Microsoldering – What Is It?

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Jan 27, 2021

Here at Techcycle we don’t just fix screens and replace batteries on educational devices. We also offer a rare brand of services that can help electronics suffering from board level issues get back to life again – that’s microsoldering. What is it, you might ask?

Exploded backlight filter and damaged screw standoff on an iPad Pro

Exploded backlight filter and damaged screw standoff on an iPad Pro

Damaged connector on an iPhone board

Damaged connector on an iPhone board

Repaired trace for an iPhone 6 Plus Touch Controller

Repaired trace for an iPhone 6 Plus Touch Controller

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Micro-what?

Microsoldering is a form of soldering components that have traces and pads barely visible to the naked eye. A steady hand is required to place components on boards when a robotic machine is not available. Other must have precision tools include a 10-20 times magnifying microscope, fine solder tips, and heat air gun tools with small nozzles. Sometimes confused with welding, soldering is done at lower temperatures to prevent damage to fragile components on computer boards. This also allows the service time to be more flexible and precise so that chips can bond properly to the copper and gold traces on the board. 

 

An Exploded Capacitator on an iPad

An Exploded Capacitator on an iPad

 

 

When It’s Needed

When simple part replacements won’t get the device back to full working order, a board repair service may be needed. Unfortunately, processes for board manufacturing are not always perfect. While devices go through a boat load of tests to ensure they leave the factory working, certain features can fail over time or break under extreme conditions. Most of what we do in the microsoldering department is based on prior experience with other similar issues. We use specialized schematics and board views that help us map out what the root cause of certain problems may be on the board. Let’s take a look at the ten most common issues we’ve seen on our work bench:

Long Screw Damage with broken traces on an iPhone board

Long Screw Damage with broken traces on an iPhone board

  • No Backlight/Display
  • Water Damage Repair
  • No Audio
  • No Touch
  • Data Recovery
  • No Power
  • Port Replacement
  • No Camera Response
  • Fingerprint/Face Biometric Sensor Failure
  • Bootlooping/On Board Storage Failure

 

 

 

 

What Can You Microsolder?

Display Connector for a Macbook Pro

Display Connector for a Macbook Pro


While most of our board repair services are for mobile devices, desktop computers and video game consoles, we have also been known to branch out into other electronics. Hobby electronics such as drones, boards for home appliances, and even a board controller for an electric wheelchair have been successfully repaired here. 

Charging control board for Beats Headphones

Charging control board for Beats Headphones

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Future of Microsoldering

I do not see the demand for these specialty services slowing down any time soon. The race to make handheld devices smaller and more powerful is accelerating beyond the scope of our imagination. Enhance the services and products you provide in your shop or technology department by considering us as a repair partner.

 

 

 

Jaime Enriquez

 

Author: Jaime Enriquez, Technical Training Coordinator

 

 

 

 

 

 

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