Common Soldering Problems: Too Much Solder

Having too much solder in joints is one of the most common mistakes in soldering. When there is excess solder, joints will typically be round and swelled, like a bubble. While this does not seem like a big problem, it can easily create solder bridges with other terminals if they are close to each other. Excess solder also affects the electrical conductivity of the board, resulting in a decrease in electrical performance. 

How to prevent having Too Much Solder at a Joint?

The simplest way to prevent having too much solder is to simply not add extra solder. This may seem simple, but to many who recently started their soldering journey, it may be hard to identify how much solder is sufficient. When soldering, the goal is to get a nice concave surface on the joint as per the image below. This is more than enough to ensure a connection and prevent the joints from coming loose. 

How to remove the excess solder?

If you have already put too much solder on the joint, do not worry! The excess solder can be easily removed according to these steps:

  1. Use a soldering iron to heat up the solder joint and melt the solder. 
  2. Heat up a desoldering wick with the tip of the iron and hold it to the solder joint. It will suck up the molten solder. 
  3. If the wick has been saturated with molten solder, trim it off at a 45 degree angle and repeat the process until the desired amount of solder has been removed. 
  4. Refer to this for more information on how to use a desoldering wick

Alternatively, you may remove the entire solder joint and restart the process with a desoldering tool such as 

12 most common soldering problems (and how to fix them):

  1. Cold Joint
  2. Disturbed Joint
  3. Overheated Joint
  4. Insufficient Wetting of the Surface Mount
  5. Insufficient Wetting of the Pad
  6. Insufficient Wetting of the Pin
  7. Solder Starved
  8. Too Much Solder
  9. Untrimmed Leads
  10. Solder Bridge
  11. Lifted Pad
  12. Stray Solder
Back to blog