4 Soldering Iron Safety Tips to Remember 4 Soldering Iron Safety Tips to Remember
A soldering iron is useful for a range of different purposes, giving you the ability to attach different materials together whether for the purpose of repair or crafts. However, as well as knowing how to use the tool properly, you will also need to be aware of the safety tips that you can put in force.
1 – Work Area
The use of a soldering iron can result in smoke being formed, which can quickly fill a room depending on the size of the job. Reduce the risk of this happening by working with the tool in a ventilated area. Keep the work area clear of any unnecessary materials, especially those that are flammable. In addition, the work area should be cleaned of any dust and debris before any work is undertaken so there is no risk of it getting stuck to the tip.
2 – Touch
Don’t be tempted to touch the tip of the soldering iron to check that it is heating up properly after it has been switched on; you will know when it is ready. The tip is capable of reaching significantly high temperatures and can deliver a serious burn. Alternatively, check the manufacturer’s instructions to determine how long they recommend to wait before using the appliance after switching it on. When it has reached its optimum temperature and is ready to use, be careful to only grip the handle and not anywhere near the tip. Don’t touch the area that has been soldered until it has had a chance to cool down. If the material being soldered needs to maneuvered, use a pair or thick work gloves or a cloth.
3 – Store
A soldering iron will usually come with a corresponding stand and you should avoid any that doesn’t, unless you already have a stand to go with it. Always return the appliance to the stand when you have finished using it as resting it on a work surface can cause damage and can be a fire hazard. If you intend to store the appliance separately from where it is used, make sure that it is properly unplugged and has been allowed to cool down before doing so. Store it in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure that dirt is unable to accumulate on it.
4 – Operation
Do not leave the appliance unattended while it is on, whether it is in the stand or not. Avoid mistakes and accidents by not letting yourself get distracted while you are using it. Do not leave the soldering iron on the material for longer than necessary to do the job as this can create more smoke. Use a face mask to avoid inhaling the smoke or lean your head out of the range of the plume. Take care when swapping the handle from one hand to another and ensure that the cable is never in the path of the hot tip. After handling the appliance, you should wash your hands thoroughly to clean away any traces of lead that is used in the soldering process.