What is the difference between lead-free solder and leaded solder ?

2023.9.11 Articles GOTREND Technology Co.,Ltd

What is the difference between lead-free solder and leaded solder?

The European Union officially announced a significant industry policy in 2003, stating that starting in 2006, it would implement two legal directives related to electronic products: the "Restriction of The Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment" (RoHS) directive and the "Waste of Electrical and Electronic Equipment" (WEEE) directive. 

As a result, GOTREND began the adoption of lead-free processes for all its products, ensuring that they all comply with lead-free manufacturing. Simultaneously, it required all suppliers within its supply chain to also adhere to lead-free processes.

So what is the difference between lead-free and lead-enabled in the soldering process ?
Let's take a look at the differences between the two.

1 、The composition is different 

• There is lead solder alloy consisting of tin (melting point 232 degrees) and lead (melting point 327 degrees). The solder consisting of 63% tin and 37% lead is called eutectic solder, and the melting point of this solder is about 183 degrees. 

• The main metal elements of lead-free solder are tin, copper, iron, arsenic, zinc, aluminum, etc. Lead-free solder in order to meet the ROHS standard proposed by the EU environmental protection requirements, solder is made of tin copper or tin-silver copper alloy, and the melting point of solder is left at 217 degrees.

2 、 Solder characteristics are different

• Lead-free solder has less slag output than ordinary solder after melting, and has excellent oxidation resistance; Low viscosity after melting, good fluidity, high weldability, most suitable for wave soldering process.
Due to the very small oxidation inclusion, the phenomenon of Solder Icicle and bridging can be minimized, the welding quality is reliable, and the solder joint is bright and full.

• Lead solder contains lead as its electrolytic material. It produces bright solder joints, exhibits good wetting properties, and is easy to tin. With a lower melting point and excellent fluidity, it facilitates a smoother and more stable soldering process. It quickly melts at relatively lower temperatures, forming reliable solder joints.

• Lead solder contains lead elements, and lead is a toxic heavy metal. During the soldering process, it may generate lead fumes and waste, posing potential hazards to the environment and human health. With the increasing global awareness of environmental protection and health concerns, many countries and regions have implemented stringent regulations to restrict the use of lead solder.

3 、 Solder is used differently 

• Lead-free solder is used in the electronic parts industry, manufacturing, maintenance industry, etc. 
• Lead solder is generally used in electronics, electrical, toy industries, and is used in the can industry, automobile manufacturing, fuse and soldering places with low requirements.

4、 Although lead-free solder offers several advantages, it requires a higher soldering temperature of 240-250 degrees Celsius in the SMT (Surface Mount Technology) process, imposing stricter demands on material selection and production process control for SMT components. Additionally, lead-free solder has a higher melting point, necessitating careful choices of solder pads, solder materials, and flux to ensure a smooth soldering process.

With 23 years of professional experience in magnetic component design and manufacturing , GOTREND offers a diverse range of high-quality products that cater to various customer applications, providing one-stop solutions. We welcome your inquiries!

GOTREND Technology As A Green Enterprise For Global Sustainability
It is stated in our company philosophy that GOTREND enterprise group had the vision of setting up a dream enterprise that work for the sustainable growth, learning, creativity, profitability and happiness of every employee, partners, our customers, investors, and in helping to bring about a better living world. We respect Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability (LOHAS), support actions towards better environmental protections and are committed to design, manufacture and produce energy efficient, environmental friendly products.

Green manufacturing is our belief and all GOTREND products including raw materials, spare parts, solvent, consumables, packing materials, as well as production process are in conformity with WEEE(Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment 2002/96/EC)and RoHS compliance.
GOTREND preferred eco-friendly manufacturing methods and materials.

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