Printed Circuit Boards, also known as PCB, must be manufactured because they need to have been manufactured according to the specific needs of the individual designing them.
Extensive development and changes would need to be made according to the scope of the circuit board, which is determined according to the project’s purpose.
However, it is important to know that a PCB is prone to many errors that may occur during the assembly phase of the
creation process, whether it is due to an incident during the construction of the board or some inconsistencies that may lead to a faulty circuit board.
A circuit board is prone to many faults, but the good news is that there are certain steps to troubleshoot that you can utilize to rectify some common issues during the assembly phase of the circuit board.
Let us discuss the steps in greater detail, highlighting the entire troubleshooting process as a step-by-step guide.
PCB Troubleshooting Steps
Step #1: Cleaning
when troubleshooting to fix a faulty PCB, the first step is to thoroughly clean the board using alcohol wipes, specifically the part that has been infected, after which you need to dry the alcohol remaining on the part of the board where you have performed cleaning.
Step #2: Remove the Infected Padding
After you have performed thorough cleaning using alcohol, you need to take off the current padding that has been damaged. It is advised to do this using an exacto knife to ensure the pad has been peeled off without causing damage to the circuitry.
Step #3: Dispose the Laminate
Although not always the case, depending on the fault, there have been instances that the laminate also gets damaged, in which case, peel the laminating off as well.
Step #4: Take off Soldering Mask
Soldering is necessary for performing repairs on the circuit board, and the solder mask prevents the soldering iron from working on the board, so it is advised to remove any solder mask on the board.
Step #5: Rub Alcohol on all Spots
Once you have removed the mask, perform cleaning on those spots using alcohol to ensure that the entire board has been properly cleaned.
Step #6: Prepare the Area for Conductor Replacement
Before performing the replacement of the conductor in question, it is important to perform work on the spot to prepare it for the replacement.
Step #7: Choose the correct Circuit Frame
After examining and selecting the right circuit frame compatible with your replacement, choose the right conductor and remove the selection carefully from the frame, preferably with a small knife, to avoid contact with other parts involved within the circuitry.
Step #8: Prepping the Conductor
Once the appropriate frame and conductor have been determined, use the solder to work on the spot where the new conductor will be placed facing the trace of the old one.
After that, create the epoxy, and it is strongly advised to prepare it in small amounts because epoxy lasts for no more than 45 minutes.
After preparing the epoxy, apply it to the PCB and place it in the open air to ensure that the mixture dries up as soon as possible.
Step #9: Solder the new Pad
After the epoxy has been efficiently placed and set, it is time to fit the new conductor onto the trace using special tape.
Step #10: Let it Dry
The pad is not guaranteed to be set in place right after you have fit it onto the PCB, so it is recommended to hold the new pad in place, preferably using clamps to ensure it does not move while it dries.
Many issues can occur within a PCB during its assembly, such as gaps between the plating or the solder mask not being made properly between the pads, leading to the PCB not producing the intended results.
However, following these steps are a great way to troubleshoot a faulty PCB during its assembly phase to fix most of the common issues that can occur with the circuit board.