How To Solder and Desolder Connections
Soldering is used in almost all electronic devices to attach components to boards. There are a few different techniques used to repair, replace, or remove soldered connections. Whether it be a large thru-hole component, a small thru-hole component, or a small surface-mount component, this guide will walk you through the soldering process.
Extracting a Stripped Screw ¶
Try as you might, it is likely that you will one day strip a screw and be left with a screw head that physics just cannot handle. First, try using different sized and shaped screwdrivers, or a pair of pliers, to see if you can get the screw to budge. If that doesn't work out, follow this guide to cut a small notch in the screw head and allow removal with a flathead screwdriver.
Cleaning Liquid Damage ¶
Liquid damage is one of the most common causes of device malfunction. It happens to everyone and can cause permanent damage to electronics if not taken care of properly. Luckily, it can only damage the device if it causes a short-circuit, or corrodes the internals. Turn off your device, then check out this guide to try and clean out all the liquid.
Discharging a Capacitor ¶
Always be careful when working with electronics, as capacitors inside the device can store dangerous amounts of electricity. This is not usually as much of a concern with smaller electronics, but larger and older electronics often contain larger capacitors that can be dangerous. If you are ever unsure about whether a capacitor is charged or not, you can follow this guide to make a capacitor discharging tool.
Applying Thermal Paste ¶
Any time you remove a heat sink from a processor, you need to clean off the old thermal paste and apply a new layer, to ensure the best conductivity and cooling. Follow this general guide to reapply thermal paste after removing, replacing, or upgrading a heat sink or CPU.