How Temperature Impacts Your Electronics Cleaning Process

An important factor for cleaning.
–Phil Tomasello

Q: What is the optimum temperature for my aqueous cleaning process?
A: The operating temperature will vary, based on each individual process, with soils and substrates involved. But the most common range is between 130°F – 150°F.
Q: Will raising the temperature of my wash process allow me to reduce the amount of chemistry that I am using in the bath?
A: Yes, increasing wash temperature will generally compensate for ineffective or lower chemistry concentrations. However, chemistry plays a key role in the cleaning process, so it is important to analyze all process control variables in context, to avoid higher temperatures damaging PBCs, machinery, or possibly causing health concerns.
Q: How high of a cleaning temperature is too high?
A: This will depend upon the specifications in the data sheets provided for solder paste, resistors, and other components used. Your analytical and process lab will be able to determine a range compatible with your specific project.
Q: How often should I evaluate my cleaning process and aqueous bath concentration?
A: The cleaning process should be documented and evaluated on an ongoing basis, with aqueous bath concentration being analyzed weekly. It is also important that the proper test methods are used, to obtain accurate data.