuit board assembler, you must have come before PCB failure before. It's essential to ensure that you conduct failure analysis tests from time to time to identify problems and fix them.

Chemical fluid leakage can bring about severe damage to your PCBs. Among other causes of chemical fluid leakage, leftover trace elements are a significant contributor. If not removed these trace elements in the PCB manufacturing process, the chemical fluids may leak occurs. There's a way of avoiding such.

To do away with such cases, manufacturers should ensure that they carry out a thorough cleaning of their boards. With proper cleaning, there's the avoidance of instances of corrosion of the boards' metallic parts.


Chemical leaks during PCBAs might affect the overall usability of your PCB

(Chemical leaks during PCBAs might affect the overall usability of your PCB)




So there you have it, seven most common PCB manufacturing defects and their solutions. As mentioned earlier, proper analysis is a necessity for fault detection. Inadequate or improper screening can see the production of low-quality PCBs.

With low-quality PCBs, manufacturing firms risk damaging their reputation too. Do you want to understand more concerning defects and solutions to PCB issues? If so, feel free to contact us at OurPCB today.

We at OurPCB can offer you lasting solutions to any printed circuit board failures. Having in business for more than a decade, we have assisted thousands of clients in transforming the defects and faults of their printed circuit boards. If you need information or any other assistance, don't hesitate to contact our customer care attendants. They are informed, polite, and professional in their engagement with you.