Knowledge is Power: How to Identify Overheating Damage to Your Circuit Boards

printed circuit board repairs
damaged circuit board

Heat, moisture and dirt are the mortal enemies of circuit boards! That means nearly ALL circuit boards eventually need repairs. Useful knowledge about preventive care and maintenance can extend the life of your circuit boards. It can also put off the need for repairs a little longer. This is especially important for those very expensive industrial circuit boards that can cost $30,000 each and sometimes more!

Signs of Overheating on Your Circuit Boards
  • Burnt, brown or blackened components
  • Burn marks on the board substrate
  • Delamination of the board
  • That well-known “burnt electrical smell”burned circuit board
  • Cracks in the solder joints (typically caused by repeated overheating and cooling)
  • Broken traces
  • Subtle differences in the shades of grey of a solder joint (this one is tricky for the untrained eye)burnt traces
Prevent Overheating in Your Equipment by:
  • Proper ventilation
  • Keeping fans clean and free of debrisDamage due to overheating
  • Account for additional heat generated by auxiliary equipment
  • Avoid sunlight, direct or reflected, on your equipment
  • Keep your equipment in good repair – no loose connections, no dirt, good insulation; check it regularly
  • Do not operate your equipment above the recommended limits, electronically or physically
  • Avoid excess current

If you find signs of overheating on your circuit boards, chances are pretty good that your equipment has already stopped functioning properly, or at all. Unless you have inhouse electronic repair capabilities, your best course of action is to properly shut down your equipment and remove the unit for repairs. Check your warranty to see if the OEM will handle the repairs.

If the unit is out of warranty, repairs of this kind should be sent to a professional electronic repair service company. They should offer free evaluations and a good warranty on their repairs.  Getting a solid warranty for repairs on an old/legacy board is security!

About the Author: ACS is an independent industrial electronic repair center providing repair services for printed circuit board repairs, repairs to drives of all types and most all manufacturers including servo drive repairs, AC/DC drives, VFD drives, servo motors, encoders, monitors and touchscreens, PLCs, test equipment, and much more. Our customer service team is available to answer your questions and help solve your industrial electronic repair concerns. Legacy equipment can be repaired! RUSH Service for your electronics is available. You can reach ACS by calling 800-605-6419.