Which solvent for removing flux?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by #12, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. #12

    Thread Starter Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    It was a very long time ago that I learned to use xylene to remove rosin core flux. I just decided to check here about whether my method is terribly outdated.

    Lead-free solders are becoming the standard now. That might change which flux remover is the right thing to do.

    So, what's the "standard" nowadays?
     
  2. iONic

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    I've been using denatured alcohol with success.
     
  3. #12

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    With success on what? Old fashioned rosin?
     
  4. KJ6EAD

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    There's a thread covering the subject on another forum.
    http://www.electro-tech-online.com/repairing-electronics/120816-flux-remover.html

    I'll summarize for you. For rosin fluxes (R, RA & RMA) 50% denatured ethanol, 40% isopropyl alcohol and 10% acetone work fairly well.* If you can still get one of the commercial flux removers that contains a chlorinated or fluorinated solvent, they're very effective. Most have been phased out or will be soon.

    *Acetone will damage some plastics, notably styrene, ABS and polycarbonate.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2011
  5. debjit625

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  6. ErnieM

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    Yeah I'd call it outdated. The trend is to go with as gentle a solvent as possible. I have good results using isotropy alcohol and elbow grease applied with a small brush for the most stubborn of flux residues.

    The current generation of water soluble fluxes are excellent when working with clean PCB and fresh parts.
     
  7. Wendy

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    Mar 24, 2008
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    IPA (isopropyl alcohol) can be bought from the Walmart or pharmacies either 70% or 96% pure. I go for the 96% stuff myself.
     
  8. k7elp60

    Senior Member

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    A lot of the isopropyl alcohols from the local store have some glycerin in them. I use GC Electronics 10-1507 which is anhydrous-pure, and it works great. I have been using it for years.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2011
  9. Wendy

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    I think that would be the 70% stuff. It is used as a liniment.
     
  10. #12

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    OK. The consensus is ethyl and/or isopropyl alcohol.
    Just happen to have a quart of 70% isopropyl.
    No problem.
    I'll try it.
     
  11. Wendy

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    It would be worth your while to either get denatured ethanol or 96% isopropyl. The glycerin in 70% IPA is not good (some brands also use lanolin).

    The pure IPA is almost as cheap as rubbing alcohol (70% IPA).
     
  12. KJ6EAD

    Senior Member

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    I find the 99% isopropyl from time to time in drug stores. The last time I found it was in a Safeway.
     
  13. orbiter

    Active Member

    Jun 17, 2010
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    I use 99% IPA too. I just order a couple of bottles from ebay every now and then.
     
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