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Is solder wire harmful....

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demetal

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Hi,

I don't know whether i can ask this question here... but still i am asking...
I hear in NEWS about pollution and harmful effects created by electronics waste... and the major harm are caused by the Solder wire / lead content(even by touching)... can anyone tell me whether the solder Wire we use for soldering can cause harm to us...


Thanks
 

FvM

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I hear from your question, that you are using leaded solder.

The major health risk involved when soldering with lead-tin alloy is caused by lead vapour. Touching the solder wire isn't a problem, but eating at work probably is. See this information from british safety autorities: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg305.pdf

Leaded solder is mostly a problem with disposal of electronic waste, and that's the reason why it has been banned in most countries, at least for consumer devices.
 

jpanhalt

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The harmful effects of lead to ADULTS are, in my opinion, somewhat overblown. The real concern is children. There is no doubt that children who ingest lead are harmed by it. Their absorption is greater than adults, and the effects on developing neurological tissue and bone is more serious. Such ingestion comes from natural sources, for example eating mud, and from man-made sources, like eating flaking paint. Here is a fairly balanced review: Lead poisoning - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia It is definitely important that children be protected and the upper acceptable limit of 10 ug/dL is actually too high in the opinion of many American pediatricians.

Adults are different. Some use an acceptable limit of 10 ug/dL while others use the older limit of 25 ug/dL (see previous citation). About 30, 20, and 10 years ago, I did non-controlled studies of blood lead in young adults -- basically students in a toxicology class. Their blood levels were all considerably less than 5 ug/dL, including mine and other faculty who participated. I routinely use lead solder, leaded alloys in machining, and had exposure to leaded fuel and oil from engines using such fuel (aviation fuel). It should also be noted that lead bullets embedded in soft tissue for long periods cause no discernible increase in blood lead, unless the bullet is lodged near a bone. That is why surgeons may decide the risks of surgery do not justify removing them.

In summary, I think common sense and care in dealing with exposure to elemental lead is all that is needed for adults. Lead solder has advantages over lead-free solder. It is a risk/benefit type of issue. If you use it, wash your hands afterward, particularly before eating. If you are doing a lot of soldering, with or without leaded solder, be sure there is good ventilation. The fumes from the solder and flux are not good for you. And, don't do it in a place where children are likely to pick up pieces of solder and eat them.

John

Sorry, it took me too long to write my reply.
 
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luben111

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Hi jpanhalt,

The poison ingredient in the lead is actually one of the oxides in some particular valency which is dissolvable in water. If the environment is dry this oxide appears in smaller quantities, so it's not only the lead but also the environment. I would recommend to use gloves when soldering because the lead oxid can penetrate directly through the skin and of course through the fumes in our body. Once the lead is inside the body it replaces the calcium and it's very difficult to be taken out. The biggest risk is when you're young and you absorbed lead - for sure you'll get problems with bones and teeth in the future. The main problem is that small doses of lead work very slowly inside the body - it takes decades to harm your health.
 

demetal

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is there any way to identify whether my Solder wire consist of lead content...?
 

Embedded_Geek

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is there any way to identify whether my Solder wire consist of lead content...?
Every solder wire is made of combination of Lead(Pb) and Tin(Sn)
 

alexan_e

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Every solder wire is made of combination of Lead(Pb) and Tin(Sn)
No it isn't, there is lead free solder too.
Lead-free solders in commercial use may contain tin, copper, silver, bismuth, indium, zinc, antimony, and traces of other metals

Alex

---------- Post added at 18:20 ---------- Previous post was at 18:18 ----------

Is this lead content is capable to harm humans...?
the lead has the effect that you read in the links that were provided in the previous posts, it is harmful if you digest it.
 

demetal

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No it isn't, there is lead free solder too.
Lead-free solders in commercial use may contain tin, copper, silver, bismuth, indium, zinc, antimony, and traces of other metals

Alex

---------- Post added at 18:20 ---------- Previous post was at 18:18 ----------



the lead has the effect that you read in the links that were provided in the previous posts, it is harmful if you digest it.

as you referred if the lead free solder contains copper then its melting point must be higher as compared to cheap solder wires..... so do we need special soldering iron to use such lead free solder wires....?
 

leex14

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Well, Ive been messing with solders in my line of work for years now and nothing really harmful happened whenever Im feeling extra careful...
 

haree

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The concern is the children and whether this is not the harmful for the adults. there is no issue to touch this wire but if you will put to in your mouth then this is harmful and have a lot of side effects
 

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