Hacked Gadgets Forum

October 19, 2009

Surface Mount Component Removal using a Heat Gun

at 4:58 pm. Filed under Electronic Hacks


Surface mount rework stations are very expensive, Openschemes shows us that it is possible to perform Surface Mount Component Removal using a Heat Gun.

"Now it doesn’t matter much WHICH heat gun you use, although it should be able to produce a good bit of air at >300C. In our experience, long heating times due to using a weaker gun are the biggest cause of PCB burn, bulge, or trace peel.
A drawback of high air setting is the risk of blowing neighboring devices (usually tiny SMT resistors or capacitors) off their pads and maybe even off the board! You will need to weigh the risk at rework time and choose your airflow accordingly – if you have a device that’s simply SURROUNDED by tiny SMT caps, you may want to use lower air or make a foil cone for your heatgun to contain the hot air to the desired area. Here’s the heat gun we used here, peak temp is about 550C."


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7 Responses to “Surface Mount Component Removal using a Heat Gun”

  1. chip Says:

    Use kapton tape to shield surrounding components

  2. Alex G Says:

    TiVo PROM hack in progress?

  3. Josh Says:

    I’ve used this method several times on a laptop that wouldn’t flash the BIOS properly. I had to remove the PROM to reprogram it. I ended up getting a new board for it because I burned the board while trying to get solder on one of the places to melt.

  4. Asia – Heat of the Moment ( w. lyrics ) | Travel-e-Store Says:

    […] Surface Mount Component Removal regulating a Heat Gun – Hacked Gadgets … […]

  5. wolfy02 Says:

    i’ve been doing this for awhile now, but you have to watch out for burning the board up or worse, burn the chip you’re trying to get. I was trying to get a smd mini usb off a razr for another proj and ended up melting the plastic inside. *DUR*


    if you use this methode apply some capsule to the heat gun to only unsolder the bios chip but be aware that heat can burn the chip i have a solder station and when unsoldering a chip from an amiga i unsolder it right solder a plcc socket and when put the same chip on the socket never waked up i am waiting now for a new and hope it was just the chip that fried inside because you won´t see any damage sign from out chip greetins from Portugal

  7. Fuming Solder Says:

    There are quite a few things wrong with this picture, and worst of all is that the PCB is not removed from the case! This is a recipe for disaster – melted wire being an obvious one. Also, most (good) heat guns come with a variety of nozzles and using a heat gun without a flat nozzle is not a good idea. At least with the flat nozzle you can somewhat control the direction of the hot air flow. There are usually also reducer nozzles of various kind in there – no reason to heat this much area if all you need is one chip. Just use a reducing nozzle.

    And lastly, one will do much better by trying to cover the rest of the components with a heat-resistant material. I just happen to have some mineral wool sheets for that but I’d think anything that does not get burned itself and helps to deflect the hot air away from the parts you’re NOT working one, will do. For example, looks like some sheet steel or sheet aluminum from old CD/DVD-rom drives should do a good job protecting materials you don’t want de-soldered.

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