Soldering is widely used throughout the engineering and manufacturing sectors. This well-known and commonly used technique involves melting a filler metal for the purposes of combining two joints.
One reason that soldering is so popular is that it allows technicians to create strong joints without having to melt working pieces of the device.
However, the joint will not exhibit the desired attributes if “cold soldering” occurs. A cold solder joint is created when the technician does not apply enough heat to the filler material. Cold solder joints exhibit characteristics such as:
The aforementioned attributes make cold solder joints more likely to crack and — ultimately — fail. It is vital that you avoid cold soldering if you want to preserve product performance and avoid untimely joint failure. This prevention can be accomplished in several ways.
There are several simple strategies for avoiding cold soldering, including the following:
When applying solder, it is vital that you take your time and pay close attention to the joint that you are manipulating. Make sure that the solder has sufficiently melted as you carefully apply it to the desired location.
You should ensure that you are working on a flat surface. This setup will allow you to minimize runoff and prevent the solder from dripping onto other areas of the component.
Like all devices, solders can become more prone to failure as they age. Lower quality equipment is also more prone to failure and might not heat up the filler material as efficiently. Devices that are not functioning properly are more likely to produce cold solder joints.
Therefore, it is critical that you invest in quality equipment. If you believe that your soldering equipment is not functioning as designed, replace it as soon as is practical.
If you want to become more proficient at soldering and reduce your chances of creating cold solder joints, you should consider attending certification classes.
During these classes, you will learn proper soldering techniques that will help you produce higher quality solder joints while also optimizing your work efficiency. You will also receive a technical certification upon completion, which can improve your career outlook.
To recap, cold soldering is a completely avoidable issue that you can prevent by being attentive, completing quality training, and investing in reliable equipment.