Soldering enables the joining of metal parts by melting a filler metal to attach wires and other metallic components. The fumes generated from melting solder especially solder containing Lead or Tin present are dangerous and require local ventilation to remove harmful smoke from the work area. Soldering application need to be properly ventilated to prevent toxic fumes from reaching the worker's breathing zone.
There are a number of different industries such as the electronics assembly industry and electronics repair companies who must deal with the hazards of solder smoke. Fumes created by automated PCB soldering including wave soldering machines, handheld soldering irons, torch brazing and furnace brazing are often ignored because of the small volume of smoke generated. However, these applications still require careful consideration as dangerous fumes can impair employee’s respiratory tracts depending on the filler metals used.
Because manual soldering applications require working with tiny components, workers end up positioning their heads right above toxic rosin or lead solder fumes with a direct exposure into their throat, nasal passages and lungs, and as a result, they can experience respiratory complications. Rosin irritation can cause various side effects and the inhalation of lead fumes is carcinogenic. As lead oxide smoke collects in your lungs, it can be transferred into your bloodstream.
Repeated exposure can lead to lead poisoning. Symptoms can include:
Diversitech recommends installing soldering fume extraction equipment to prevent the inhalation of dangerous fumes. These ventilation units will not only protect each person working at a soldering station when installed and positioned correctly, but they will also prevent fumes from contaminating other worker’s lungs.
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